travelling with kids to Noosa

Well Noosa seems like a distant memory but I know a few of you wanted a full debrief of our trip! We discovered Noosa this time last year and fell in love……..hard. If you have kids then this is family friendly and if you like to do things stylishly, love to shop and a good restaurant then you’ll be right at home. I think that’s the appeal for me – gorgeous beach, great shopping, delicious restaurants and cafes and just a lovely atmosphere.

But let’s add kids to the mix? Yes! Still works and still a great place to stay.


We like to be right near the beach so stay in a private apartment at the Sebel. It saves you on the cost but I actually discovered it because the hotel was fully booked last year. You have a kids pool and a regular pool, 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, double sofa bed and there are a mix of families and couples. But sadly we’ve outgrown it. It was fine when elodie and emerson were smaller but we need a 3 bedroom next time. If you stay as a guest of the Sebel you will get daily room servicing which would have been nice and you don’t need to bring your own beach towels. If you’d like to save a bit of money then go the private rental through one of the holiday accommodation agencies in noosa. We always get a lovely bottle of wine and welcome pack and enjoy staying there.

There are a few real estate agents who do private rentals and you can look on stayz for apartments and houses. We’ll be looking for a small house that is walking distance to Hastings Street next time just so the kids have a bit of space to run around but so we can still be close enough to where we like to be.


in your apartment!!!! Taking the whole gang out is a test of patience and budget. We had most of our meals in the apartment and retro daddy would duck out for a bottle of wine and a gourmet pizza for the adults. Coles is at noosa junction which was about 2 bus stops away and Woolies is at Noosa Civic which I found accidentally coming back from a shopping expedition to Noosaville.

For a special meal out we love Sails. We’ve had tables right near the beach (this was the view on the night we went)

amazing service and friendly service (you know when you go somewhere fancy but feel uncomfortable, not at Sails), little entertainment bags for the kids, fabulous wines and cocktails and just a lovely place to be. Lots of families and couples and we’ll go back every year. Now the website says don’t ask for a table near the beach but we have been lucky on our 2 visits so book before you arrive and we go early at 5pm.

We also enjoyed 2 meals at the surf club which has the best views, great gluten free options (their nachos are delicious) and loads of families. We went on a windy night and the carpet was a bit stinky so go at lunch time and sit outside for the amazing views. We had a great lunch on our last day soaking up the sun and views.

Zachary’s do great pizzas and it’s so easy for one of you to duck out and pick up some pizza. If you send your hubby let them discover that it’s a bar so they can order a drink and have a quick one while your pizza is cooking. That’s probably why retro daddy didn’t mind ducking out a few times. their gluten free bases are delicious and we’ve done hawaiian, fruits de mer and chicken tandoori and give them all the thumbs up.

For quick lunches we loved the bakery opposite the Sebel (they have a gluten free bread and some gluten free delicious muffins) and Kabana’s (great fish and chips and some gluten free options too) and the food court next to the Sheraton but sushi set us back almost $40 to feed the whole crew so eating in was always a better option.

Ice cream options are everywhere and for after dinner retro daddy would go and grab a take home pack from royal copenhagen which is just opposite the sebel. Nitrogenie for a bit of wow factor with your ice cream but just like my readers told me, best flavours and taste are up at Massimo’s. Their coconut flavour is so good and I couldn’t say no each day. Walk around the corner and sit on the beach or steps with your ice cream.


If your kids are like our kids then it will be pool time! And a bit of beach time but let’s be clear that our guys are still a bit too young to all enjoy the beach together. Finn doesn’t like sand, elodie is not a fan either, emerson gets sand everywhere and has no fear and tillie and keira love the beach. So we didn’t make it in the water but enjoyed some walks and ice cream time each day and then took a few down separately. We’ll get there……….one day.

If the weather is bad then you’ve got the cinemas at Noosa Junction (Finn kept praying for a rainy day so he could see Turbo).

My guys also love to get a beanie toy from the newsagent, look at the clothes and toys in Go Bananas on Hastings Street or Think Kids (Noosa Junction – great for craft supplies too) and then spend more time in the pool. Our days tended to start between 6 and 7, be in the pool about 9, early lunch about 11, take a walk to the beach, look at the shops, get out and about till 3, back in the pool, dinner, bath, tv, bed. Start it all over again the next day.


OK so last year we drove and it was a bit of a nightmare with a 3 month old baby and a few tantrums from the twins. This time I found flights with jetstar and decided we’d fly. Adding in transfers at each end because I didn’t think we could get on a mini bus with other people and the 5 little ones all added to the cost of the holiday. Retro daddy the accountant is convinced we will drive again but I think driving will require a stop over each way just to break it up for the kids. I must admit that I did miss having the van with us for day trips, trips up to the supermarket and I really wanted to head to the farmers market and church on sunday but didn’t have the car with me.

