This stunning coastal region of Redlands Coast is defined as much by the bay waters as it is by the mainland. From the coastal villages that are scattered with cute cafes to seaside fun and an abundance of nature to explore and beyond to the many islands dotting southern Moreton Bay operate on their own island time with plenty of adventures to be had, the Redlands Coast is a hidden treasure to be explored.

Located just 26 kilometres South-East of Brisbane, Redlands Coast is often described as Queensland’s “best-kept secret”. A scenic gateway to iconic North Stradbroke Island and the secluded Southern Moreton Bay Islands makes Redlands Coast a popular destination for those who have discovered its unique beauty and multitude of options for recreation.

How to get to Redlands Coast

The Redlands from Mount Cotton. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

Redlands Coast is 30 minutes from the Brisbane Domestic and International airports, a 30-minute drive from Brisbane CBD and a 50-minute drive from the Gold Coast.  You’ll get direct access to the Redlands Coast via the Pacific Motorway (M1) and the Gateway Motorway (M2). The motorways provide links to Old Cleveland Road, Rickertt Road, Mt Gravatt-Capalaba Road, Beenleigh-Redland Bay Road and Mt Cotton Road. Alternatively, take the scenic route from Brisbane and the Gold Coast that takes in the Southern Moreton Bay Tourist Drive, which roams through the scenic hinterland of Mt Cotton, through bayside villages Victoria Point, Cleveland and Wellington Point, and onto the picturesque suburbs of Manly and Wynnum.

Trains run frequently from Brisbane’s Central Station to Cleveland Station. The journey takes about an hour and there are regular bus services that operate within Redlands Coast, and to and from the Brisbane Transit Centre.

Top things to do in Redlands Coast

Cleveland Lighthouse. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

Redlands Coast really does have something for everyone. Families will enjoy the calm waters, beaches and islands to explore. Couples will find romancing this bay area a breeze and a town full of romantic hidden gems. Adventurers can explore both land and sea with hiking tracks aplenty, coastal walks and islands to explore. The region is perfect for a relaxed visit for the golden oldies who like a slower pace and foodies will be able to get a true taste of local delights.

Glamping at Sanctuary at Sirromet Winery

Sirromet Winery. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

Nestled in the picturesque Mount Cotton (Jungalpin/Tungipin) is Sirromet Winery and their luxury glamping pavilions at Sanctuary by Sirromet. Why just visit the cellar door when you can stay longer and enjoy the 560-acre property that captures amazing views across Moreton Bay and is home to wallabies who graze freely around the area? This tranquil vineyard glamping retreat allows you to indulge your senses and reconnect with nature during a stay amid the Australian bush. The luxurious tented suites and pavilions are decked out with a seating area, a large comfortable bed, mini bar (to keep the wine cool of course), tea & coffee making facilities and a spacious bathroom with a rain shower. Visit the winery and do a tasting by day, dine in the Terrace at night and end your evening with a glass of wine sat on the private deck off your pavilion and watch the sun go down and wallabies graze nearby.  Sanctuary by Sirromet recently took out the Tripadvisor Travellers’ Choice 2021 award.

Ride across the ocean on a water bike tour

Bay Island Water Sports. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

For those who like a bit of an adventure, Bay Island Water Sports has the answer. Get out on the beautiful waters off Raby Bay in Cleveland (Nandeebie/Indillie), and experience an ocean playground in a different way, by water bike. Located at Raby Bay Foreshore Park, Bay Island Water Sports offers water sports experiences for every level of ability. The Ormiston Mangroves Water Bike Tour is a rather unique option. Taking off from the shallows of Raby Bay Beach, peddle your way effortlessly along the waterways and keep your eyes peeled for marine and birdlife. You can often spot dolphins, dugongs, rays and other marine life play as you make your way to meander through the mangroves. The water bikes are surprisingly easy to use, making it the perfect tour for everyone from beginners to expert watercraft operators. The expert-led tour takes around 1.5 hours, costing $70 on a single bike and $95 on a tandem bike.

Pet friendly stay in Mount Cotton

Stay at Mount Cotton Retreat with your pet. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

It is great when you can take your furbaby on holiday with you and that is what Mount Cotton Retreat offers – pet-friendly stays (for well-behaved furbabies). Enjoy a peaceful and relaxed stay surrounded by nature in Mt Cotton. Wake up in the morning to the sound of birds, go for a bushwalk or simply relax in the beautiful surroundings. Their unique and stylish cabins are your home away from home with a kitchen, lounge area and beautiful big private deck. It is the small touches that really make a stay here special, like a glass of port on arrival.

Read the Hotel Review here.

Grab a coffee at Warra Warra Café 

Grab a coffee at Warra Warra. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

Just like the Warra WarraBNB, Warra Warra Café is fairly new to open. The café is also located in Victoria Point (Warrer Warrer) and continues on the theme of coastal boho with a twist of funky tropical vibe. It serves up coffee from Single O and unpretentious casual dining inspired by local and First Nations flavours. Drop-in for a coffee and cake or stay a little longer and make a morning of it. There are even some cute homewares for sale.

Get creative at Carys Martin Ceramics

Carys Martin Ceramics. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

For a hands-on creative experience, join a Makers Meet Class at Carys Martin Ceramics. Carys runs regular hand building and wheel throwing classes and workshops at her studio in Cleveland (Nandeebie/Indillie). During the 2-hour workshop, Carys will give you the tuition and guidance to create the hand-built project. These workshops have a set hand-building technique at their core but allow for individual creativity in how you choose to use this technique. You can copy from an example or let your creativity run free. Moulding the piece is just the beginning with the decoration process using tissue transfers and underglazes just as fun. Carys will then carefully dry your piece before firing and then glazing with a clear glaze before it is ready to be fired again before collection a couple of weeks later.

