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Ways to spoil dad on Father’s Day on the Gold Coast

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Ways to spoil dad on Father’s Day on the Gold Coast

Special Cruises

Are you stuck on Father’s Day gift ideas? Sea World Cruises has a variety of fun and relaxing activities for your favourite old man! From whale watching to delicious buffet dinners, we have the list of the ultimate things to do and gift ideas for Father’s Day on the Gold Coast.

Lunch Cruise

Spend the day soaking up the sunshine aboard a Sightseeing Lunch Cruise. Relax as you depart Surfers Paradise on our multi-million dollar, air-conditioned vessel. Indulge in a delicious tropical buffet with all you can eat fresh prawns, maple glazed ham, succulent roast chicken and more. Enjoy our range of local craft beers and wines at our fully licensed onboard bar. Wander up to the spacious sun deck with a drink in hand, watching the beautiful views of the Gold Coast waterways.

Soak in the Gold Coast sunshine on the open-air sun deck.

Dinner Cruise

Celebrate dad under the twinkling lights of the Gold Coast skyline aboard a Sightseeing Dinner Cruise. Departing from our Sea World Cruises Terminal on Main Beach on our Spirit of Elston vessel, enjoy a two-hour cruise down sparkling waterways. Enjoy a dinner feast fit for a king, featuring delicious herb-crusted lamb, grilled calamari, pan-seared barramundi, salads and more. Take in the scenery as you tap your toes to live entertainment. Treat him to a drinks package and make him felt even more spoilt.

Whale Watching

Surprise your pa with tickets to the greatest migration on Earth. Whale Watching is one of the best activities to do on the Gold Coast and one your dad is sure to love. Just 20 minutes from our Sea World Cruises terminal, you’ll reach the famous Humpback Highway, an underwater corridor that sees over 35,000 whales pass through every year.  Be amazed as humpback whales launch themselves into the air, slap their mighty tails and ‘mug’ the vessel.

For a VIP experience, upgrade to the exclusive Captain’s Lounge, featuring comfortable leather seats, priority boarding and complimentary light refreshments.

Explore the Gold Coast waterways

Watch the sunset as you sit back and relax aboard a 1.5-hour Afternoon Explorer Cruise. Take in the views with a cold, crisp beer on hand as we drift past the Gold Coast’s most iconic locations. Take in local wildlife, admire multi-million dollar yachts at Marina Mirage, and the magnificent waterfront homes of the rich and famous, accompanied by an entertaining commentary.

See the homes of the rich and the famous on the Gold Coast Broadwater.

Give the gift of gift vouchers

Stuck on a gift idea that dad will really love? Give him the choice of what cruise he wants with a Sea World Cruises Gift Voucher.

Places are limited for our Father’s Day cruises. Book now to avoid disappointment.

BOOK NOW!

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Responsible whale watching: What does it mean?

By | Blog, Whale Watching

Responsible whale watching: What does it mean?

Whale Watching

Sea World Cruises are proud to be certified in responsible whale watching with an Advanced ECO Certification. As a leader in ecotourism, we have a high standard in our operations and a duty of care to animals and the environment. This is important to conserve the natural beauty of the Gold Coast bay and keep its wild inhabitants safe for future generations.

Who is Ecotourism Australia?

Formed in 1991, Ecotourism Australia aims to promote environmentally sustainable and culturally responsible tourism. They define their definition of ecotourism as:

“Ecotourism is ecologically sustainable tourism with a primary focus on experiencing natural areas that foster environmental and cultural understanding, appreciation and conservation.”

Its focus is on conserving the local environment and historical heritage while supporting the culture and encouraging people to look after the natural resources that attract them to the region.

What is Ecotourism?

Ecotourism aims to preserve the integrity of the destination. Its focus is on conserving the local environment and historical heritage while supporting the culture and encouraging people to look after the natural resources that attract them to the region. Sea World Cruises holds an Advanced ECO Certification, meaning Ecotourism Australia has independently assessed us as one of the nation’s leading and most innovative ecotourism operators.

What makes our whale watching sustainable?

Sea World Cruises adhere to best practices for whale and dolphin watching. This includes guidelines, ethics, and ideas that ensure services provided are conducted in a manner that:

– Minimises negative impacts on marine life, including whales, dolphins, and the environment.
– Results in high levels of customer satisfaction.
– Positively benefits local communities and the environment.
– Educates and inspires the public and the wider tourism industry.

