Q1 SkyPoint really is a great family activity.
We decided to go in the early afternoon to ensure that we could see the view in the day time, and then also see the stunning night time view.
The line up was fairly long, but it moved steadily, if not fast. I left my partner and my 10-year-old in line for most of it while I followed around our 2-year-old who wasn't patient enough to wait in line. When they neared the ticket desks, we jumped back in line with them.
A word of advice: buy your tickets online to save some time! We bought ours discounted through RACQ, which allowed us to use our tickets as many times as we liked within 14 days. Our only annoyance with doing it this way is that the Q1 ticket desk still required a printed copy of the tickets, as their scanners were unable to scan the barcode from our smartphones. We didn't know this, so we then had to wait in the busy line for an extra five minutes or so while they printed a copy of our tickets. I guess this must happen fairly often, though, as they took it in their stride and had the process flowing fairly smoothly.
Once we were inside, they lined us up against a large picture wall featuring a panoramic best-weather-view from the top, and they took a photo of us. This picture was on display and available for us to purchase once we were back downstairs. We didn't buy it, as I felt an image of us against a 'fake' view was a little disingenuous, but then if we were visiting from afar and wanted a lovely picture of ourselves to help remember the day, it would definitely be worth the purchase. The advantage of this posed picture is that the lighting is perfect, as getting the lighting right for a family picture up in the tower can be challenging. It would certainly be a lovely keepsake for your own family or to send to family and friends.
While we waited for the lift to take us up to the top, we could see a lot of souvenirs across the other side of the barrier the mugs that I spotted were cute, and seemed to be decent quality from what I could see from the other side of the barrier. They also had the usual stuff, such as postcards and the obligatory collector spoons.
The lift ride to the top was pretty exciting even on its own! On the ceiling of the lift was a digital view of the inside of a lift shaft in motion, with a count up of the levels we were passing to reach the viewing floor. My sciencey 10-year-old loved it, and was trying to figure out if it was a live view of the lift shaft (unlikely), and if the count of the floors was accurate (it was only a representation, I think, but fun, never-the-less).
At the top, we stepped out of the lift area to discover the tall viewing windows all around the outside, 360 degrees worth. It was impressive! Along the floor at the bottom of the windows were lit up areas with place names and an arrow pointing to the direction of the place. Each plaque had a little bit of information about the named place and how far away each was from the tower. Some were local, like Kirra, and some pointed to places as far away as Paris. These plaques were fun, and interesting to read.
When we arrived, there was live music with a guy playing guitar and singing. It was pleasant and non-offensive, and created a nice atmosphere.
The view was amazing. By the time we'd worked our way most of the way around, it was beginning to get dark, and the lights around the Gold Coast began to turn on, and we were inclined to do the circuit again to look at the gorgeous city lights, giving us a two-for-one experience. We'd ensured to bring along my 10-year-old's binoculars, but there are a few coin-operated binoculars situated around the viewing area if you'd like to inspect any of the view more closely. We happened to go on a day where they were doing some burning off on the southern end of the Gold Coast Hinterland, so this gave us something interesting to focus on over that side. With the binoculars, we could just make out the red flames, and looking with the naked eye, we could see the trail of smoke in the distance.
The lookout area is around the edges of a slightly raised platform featuring quite a nice restaurant/cafe/bar. There are tables and chairs in a kind of enclosed area, as well as more places to sit and eat around the periphery of the main eating area. It felt welcoming of families, and was roomy enough so that children who take up space and the various bulky paraphernalia that sometimes accompanies young children didn't feel unwelcome. We ordered a meal of wedges and some hot and cold drinks and shared the decent-sized portion between two adults and two kids. The menu was varied enough to cater for those of different ages and dietary persuasions.
There is an option to be able to do the SkyPoint climb, which is to get around above the viewing area, outside the building! If you've already bought tickets for inside, you can pay an upgrade price to then do the outside climb. I'd love to do this one day, but will choose a day in the future when we have more time so my partner and I can take turns looking after our little one inside while the other one does the outside climb. You can read a review of the Skypoint Climb here.
We loved the beautiful view and the great food, and we felt there was enough to keep our little one happy, as well as my 10-year-old. It's not a cheap attraction for a family (even with a family ticket option), but we felt it was well worth the money.
Review by Coralie Nathan. Coralie has 10 year old and 2 year old sons.