Local's Pick: 7 Secret Gold Coast Cafés

Step away from the Strip and seek out the Gold Coast's hidden cafés.

One of the most important local's tips a traveller should get is where to find that perfect cup of coffee. Away from the glitzy bars and restaurants, hidden in laneways and neighbourhoods, you'll find some of the Gold Coast's best cafés.

Brimming with in-the-know locals, this is where you'll find lattes brewed with bespoke blends and food so good you'll drop in for breakfast and come back for lunch. So just seek and you shall find.

The quirky interior at Elk Espresso
The quirky interior at Elk Espresso (©Trevor Templeman)

Elk Espresso

Flower posies peeking out of glass jars, quirky stencil art and eclectic, mismatched furniture give Elk Espresso a hip yet homely touch. Tucked down a Broadbeach side street and overlooking a grassy park, it’s a favourite with dog-loving locals who sit at the outside tables with their pooches. Try the breakfast salad served with poached eggs or treat yourself to brioche French toast topped with caramelised banana and vanilla mascarpone. Helpful staff and a range 
of gluten-free and dairy-free dishes
 make this café a top choice for diners with food allergies.
16 Chelsea Ave., Broadbeach. 07.5592.2888.

Bam Bam Bakehouse, Australia
Bam Bam Bakhouse has great menu options like house-made crumpets. (©Roshan Sukhla))

Bam Bam Bakehouse

With its chic wooden decor and stylish staff, Bam Bam Bakehouse has more in common with a hip café than a suburban bakery. Buttery croissants served with chunky preserves, house-made crumpets and soft-roll breakfast burgers piled high with double-egg omelette, pork sausage and grilled haloumi have the queue stretching into the adjoining park at breakfast. Lunch options include a pulled pork sandwich with green apple and fennel slaw or classic croquet madame. Bam Bam Bakehouse is licensed if you fancy something stronger than the house-bottled juice blends with your lunch or dinner (Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights only).

Commune organic salad
Commune organic salad (©Tiana Templeman)


Take a seat on a retro 1970s lounge or in the outdoor courtyard and discover one of the hippest and healthiest cafés on the coast. Locals come here for spicy chorizo breakfast tacos, topped with cute little quail eggs, and flavour-packed salads. Meat-free Monday, featuring dishes to tempt even the most dedicated carnivore, is a long-standing tradition at this ethically-minded café. Commune is tucked away on a side road off the Gold Coast Highway but visitors who seek it out are rewarded with some of the Gold Coast’s most nourishing, and delicious, food.
1844 Gold Coast Highway, Burleigh Heads. 07.5520.3377.

The Yard Cafe's scrambled eggs with salmon
The Yard Cafe's scrambled eggs with salmon (Courtesy The Yard Cafe)

The Yard Café

Everyone is made welcome at The Yard Café which has a paddock-to-plate philosophy, with much of the food coming from the owners’ eight-acre property at nearby Currumbin. Breakfast choices include house-made granola and eggs every-which-way. As the day goes on, choose from pulled pork tacos with black beans and chipotle mayo or a juicy Wagyu beef burger with cheese, mayo, slaw and pickles. People watching from one of the inside tables near the front window will keep you entertained
 for hours.

Enjoy your coffee with a delicious brownie at Canteen Kitchen
Enjoy your coffee with a delicious brownie at Canteen Kitchen (Courtesy Canteen Kitchen)

Canteen Kitchen

If you fancy something a little different from the usual bacon and eggs, the Middle Eastern flavours at Canteen Kitchen will hit the spot. Take a seat in the dining room or make new friends at a communal outdoor table as you enjoy something from the all-day menu. Choices range from lamb kofta with Middle Eastern beans and poached eggs to a za’atar chicken burger with pineapple chilli chutney. If you don’t have time to sit down, head next door to the equally good Canteen Coffee for a house-made muffin and quick coffee hit.

Freshly baked croissants at Vintage Espresso
Freshly baked croissants at Vintage Espresso (Courtesy Vintage Espresso)

Vintage Espresso

Tucked away on Alfred Avenue, just off the highway at Mermaid Beach, this quirky retro-inspired café remains one of the best spots on the Gold Coast to escape the tourist crowds. One of the original trendsetters on the Gold Coast café scene, Vintage Espresso is still going strong, serving up wholesome breakfasts such as French toast served with berry compote, coconut yoghurt and toasted almonds and decadent baked treats for morning and afternoon tea. Plus Vintage Espresso are eco-friendly too, with their own range of reusable keepsake cups—purchase in store or online from their website.

Coffee lovers can't go past No Name Lane
Coffee lovers can't go past No Name Lane (©No Name Lane)

No Name Lane

You won’t have trouble finding this café at The Oracle shopping precinct at Broadbeach, just look for the long line of coffee lovers waiting for takeaways. Meals are simple but done well—think poached eggs on sourdough—and the Black Sheep Coffee "feeling woolly" blend puts a spring in your step. No Name Lane is the local go-to spot for 
a public holiday caffeine hit as it is 
open every day of the year, even Christmas Day.
9 Elizabeth Ave., Broadbeach. 07.5538.5221.