So we will see who will win next year. Flying with everyone was easier than I expected but elodie had some serious ear problems landing which was the worst of it really. And why people feel the need to comment to me on my crying child escapes me. Thankfully each trip we had lovely ladies sitting in front who were very kind and sympathetic.

In Sydney we use Town Cars who came out with a Mercedes van each time and 4 carseats and in Noosa we used a local company but turns out they all share the work. The transfer door to door with 4 carseats was about $145 but they were great and let us sit in the car while retro daddy went in to get the key and they offered to take us past a supermarket to get a few things. If you have older kids or less kids then taxi’s are easy but for us having the transfers all booked made it easy. But yes added to the cost. But it can be done. I know the first holiday with kids can all seem too hard but use the internet, have everything planned out, a great central location near everything and you will be fine. Trust me.


I think I need to mention this. This is our first year taking elodie away where her issues are more pronounced. We probably won’t stay in an apartment again until her tantrums and screaming for things are under control. I found sometimes just telling people was the easiest option like at airport check in, when we were getting into the minivans and she was screaming because it was a new seat and car, on the plane or if we were in a shop trying to do something. Now that we’re home again she is so settled into routine and really happy but she absolutely loved the pool each day and that was when she was happy. Factor in nap times and make sure the little ones get a nap each day because we found they were happier when they had a nap.

We had ipads, tablets, lollies, lemonade, chips, colouring and everything to keep her entertained on the plane but hadn’t really factored in the ear factor as she wouldn’t take any medicine before we left. The very lovely Mrs Woog has told me about some depressurising ear plugs and giving the medicine at home so I think we’ll try that if we’re ever brave enough to fly with our little miss again.

And I would say bring along the things that make them really happy. She loves sorbet and ice cream so we made sure that each day we had a big tub of sorbet in the freezer and when the tantrums were just getting too much we just had a little bowl of sorbet. This isn’t something we would do at home but it just worked while we were away. We also got a few little soft toys while we were away and bought her a little scooter to get around and she was happy. It was hard work yes but she just adored the pool and lots of things about the holiday which outweighed the hard work. Kind of.


We did it, that is our 3rd big holiday away where we’ve taken the whole gang and we’ll probably only do one big holiday each year because it is so much work and expense. The kids had a ball and despite the hard work we all came home relaxed and happy.


  1. Hi corrie
    You mention Elodie’s special needs but can I ask what they are exactly? Just I can relate a little and it would be good to connect

    • Thank you, I don’t share on the blog due to some not so nice people but we are going through genetic testing and she is delayed in all areas of her development. We do speech, physio, hydro and hope to find a cause for her delays. It’s hard work but has opened my eyes up so much to what other families deal with and over time will share more with readers as we understand what is going on. Thanks :)

  2. Go the ear planes Corrie! They are the best ever. They make flying so much more pleasant than not with Amelia. They only last a few flights but at $15 I think they were it was worth every penny. They are made from silicone too which was a relief for us as Amelia is allergic to rubber, if they were made from rubber we wouldn’t have been able to use them! Chuppa chups are good too for landings and are affectionately called the flying pops in our house as that is pretty much the only time we have them!

    Looks like a great holiday, I am yearning for something like this but no treats till hubby gets a job!

  3. I’m so glad that you got such a great week in my part of the world Corrie!

  4. Janice Nugent says:

    I know its not the same for children as adults, but my husband has problems with his ears on flights. He gets severe pain, and we were told once to sniff some eucalyptus and chew on something (lolly or gum) as well. We put the eucalyptus on a tissue and seal it in a small plastic container (think film container) and he just take long breaths from it when taking off/landing. Works a treat for him.

  5. Sounds like a great trip away and your amazing organisation obviously paid off! Reckon I might have to bookmark this for when we have more than one and contemplate a trip away. Totally agree about sticking with nap times.. My son doesn’t have special needs but is very adept at tantrum throwing, especially in new environments and when he’s tired/confused etc. We’ve just got back from a few days away and found that him having a daily quiet time/nap and plenty of favourites from home worked a treat. Hope you’ve come back relaxed and well!

  6. A wonderful, wonderful blog Corrie. It shows everyone that you don’t have to put things in the too hard basket and miss out on life.

    Memories are made of this. The good and the bad will be talked about affectionately until everyone is quite grey and their grandchildren know all the details.

    My husband and his 9 siblings talk incessantly about their annual holidays to various destinations on the Sunshine Coast. The tales are hilariously entertaining.