Our skippers are trained in precautionary boat handling to reduce disturbance on wildlife to an absolute minimum. We offer educational commentary to inspire our guests to coexist with marine life authentically and respectfully.  

Sustainability and pollution

Did you know humpback whales and all other marine life are affected by underwater noise pollution? We have designed all of our whale watching vessels to operate with smaller, quieter engines that reduce acoustic pollution and produce fewer carbon emissions.  They are also equipped with mini-keels to prevent harm to marine wildlife and habitats from propellers. A pump-out facility has been installed at our terminal to discharge wastewater onshore, not at sea. We employ a Garbage Management System, minimising single-use plastics and recycling and composting of waste.

Cultural heritage

We acknowledge and pay respect to the Yugambeh people, the traditional owners of the land and sea on which we operate. We conduct cultural heritage training with our staff and include cultural heritage as part of our whale watching cruises, including commentary using traditional names of animals and locations. We are an equal opportunity employer and a member of the QTIC Indigenous Champions Network, an initiative to ensure indigenous people are active participants and valued members of our business and the broader tourism industry.

Whale knowledge

Our crew are experts on humpback whales, going through intensive learning to understand whale behaviour. Reading and predicting behaviour is an important skill when it comes to whale interactions. This is important when interacting with whales. It helps the crew determine which individuals would like to be approached and like us to stay away. Most whales are curious to humans; however, some would instead prefer to be kept at a distance. Our skippers abide by maritime law in keeping the minimum distance between the whale and the vessel.

Griffith University partnership

Sea World Cruises have a close partnership with Griffith Centre for Coastal Management to further our understanding of whales and their role in marine ecosystems. With multiple whale watching tours each day, Sea World Cruises offers opportunities to gather essential data on migrating whales. Recent projects include fluke identification catalogues, long-term monitoring of Humpback whales in South East Queensland and studying newborn calves in the Gold Coast.

Cruise amongst the whales with the Gold Coast’s most advanced and eco-friendly cruise company this 2021 whale watching season.

BOOK NOW

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Makes a splash with Gold Coast Holiday Dollars

By | Blog, Sightseeing & Dining, Whale Watching

Make a Splash with Gold Coast Holiday Dollars

Sightseeing & Dining, Whale Watching

If you’re reading this, there is a good chance you are one of the lucky winners of the highly anticipated Gold Coast Holiday Dollars. Congratulations! Here are five unique and exciting ways to use your $100 voucher. Will you explore stunning waterways while feasting on the finest regional flavours? Or perhaps it’s time to encounter gentle giants of the deep on an unforgettable whale watching experience? With so many exciting ways to set sail the hardest part will be knowing which to choose.  

Whale Watching Cruise

Are you looking for something unique and exciting to spend with your Gold Coast Holiday Dollars? Join the marine experts for a Whale Watching Cruise that you’ll never forget. Setting sail from the pristine waters of the Gold Coast Broadwater, step on board Australia’s newest and most advanced whale watching vessel and head to the humpback highway. See mother whales tenderly care for calves. Feel dwarfed by the size of gentle giants as they curiously approach the boat or launch themselves out of the water. Keep your camera at the ready because whales aren’t the only stars of the show, our cruises routinely encounter charismatic dolphins, enormous sea turtles and resident and migratory seabirds.

Wake Up with the Whales Cruise

For a whale experience like no other, secure a ticket to our Wake Up with the Whales Cruise. Starting from 6:00 AM, cosy up with a hot cup of freshly brewed coffee or tea (or juice for the kids) and satisfy your tastebuds with your choice of mouth-watering bacon, egg and cheese roll or flavoursome halloumi, mushroom and spinach burger. Within 20 minutes of departure, you’ll be helping the crew spot whales against the unique backdrop of the sun rising over the horizon. Witness these gentle giants up close as they showcase their size, behaviours and execute flawless acrobatic skills. After saying a regretful goodbye to the whales, we return to the terminal at 8:30 AM for you to begin your day.

