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Cruises to Mooloolaba

1 Review
Mooloolaba (Photo:DAE Photo/Shutterstock)

About Mooloolaba

Queensland is said to be 'beautiful one day, perfect the next'. In keeping with this theme, the Sunshine State prides itself on having more than 2,000 kilometres of fabulous beaches and coastal hotspots. One of these highlights is Mooloolaba, about an hour's drive north of Brisbane.

Mooloolaba's population swells considerably each weekend and on school holidays. However, it's not a quiet hideaway by the ocean. While very much maintaining its own identity, Mooloolaba is, along with the neighbouring Alexandra Headland, a suburb of Maroochydore. The three seaside areas sit next to each other -- the centre of Maroochydore being the third area -- and it's hard to tell where one seaside village and the next begins.

Mooloolaba is very much the tourist hub of the three and The Esplanade, with its abundance of restaurants, cafes and shops overlooking one end of Mooloolaba Beach, is the focal point. Mooloolaba's prime location makes it an excellent launching pad to all sorts of attractions, such as the world-class Australia Zoo, the Glass House Mountains and the Sunshine Coast hinterland and its quaint towns.

For cruise travellers, Mooloolaba has only been a port of call since August 2014. However, its long history as a tourist destination means there is a calm confidence in its treatment of visitors. It might be a small town by the ocean, but for a holiday it is top notch on many levels. The combined population of all three numbers is in excess of 30,424 (based on 2018 Census figures), and this brings with it a co-existing blend of tourism and urban living.

  • More about Mooloolaba

  • Why go to Mooloolaba?

  • Mooloolaba Cruise Port Facilities?

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Seven Seas Mariner
Seven Seas Mariner (Photo: Regent)

150 Night
150 Night World CruiseDetails

375 Reviews
Leaving:Miami
Cruise Line:Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Jan 7, 2025
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Silver Whisper
Silver Whisper

35 Night
Expedition CruiseDetails

216 Reviews
Leaving:Sydney
Cruise Line:Silversea Cruises
Feb 14, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Viking Neptune
Ship Exterior on Viking Orion

120 Night
120 Night Viking World JourneysDetails

57 Reviews
Leaving:Los Angeles
Cruise Line:Viking Ocean Cruises
Jan 8, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Seven Seas Explorer
Seven Seas Explorer

18 Night
South Pacific CruiseDetails

230 Reviews
Leaving:Sydney
Cruise Line:Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Jan 26, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Virgin Voyages

16 Night
Australia CruiseDetails

Leaving:Cairns
Cruise Line:Silversea Cruises
Nov 18, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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23 Night
Extended Great Barrier Reef & Indonesian Explorati...Details

121 Reviews
Leaving:Melbourne
Cruise Line:Windstar Cruises
Jan 25, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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30 Night
Australia,new Zealand & IndonesiaDetails

494 Reviews
Leaving:Auckland
Cruise Line:Viking Ocean Cruises
Feb 16, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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21 Night
21-nt Astounding Australia/asia VoyageDetails

25 Reviews
Leaving:Sydney
Cruise Line:Azamara
Mar 1, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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30 Night
Australia,new Zealand & IndonesiaDetails

494 Reviews
Leaving:Bali
Cruise Line:Viking Ocean Cruises
Nov 19, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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61 Night
World CruiseDetails

230 Reviews
Leaving:Sydney
Cruise Line:Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Jan 26, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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30 Night
Australia,new Zealand & IndonesiaDetails

494 Reviews
Leaving:Auckland
Cruise Line:Viking Ocean Cruises
Feb 13, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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14 Night
Australia CruiseDetails

386 Reviews
Leaving:Sydney
Cruise Line:Oceania Cruises
Dec 21, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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25 Night
Indonesia & Australia Discovery 25d Boa-melDetails

121 Reviews
Leaving:Bali
Cruise Line:Windstar Cruises
Nov 26, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Cruise Critic Favorite

28 Night
South Pacific SojournDetails

494 Reviews
Leaving:Bangkok
Cruise Line:Viking Ocean Cruises
Nov 7, 2023
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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Cruise Critic Favorite

17 Night
Australia CruiseDetails

233 Reviews
Leaving:Singapore
Cruise Line:Silversea Cruises
Oct 21, 2024
No prices currently available for this sailing.
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More about Mooloolaba

Why go to Mooloolaba?

Pros:

Breathtaking beaches, pristine national parks, an unhurried vibe and great food

Cons:

One day is not long enough to explore the Sunshine Coast area

Bottom Line:

A 'surf and sun' escape for locals that has plenty more to offer visitors

Mooloolaba Cruise Port Facilities?

