With its pristine beaches and laidback vibe, Noosa on Queensland's Sunshine Coast has always been a favourite for family holidays - but not everyone arrives with a bucket and spade. Couples have discovered this beautiful destination is ideal for a delicious romantic escape. Think happening bars, sophisticated dining, sublime spas and sunset strolls. Noosa is beautiful one day and perfect the next when you visit with someone special.
Wicker chairs face outwards in classic European style at Aromas Noosa where breakfast featuring produce from the Noosa Hinterland, accompanied by the papers and a leisurely coffee, is not to be missed. In the afternoon, people drop in for a glass of wine and watch the parade of window shoppers browsing the art galleries, gift shops and boutiques along Hastings Street.
TELEPHONE CALL FROM
Slip down Arcadia Walk and raise your glass to The Junction, as the eclectic collection of bars and restaurants around Noosa Junction is known. Grab a seat on a comfy couch and rub shoulders with the locals at Eddie Cheeba's, drop into the funky beer garden at Village Bicycle for a brew or check out the intriguingly named Telephone Call From, a tiny hole-in-the-wall bar that serves great cocktails and a rotating selection of eats from around the globe. One week you might receive a Telephone Call From Africa, the next it's a Telephone Call From Bangkok.
NOOSA BEACH HOUSE
Party people will enjoy the lively atmosphere of the bar at Noosa Beach House. Early afternoons tend to be laidback with the action really kicking off around 4pm. Windows let in the breeze and locals frequently wave to friends passing by, urging them to come in "for a quick drink", which is usually anything but. Locally-inspired bar snacks such as poached Mooloolaba prawns and snapper ceviche make it tempting to stay all night.
Season is located just a few steps away from Noosa's famous beach. Grab one of the high tables outside, order a refreshing cocktail and watch suntanned beach goers wander along the Noosa boardwalk. If there are no seats available outdoors or at the bar inside, it's worth asking if you can sit at one of the restaurant's prime front tables. Even if these have reserved signs, you can often 'borrow' one to enjoy a drink and watch the sun go down before the dinner crowd arrives.
Although this beachfront restaurant is open all day, it's hard to go past the breakfast menu. Start with a glass of freshly squeezed juice followed by seasonal fruits topped with candied walnuts and creamy yoghurt from the nearby town of Kenilworth. Corn and chive waffles arrive with lashings of capsicum spiced jam, smashed avocado, crispy bacon and roasted tomatoes with a dash of balsamic. With stunning views over Laguna Bay, Bistro C is the perfect spot to linger over a second coffee.
Locale has the brooding good looks of an Italian Romeo and a sultry colour scheme that makes it especially romantic at night when the lights are low. Local produce features heavily on the menu, which offers classic Italian dishes with a modern twist and an impressive array of pizzas and pasta. Service is friendly and as polished as a bright red Ferrari.
Stroll along the beach with your lover and surprise them when you "stumble across" a beautiful, romantic haven for two that comes complete with scatter cushions, a bottle of bubbles and delicious gourmet treats. Noosa Picnics sets up everything and removes it when you're finished, so all you have to do is eat, drink, relax and hold each other close as the setting sun sparkles on the ocean.
Exploring Noosa's waterways in a classic 1940s-style speedboat makes you feel like movie stars. Start off slow with a relaxing cruise alongside million-dollar mansions then hold on to your hat for a thrilling ride up the river past Makepeace Island. Further ahead the freshwater tidal parklands of the Noosa Biosphere Reserve offer a change of pace. Dark tannin-stained water reflects the beauty of the surrounding bush and it is silent except for the sound of the wind in the trees.
Walking into this Balinese-inspired spa oasis is instantly relaxing. Native birds fill the air with their sweet song and freestanding treatment rooms, surrounded by lush tropical gardens, beckon you inside. Couples can indulge in one of Ikatan's most popular treatments, a sensual Balinese Boreh wrap and massage. Traditional spices are used to create a warming body wrap followed by a warm coconut milk cleanse and a one-hour Balinese massage.
NOOSA NATIONAL PARK
Noosa's serene surroundings and natural beauty inspires couples to relax and revel in its sense of place. Soak up the sun on a secluded beach or walk the famous Noosa National Park Coastal Track, keeping an eye out for koalas overhead and dolphins in the sparkling ocean below. Cooling off in the crystal clear waters of Little Cove or Laguna Bay on the return journey is pure bliss.
For more ideas, see visitnoosa.com.au
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