Discover Noosa Junction

Image source: Photographer David Gleeson

Bursting with more than 250 business and a thriving café and dining scene; it’s hard to believe Noosa Junction was once no more than a dirt road. Today, this cosmopolitan space is an eclectic mix of colourful characters, unique stores and delicious dining. Jolene Ogle delves into the past and sees the future, with a little help from Noosa Junction Association.

If you spend enough time in Noosa Junction you will soon start to hear stories of its past and a time known as the “barefoot years” – Noosa Junction’s laid-back beginnings. Throughout the 50s and 60s, the term Noosa Junction didn’t exist and wouldn’t come into being until the 1980s thanks to a competition run by the local rag at the time.

Jean and George Cookman were the first to build on the dirt road that connected Noosa Heads to Sunshine Beach. Their home had a shop front – a plumber’s workshop – and they enjoyed no neighbours until others realised the potential of this unique space flanked by the bush and beach.

There was a time when the Banksia Caravan Park occupied a lush 6691sqm site in The Junction, proving popular with visitors chasing the sun and surfers looking for their next break. Bowls, tennis, and squash were all on offer, as well as Marina Land and Cinema House.

The infamous Dook’s Wine Bar was opened by Dook and business partner Dick Thorne in the 1970s on the site where the cinemas now stand. “Hollywood Bob” was the iconic barman and girls in sarongs and bare feet served patrons, often earning tips of up to $100.

The Junction went on to develop in a haphazard way until Council appointed a town planner in the late 70s. Soon after, Noosa Junction became home to Noosa’s first roundabout with the shire now home to more than 110 roundabouts.

Coles came to town in 1982 with the construction of the Noosa Fair Shopping Centre, something many locals say was the turning point for the previously haphazard precinct. Today, Sunshine Beach Road is the main place of business, lined with soaring trees, streetscaping, cafes, restaurants, retail stores and the local cinemas, while laneways and side streets are home to quirky and cool finds.

Arcadia Street offers eateries and a place to relax while the kids play amongst the street art. Lanyana Way is a hub for local shopping and services with everything from tax accountants to insurance brokers, medical professionals, wellness, homewares and so much more.

It’s easy to drive right through Noosa Junction without realising the hidden treasure that awaits. What could seem like a through-way is actually one of the region’s most diverse and cool places to spend a day shopping, eating and meeting with friends. Isn’t it time to make Noosa Junction your destination?

Check out Destination Junction, a comprehensive guide to all things Noosa Junction from eateries to retail stores and so much more!

About the Author /

Jolene has worked in the local media industry for more than five years. She is now a small business owner, mother to one sassy toddler and a newborn baby and loves to share stories about Noosa from its glorious food scene to the inspiring people.

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