Brisbane / Gold Coast

Trip Start Jul 16, 2009
1
8
15
Trip End Oct 08, 2009


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Flag of Australia  , Queensland,
Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hey guys!

Just had a 3 day weekend which was quite nice! Flew to Brisbane on Sat morning and right away boarded a bus to get to the Australia Zoo (Steve Irwin zoo). That is the only part of the weekend with which I was somewhat disappointed unfortunately! It took me about 2.5hours to get there (was supposed to be 80 minutes), it cost $54 to get in, it was quite smaller than I expected (I was ready to head out after about 3 hours) and it then took about 3 hours to get back to Brisbane. Don't get me wrong, it wasn’t all bad! The Steve Irwin memorial they had was pretty cool, and they had a huge area with wallabees and kangaroos that you could feed which could’ve kept me entertained the whole day! They also had a couple of red pandas on exhibition from china, sooo adorable!! I usually don’t mind travelling alone, but for the first time wandering through the zoo by myself I wished I had company! I remembered going to the Toronto zoo with dad and Diane and Michelle a couple of years ago when I was in pure hell (SOA exam) and about how good it was to see them that day and got a little bummed out… but then I went back to feed more kangaroos and cheered up again! J   My hotel was in a great location in Brisbane and was pretty nice. I had dinner and a couple of drinks on Queen Street, which is similar to Sparks Street in Ottawa with tons of cafes and bars in the middle of the street (pedestrian street only) except it’s about 10 times bigger! I was quite tired after travelling so much that day, so I went back to the hotel early and got some much needed sleep! I took a walk down to South Bank and around the CBD (central business district) in the morning before heading over to the Transit Centre to catch my bus to Gold Coast…. Here is where the vacation REALLY started!!

Got to the Gold Coast around 12:30pm… one word: WOW! The gold coast is made up of several beaches, all gorgeous and miles long! I was staying at the Crown Plaza in Surfer’s Paradise, the most touristy/popular beach. I went to walk around the beach for a while totally amazed! The weather was about 32 degrees on Sunday and 34 degrees on Monday, but not humid at all so the heat was just lovely! I walked around the beach for a while as well as the shops at Surfer’s Paradise, and took an Extreme JetBoat ride… awesome!!! The boat (which just very conveniently happened to be driven by a very hot aussie!) was filled with about 12 people. I was sitting in the front row with this asian man in his 40’s… he really didn’t know what he was getting himself into and was holding on to his camera and cell phone in his hand… and was wearing white shorts! After the first crazy 360 the driver did, we all got literally drenched and the little asian guy was freaking out, hilarious! I got smashed around the side of the boat pretty hard though, and I have crazy bruises on my arm, leg and stomach to show for it! Overall though it was amazing fun and I’m definitely glad I did it!!!  After spending all afternoon walking around, I quickly went back to the hotel to change and get some sand out of my hair before going to Broad Beach for dinner. The walk there is along a highway (if you don’t go by the beach) and takes about 20 minutes. The sun was just going down as I was walking there and I was hearing these crazy sounds coming from the trees.. At first I thought it was parrots, but quickly realized as they started flying by my head that there were HUGE bats! Tons and tons of them everywhere! It was pretty impressive to see, but I must admit that I’m pretty happy none of them got too close to me! J I had a nice dinner at this café on the beach with some wine, bought some beer and headed back to the hotel where I sat on my balcony (which had an amazing view!) with a book.

On Monday morning, I took a busy down to Burleigh Head, another nice beach area along the coast that has a lot of rocks along the edges.. not a nice beach to lie around at, but definitely a nice area to look at! I grabbed a coffee and just walked along the beach for a while. At this point, I realized that I’d been on the go non-stop and decided it was time for a break. That’s when I decided to go back to Broad Beach and do the pancake for about 5 hours! I got some nice fish and chips on the beach and ate that while looking at the waves (AND the hot aussie men running along the beach!). It’s crazy to think that it is possible to get a vacation to a location with weather like this for a weekend trip! The flight there and back was only about $150, so it’s definitely very accessible. The end of the day unfortunately crept up on me sooner than I would’ve liked (doesn’t it always?!) and I made my way back to the airport to head back to Canberra. Overall, had an amazing and very relaxing weekend!!!

It is already Tuesday night here, and I am leaving for Sydney with Sonia after work on Friday night and will only be driving back into town on Monday morning. We’ll be doing mostly beachy stuff and going out, which is great since they’re the 2 aspects of Sydney that I haven’t had the chance to enjoy yet. It’s crazy to think that I only have 2.5 weeks of work left and only 2 weekends left before heading off on my trip.. time is really flying by!!!
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