The Victorians who call Noosa home

RACV RoyalAuto magazine

Heading north for some guaranteed sun has been a happy habit for many years for countless holidaying Victorians, especially at Noosa with its package of soothing sun, chic shopping and delicious dining.

So heady is the mix, many a Victorian hasn’t bothered to make the return journey home and now Noosa is a hot spot on the migration map. 

RoyalAuto takes you deep into the experience via five former Victorians who now call this Queensland haven their home. 

Pete Dillion with his partner Nathan
Pete Dillion with his partner Nathan

Sun, sand, sea, weather

Pete Dillon, broadcaster, publicist and co-owner of 32 East, Noosa Junction, grew up in north-west Victoria.

For five years Pete was a regular visitor to Noosa, primarily to visit his partner’s mum. Each year he and Nathan would enjoy some “mini breaks”, especially around the time of the Noosa Food and Wine Festival (17 to 20 May this year).

In February last year, Pete and Nathan became Noosa residents. “We originally lived in the hinterland but we moved near the beach, which was why we came here in the first place – the sun, the sand, the sea, the weather,” Pete tells RA. “We are about a 400-metre walk from Sunrise Beach.”

Pete’s top spots to:

Relax: “Noosa River, Noosaville. There’s a great variety of restaurants and cafes.”

Swim: “Main Beach is very popular as it backs onto Hastings Street, so we can hang out on the beach and then sit in a cafe on the beach and eat seafood and drink wine.”

Wander: “I don’t care to walk too much but there is a great national park with fantastic walks and trails. We do like to wander along the beach with our dog Gus.”

With eight resorts to choose from, find the moments you'll remember at an RACV Resort

Anne Marie Box with her dogs, Bundy and Coke
Anne Marie Box with her dogs, Bundy and Coke

So beautiful, lush and green

Anne Marie Box did not have ‘Noosa resident’ on her life list but a few short breaks sparked a love affair.

In 2006, her husband Chris, who had always wanted to live in Queensland, bought a farm in Pomona, just inland from Noosa.

“I was studying my final year in psychology,” Anne Marie remembers. “We decided to try it for a year and see how we liked it.” They certainly did like it, and she and Chris now live in Noosa Waters. 

“The fish can wake me up leaping out of the water on a full moon. It is so beautiful, lush and green. Noosaville is central to everything and the beaches are very accessible. We are privy to many wonders, not the least being whales, dolphins and turtles.”

Anne Marie’s top spots to: 

Relax: “Overlooking the canal at Noosa Waters.”

Swim: “My place! Alternatively I have a motor scooter and can zip down to Hastings Street.”

Wander: “Shopping in Hastings Street, walking along Gympie Terrace, driving up to the Hinterland or going to the fish markets in Mooloolaba.”

Zoe Stanton with her husband Jac, and their daughter, Olive at the Noosa River mouth
Zoe Stanton with her husband Jac, and their daughter, Olive at the Noosa River mouth

From girls’ weekend to new life

Zoe Stanton is originally from the Mornington Peninsula.

She moved to Noosa in 2014 after a stint volunteering with Australian Volunteers for International Development. Six months after she arrived, she met her future husband and they now have a child. 

“My mum and I used to have a girls’ long weekend every year in Mooloolaba and we would come to Noosa for a day trip,” Zoe recalls. 

“When RACV opened their resort, we started staying in Noosa and the long weekend turned into a week, and then we decided it was such a perfect break it got extended to 10 days.” 

Zoe’s top tips to:

Relax: “I have a few favourite spots. Gibsons in Noosaville has great chocolate milkshakes plus homewares and gifts. Gympie Terrace is the place to unwind and exercise. The rocks at the Doggy Beach (near the river mouth) have clear water, and an abundance of tropical fish cluster there. And there are the hinterland towns for their laidback feel.”

Swim: “Granite Bay in Noosa National Park, and if you have kids the Noosa River is lovely for calmer water, shady grass areas and activities like stand-up paddleboarding and kayaking.”

Play: “Bonsai Brewhouse, Cooran, is our favourite Friday-night or Saturday-afternoon hangout.”

Wander: “Noosa North Shore is great.”

Driving: “The trip from Noosa North Shore to Double Island Point is picturesque.”

Coffee:First Batch Coffee Roasters in Noosaville – their Noosa blend won gold and silver at the Hobart Fine Food Awards.”

Don't plan a holiday without seeing what discounts your RACV membership can offer you

RACV Noosa Resort food and beverage supervisor Bernard Duffy
RACV Noosa Resort food and beverage supervisor Bernard Duffy

Melbourne’s most northern suburb

RACV Noosa Resort food and beverage supervisor Bernard Duffy, originally from Portstewart, Northern Ireland, knew Noosa well when he made the move to live there. 

“I was a backpacker when I first visited Noosa,” he says. “I then holidayed here with my partner and then with our kids. So I had been to Noosa about six times.”

Before the family moved from Victoria in 2011, Bernard had perceived Noosa as Melbourne’s most northern suburb. “I was proved right, lol!”

While he misses the cultural and sporting events of Melbourne, Bernard has taken up his own sporting pursuit: triathlons. “I’m looking forward to the Noosa Triathlon (31 October to 4 November this year). I completed my first last year and it was amazing to be part of such a huge event.”

Bernard’s top tips to:

Relax: “Hell’s Gates in Noosa National Park. The walk around the headland is good for the soul. Gympie Terrace on the Noosa River is the place for having a coffee, walking the dog or having a few drinks and a barbecue with friends. It’s another piece of heaven.”

Swim: “Little Cove in winter time. The water is flat as a pancake and crystal clear.”

Play: “I like to take my boys mountain-biking on the tracks off Beckmans Road in Tewantin and Gyndier Drive (beginner to extreme tracks).”

Wander: “I go to Mount Coolum early in the morning and then for a coffee in a local cafe before venturing down for a stroll and a swim at the beach.”

Drink:Sunset Bar at Noosa Boathouse on Gympie Terrace is a great place to catch up with friends, or if you’ve got the kids you could get fish and chips from the takeaway below and enjoy them riverside with a glass of wine.”

Stuart Mcgillivray at Laguna Lookout
Stuart Mcgillivray at Laguna Lookout

Fishing from boat, river or shore

Stuart McGillivray grew up in Moe and moved up to Noosa in 2010 to be near friends. He now works as a duty manager at RACV Noosa Resort

Stuart had very little experience of Noosa before moving up – a few days of holidays here or there. 

Now his favourite aspects of Noosa are:

Relax: “On-the-river fishing or off-shore fishing. Having very few people around is a time to think about nothing.”

Fish: “From a boat you could try Woods Bay, First Ski Run in Tewantin and Weyba Creek to name a few. The surf fishing is great at Noosa North Shore and Sunshine Beach. For riverbank fishing, try Dog Beach, Noosa off Gympie Terrace or the Weyba Bridge Park pedestrian bridge. For beginners, Gympie Terrace in Noosaville is a great place to catch a bream, whiting or flatty. It’s not far from Davo’s Tackle World where you can pick up supplies.”

Play:Noosa Farmers Markets or Eumundi Markets when family or friends come to visit.”

Photos: Shannon Morris.

RACV Noosa Resort
RACV Noosa Resort


Get a taste of Noosa living by taking your choice of spacious and stylishly appointed one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom suites, apartments and villas at RACV Noosa Resort.

Members who book direct with the resort save at least 25 per cent off full accommodation rates year round, plus there are often other benefits and packages. 


Written by Celia Kennedy. Photos by Shannon Morris.
February 06, 2018