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Gold Coast, Queensland

Gold Coast is a coastal city located in the South East of the state of Queensland, Australia. The city is 94 km south of

the state capital Brisbane. With a population of approximately 600,000 in 2011, it is the second most populous city in

the state, the sixth most populous city in the country, and also the most populous non-capital city in Australia.[1] The

Gold Coast also holds the title of the largest cross-state population of any metropolitan area in Australia, due to the

inclusion of Tweed Heads, New South Wales in its metropolitan area. The Gold Coast's metropolitan area converges with

that of Greater Brisbane, forming part of an urban conurbation of over 3 million people.[2]

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While the origin of the city's name is debatable, the moniker "gold coast" was bestowed upon the city by real estate

investors. The first settlement in what is now South East Queensland was as a penal colony at Redcliffe. The Gold Coast

region remained largely uninhabited by Europeans until 1823 when explorer John Oxley landed at Mermaid Beach. The

hinterland's red cedar supply attracted people to the area in the mid-19th century. Later in 1875, Southport was surveyed

and established and quickly grew a reputation as a secluded holiday destination for upper class Brisbane residents. The

Gold Coast region grew significantly after the establishment of the Surfers Paradise hotel in the late 1920s. The area

boomed in the 1980s as a leading tourist destination and in 1994, the Gold Coast City local government area was expanded

to encompass the majority of the Gold Coast's metropolitan area, becoming the second most populous local government area

in Australia after the City of Brisbane.

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Gold Coast is today known as a major tourist destination (often cited as the Miami of Australia) with its sunny

subtropical climate, surfing beaches, canal and waterway systems, its high-rise dominated skyline, theme parks,

nightlife, and rainforest hinterland, making tourism one of its most significant industries. Gold Coast will host the

2018 Commonwealth Games.[3]