GOLD COAST. QUEENSLAND. AUSTRALIA.
THE LAND & CLIMATE
Gold Coast is a coastal city in the Australian state of Queensland, approximately 66 kilometers (41 mi) south of the state capital, Brisbane, and immediately north of the border with New South Wales. The Gold Coast is the sixth-largest city in Australia, making it the largest non-capital city, and the second-largest city in Queensland. The city consists of 70 kilometers (43 mi) of coastline with some of the most popular surf breaks in Australia and the world.
The Gold Coast is approximately half covered by forests of various types. This includes small patches of near-pristine ancient rainforest, mangrove-covered islands, and patches of coastal heathlands and farmland with areas of uncleared eucalyptus forest.
To the west, the city borders a part of the Great Dividing Range commonly referred to as the Gold Coast hinterland. A section of the mountain range has been listed as a World Heritage area in recognition of its "outstanding geological features displayed around shield volcanic craters and the high number of rare and threatened rainforest species".
The suburbs of Southport and Surfers Paradise form Gold Coast's commercial centre. The major river in the area is the Nerang River. Much of the land between the coastal strip and the hinterland were once wetlands drained by this river, but the swamps have been converted into man-made waterways (over 9 times the length of the canals of Venice, Italy) and artificial islands covered in upmarket homes. The heavily developed coastal strip sits on a narrow barrier sandbar between these waterways and the sea.
Gold Coast experiences a humid subtropical climate, with warm winters (May-Sept) and hot, humid summers (Oct-Apr). The city experiences substantial summer precipitation mostly concentrated in thunderstorms and heavy showers with rain events occasionally lasting up to a few weeks at time giving residents "the Summer blues", while winter is pleasantly mild to warm with little rain.
THE LIFE & CULTURE
The culture of Gold Coast, Queensland derives from mainstream Australian culture and incorporates a strong history in the performing arts, music and sport. It is the third largest film production centre in Australia behind Sydney and Melbourne.
The Gold Coast population is extremely diverse with 27.9 per cent of residents born overseas.
Just over one tenth of Gold Coast residents speak a language other than English at home. After English, the most frequently spoken language is Japanese, followed by Mandarin, Korean, Cantonese, Italian, German and Spanish.
The Gold Coast is one of Australia's fastest growing large cities. Tourism remains fundamental to Gold Coast City's economy, with almost 10 million visitors a year to the area. In the past the economy was driven by the population derived industries of construction, tourism and retail. Some diversification has taken place, with the city now having an industrial base formed of marine, education, information communication and technology, food, tourism, creative, environment and sports industries.
The car is the dominant mode of transport in the Gold Coast, with over 70% of people using the car as their sole mode of traveling to work. However, there are other modes of city transport available such as light rail, heavy rail and a bus system.
THE RELIGIONS & BELIEFS
The most practiced religion on the Gold Coast is Christianity. The other most common religions practiced within the city are Buddhism, Islam , and Hinduism.