Australia's East Coast has forever been a popular backpacking destination. It is super safe to travel and the cultural shock levels are pretty low. Australia itself has over 11,000 beaches and 8222 islands, so it's pretty safe to say that no matter where you go, from Melbourne all the way north to Cape Tribulation, you are sure to find a little slice of paradise. If we were to list every location on the east coast that will blow your mind, we would be here for a VERY long time! So we've narrowed it down to our top slices of amazingly, beautiful, jaw droppingly stunning paradise beaches (in no particular order).
These are some of the best beaches on Australias East Coast.
1. Bells Beach, Great Ocean Road
Home of the Rip Curl Surf Pro, Bells Beach can be found in Torquay at the very beginning of the Great Ocean Road. Why we love it? The beach is perched in the middle of a towering coastline and the stairway leading to the beach really makes you feel like you are venturing to your own little beach hideaway. How to get there? Hire a Campervan from Melbourne or book a Great Ocean Road tour.
The world's largest sand island is home to over 100 freshwater lakes, ancient rainforest and is rich with history. The beaches are a no go zone but the dune perched lakes are the main attraction. Hmm.. imagine it now. Cruising along 75 mile beach in a 4WD, floating down the fresh waters of Eli Creek, look out towards no where from Indian Head Lookout and chilling in the crystal clear rain waters of Lake McKenzie and Lake Wabby! How to get there? Organise a Tag-Along 4X4 or guided tour from Noosa, Rainbow Beach or Hervey Bay. Why we love Fraser Island? The lake's waters are made purely of pure rainwater.
Byron Bay has MANY amazing beaches (including main beach). But Wategos is a local's secret and just a short drive from the town centre. Why we love it? Although unpredictable, there is usually good surf and the beach is rather quiet - making it a great place to laze away a Cheeky Monkey's hangover. How to get there? Located around 3km east of Byron's town centre, Wategos can be reached by a 450m walking track from the Cape Byron Lighthouse. Our tip? Get up early for a lighthouse sunrise and venture to Wategos.
74 Islands sit upon the Great Barrier Reef east of Airlie Beach. The largest of the islands, Whitsunday Island, is home to Whitehaven Beach - which we are sure you have most likely hear of! The beach's sand is made of pure silica which means that you can actually clean your teeth with it! Why we love it? Because no matter how many times we take a trip to the Whitsundays, the islands never fail to blow us away. How to get there? Our tip: Book an overnight sailing tour from Airlie Beach where you actually get to sleep on the boat!
Cape Tribulation is as far north as you can travel without a 4X4 vehicle on the east coast. Located two hours north of Cairns, it is the only place in the world where two World Heritage Listed sites meet: the Daintree Rainforest (the world's oldest rainforest) and the Great Barrier Reef. To get there? Hire a Campervan or organise an overnight tour from Cairns. Why we love it? Because you really feel as if you are in the 'middle of nowhere.'
Noosa's National Park is home to some pretty amazing hidden beaches of paradise - it's the ultimate location to slap on the swimsuit, strap on the walking shoes and get lost in the park's walking trails, bays and beaches. The walking track is high above Granite Bay so you can score some great photo opps of the coastline. Why we love it? The beach is isolated and there are walking trails that lead down to the bay. How to get there? Chat to the staff at Nomads Noosa for tips on walks through Noosa National Park.
Magnetic Island is a sandy paradise within itself - but there are 23 beaches and 22 bays surrounding the island that sits within the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park. There are loads of walking tracks that lead to Insta worthy views of the ocean and it's not unlikely that you will spot a Koala on the island! Why we love Rocky Bay? It's not the easiest secluded sandy paradise to get to - but completely worth it when you get there! How to get there? Make your way over the Nelly Bay rocks by Base Magnetic Island and follow the walking trail through Picnic Bay.
Located around 3 hours south of Byron Bay sits Spot X Surf Camp. The surf camp offers hostel accommodation right on the door step of a secret, secluded beach - also a great place to hit the waves. Think hammocks, bean bags, good food and a chilled vibe. Why we love it? This slice of sandy paradise sits within a marine reserve and is a great way to chill out before hitting up Byron or Sydney. How to get there? If travelling on a Greyhound East Coast pass, the hostel runs a transfer service from the town of Woolgoolga.
9. Manly Beach, Sydney
Bondi Beach and Coogee Beach are a given - so we though we would throw good old Manly Beach into the mix! Why we love it?There tends to be more locals at Manly and of course a chilled out vibe. How to get there? Take a ferry from Circular Quay in Sydney's CBD. Tip: rent some snorkels and check out the marine life at Shelley Beach.
Located around a 40 minute ferry ride from Cairns, Fitzroy Island is a little island paradise with tropical rainforest and beautiful beaches. The best beaches and bays on the island are reached by exploring one of the many walking tracks. You can hire kayaks, snorkels, paddle-boards and loads of other fun things when you reach the island. Why we love it? There's a beach front bar, an ocean trampoline and a Turtle Hospital! How to get there? Chat to the staff at Nomads Cairns about booking a ferry transfer or adventure package.