Noosa, on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast is renowned as one of Australia’s most beautiful beachside destinations and we had to see it for ourselves. If you are looking for adventure, there is plenty to do. Learn to surf or try stand-up paddle boarding, sail the beautiful waters of Laguna Bay, kayak in the Noosa Everglades, join a sunset cruise abroad a ferry or go swimming with humpback whales (July to October). For those wanting a more relaxed experience, Noosa is home to fabulous day spas, world-class golf courses, stylish shopping and delicious cuisine.
From Melbourne, we flew into Sunshine Coast Airport and it was just a short 25 minutes scenic car ride to Noosa. As soon as we stepped out of the car, we were greeted by sunshine and warm friendly staff at Sofitel Noosa Pacific Resort.
WHERE TO STAY
We decided to stay at Sofitel Noosa Pacific Resort, located in the heart of Hastings Street and close to everything the Sunshine Coast has to offer. The stunning Main Beach is only a 2 minute walk away and the central location provides easy access to the hub of Hastings Street and Noosa National Park.
There are 176 guest rooms, suites and villas. Each takes inspiration from the beautiful surroundings, reflecting the relaxed beach ambiance, the natural, soothing colours are given a little energy with orange accents throughout. The rooms are bright and spacious and include a kitchenette, sofa and a private balcony.
Resort facilities include, outdoor heated swimming pool (pictured above), pool bar, luxury AQUA day spa, jacuzzi, sauna, aqua therapy, gymnasium, bicycle hire, boat excursions and renowned on-site restaurant.
For those of you with kids, this is an extremely family friendly resort. During the time when we were there, it was school holidays. The resort had many activities planned for the little ones daily, from cupcake decorating to face painting. I know where I will be heading for a family holiday after #babyfox is born!
Of course, one of my favourite indulgences while on holiday is ordering breakfast in bed. We decided to take our breakfast out to our private balcony to enjoy the view and sunshine while sipping on our cups of coffee and devouring our scrumptious breakfast.
During our stay, I visited the AQUA Day Spa located in the Resort. The spa offers a comprehensive selection of treatments, therapies and products to relax your body, mind and soul. Being 12 weeks pregnant at that time, I selected the pregnancy massage. I came out of the massage feeling very relaxed and refreshed. What a perfect way to start any holiday!
The Cabanas Noosa
Picture this: you’re lazing in the French Riviera by a gorgeous pool in your very own private cabana. Then, a butler appears to pour champagne and serve you super-fresh oysters. And you don’t have to move an inch. Sounds like bliss?
We think so! We booked ourselves into a cabana at The Cabanas Noosa for a full day. We loved lounging in the beautiful all-white cabanas which also included personalised butler services, fresh fruit platter, a selection of French still and sparkling water, plus a personalised iPad to browse means and hand-picked selection of magazines. Seriously, what more could we ask for?
We think a cabana would be the perfect addition for that special staycation coming up – anniversary, babymoon or birthday! Or just any excuse to spoil yourself and your loved ones!
$175 – Full Day 9am – 5:30pm
$125 – Half Day 9am – 1pm or 1:30pm – 5:30pm
Maximum of 4 guests per Cabana
Available for Hotel Guests when staying at Sofitel Noosa Pacific Resort
WHERE TO EAT & DRINK
Between bounty from the sea and the verdant hinterland, Noosa has a lot of beautiful and fresh produce. Add a fair serve of kitchen talent, natural beauty, sunshine and you have a fresh and thriving dining scene.
Noosa Beach House
From one of Australia’s most acclaimed and well-regarded chefs, Peter Kuruvita’s Noosa Beach House Restaurant & Bar offers dining in a stylishly chic setting. Noosa Beach House combines two elements of dining; a breezy bar overlooking the passing parade offering cocktails and smart bar snacks and an upmarket restaurant with an extensive menu, wine list and personalised service.
Featuring the local produce and seafood of the Sunshine Coast, fusing the flavours of Peter’s childhood in Sri Lanka and his travels through the Asia Pacific region, with a modern approach. Don’t miss the wild caught North Queensland crayfish on the menu!
