Free to do,  Nature play

Currumbin Valley

Images: Pasture & Co

Images: Must do BrisbaneImage: Brisbane Kids

Only a short drive inland from the golden sands of the beaches that the Gold Coast is best known for, is another world that the Gold Coast keeps hidden – Currumbin Valley. Being only 40 minutes from the northern Gold Coast where we live, we decided to head there one Sunday mainly to check out a café I had heard plenty about, but also to take in the beautiful scenery and rediscover this little corner of the Coast.

Currumbin Valley is mainly known for two things – the Currumbin Valley Rockpools, and the Eco Village. Visiting both of these places makes for the perfect day out for young and old.

The Eco Village

Start your day by heading to the Eco Village at Currumbin, an international award-winning sustainable community set on 270 acres. The community is the most awarded estate in Australia with over 33 accolades, including “The World’s Best Environmental Development” (FIABCI Prix D’Excellence Award 2008). The ecovillage is not a religious, arts or organisation based community. It developed organically with people from all walks of life choosing to live in the estate for a range of different reasons. The demographic is widely spread with some young families, older families, singles, travellers and retirees all enjoying the best the village has to offer.

What the Eco Village is most known for however, is the precinct Ground at Currumbin. Here you’ll find a marketplace called Ground Grocer selling fresh, local and organic produce each Saturday morning, and a café called Pasture and Co. In the same village centre, The Green Marquee coordinates markets on the second Saturday of every month offering local food, crafts and artwork.

The café is what I had heard about and was keen to try for breakfast. Pasture & Co is earthy and fresh, yet real and approachable. There is an emphasis on organic and spray-free produce, free-range and healthy, showing off the flavours of food. With its all-day breakfast menu, all dietary requirements are covered, and the best thing is that meat lovers are catered for just as much as vegans.

Pasture & Co provides casual indoor seating that opens up to a grassy outdoor area where you can just as comfortably sit under the fig trees and watch the kids run around alongside kangaroos. We chose to sit inside on what was a beautiful autumn morning, with the valley breezes gently blowing through the venue enhancing the light and airy feeling of the café.

Reading over the menu is no small task, with so many options and each with a comprehensive list of fresh ingredients. I settled on the bacon & egg roll and a mermaid smoothie (for the young girl at heart!), while hubby went for the beef and bacon burger and a banana smoothie. The meals were delicious, with some of the best flavours I’ve tasted in a long time thanks most definitely to the fresh produce. You really could taste the difference.

No visit to Pasture & Co is complete without tasting one of the cakes from the cabinet. The famed Lemon Meringue Pie was what we were after, and it sure did satisfy! There is an ever changing variety, and they include a selection of raw cakes too.

Currumbin Valley Rock Pools

If you’re looking to extend your visit to Currumbin Valley, take a short drive up the road to the Currumbin Valley Rock Pools. Don’t be fooled if you hear of this place, they are not coastal rock pools and are not located near Currumbin beach!! They are instead formed up in the hinterland and are fresh water. In summertime, this is a favourite swimming spot and the place is packed. In the cooler months it makes a great picnic spot and place for kids to explore, but the water is a bit chilly!

Need to know before you go:

  • Pasture & Co can be busy on Saturday’s when the markets are on. Be patient, you’ll get a table soon enough, or alternatively grab your coffee to go and sit out on a picnic blanket in the grassed area behind.
  • Remember the Eco Village is where people live! Be respectful of your surroundings – there are around 65 kangaroos living here as well as 150 different bird varieties – and the lifestyle that these residents have worked hard to achieve.
  • Currumbin Valley Rock Pools are naturally formed and can be dangerous. Use caution jumping in and always check the depth first!
  • Toilets, barbeques and picnic shelters are available at Currumbin Valley Rock Pools.

The Ecovillage

639 Currumbin Creek Road – Corner of Village Way, Currumbin Valley QLD

Currumbin Valley Rock Pools

Currumbin Creek Road (closest intersection is Reynolds Rd), Currumbin Valley QLD