Noosa is a beautiful place for a visit and the local beaches have lots of beach goers, surfers, cafes, and of shopping to be had. If you stick to the beaches, the river, cafes, and surfing you’ll have a great time, but you’ll miss some amazing things Noosa has to offer. So without further ado, I present to you the top things to do in Noosa.
1). Take a cruise through the Noosa Everglades.
A backpacker-focused travel agent had tried to sell me this canoeing the everglades package that was like $150/pp. It sounded cool, but I’m so glad I decided to research other options to see the everglades before I made the commitment to go. I found an option I thought looked pretty good on paper, roughly 1/2 a day Eco cruise up the Noosa River with afternoon tea and drinks provided at “Harry’s Hut”.
We got onto the boat and started cruising up the Noosa River. Maybe halfway into the trip, our skipper points to a campsite and shows us where he dropped off the backpackers set for the camping trip earlier that day. It was nowhere near where best parts of our cruise would take us, and I know I wouldn’t have canoed anywhere close to where the cool bits were. Once we got out of the main channel and into really calm water we got to sit out at the front of the boat for a better view.
I should note that while the draft on our boat was minimal we still bumped the bottom a few times and caught an overhead branch once. The benefit of a canoe is you wouldn’t have these troubles and would be able to go where the tour boat couldn’t. It is possible that the canoes were able to check out parts of the everglades with shallower depth closer to their camp sites.
The cruise option was about $80/pp and was incredible! You’ll not be surrounded by backpackers, and may not have an opportunity to make a lot of friends this way, but I thought it a much better value.
2). Hike the walking tracks in Noosa Heads National Park. By the time we were planning our time in Noosa we had decided that all of the beautiful hiking advertised at each of the previous stops was mythical, so we didn’t schedule any time for that. Unfortunately for us this was a mistake. Noosa Heads National Park shares a boundary with the town is absolutely beautiful! We only hiked to the lookout which was a little over a km from our accommodation and we couldn’t change our plans to allow for more time. If you like to hike though, plan to spend some time. I’ve since Googled some of the pictures of highlights of these trails and they look amazing! Click here for a walking tracks map.
3). Get a coffee and some brekky (breakfast) at the Sunday Farmers Market. There are many vendors selling tasty food you can munch on wile you shop the stalls filled with wonderful fresh produce. We joke that this is the market that “only has food” because when we checked in at our accommodation we asked if there was a market and told “No”. I said I had read there was and she said, “Well there is, but they only have food there”.
4). Take the ferry to Tewantin. A hop-on-hop-off unlimited all day ferry ticket will set you back $22.50 per person and goes all along the idyllic Noosa River filled with boats, recreational boating, swimming, paddle boarding, and pelicans.
5). Shop the Tewantin Sunday Craft Markets. As noted before, the staff at our accommodation told us there weren’t any markets around (and then later admitted there was a small market that only had food). You might imagine my surprise as we rode the ferry into Tewantin to find another market there! We went around quickly at the vendors that weren’t already closed (it was after noon) and saw some really charming home-made crafts. The markets website indicates that produce is also available, but it was all packed up by the time we got there. We had fun walking around and decided to have lunch on the porch of one of the marina’s cafes (about $20 per person).