An ISA student overlooking the Gold Coast in Australia.

5 Reasons Why Australia’s Gold Coast is Worth the Hype

By Kaitlyn Webster, Marketing Associate

With a name like the Gold Coast, one can expect glittering beaches, sparkling water, and gleaming skyscrapers, but Australia’s so-called “Glitter Strip” is not just a golden facade. There’s a lot more to this popular vacation spot than luxury shopping malls and world-class beaches. Here are five reasons why Australia’s Gold Coast is worth the hype as a study abroad destination.

Exploring the natural beauty of Tamborine Mountain. (Photo by Kristen Parisi)

The Landscape

Beyond its glittering high-rises and 43 miles of pristine coastline, the Gold Coast is the perfect spot for adventure travel. In fact, the Gold Coast has the largest subtropical rainforest remnant in the world, which means plenty of trails to hike, waterfalls to chase, and treetops to walk. ISA Gold Coast excursions will take you to local hotpots, like the scenic Springbrook National Park and Bridge and towering Tamborine Mountain, but adventure travelers will never be at a loss for local outdoor activities.

Bond University in the Gold Coast of Australia.
Bond University in Australia’s Gold Coast

The Universities

Two great universities in one great location — that’s how we describe ISA’s Gold Coast university partners: Bond University and Griffith University. Bond University is Australia’s leading independent university and offers small class sizes and a tight-knit campus where study abroad students can take classes in a wide range of subjects, including Business, Psychology, and Criminology. Just 10 miles up the coast is Griffith University, a large modernized campus located just 20 minutes from the iconic Surfer’s Paradise. No matter what type of university you’re looking for, you can’t go wrong with these Gold Coast institutions.

Kangaroos at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.
Chillin with the locals at the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.

The Locals

Australians are famous for their friendliness and their exotic wildlife. The Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is just a short drive from the Gold Coast and is home to some of Australia’s most adorable locals. Have you ever wanted to hold a koala or take a selfie with a kangaroo? Now’s your chance! ISA students will have the opportunity to explore the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary as part of the Bridging Cultures Program when they first arrive in Australia. It’s a great way to get to know the locals and your new classmates.

Gold Coast beaches
The Gold Coast is made up of 43 miles of pristine coastline. (Photo by Shona Williams)

The Beaches

You can’t talk about the Gold Coast without mentioning its beaches: Nobby Beach, Burleigh Beach, Surfer’s Paradise… while it’s almost impossible to choose a favorite, Surfer’s Paradise is the most famous Gold Coast beach — and for good reason. This Gold Coast hub is a place to see and be seen and just steps away from the beach is some of the Gold Coast’s best shopping opportunities, so be sure to leave room in your bag for souvenirs!

The Gold Coast skyline.
Location, location, location.

The Location

The Gold Coast’s prime location on Australia’s east coast in Queensland makes it the ideal spot for surfers and beach-goers but also for those looking to explore some of Australia’s best cities and scenery. The Australian state of Queensland has plenty to explore, including its urban capital of Brisbane, the Great Barrier Reef just off the coast of Cairns, and even more picturesque beaches on the Sunshine Coast. With so much to do and see in Australia, the Gold Coast makes it easy to make the most of your time abroad. 


Learn more about ISA’s study abroad program in Australia’s Gold Coast.

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