Captain’s Lounge Whale Watching Experience

Want to make the most of your Gold Coast Holiday Dollars? Take your wildlife encounter to the next level and upgrade to the exclusive Captain’s Lounge Whale Watching Experience. Take an exclusive grandstand position in the heart of the vessel command centre with one-on-one time with the Captain and luxuries found nowhere else on board. Indulge in a private, spacious area with priority boarding and a personal host while savouring an individual grazing box and unlimited non-alcoholic beverages.

Sightseeing Lunch Cruise

Soak up the Queensland sunshine and spend your Gold Coast Holiday Dollars aboard our relaxing Sightseeing Lunch Cruise. Departing from a convenient location in the heart of Surfers Paradise, embark on a relaxing 2-hour river cruise on the sparkling Gold Coast waterways. Indulge in a delicious tropical buffet lunch, including fresh king prawns, maple glazed ham off the bone, succulent roast chicken and more. Views from the open-air sun deck will showcase some of the Gold Coast’s most famous sites including homes of the rich and famous and iconic landmarks.

Sightseeing Dinner Cruise

Whether celebrating a special event or getting friends or family together for a night out, our Sightseeing Dinner Cruise is perfect for every occasion. Set sail through the Gold Coast waterways for a delightful 2 hour 30-minute dinner cruise. Enjoy the region’s best produce, including fresh king prawns, rosemary crusted lamb, twice-cooked roast potatoes, grilled calamari, New Zealand mussels, gourmet salads and delectable desserts. Try some locally produced wines or boutique beers from the fully licensed bar, or treat yourself to one of many tasty cocktails. Be entertained and tap your toes to live music. Wander upstairs to the spacious upstairs deck, boasting 360-degree views of the sparkling Surfers Paradise skyline.

Don’t miss your chance to book!

You’ve got until 21 July 2021 to book your experience, and until 17 September 2021 to travel.

You will have received an SMS and an email containing your voucher (don’t forget to check your junk mail folder if you don’t see it). You will need this number to make your booking. All booking can be made online. Feel free to reach out to our friendly reservations team on +61 (07) 5539 9299 for assistance.
 
BOOK WITH HOLIDAY DOLLARS

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How to have the best staff Christmas party on the Gold Coast

By | Blog, Charters & Functions

How to have the best staff Christmas party on the Gold Coast.

Charters & Functions

Christmas is fast approaching and yes, we know it’s still a while away, but dates for our Christmas party cruises are filling up fast! Sea World Cruises will look after everything from the venue (hello party cruise boat on the Gold Coast waterways), food and drinks, Decoration and even live entertainment! Find out more about how to have the best staff Christmas party ever!

Early birds get the worm

The best Christmas party locations book out fast so it’s encouraged to secure a date and venue ASAP! Booking early guarantees the time, date and location that you want. It gives you more flexibility with arrangements and not settling for what you don’t want.  Everything is booked and organised, no need to worry about it until December arrives.

Our luxurious, multi-million dollar vessels can host up to 150 guests. It’s time to plan the party your team will never forget!

Tasty tapas and delicious dinner

The best part of our food packages is the extensive menu options available. Our dedicated kitchen team are happy to work with all your dietary requirement needs.

Our stand up tapas selection is perfect for a more casual, laidback affair. Our friendly staff will bring out tasty bites to eat including Italian meatballs with Napoli dipping sauce, caramelised onion and goats cheese tartlets, grilled lime and garlic calamari, sweet tomato and basil mini bruschetta and so much more.

For those looking for something a little more formal, sit-down lunch or dinner is an ideal choice. Select from a chef-prepared menu consisting of delicious dishes from local farmers and suppliers. Think lime and coconut grilled barramundi, fresh king prawns, premium roast beef with red wine jus and maple glazed ham on the bone, just to name a few.

The essential bar tab

Drinks are the one the most important parts of a staff Christmas party. We offer a wide selection of beverage packages, from basic house beers, wines and spirits or for an extra cost we can include our tasty cocktail options.


We haven’t forgotten the designated driver, either! Select from a range of yummy mocktails, soft drinks and juices.  Talk to our events team for more information on what’s included in drink packages according to your price range.

Christmas themed cocktails, anyone?

How much does a polar bear weigh? Enough to break the ice!