On Saturdays and Sundays (12noon – 2:30pm) at Noosa Beach House, you can enjoy a Five Pot Curry Lunch for $38 per person. Indulge on an authentic curry lunch served family style with five curries, rice and condiments.
Positioned absolute beachfront overlooking Noosa’s Laguna Bay, Bistro C is open for breakfast through to dinner. The relaxed beachside atmosphere is a great place to enjoy some of their famous calamari with a glass of wine. Treat yourself to a sunset cocktail or a sumptuous moonlight dinner as you take in the sound of the waves lapping at the doorstep.
Offering stunning river view over three levels, Noosa Boathouse is ideal for morning coffee and cake, long lunches, intimate dinners and sunset cocktails. Noosa Boathouse offers steak and fresh seafood in a causal dining environment. Noosa Boathouse’s signature dish is an extravagant seafood experience for two – a three-course smorgasbord of seafood delights including Morton Bay bug, Mooloolaba prawns, Hervey Bay scallops, Pacific Oysters and more.
Sails Beach Restaurant
Bang on the boardwalk in prime people watching location, Sails is as close as you will come to the water without getting wet. Located at basement level is their wine bar, Rumba which is a working cellar storing all of their red wines, dessert wines and vintages champagnes.
Betty’s Burgers & Concrete Co.
One of Noosa’s favourite casual eaters is famous for its burgers and its frozen custard ice creams. Betty’s Burgers & Concrete Co. is a dine in and take away going that aims to be tasty and affordable. Go for the whole hog with the pork belly burger or watch your carb intake with ‘Bare Betty’ served with lettuce in place of a bun.
Without a double the best ice cream in town! On sunny days there is always a line out the front but don’t let that deter you. If you come to Noosa, you have to sample the delicious ice cream they have on offer!
Riviera Bar & Lounge
Offering spectacular views over Noosa River, Riviera Bar & Lounge blends contemporary French luxury with Noosa’s coaster chic. This is the only establishment along Hastings Street that offers sunset views over the river and the opportunity to wave to the stand-up paddle boarders as they paddle on by. With a cocktail list that is difficult to say ‘no’ to. There are over 10 different types of French champagne to try and not to mention Riviera also specialises in whisky!
WHAT TO DO & SEE
Surrounded by beach, river, hinterland and national parks, the Noosa region offers an amazing range of activities, adventures and tours in beautiful natural settings.
Noosa National Park’s coastal travel is one of the great walks of the Sunshine Coast – a must for holiday makers and locals alike. No trip to Noosa is complete without a trip here!
The park’s walking tracks lead to stunning coastal scenery, idyllic bays and great surfing. Koalas are often spotted in the trees near Tea Tree Bay and dolphins are commonly seen from the rocky headlands around Alexandria Bay. During July to October months, you may be able to spot some humpback whales.
Keeping walking towards Hell’s Gates, you will come across some fairy pools (pictured above). It’s a great spot to rest and go for a dip to cool down!
The Noosa Everglades, one of the only two everglades systems on Earth. Known as the River of Mirrors because of the amazing reflections in the water, is a 60km stretch of pristine waters, magnificent flora and fauna and narrow waterways.
You can explore the Noosa Everglades with guided or self-guided kayak tours from Boreen point, by boat from Noosaville or on foot.
Learn to surf
Noosa is known throughout the world for it’s amazing surf spots, with options from preschoolers on big foams through to oldies with 10-foot longboards. It’s easy to see why, white sand, clean warm blue water and gentle waves. Main Beach is perfect for learners or long boarders!
Stand up paddle board
Whether for fitness or pure enjoyment, stand up paddle boarding is an activity that can be enjoyed at any age and experience level. We decided to give it a try! Behind Sofitel Noosa Pacific Resort is Boardwalk Boats, where you can hire boats, kayaks and stand up paddles.
The canal offers smooth flatwater paddling with breathtaking vistas of the hinterland to Mount Cooray. My board was extremely light and easy to steer. We had so much fun that morning paddling up and down the river! Being 12 weeks pregnant at the time, it was a very light exercise and I wasn’t out of breath at all!