Howdy all. Well, I’m back in Melbourne after four days off up on Queensland’s Gold Coast, staying at the Mantra Legends Hotel (review to follow in the next couple of weeks). It was a much needed and much enjoyed break where I was actually pretty busy every day. It’s been five and half months since my last break from work, where I rarely get two days off a week, usually just the one it seems. So here is a rough summary.
Day One – Tuesday 16th April
‘Twas a very early morning, up at 430am with an Uber pickup at 5am. After very little sleep – I admit, mostly due to finishing packing at 11pm after work – I was phasing in and out of consciousness on the right to the airport.
Check in was thankfully easy enough. At 6am Melbourne Airport is certainly warming up, but far from its busiest. The flight was smooth, I remember the take off and landing, but little in between. A little under two hours in the air. Skybus to Surfer’s Paradise, Gold Coast’s best known town, and thankfully was able to get an early check in and then recover a bit of sleep.
The afternoon consisted of heading up the Sky Point Tower, 322 metres high with a superb view of the surrounds. Expensive at $27 to take the 43 second lift, it was a good start to my holiday. I also got some drops for my left eye, which I managed to hit with my comb in the morning, which helped a lot!
Day Two – Wednesday 17th April
I had booked from Melbourne a snorkelling expedition with Queensland Scuba Diving Company. The pick up from the hotel was shortly before 7am. I’d gone to bed pretty early to facilitate this, and also because of lack of sleep the previous day.
The company had both scuba divers and snorkellers on board the boat, and we had around 2 hours in the water. There were large schools of fish, some of which came right up to waters only 3 inches or so deep. It was great, but there wasn’t a lot of variety in the water.
Back to the hotel by 11am, and by 12pm I was headed to Sea World. This large park is only 10 – 15 minutes from Surfer’s, and Uber was again the go. I went snorkelling again, they have a program where you can snorkelling in a pool with fish, rays and sharks, and it was brilliant. But short, only 20 minutes in the water. My underwater camera again gave me headaches, but somehow started working just before I got in the water.
There was a fun roller coaster as well, a dolphin show and a water stunt show to finish of the day at Sea World. Then I enjoyed a great meal at the Shiraz Persian Restaurant.
Day Three – Thursday 18th April
I spent the day at Movie World rediscovering my love of roller coasters taking the Arkham Asylum ride, the Superman ride, and the Scooby-Doo ride. The best weather of the week, very sunny most of the day but luckily at Movie World you can escape the sun (harder at Sea World). Tired at the end of the day, didn’t eat out!
Day Four – Friday 19th April
My brother, his wife and daughter came to Surfer’s. The weather turned and there were moments of heavy rain, lots of wind, and so plans to return to Sea World were thrown out the window. Instead we had an awesome long lunch at the Brazilian Flame Bar and Grill. All you can eat meat brought to your table! It was pretty incredible. We were there for two hours.
Then we meandered around before it was time to return to the hotel, grab my bags and take the Skybus back to Gold Coast Airport, which is located around 30km from Surfer’s Paradise in the town of Coolangatta. The Gold Coast is an area with many towns. The getaway was all but done.
What have I learnt?
Well, this is the first time I’ve seriously used Ubers. The app has been slow as hell, frustrating at times, but the service and rides have all be excellent. I’ve had four trips up here on the Gold Coast and a couple in Melbourne.
There are some great places to eat in Surfer’s. I tried two of them, and they were as good as their reviews claimed.
It’s not as hot as you’d think. It hasn’t got beyond 27 degrees since I’ve been here, on one or two days Melbourne was actually warmer!
A short break is well worth it! I knew I needed a break, but to feel so much more relaxed than I have been at home, I realised it was actually possible. It was just the tonic, as they say! Hopefully it can stay with me for a short while at least! Also, I discovered I still love theme park rides and actually at 43 went on the most extreme rides I’ve ever been on!
So don’t underestimate the value of a good, short break! Thanks for reading, and May the Journey Never End!