If you are from a large workplace, there is a good chance that not everyone knows each other and can make things a little awkward. Fear not, we have an idea of how to skip the small talk and have your team bond with an ice breaker. Have all your staff wear a name label with a bonus fun fact about the person e.g “My name is Harold and I love mammoths”. Now we know more about Harold and can begin an interesting conversation starting with his very unique interest.

Give a little love

Show your love and appreciation of your team with fun awards. Before the event, brainstorm a list of light-hearted awards and get your team to vote for each other.

A few of our favourite end of year staff awards:

    • Who wore it best – who always rocks up to the office in style, they can even make the mandatory uniform look good.
    • Loch Ness monster award – the team member who is seemingly never at their desk. As mysterious as Nessie herself.
    • Chatty Cathy – The one who appears to do more talking than working
    • Rookie of the year – The newcomer who has done an outstanding job.
    • The coffee shop – Always sipping on a coffee or making/buying coffees for their colleagues.

Don’t forget to make up certificates and even a little novelty gift!

Play dress up

Add a little zhuzh to your event and add a dress code or theme. It can be simple as ‘white and gold’ or elaborate as ‘silly sweaters’ or costume dress-up.  A dress code or theme can make it easy for your team to know what attire is expected, too!

Afterparty

There are three types of people at the work Christmas party:

      • The ‘Nana’s’:  Responsible, have a drink or two and head home.
      • The ‘Party Animal’: Loves a bar tab and keen to keep going after the is over.
      • The ‘I’ll regret this tomorrow’: Goes a little too hard and makes questionable choices that the office will laugh about until next Christmas.

The charter departs and arrives in Surfers Paradise, the heart of the Gold Coast nightlife and a party animals favourite, making it a seamless transition to keep the celebrations going.

Sea World Cruises would love to host your 2021 staff Christmas work party. Dates are beginning to book out, contact our friendly events team to secure your party today!

CONTACT

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5 animals to see on your Gold Coast whale watching cruise (that aren’t humpbacks!)

By | Blog, Whale Watching

5 animals to see on your Gold Coast whale watching cruise (that aren't humpbacks!)

Wildlife

There is no experience more incredible on the Gold Coast than whale-watching. But did you know that you will see more than just humpbacks on your whale-watching tour? The Gold Coast bay is home to a range of wildlife, from dolphins to whale sharks; what will you see?

Dolphins

Dolphins are one of the most beloved marine mammals on the planet. From their curious personality to incredible porpoising behavior (jumping in and out of the water), everyone gets excited when a pod of dolphins visits a whale watching tour. Dolphins are one of the most intelligent animals on Earth and are compared to being as bright as chimps and gorillas. They are swift predators hunting small fish, squid, and other small sea creatures. 

There are 38 oceanic species of dolphin, and there are three different dolphin species that frequent the Gold Coast waterways.

1. Common Dolphin

Common dolphins are found in large pods and are very family orientated. They have a sleek build with distinctive hourglass coloring with a yellow patch extending from their eye to their dorsal fin. Common dolphins rest in groups in shallow waters, keeping one eye open to look out for lurking predators. During the day, they are a very acrobatic dolphin species, and you will often see them leaping, head lunging, tail slapping, and approaching vessels to bow ride in the wake.

Australian common dolphin.

2. Australian humpback dolphins

Classified as a vulnerable species, it’s something special to spot an Australian humpback dolphin on your whale-watching trip. This species of dolphin travels in small pods of up to five individuals. Unlike other humpback dolphins, the Australian species doesn’t have a distinct hump but can be distinguished by their thick and curved back. They have a long beak that protrudes out of the water. They are a shy species of dolphins and would rather keep to themselves than interact with humans. They do, however, enjoy playing with other sea life such as jellyfish, seaweed, and shells.

3. Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphin

Frequent visitors in the Gold Coast bay and the city’s canal system, Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins are the most commonly seen dolphins on the Gold Coast. This species of dolphin is distinguishable by its dark grey back and pale belly, and chunky appearance. Bottlenose dolphins are very family orientated and live in pods of 10-15 individuals. They are a close-knit group, raising young calves, hunting, and playing together.

Indo-pacific bottlenose dolphin.