Dine and shop at Louie’s Coffee & Bodega

Shop or snack at Louie’s Coffee & Bodega. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

Now, this is a place that has all the fun wrapped up in a very pink Bodega. What is a Bodega you ask? It is a small owner-operated convenience store, they are renowned for their convivial culture and colourful character. And Louie’s definitely has character. While you can pop in daily for a coffee or bite to eat during the day (the Ruben Sandwich is highly recommended), Louie’s Coffee & Bodega is also open Thursday to Saturday for dinner. They claim to have the best damn bean juice around, while Vivo roasts their beans. You will find it hard to leave without a baked treat that is made on-site or something funky from the store.

Be romanced at Rainforest Gardens

Escape for the weekend at Rainforest Gardens. Photo Credit: Kate Webster

Nestled amongst one of nature’s blessings, Rainforest Gardens at Mount Cotton is the perfect place to slip away for a romantic getaway. The collection of unique luxury chalets are set adjacent to a forty-year-old hoop pine forest, ​​with breathtaking views to Moreton Bay and islands. The rooms are private, with a large immaculate styled bed, wood fire and luscious, with a gorgeous floor to ceiling glass shower wall offering views out to the surrounding forest. Take a hike through the bush tracks or spoil yourself with an add on hamper and just enjoy the quiet from your deck.

Chill out at Sula Juice Bar

Sulu Juice Bar. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

Nothing beats a cold fresh juice or Acai Bowl on a hot day, and this is the specialty at Sula Juice Bar. Found on the main strip at Wellington Point (Cullen-Cullen), Sula sits pretty in pink so you can’t miss it. The drinks, treats and bowls that come out of Sula are just as pretty. With design-your-own-Acai-bowls, coffee, baked sweets, juices, smoothies and other yummy treats, the hardest part will be choosing what to have. This one is definitely an Instagrammer’s delight, with gorgeous tropical flamingo painted murals on the wall and coastal chic design. Oh, and you can even pick up a bunch of fresh flowers here too.

Visit the Grand View Hotel

Grab a drink or meal at the Grand View Hotel. Photo Credit: Grand View Hotel

Ok, so the Grand View Hotel may not be so much a “hidden” treasure, but we still think it is a gem. Staking claim to be Queensland’s oldest licenced hotel, the Grand View (or GV to the locals) was built in 1851 and has a lot of history to it. It overlooks beautiful Moreton Bay and is so much more than a hotel. The Grand View offers alfresco dining, superb function facilities and a wide range of craft beers. Boasting Queensland’s favourite beer garden with the freshest seafood and mouth-watering steaks, the Grand View is the place to stop in for a drink when in Redlands Coast. More often than not, they will have some live music to keep you entertained too.

Walk out to King Island

King Island, Wellington Point. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

King Island off Wellington Point (Cullen Cullen) is easily reached by walking there during low tide along the 1km sandbar. Take a picnic with you and go for a swim off the shallow waters. As you walk out to the island, you can often spot marine life along the shores. Just be careful to time your return right as you don’t want to get caught out there when the high tide arrives. And remember your hat and sunscreen as it can get hot out there.

Visit Indigiscapes

Indigiscapes Centre. Photo Credit – Kate Webster

Step into the 5 hectares of serene natural bushland that makes up IndigiScapes and explore the native botanical gardens, a native nursery, bush trails, a nature playground, a recently renovated Discovery Centre and café specialising in local cuisine with a bush tucker twist. Found at Capalaba (Kapallaba), this special space is home to Redland City Council’s environmental education centre and offers the chance to get involved in community groups that build lifelong friendships and make a difference to the environment. This Discovery Centre is a true hidden treasure, a visit here will help you make small and simple lifestyle changes that will generate a positive difference to a healthy environment. If you time your visit right, you can shop until you drop at their open-air Eco Markets packed full of local small businesses offering a wide range of eco-friendly products, handcrafted goodies, sustainable giftwares and more. 

Embark on a cultural experience of Quandamooka Country

Take a tour with Yura Tours. Photo Credit: Yura Tours

Did you know you can have a Cultural Island Experience right here on the Redlands Coast? Discover the Beautiful Quandamooka Country and culture with Yura Tours on Minjerribah (North Stradbroke Island) with an experienced Quandamooka guide and mother, Elisha. Explore her magical island home of Minjerribah and visit pristine beaches, charming clear bays, blooming bushland and stunning headlands. Wildlife thrives both on land and sea, so you can expect to see turtles, dolphins, whales, kangaroos, wallabies and much more. Yura Tours is a 100 per cent locally owned and operated indigenous Business that have a deep connection to the land and sea. The Exclusive Culture Tour takes 3 hours and is priced from $150 – $220. The tour begins with a Welcome to Country at Bummiera (Brown Lake) and follows in the footsteps of Elisha’s ancestors, stopping in at Moongalaba / Terra Bulla (Old Mission Site), Capemba (Myora Springs) and Mulumba (Point Lookout headland) to enjoy creation stories, breathtaking views and learn about the different flora of the island and its aboriginal uses. Wrapping up this incredible experience, you will visit Delvene Cockatoo Collins studio where you can find a piece of Minjerribah to take home.

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Kate Webster

Kate Webster is the founder and owner of Captured Travel Media. She is a world traveller, ocean lover and conservation warrior who is determined to make every moment count for not only herself, but the world around her. An editor and travel journalist, Kate travels the globe in search of vivid imagery and compelling stories that capture the essence of the people and places she visits. She is a passionate conservation advocate, sustainable traveller and always travels with reason and cause.