  7. Sounds like a typical family holiday, fun, sun, icecream and tantrums! I also relate to the special needs side of things but ours is more about access and mobility rather than behaviour/sensory. I am really glad you took the plunge for your whole family to experience an adventure! Xx bron

  8. Seems you had a great time! I wish I could go there with my family…a girl can dream right?!!!
    We live in Greece and we are lucky enough to have places like that to visit but a trip so far away is always an exciting idea!!!

  9. Can I ask why you travel so far? I have four kiddos and we try to go to the beach that’s only four hours away, as I find the traveling the exhausting bit with kids.

  10. So proud of you guys with the little Elodie….I can so relate….hubby use to go around and close all the windows so the neighbours wouldn’t complain about the tantrums…being out of routine is so very hard for them and unfamiliar surroundings. We actually go and stay in the same place year after year because of familiarity. But it’s so lovely to be building memories of family holidays and creating family traditions.

  11. What a fabulous holiday Corrie. So glad you all enjoyed your time in Q. During my very first visit to Noosa, Sid and I camped on the beach in the late 70s. It was mostly all national park, and we paid $3 to camp with shower access. From memory, there were half a dozen shops, including a seafood restaurant, an ice cream shop and a pizza bar :) The “corner store” in the middle of Hastings St operated as the PO and souvenir shop, where I bought you something made from seashells :) Very happy that you have created some wonderful memories for the children. Love and hugs, Annie xxxxx

  12. Looks gorgeous and such fun, even if hard work for the two of you! The kids all look so happy :) And what fun memories it will create for them!

  13. It looks like you all had so much fun!! The kids will have great memories as they grow up. You are such wonderful parents Corrie!

    XXX Wendy

  14. you are very inspiring, thank you for painting a beautiful yet realistic image of family holidays! I think they are worth it (although I only have 3 little ones) too, for the memories, the travel, the change of scene and more… thanks again.

  15. Noosa looks lovely. It’s so so long since I was last there – I think I need a trip up there with my little tribe. I have a suggestion – friends of ours used to travel up from Adelaide every second year with their two kids, the husband used to drive up (with an overnight stay) and the wife would fly with the kids. He was more than happy to drive solo, the kids got travel sickness in the car on the long haul so it was a win-win, and they had the car here for all the jaunting they needed to do.

  16. Lovely post Corrie! We live on the southern edge of the Gold Coast and regularly pop up to the Sunny Coast, mostly Caloundra and mostly in our caravan. (Three kids under 9) So much to see and do, Australia zoo, Underwater world, but our favourites are the Ginger Factory at Yandina (kids love the train and boat ride, I can’t wait to get in and do some cooking classes with their amazing produce!) and the Eumundi Markets of course. Flying sure is full of pro’s and con’s with littlies, as a mum of a ‘special needs’ little person I hear you! We took the family to Fiji for 2 weeks in march this year, flight over was grand, flight home we had two very ill little people, one vomiting as we taxied up the runway before we even took off!! They picked up Giardia during the last 2 days there! Just this week we came home from a big 10 day road trip, from here, out to Lightning Ridge, Walgett, Dubbo (zoo!) Newcastle, Coffs etc. It was a bare essentials holiday, packed light as in NO toys- only Ipads for down time, so they made their own fun, met new friends and played together beautifully. Some nights we set up a tent, others we stayed in lovely hotels, quite an adventure. The kids declared it was “the best adventure ever!!” Our next holiday might be a bit more glamorous haha!

  17. Good on you all, for prioritising a get-away, even though it’s a lot of work and stress to make it happen. Getting away, and coming home with new eyes for the daily routine, is good for the adults and the kids. And I think I agree with the timely sharing of an explanation for Elodie’s meltdown when required, as people are more likely to help, less likely to judge, and if there’s a quick way through a slow process, they ‘ll be more likely to help you access it. Lovely writing, lovely pictures, *sigh* feel like I took a day trip to Noosa myself after reading it.

  18. Hi Corrie, lovely to read about your Noosa family holiday and thank you for sharing. Was not sure about it being a family friendly place, however reading your blog it’s about quality family time which you made me realise through you sharing about your family walks, ice cream treats and pool time. We are heading up for a wedding. I appreciate you sharing, you provided a lot of good information. Best wishes with Elodie, it was touching you shared as like you said people can not always be nice on these sites. You sounded like you did a great job balancing all the needs of your family. Thanks again for sharing was a big help

  19. Katie Blundell says:

    I never do this but just wanted to say Thank you for writing this piece, I really enjoyed it! While I’ve been to Noosa many times, I’m going there again in 4 weeks but this time we’re taking my just turned 3 year old & 18 month old. This has given me some great tips for travelling with kids, and reminded me to let them eat lots of ice cream just because ‘we are on holidays’!

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