Minke Whales

Mike whales are often spotted early in the whale season in May through to early July. The smallest and most abundant of baleen whales, they are a rare sight to see on your whale-watching tour. Noticeable by their small size and unique coloring, they are a shy species and not as inclined to humans as their humpback cousins. Minke whales are believed to follow similar migration patterns as humpback whales; however, scientists are still unsure where they go once they leave Queensland waters. 

Minke whales are the most widely hunted whales in the ocean and continue to be the target of commercial whaling. Here in Australia, minke whales can swim safely in protected waters.

Whale Shark

The rarest marine creature you will see on your whale watching tour is the whale shark. The largest fish on Earth at an average length of 10 metres, witnessing this gentle giant must be seen to be believed. They are brownish blue in colour and covered in white spots. Their mouths can stretch open to 4 metres wide. Whale sharks are slow swimmers travelling up to 3mph.

Whale sharks are an endangered species, with only 10% reaching adult maturity. They are protected in Australian waters, encouraging safe breeding.

Minke whales are the most widely hunted whales in the ocean and continue to be the target of commercial whaling. Here in Australia, minke whales can swim safely in protected waters.

Whale Shark courtesy Getty Images.

Now that you have the knowledge of what to look for on your next whale-watching tour, secure your 2021 season seats today.

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When do the whales come back to the Gold Coast?

By | Blog, Whale Watching

When do the whales come back to the Gold Coast?

Whales

The question we get asked the most during the whale off-season is, “when are the whales coming back to the Gold Coast?“. We have been counting down since the end of last season for their return, and it’s still a little while yet. Our gentle giants make their way back to the bay in late May and return back to Antarctica in early November. With population numbers increasing every year, the humpback highway is a hub of activity during these times. 

The humpback whale migration is one of the longest journeys of any animal on the planet. From Antarctica’s cold waters, the whales embark on a 5000km return journey to north Queensland. They pass through the Gold Coast and slow down to rest in the protected waters close to the coastline. It is here that they put on a magnificent display of breaching, tail slaps, and peduncle throws.

When is the best time to see them on the Gold Coast?

The Gold Coast whale watching season begins in late May ending in early November. You can experience some of the best whale actions in the world during this time. As whales are wild animals, it can be hard to predict what behavior you’ll come across, but that is the exciting part of whale watching. If you’re eager to find cute baby humpbacks, they are seen in the bay from late July.

Where are humpback whales coming from?

Although they spend a fair amount of their life in Australia, humpbacks are residents of Antarctica. It’s in these polar waters that they feast on an abundance of krill to fatten themselves up for their journey to the warm northern breeding grounds.

Why don’t they breed in Antarctica?

Whales have a thick layer of fat called ‘blubber’, which keeps them warm and protected in the cold Antarctic waters. They develop this blubber by gorge feeding krill during the summer. However, as the season ends, the water temperature begins to drop, and it is time for the whales to migrate north. They must move to warmer waters as newborn calves are born without any fat stores, meaning if they were born in Antarctica, they’d quickly turn into a whale-popsicle. Calves are born in the tropical waters of north Queensland, where they feed on their mother’s nutrient-rich milk, which is bright pink with a yogurt-like texture. On their return journey home, the baby whales will have enough fat stores to survive.

A new born calf swimming with their mother.

What do they eat on their migration?

Antarctica is a humpback’s only feeding ground, so they will fast for their entire 5000km migration. They eat enough krill and plankton before they depart to sustain themselves during their journey, consuming up to 4-tonnes of food a day. You can often determine their direction of travel by the whale’s size; northern travellers are quite fat and large, whereas returning whales show more skin and bone.

Who will I see?

Humpback whales arrive at different times depending on their age. Immature adults, who are much smaller and often seen travelling together in pods, and the previous season’s mothers and calves are the first to head north. Pregnant females and mature males stay back in Antarctica longer to fatten themselves up as much as possible. They do this because females must have enough fat to sustain both herself and her calf, whilst males want to be as big as possible to impress their prospective mate.

Excited passengers being ‘mugged’ by a humpback whale

We feel the anticipation building with reports of early sightings off the coast and can hardly wait until late May to officially begin our whale watching season. Be part of the whale’s incredible journey and book your seat now.

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Why do humpback whales migrate north?

By | Blog, Whale Watching

Why do humpback whales migrate north?

