The Pilt Family are currently on Holidays on the Gold Coast staying right in Surfers Paradise. We have been here 8 days so for and have another 6 to go – although we are heading to Broadbeach for a conference in 3 days. I thought I would blog about my experiences up here. It is the first time we have holidayed on the Coast and thought some people may benefit from our experiences. So if you are looking for recommendations etc – please keep reading.
We are staying at Artique – which is a high rise with self contained apartments. We chose this particular block as we wanted somewhere that was an easy 10 minute walk into Cavill Mall, just off the beach and being a self contained apartment – we can do our own cooking etc – which keeps the food bill down for the week. It also has a nice gym – although it is not air-conditioned. Artique gets a 9 out of 10.
Here is the view from the room we had.
The only negative of the complex is that the pool is in the shade for a large part of the day – which makes swimming a slightly cold affair. Here is a pic of the pool – taken during the few hours of sunlight.
One of the big negatives at the moment with Surfers Paradise is the roadworks that are taking place as they install the Light Rail system. It makes getting around insanely frustrating with the back roads loaded up with traffic, roads that were open yesterday are closed today and traffic overall constantly very heavy and often stationary. Here is shot of the Surfers Paradise Blvd – which is one of the main North/South roads around the Coast. Surfers Paradise roads get a 2 out of 10.
One of the reasons we wanted to be close to Cavill Mall, was to be part of the buzz of the mall. There is always lots happening: buskers, tourists etc. Love the buzz. Here are a few pics from the Mall.
The following photo was taken purely for this blog to show you the activities and life of Cav Mall. See how dedicated I am to you the reading public.
I posted a blog of a whole stack of photos from the Mall – Here is the link http://goo.gl/lUN3Xs
We went to Dreamworld and Whitewater World – Which is all in the same park – but you need to buy separate tickets. Both parks were excellent, although typically with theme parks – the lines were painful at times. We waited 50 minutes for a couple of rides, but then toward the end of the day, the crowds had fallen and we got on all the rides we wanted. It was a really enjoyable day and Lakeisha and Laura had a super day. It was pretty expensive. For my family of four it was going to cost me around $300 (as Lakeisha is considered an adult) but there was a deal being offered on the Gold Coast streets by a promotional company that if you sat through a 90 minute sales presentation on Time Share Holidays – you got two adult tickets for $40. So we did that. It was a waste of 90 minutes of my life – but it saved me about $150. Here is a pic of Lakeisha at Dreamworld. Overall Dreamworld gets a 9 out of 10.
We spent an evening at the largest Timezone in Queensland – which is on Cavill Mall. Only spent $30, but with a few free things they threw in, we had a blast for about an hour. Was worth the money. Here is a pic of Lakeisha using a gun in Timezone. This gets an 8.5 out of 10.
We tried out the Ripleys Believe it or Not display in Cav Mall. Cost $87 for a family of four – which was pretty expensive but certainly an interesting place to visit. We spent a good two hours in there and there was a lot of good discussions about the things we saw. They have an iPhone app that you down load and you can unlock bonus stuff as you scan different things as you walk through the display: That was worth doing. Here is a pic of Laura and Lakeisha posing in front of a caged skeleton – and then the skeleton spoke – check out Laura’s response. Overall I would give Ripley’s an 8 out of 10.
As it is school holidays, Surfers Paradise has extra entertainment on at the moment. These bubbles for example that kids can go inside and run on water in them. Cost was $10 for 15 minutes. Laura had fun. 7 out of 10.
Here is another example of the extra entertainment – Movies on the beach. The Gold Coast do entertainment well. This was an 8 out of 10
In terms of eating venues, its all pretty predictable. We did have an ugly incident at The Coffee Club on the Mall where we waited for 90 minutes before we got our meals – which was a pretty long time seeing the cafe wasn’t full or particularly busy at the time. We did find a great dessert place called San Churros – highly recommended. Expensive but awesome. Here is pic of the dessert I had the other night. Rating for San Churros 8 out of 10.
We went on a Jet Boat. Was a tad on the expensive side $145 for a family ticket – for a 55 minute ride, but it was a good experience for the girls. Melanie and I had been on a jet boat at Queenstown which is adrenalin to the max and the Gold Coast version wasn’t as exciting, but still a good thrill for the girls. If you are hard core and want a thrilling ride – go to Queenstown. Overall Rating 7 out of 10.
I took the girls to experience Gold Class Cinemas – as we having nothing like that in Nowra. In fact we don’t even have a proper cinema in Nowra – but lets not go there. Anyway – the experience was good:- $20 a ticket – which was cheaper than what I expected – but the shocker was the food we ordered. There was only three of us and we ordered a couple of pizzas and banana splits etc to eat during the movie – $112 later – which made it an insanely expensive trip to the movies. To increase my angst about the evening – we saw GrownUps 2 – worse movie ever – it would have been more beneficial for me to sit through a time share presentation with no intention of buying – than to sit through this movie. Rating 1 out of 10.
The Pilt Family have loved the beach experience up here. Clean beaches, swimming safely between the flags under the beautiful Queensland sun – it doenst get any better than that. Overall Rating 10 out of 10. The only negative is that by 1pm, the shadow from the Soul building falls over the main swimming area of the beach. It is quite imposing. But that’s minor I guess. A couple of times some fighter jets flew over about 200 metres off the water surface and about 300 metres off the beach – excellent to see.
We have enjoyed the night markets beside the Surfers Paradise Beach – They are Friday, Sunday and Wednesday. To some degree typical market stuff but an enjoyable atmosphere.
We also tried the 7D experience. This is where you sit in a roller coast type car and it moves on an arm as you sit in front of a large screen – so it is a virtual reality roller coast. As you go through water you get sprayed etc. Cost $50 for the family of 4, lasted about 7 minutes and my overall rating is a 4 out of 10. Don’t do it. Here is pic.
Anyway that gives you a little bit of an insight into our holiday and what I would recommend and not recommend. Overall, its been a very enjoyable 8 days and the Gold Coast gets two thumbs up. Overall rating 9 out of 10.