The Australian coast is one of the most beautiful sights in the world, and a fantastic backdrop for festivals and events all year long.
Check out this list of the best festivals and events on the Aussie coast for food, films and family fun.
Ocean Sounds – VIC
Held on Churchill Island, just off the coast of Phillip Island, Ocean Sounds is an unmissable all-day event. This family-friendly festival is for lovers of music and gourmet food. All visitors are encouraged to bring a picnic blanket, and settle down to listen to a fantastic concert. As well as incredible live performances, Ocean Sounds is also a celebration of the best wine, cheese and gourmet food on offer, with a variety of stalls and vans to choose from.
The 2024 line-up includes stars like Xavier Rudd and Spiderbait. With a stunning coastal backdrop and good vibes all around, you’re sure to love this island celebration.
Date: 6 January 2024
Festival of King Island – VIC
FOKI festival is all about enjoying great music and surf across one jam-packed weekend. Featuring the best folk, blues, country and rock bands, FOKI brings in hundreds of visitors every year. Vendors serve up mouth-watering treats, showcasing the island’s fantastic cheese, beef and seafood.
Plus, check out the survivor paddle race and pie-eating competition, guaranteed to keep you entertained for the whole weekend.
Dates: 2-3 Feburary
Gold Coast Film Festival – QLD
The Gold Coast Film Festival is a 12-day event featuring more than 100 incredible films, discussions, parties and pop-up cinemas. As one of seven AACTA qualifying festivals in Australia, the selected films can be submitted for one of the country’s most prestigious arts awards.
Each year, more than 150 guest speakers share their best industry tips and tricks with the crowd. Previous presenters have included household names such as Luke Hemsworth, Deborah Mailman, Sigird Thornton and Claudia Karvan. The program includes the best national and international independent films that will have you crying, laughing, and questioning your view on the world.
Dates: 17-28 April 2024
Port Macquarie Ironman – NSW
Race along Port Macquarie’s stunning coastline, swim in the Hastings River, and take in the views of the Pacific Ocean as you undertake the Port Macquarie IRONMAN. This highly anticipated event is a qualifying race for the 2024 VinFast IRONMAN World Championships in Nice, France, as well as the 2024 VinFast IRONMAN 70.3 World Championships in New Zealand.
Every participant will finish to the cheers of a supportive and energised crowd. Plus, there’s plenty for the family to see and do while in town, including coastal walks, wildlife experiences and restaurants around every corner.
Date: May 5 2024
Great Ocean Road Running Festival – VIC
Every year, thousands of participants from around the world descend on the Victorian Coast to run along the beautiful Great Ocean Road. The festival offers nine different distance races, including a 60km ultra-marathon and a 1.5km kids race, meaning all ages and abilities are encouraged to compete. As all roads are closed to cars, racers have full access to the winding coastal track, offering stunning views of the ocean.
At the training hub, participants can learn how to properly fuel and hydrate for the race, and there are plenty of other free activities to enjoy during the festival as well. Listen to live music, fly kites with kids and watch the Waiters Race, where local wait-staff race to carry a tray of beer from one bar to another.
Dates: 18-19 May 2024
Central Coast Airshow – NSW
Head to the Central Coast Airport to witness incredible jet displays, aerobatics and show-stopping stunts from the country’s best pilots. Featuring both single and formation flights, attendees will be amazed as historic warbirds and modern jets race overhead.
On the ground, you can enjoy market food, kids rides, and plenty of entertainment all day long. By purchasing the Central Coast Airshow experience package, you can even tour an aircraft and take a guided flightline walk with Paul Bennet. The event is supported by the Australian Defence Force, perfect for plane enthusiasts and familys looking for a fun time.
Dates: 25-26 May
Noosa Eat & Drink Festival – QLD
Over four delicious days, you can discover the best food and drinks in the country and participate in 75 unique events. At the Noosa Eat & Drink Festival, visitors will have the chance to enjoy a long lunch, beach events and restaurant showcases.
Head to the festival village where 80 local and international vendors showcase their delicious produce through stalls, masterclasses, live demonstrations and tastings. On arrival, you’ll be greeted with a glass of prosecco, and the chance to dive into a delicious world of food. For even more excitement, you can join a twilight gathering on the beach, where the sunset is the backdrop to tastings and talks.
Dates: 30 May – 2 June 2024
Can’t get enough of these festivals and events on the Aussie coast? Check out the top events in regional South Australia.
For even more unmissable events and experiences, check out this story on the best cultural experiences in Australia.