Whale Watching

Between May to November, the Gold Coast coastline comes alive with humpback whales and their mesmerizing displays. Their acrobatic feats and entertaining behavior keep keen-eyed whale watchers coming back year after year. But why do the humpbacks themselves return at the same time every year? The answer is that the Gold Coast is a stop on their annual migration from Antarctica to Far North Queensland.

The Great Migration

What is migration?

Migration is the seasonal movement of animals from one region to another. It is found in all groups from the animal kingdom, from birds to butterflies. Some of the most common reasons are food supplies, breeding, and climate. 

Humpback whales begin their annual 10,000km round trip in Antarctica’s cold waters and migrate to Far North Queensland’s warmer climates. During the summer, humpbacks spend their time in the polar region gorge feeding krill to fatten themselves up for their long voyage. From here, they head towards their tropical breeding grounds to mate and give birth.

Northern Migration

May-August

The first humpbacks to begin their journey are pods of immature adults and last season’s mothers and calves. Pregnant females and mature adult males stay a little longer in Antarctica to have more time to gorge, feeding to fatten themselves up for their journey. As they fast until they return to the feeding grounds, future mothers require as many fat stores as possible to feed both themselves and their calf, whilst males bulk up to be the biggest and strongest to impress potential mates.

The northern migration is all about females: Pregnant females heading to tropical waters to give birth and ready to mate with males, who spend their days chasing after potential mates. Females will be pursued in extravagant displays of aggression by a ‘competition pod’. Competition pods are groups of male whales of up to 20 individuals who are trying to impress the chosen female. The competitions can be violent, with males shoving, lunging, peduncle slapping, and even biting at another to assert their dominance until one outlasts the others

Male’s in a ‘heat run’, a pod of whales chasing a female. They are more passive and last longer than competition pods.

Southern Migration

August-November

Things are calmer on the way south as the humpback population begins to relax. Instead of females, food is the greatest motivation to return to Antarctica. Male humpback’s desire for mating has subsided, and females are now either pregnant or have given birth.

The journey south showcases different behavior than the fast-paced, hormone-driven chase north. As they are not chasing or chased, humpback whales ease and become more curious and playful. They often swim close to boats, bringing themselves eye to eye with lucky whale-watchers as they pop their heads out of the water to say hello. You will also see an abundance of mothers and calves. Mum teaches bubs to breach and is a charming and amusing spectacle as they clumsily try to launch out of the water.

Late October to early November sees the last of the humpbacks as they bid farewell to the Australian coastline on their voyage home.

Calves are distinguished by their small size and pale grey colouring.

When does whale watching begin on the Gold Coast?

Humpback whales often trickle in early before the official whale season begins; however, going off yearly migration patterns, most of the population passes through at the end of May through to early November. During this period, Sea World Cruises offers daily whale-watching cruises departing three times a day from the Sea World Cruises Main Beach Terminal. With over 35,000 humpback whales migrating annually, we offer a 100% whale sighting guarantee.

Don’t miss out on seeing these magnificent creatures for yourself.

BOOK NOW

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From farmland to high rises: A brief history of Surfers Paradise

By | Blog, Sightseeing & Dining

From farmland to high rises: A brief history of Surfers Paradise

Sightseeing and Dining

1952 Surfers Paradise

Our luxury sightseeing vessel, Spirit of Elston, is named in recognition of Surfers Paradise’s history. But what even is Elston?

Elston was the first official name of the town of what we now know and love as Surfers Paradise. Long before the hustle and bustle and the striking city skylines we are used to, the city was a quiet agricultural region. Over the years as its potential and popularity grew, the dull farmlands turned into the glitzy, must-see tourist destination in South-East Queensland.

As you cruise through the Gold Coast waterways, you’re drifting past one hundred years of history.

Cavill Avenue

The early days

The Yugambeh People first occupied the Gold Coast and South-East Queensland region before the arrival of European settlement. They hunted for fish in the waters hosted ceremonial invitations where Coomera is located.

The region was settled by James Beattie in 1869 and used for farmland. Timber cutters relished the rich cedar and tallowwood forests in the hinterlands and the area along the rivers were used to grow crops and sugarcane. In 1889, the Gold Coast region was officially called Elston, named after the Southport Postmaster’s wife’s home village in England.