The Wharf Mooloolaba is about a 200-metre walk to the start of The Esplanade and its multitude of shops and eateries. However, The Wharf Mooloolaba itself contains quite a few places to shop and dine. There is an ANZ ATM next to The Savvy Squire (123 Parkyn Parade). If a quick bite to eat before or after the day's activities is in order, or a last-minute souvenir needs to be purchased, The Wharf Mooloolaba fits the bill. It's a good point to start or end a cruise. Visit Sunshine Coast also coordinates cruise ship activations at The Wharf Mooloolaba for each cruise ship arrival. These are located immediately as passengers disembark, giving cruise passengers access to Sunshine Coast ambassadors who provide maps and local visitor information for day trips around the region. Visit The Booking Box (0419 704797) on the wharf to get onboard river cruises, fishing charters, tours, activities and experiences around the Sunshine Coast. You can also reserve tickets to attractions such as Australia Zoo. If you would like to book a pre- or post-cruise tour between the Gold Coast and Hervey Bey, you can visit thebookingbox.com.au and reserve your spot online. Editor's note: there is free Wi-Fi at The Wharf Mooloolaba.

Good to Know?

The subtropical climate means the sun can have a bit of bite, even if it's cloudy and the sea breeze feels lovely and cool. In the warmer months, it's best to wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunscreen with an SPF rating of 30+ To be extra careful, wear a light, long-sleeved cotton shirt.

The 'loo with a view' is a public amenity overlooking the beach on The Esplanade near Brisbane Road. Despite the name, you don't go to the toilet to look at the view. The view occurs after you've used the restrooms and walked out onto the large deck area, which juts out over the sand. It's one of the best-known landmarks in Mooloolaba because so many people use it as a meeting point.

Getting Around?

On Foot: Mooloolaba is very much a walking destination and everything it has to offer is within a 20-minute stroll of The Wharf Mooloolaba. The walk to Alexandra Headland is about 2.5 kilometres from The Wharf Mooloolaba and does involve walking up and down a sloping footpath.

By Taxi: There is a taxi stand at The Wharf Mooloolaba should you wish to venture further then the nearby beaches. The on-demand ride service Uber is also available throughout the Sunshine Coast.

By Bus: Visit TransLink to plan your journey by bus. There are regular daily buses from Mooloolaba to Noosa and the Hinterland.

By rental car: Rental cars are available and the closest is Sunset Rent-A-Car (Shop 9, Zanzibar Arcade, 47 Mooloolaba Esplanade; 07 5370 7400; open Monday to Friday, 8 am to 3pm, Saturdays 8 am to noon, closed Sundays and public holidays) located in an office inside Mantra Zanzibar on The Esplanade just after Brisbane Road (heading away from The Wharf Mooloolaba). It is open seven days a week but with limited hours on Sunday. Other major car rental companies such as Avis (74A Aerodrome Rd; 07 5453 1999; open Monday to Friday 8 am to 5 pm; Saturday 8 am to noon; Sunday 8 am to 11 am); Hertz (07 5443 3108) and Budget (07 5443 6555) are all located at Maroochydore, which involves a 4.8-kilometre taxi ride.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money?

The currency is the Australian dollar. There is an ATM at the wharf and a few more located along The Esplanade. ANZ Bank is located opposite the Sunset Rent-A-Car office in the Zanzibar Arcade, just after Brisbane Road. There is also a rediATM inside Oceans Resort (101 Mooloolaba Esplanade) and a Commonwealth Bank ATM opposite the Mooloolaba Post Office (on the corner of Brisbane Road and Hancock Street). Most businesses in Mooloolaba have contactless payment technology.

Language?

English is the main language spoken in Australia. In a tourist hub such as Mooloolaba, Aussie locals are as likely to say 'g'day' as 'good afternoon'. They will almost certainly say 'no worries', too, if you thank them for their help.

Where You're Docked?

Cruise ships moor about 1.5 kilometres off Mooloolaba and come by tender from the cruise vessel to The Wharf Mooloolaba, which recently underwent a $10 million refurbishment. Mooloolaba Beach is a surf beach, so tenders enter a channel -- the entrance to the Mooloolah River and a canal system behind Mooloolaba -- and passengers disembark at The Wharf Mooloolaba.


Mooloolaba Cruise Reviews
We did our own walk around the city. Went for a nice swimRead More
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