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The Sunshine Coast is loved for its laidback lifestyle, but that doesn’t mean we’re standing still.

Local businesses and tourism operators are constantly evolving: new restaurants are enticing customers, businesses are expanding and innovative tourism experiences are making their mark on the industry.

Each quarter we put together a list of ‘What’s New’ on the Sunshine Coast, and I’m always impressed by what’s happening in our own backyard.

Eateries such as Kiki Bar on Ocean St or Lola’s Pantry in Kuluin are changing the face of the Sunshine Coast food scene, while new tourism experiences are setting the region apart as a premier leisure destination.

This all gives tourists, and locals, even more reason to get out and explore.

One exciting new experience on the market is Eco River Rides, which is one of the first operators in the state to offer a solar-powered canoe experience on the Maroochy River.

Eco River Rides
Eco River Rides

Another emerging market boosting the region’s profile is the craft beer scene and tapping in on the action is Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Tours. Next month they plan to launch a combined craft beer and local produce tour, taking visitors through local breweries and introducing them to farmers.

The Sunshine Coast is home to a number of successful sporting events and there’s even more planned for 2019.

Last week, it was announced that the NRL will bring a first-grade game to the Sunshine Coast for the first time, with the South Sydney Rabbitohs and New Zealand Warriors set to clash at Sunshine Coast Stadium.

The Round 5 match will be held on April 13, with more games scheduled for 2020 and 2021.

The match is sure to bring a crowd, but it will also have a positive impact on tourism.

New Zealand is our number one international tourist market thanks to its proximity and the introduction of direct flights from Auckland to the Sunshine Coast.

While the match is sure to entice some Warriors fans from across the ditch, it will also play a part in putting the Coast on the map.

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