One not so white Christmas spent in Gold Coast with a group of friends, our Australian family.
Gold Coast Itenary: Surfers Paradise, Byron Bay, Tamborine Mountains
Weather: Very humid with a kind of dead heat.
Transport: The car rental company collected us from the airport, we signed a few documents and that was nice and easy. Went for the fully insured option all in was $800 for 7 days for a small bit old sedan – one issue though the aircon stopped working on our trip to Byron Bay later in the week the company replaced the car with a newer model and dropped the car up to Sunshine coast a 2 hour out of the way journey for them and didn’t charge anything extra.
Woulda Shoulda Could: More Time in Byron Bay and a road trip to Nimbin, SkyGolf instead of Wet’n’Wild
We stayed a Lamour House a lavish 5-bed villa on one of the many islands just 5 min walk from Surfers Paradise, it was $4500 for 4 nights for the entire place. The house was very nice with mounted widescreen TVs (with Netflix) in each room but randomly none in the main communal area.
It was accessed by passcodes which made life easier and we had plenty of room for the 9 of us to have Christmas dinner. Unfortunately, we were a few months too earlier for there currently being built swimming pool and BBQ area but overall it got 5 stars from all of us.
We did a bit of touring around visiting some of the amazing beaches of the Gold Coast – Broadbeach, Mermaid & of course surfers. It’s pretty long beach-going the whole way down to Burleigh Heights with high rises all down the coast.
We got a pretty epic view when we went up to on the tower and could see all the canals around the Gold Coast.
We went up around 6.30pm and got the daylight and nighttime views and a sunset for good measure. After just across the road we went to an Italian place for some of the best pasta I have ever tasted. Wasn’t overly expensive either and was jam-packed but squeezed us in just after 10min waiting.
Making use of the car we took off down to Byron Bay which was slightly over an hour’s drive but with motorway most of the way it flew by. We did stop at Burleigh Heights where some of Aquaman was recorded for a very strong coffee.
When we got to Byron the first stop was the lighthouse which is located just after the town up on a hill, there are no carparks at the top or layby areas so we drove up dropped the girls and then lucky enough when driving down at the next carpark we jammed a space.
Everyone agreed it was one of those places that just lived up to its name with astonishing views of the coast. After a few selfies and group photos, we went down to the town and parked up and went to the beach. Went for a dip and it was one of the nicest beaches I ever swam in – the water was the perfect temperature.
There really was a chilled-out vibe all around Byron Bay and you couldn’t help it rubbing off on you, not sure if it was all the friendly backpacker’s nut there just was a buzz in the town. Byron was the highlight of my entire trip.
My one regret was not going to Nimbin but it the aircon was gone in the car and I think everyone in the car just wanted to get home instead of taking my 2-hour detour, maybe next time 😊
On our last day we drove out to the epicentre of family entertainment to go to Wet’n’Wild the waterpark, it was $85 for access and $70 for fast track on top of that so we choose not to get that which was a bad decision as the queues were ridiculous – we got 5 rides in all day and some only got 2 in and one being the lazy river.
Not sure if I would recommend doing this unless you have never been to a waterpark for the experience but even that said the slides we went down were pretty tame in comparison to other parks I have been to.
What I would have really liked to do was the SkyGolf which looked amazing – a golf driving range where you can play against each other in friendly competitions and they have lots of different targets for you to aim at. It was set up where you would have a booth similar to bowling and they would bring you food/drink and there was live music. Also, Warner Brothers studios were in the same area which had an exclusive new set for Aquaman which would have been pretty good to see.
Before we took off to the Sunshine coast we took a famous Shane detour up Tamborine mountain which we took the scenic route up avoiding the motorway but got a serious view overlooking the coast.
We did the Skywalk which was okay but I wouldn’t be doing it again, they did have an adventure rope park up there, glowing night slugs and lots of day spas I think I would be choosing any of those above the Skywalk if I had the choice again.