When Jim Cavill acquired five acres of Elston’s land in 1917, it was the beginning of the rise of the town of Elston. The city began to grow in popularity in 1925 after opening the Jubilee Bridge, connecting Southport to Main Beach. Before installing the South Coast Road, the area was only reached by Meyer’s Ferry at the Nerang River. Now easily accessible, investors began purchasing land in the area.

Elston becomes Surfers Paradise

In 1925, Cavill built the town’s first landmark, Surfers Paradise Hotel (now the site of the Surfers Paradise Centre). As more visitors flocked to the town, more establishments and shops were built. After years of lobbying from Cavill, Elston’s less than glamorous name was rebranded to Surfers Paradise in 1933.

A city of high rises

Over the decades, Surfers Paradise grew rapidly into the must-see holiday destination. Attracted to the sunshine and unspoilt beaches, tourists flocked to the city, encouraging the development of holiday apartments and shopping arcades. High-rise buildings began to grow after the construction of the Kinkabool, a 10-storey apartment now protected by the Queensland State Heritage Register. The Surfers Paradise skyline has grown a lot since Kinkabool, with various towering high-rises that have become an iconic landmark of themselves. Keep an eye out on your cruise for the Q1 skyscraper, the sixth tallest residential building in the world.

What will I see on my cruise?

There are still landmarks from Elston and early Surfers Paradise that you can see on your Sea World Cruises sightseeing cruise.

Seaquarium AKA Sea World

Sea World was once known as Seaquarium in 1965. The theme parks oldest ride, Vikings Revenge Flume Ride was built in 1978 and was closed to the public in 2016. You will pass by the Sea World Marine park on your cruise.

Traffic at Jubilee Bridge

Jubilee Bridge AKA Sundale Bridge

Sea World was once known as Seaquarium in 1965. The theme parks oldest ride, Vikings Revenge Flume Ride was built in 1978 and was closed to the public in 2016. You will pass by the Sea World Marine park on your cruise.

Goat Island AKA Chevron Island

The canal estate of Chevron Island was one of the first major land developments in Surfers Paradise in the 1950s. Before it was home to luxury homes, it was farmland home to a large population of goats, earning the title of Goat Island.

Tug of war at Southport Broadwater Parklands

Southport Broadwater Parklands

The much-loved Broadwater Parklands in Southport was declared a public space in 1928. Over 90 years later, it’s grown into a popular hub of activity.

Book one of our Sea World Cruises sightseeing cruises and witness the rich history for in person.

BOOK NOW

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Valentine'sDayCruise

Why a Gold Coast Cruise is the ultimate Valentine’s Day date

By | Blog, Special Cruises

Why a Gold Coast Cruise is the ultimate Valentine’s Day date

Special Cruises

Imagine this: You’re in awe of your sweetheart, unsure what is sparkling more, their eyes or the city lights around you. You’re in a world of your own as you cruise down the Gold Coast waterways. The city skyline glimmers off the river as you and your love share a night of unforgettable romance.

Valentine’s Day can be intimidating for even the most romantic of Romeo’s. Have no fear, we have the best date idea for you and your Juliet. Ditch supermarket flowers and whisk your sweetheart away on an amorous evening of decadent dining. Sea World Cruises Valentine’s Day Cruise is the perfect way to say “I love you” to your special someone.

Follow our steps to the most perfect Valentine’s Day date night ever.

1. Your secret is safe with us

Secure your spot on the Valentine’s Day cruise, but don’t tell your boo. All they need to know is what time they have to be ready to leave. Departure from a convenient location in Surfers Paradise. Check-in 6:30 PM for a 7:00 PM departure. Dress code: smart casual. We recommend booking early to avoid disappointment as this cruise always sells out.

2. It’s showtime

You and your special someone are all dolled up and you have never seen each other look so beautiful. Now it’s time to head to Surfers Paradise to begin your romantic evening. If possible (and safe), blindfold your lover on the way to the destination to keep the allure of mystery.

3. The big reveal

Arriving at the Surfers Paradise jetty, your sweetheart is in for the surprise of their life. Take the blindfold off and voila! A beautiful cruise vessel is waiting for you under glistening city lights. After you have been rightfully adored for all your efforts, remind them that it only gets better from here.

