End of the Rainbow Beach: an easy weekend escape

Searching for a trip that’s not excessively long? That won’t break the bank? That won’t get potentially derailed by another border closure?

Well, if you’re itching for an escape from the weekly grind and crave that unforgettable weekend away – it’s time to hit the road! Explore more of what our Sunshine State has to offer on this weekend-long adventure from Brisbane to Rainbow Beach. Following this flexible itinerary, you’ll journey from Brisbane up through small coastal towns, mountain ranges and pristine national parks, all the way to tranquil Rainbow Beach. All achievable from the comfort of your car, van or caravan!

Image via Tourism and Events Queensland


Depart from Brisbane early Saturday morning, and make your way up north on the M1 towards the Sunshine Coast. After 61km, be sure to pause for a short walk uphill at Wild Horse Mountain. The lookout provides a stunning perspective of the surrounding Glass House Mountains; long extinct volcanoes, now a geological marvel.

Continuing on for another 57km, you’ll reach (just in time for lunch) the regional town of Eumundi, home to the famous Eumundi Markets held each Saturday. Sprawling across a large corner of the town, experience the eclectic flavours and art of the region, and be sure to stock up on some local artisanal goods and produce. With plenty of entertainment and vendors showcasing the finest the east coast has to offer; you’ll want to take a break to enjoy this.

Thirsty? Stop in at the Imperial Hotel Eumundi, which has revived its famous local craft beer from the 1980’s with the aid of industry giant Lion, in a beautiful new on-site brewery where you can have a tipple tapped directly from the tank!

Image via Tourism and Events Queensland

Complete the last of your driving for the day on the M1 for 91km towards Rainbow Beach. Turn off onto Rainbow Beach Rd, driving through lush national park, until you reach the small township. Prior to arrival, making sure you have booked in advance: you have your pick of number of excellent coastal caravanning and holiday parks. One to suit any type of traveler, on any type of budget!

For those who are chasing a rustic experience, go for one of the beachside campsites in the Inkskip Peninsula Recreation Area. With council owned campgrounds like MV Natone Camping Area or SS. Dorrigo Campsite offering a camping experience practically on the beach. Imagine sleeping under the stars, the sounds of waves lulling you to sleep, and Fraser Island right at your doorstep to greet you in the morning – sounds like bliss, right? Just be sure to check that these sites are suitable for whatever vehicle you’re driving… some campsites are sandier than others. Bring a supply of fresh drinking water, and be prepared for drop toilets – these sites are just the bare necessities!

If the creature comforts of home are more your speed, try Rainbow Beach Holiday Village or BIG4 Breeze Rainbow Beach, located in the heart of the Rainbow Beach township. Here you’re in walking distance of two supermarkets and  For amenities and perks galore, these caravan parks offer shaded camping areas, wireless internet, undercover BBQ / camp kitchen areas. If you wish to ditch your vehicle for the night, you also have variety of cabin, villa, and powered campsite options available.


Sunday, be sure to explore the beauty of the surrounding area before hitting the road. There’s a number of adventure experiences available, ranging from Paragliding, Surf School, Dolphin Kayak Tours, all of which can be booked online, or just ask one of the friendly staff members at your caravan park for assistance. If you want to set your own pace for the day, The Great Sandy National Park definitely lives up to its name. Short and long hike tracks through beachside bushland showcase some of the most unique pigmented sand formations in the world. A highlight being the Carlo Sand Blow, known for its “moonscape” like surface it has some of the wildest cliffside views in the area.

Image via Tourism and Events Queensland


When ready for departure back to Brisbane, try taking the turn off on Tin-Can Bay Rd instead of returning to the M1. Follow the country roads, flanked by pineapple and sugar cane fields, down towards Noosa for 117km. Here you can enjoy the seaside route stretching from Noosa all the way down to Mooloolaba, and any surf, sun and local shopping along the way. Finally, the home stretch. Carry on for another 97.2km by returning back onto the M1 and continue until you arrive safely and soundly back in Brisbane.

You’re ready to return to the working week, with the glow of having escaped it for a moment.

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