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13 Cheap things to do on the Sunshine Coast

No matter what your budget, the Sunshine Coast has some fantastic and inexpensive adventures that await. Here's a list of 13 of the best and cheapest things to do in and around the Sunshine Coast.

1. Climbing Mount Coolum

Climbing Mount Coolum is a must-do for visitors to the Sunshine Coast. Located in Coolum, a trek to the top of the 208-metre rock dome provides a panoramic view of the coastline and hinterlands. The ascent is an 800-metre track that goes through rainforest, eucalyptus groves and montane heath. There are no facilities, so bring your own water.

2. Maroochydore Shopping

If shopping is your way to relax, check out Aerodrome Road in Maroochydore. Several thrift stores offer bargains for a cause. By shopping here, you support foundations that provide care to members of local communities. Goods for sale range from gently worn clothing to furniture bargains.

3. Walk on Water on the Riverwalk

While you're shopping in Maroochydore, check out Sunshine Watercraft on the Riverwalk at Sunshine Plaza. Test your balance by trying to walk on the water while enclosed in an inflatable bubble. If you feel like running, try the water roller, an inflatable waterwheel. The venue also has kayaking and paddleboats.

4. Virtual Reality at Laserzone

Virtual reality laser play at Laserzone in Warana entertains kids of all ages, including adults. Check out the games in the interactive video arcade. Children aged 6 and up can don computerised vests and enter the laser tag arena, which includes special effects and a state-of-the-art sound system. Those aged 8 and up can create their own world in the 360-degree virtual reality zone. Special rates are available for birthday parties, groups and holiday sessions.

5. Open-Air Music Concerts

Treat yourself to an open-air concert at Peregian Beach. Peregian Originals showcases original music by local musicians the second Sunday of each month. There is no charge for entry, but guests are invited to donate to support the event.

6. Visit the Strawberry Fields in Palmview

If you enjoy produce fresh from the fields, check out Strawberry Fields in Palmview. Northeast of Caloundra in the hinterlands near Aussie World, the fields are full of fresh strawberries. During off season, the family-owned farm hosts educational tours, private parties and tractor rides. Visit the café, which serves homemade strawberry treats all year round.

7. Explore Noosa National Park

The coastal track in Noosa National Park takes you straight to hell—that is, Hell's Gate, one of the spectacular headlands along the rugged coastline. Take a dip in the secluded beaches, hike through the rainforest and look for exotic wildlife nestled into the native vegetation.

8. Treat Yourself to a Market!

The Sunshine Coast is famous for its markets. The Eumundi Markets are a must-see, featuring works from local artisans, street food, fresh local produce and loads of activities for kids and adults. In addition to the regular Wednesday and Saturday exhibitions, Eumundi Markets are open Friday nights in December up until Christmas. Join the fun with concerts, a visit from Santa, movies and other seasonal activities. Other popular Sunshine Coast markets include Caloundra Street Fair, Yandina Markets and Noosa Farmer's Markets.

9. Take the Kids to Aqua Fun Park

Slide, swim, jump and run on the inflatable obstacle course that floats on water. The family-oriented park near Maroochydore offers activities suited for children as young as 4 years. In addition to fun water play, the park has picnic spots, an exclusive beach and plenty of parking.

10. Maleny Botanical Gardens

Maleny Botanical Gardens showcase the beauty of the Sunshine Coast. Waterfalls, ponds, rainforest vegetation and exotic birds stimulate the senses. Sip locally grown tea in the café overlooking the gardens. Walk through the aviary, home to birds from all over the world. Enjoy the views of the Glasshouse Mountains while picnicking on the grass. Dogs on leashes are welcome.

11. Stock up at the Maleny Cheese Factory

While in Maleny, be sure to visit Maleny Dairies, a family-owned dairy farm and cheese factory. Watch how cheese is made, take a tractor ride through the farm, view the cows in the pasture, and see them milked. The Milkbar offers dairy products produced on the farm, including full-cream milk, yoghurt and homemade custard.

12. Rainforest Exploration

The hinterlands of the Sunshine Coast are full of scenic spots worth exploring. Waterfalls, rainforest vegetation, crystal-clear freshwater pools, hiking tracks and breathtaking vistas are some of the sights. At Kondalilla Falls near Maleny, visitors can start with a picnic, then amble to the falls and pools. The Kondalilla Falls circuit is a 4.7-km track with 300 steps that wend their way from the pools at the top of the escarpment through several vegetation zones alive with birds and other wildlife. Expect to spend between two and three hours to complete the circuit.

13. Delight in the Ginger Factory in Yandina

For more than 75 years, dedicated growers have cultivated ginger in Yandina. Today, the Buderim Ginger Factory supplies many places in the world with ginger. The establishment offers tours, fun rides, activities and a café and store that showcase edibles and other goods made with ginger. Ride the historic cane train through the 9 hectares of gardens, see how bees make honey, tour the factory, and let the young ones explore the play area. Group tours and educational programs are available.

To make your Sunshine Coast holiday enjoyable, stay at The Point Coolum Beach. The resort hotel is near all of these fun activities. We can help you plan your itinerary.

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