4. Your carriage (cruise boat) awaits!

Our friendly crew will guide you and your lover to your seats onboard our spacious and comfortable vessel. Treat yourselves at our onboard fully licensed bar to crisp beverages or be tempted by our tantalising cocktails. The sound of love will float through the air from our onboard live-entertainment, think swoony voices and melodies, setting the scene for a loved-up night only seen in the movies.

5. Tempt your tastebuds

Indulge in a delectable two-course buffet meal fit for your king or queen. Impress your special someone with an irresistible menu which includes fresh ocean king prawns, roasted leg of lamb with a rosemary crust, tasty grilled calamari, grilled barramundi plus so much more. When you’re full from dinner and full of love, there’s always room to squeeze in dessert. Be seduced by our selection of decadent desserts including rich chocolate cake with three berry coulis or our Valentine’s Day-themed Chef’s Daily Special.

6. Love is in the air

Feel the butterflies as you cosy up under sparkling skies sipping sparkling wine. Our 360-degree open-air rooftop lounge is set up with bar amenities so you don’t have to miss a moment of adoration. Pass by local iconic landmarks and the stunning Gold Coast City skyline.

7. You and me, forevermore

Time flies when you’re in love. You haven’t noticed the night drawing to a close until you hear the Captain announce that you have returned to Surfers Paradise. Lead your lover hand by their hand off the boat. It’s up to you to choose a kiss goodnight or see where the rest of your Valentine’s Day date night takes you.

Don’t miss the perfect opportunity to wow your Valentine and book now. Special cruises sell out fast, call now to secure your spot.

BOOK NOW

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Night Cruise Guests

Celebrating Australia Day with Sea World Cruises

By | Blog, Special Cruises

Celebrating Australia Day with Sea World Cruises

Special Cruises

Live Band
Nothing says Australia Day more than sunshine, live music, sausage sizzle, and locally brewed beer. Celebrate the end of the holiday season with a bang aboard a Sea World Cruises Australia Day Cruise

After spending a day celebrating in the Queensland summer sun, continue the Australia Day festivities into the night. Gather the crew for a night to remember. Departing at 6:00PM from Surfers Paradise, relax and enjoy three hours on the Gold Coast waterways. Pass famous landmarks and dazzling skylines as you relish in the best views of the city. Be entertained by live music performing covers of the most iconic acts in Australian music. Enjoy mouthwatering sausage sizzles all washed down with a crisp drink of your choice from our fully licensed on board bar.

Night Cruise Deck

Why should you spend your Australia Day with Sea World Cruises?

Traditional Australian Cuisine

AKA the one, the only, the sausage sizzle. There’s something about a freshly cooked sausage straight from the barbeque wrapped in soft white bread that just tastes like home. Top with grilled onion and drizzle with tomato sauce and you’ve got the flavour of Australia in your hand.

Hero Image Band
Well stocked bar

Relax and cool down sipping on an ice-cold beverage from our fully licensed on board bar. With a wide selection of crisp beer and ciders, delectable wines and spirits, there is something for everyone. We boast a range of mouth-watering cocktails including our famous Spirit of Elston, a fruity favourite served in a pineapple. How can you pass that up?

The best view in town

Cruising on the Gold Coast waters is a sure-fire way to secure the best seat in town. Begin with a stunning sunset view as we depart Surfers. As the sky darkens, be in awe of the sparkling city skyline. Pass by iconic landmarks from the Palace Versace, Sea World, and more. Our open-air deck offers 360-degree views of the Gold Coast, the perfect spot to witness the wonders of the sparkling city. Our skipper will find the best place to stop and soak in the breathtaking, glittering spectacular over the Broadwater.

Live Aussie music

Celebrate our ‘Great Southern Land’ as you tap your toes and belt out the high notes along with our live entertainment. Spoiling you with the best of Australian music, listen as they perform covers of classics from INXS to AC/DC.  Dance and sing your way through the night to tunes, both new and old.

Cruise In luxury

Feel like the superstar you are onboard our multi-million dollar purpose-built vessel. Our comfortable lower deck is spacious and fully air-conditioned with plenty of room to mingle and have a boogie. Wander up to our open-air deck and soak in all the best of what the Gold Coast has to offer.

Special cruises sell out fast, book early to avoid disappointment. Call to book and secure your spot today!

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