After a delay of more than 4 years, we decided to take the plunge and book our family trip to Gold Coast, Australia. We booked our flights in November last year, so we practically had to wait a year for our trip. But it was all worth the wait (and the rising Aussie dollar)…
Day 1 started the night before – Our AirAsia X flight on Sunday night from LCCT. I had my reprehensions about AAX, while its much cheaper than any other option, there are some drawbacks to consider. 8 hours to pass at night is a long time. If you can afford it, get the XL seats. Or at least pick a good seat (at a small price). Bring lip balm and moisturizer coz the air in the cabin is dry and quite unhealthy if you have breathing problems. And mostly be prepared not to sleep much. Besides they wake you up unceremoniously 2 hours before landing to sell their merchandise. 2 hours! It’s 3am in the morning, and I’ve only gotten 4 hours of sleep for goodness sake!!!
We got thru the airport security quickly, and i got my pre-booked rental car from Thrifty. They had a great offer of 4 days plus Escape Pass (entry into any 2 theme parks for 2 adults + 2 kids) for about AUD$550. I’ve gotta say after everything I’m very impressed with Thrifty and their services, I’d highly recommend them to anyone.
This was our car. It’s a brand new Nissan Tiida (say what?) with less than 5000km on the meter. Although its a compact, it can easily fit four adults and lots of luggage.
Breakfast & Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
At 8.30am we were out of the airport, and starving (last in flight meal was at 11pm). For our first breakfast in Australia, we went for somewhere recommended for having food good at cheap prices – the local Surf Club. The nearest was the Currumbin Beach, home of the Vikings.
Get a seat on the deck facing the beach. Man, the view is AWESOME. Fresh air, seagulls playing on the sand, great food, the staff even pointed out some dolphins out in the waves.
Next to the Surf Club is a rock mountain called Elephant Rock, giving you a great view of Currumbin. Believe me, it sure gets windy up there.
Then it was off to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary. I had a choice to come here or Paradise Country (which was recommended by Mei Yan) but I decided to come here since it was near the airport and en route to my hotel. The Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary is a great themepark with lots of interesting shows. The main stars of this place are the marsupials indigenious to Australia, like the kangaroos, wombats, dingos, etc.
But to me, the best part of the place was the free flight bird show. If you think the bird show at the KL Birdpark is good, this one is AWESOME, make sure you do not miss it if you come here.
Lunch and Check-In the Hotel
We left the Sanctuary at about 3pm, drove to Broadbeach where our hotel is. Before checking in, we dropped by Woolworth’s beside our hotel to do some shopping for a late lunch.
We stayed in a beachview 2 bedroom apartment at the Meriton @ Broadbeach (recommended by someone). It’s great! It’s fully furnished with cutlery and full kitchen facilities, and there’s a washing machine and dryer (which came in VERY handy).
Our apartment is about 400m from the beach, although we didn’t manage get to go swimming in the Pacific.
Dinner at Surfers Paradise
After a short nap, we took a drive down to Surfers Paradise for dinner.
After a tiring day, we had an early night.