The Gold Coast is located 66km south of Queensland’s state capital Brisbane, and on the northern side of the border with New South Wales. With a population of 494,501 in 2011 the Gold Coast is the largest non-capital city, and the second largest city in Queensland.
The first settlement in what is now South East Queensland was as a penal colony at Redcliffe. The hinterland’s red cedar supply attracted people to the area in the mid-19th century. Later in 1875, Southport was surveyed and established and grew a reputation as a secluded holiday destination for wealthy Brisbane residents.