As published in GoRV, December Edition 2020
During our 15 months full time living and travelling on the road we have had the privilege of experiencing some amazing locations, attractions, people and places! However, there have been a few favourites we have missed from our hometown of the Gold Coast…the quieter, natural side that the locals love.
If you only have a few days to explore the best of the GC this itinerary is a perfect blend of free or great value for money, natural and immersive activities that will keep the entire family engaged and happy.
1. Charis Fish & Chips and Daily Pelican Feed
The local’s favourite fish and chippery, and not just because of the fresh seafood! Located on the water’s edge the views from the ample outdoor tables and well shaded seating areas overlook a natural swimming lagoon, with the stunning Broadwater and its many sand cays the perfect backdrop. A highlight is the daily pelican feed at 1:30pm, where up to 50+ resident birds awkwardly fly in and jostle for prime position on the beach, for up to 2 hours before the feed commences.
*tip – arrive at 12:30pm to enjoy a take away lunch and front row seat prior to the pelican feed.
2. G:Link & HOPO
The G:Link (light rail) covers a 20km route with 19 stops and provides transport for a staggering 10 million locals and tourists per annum. We enjoyed a short 20 minute walk from the Broadwater Tourist Park to catch the G:Link between Southport and Surfers Paradise, before hopping on the new HOPO ferry service that offers a circular link through 5 iconic locations on the GC waterways. If you love being on the water, this is by far the best way to take in the incredibly beautiful Broadwater and canals of the Gold Coast… we even spotted a pod of dolphins!
*tip – catch the light rail after 9am to avoid the daily business commuters.
3. Burleigh Headland Sunrise Walk
Burleigh Heads is world famous for its perfect waves, but the real hidden treasure is the world class walk around the headland that juts out from the Pacific Ocean’s edge. This popular sunrise start to the day is complimented with breathtaking scenery, turquoise swimming areas, natural Australian landscape and envious options for really good coffee from either side of the headland’s coffee nooks (a reward for all your effort)!
*tip – park your car on the Tallebudgera side of the headland for a less congested and calmer start (and finish) to this amazing natural and free experience.
4. Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary
Hands down our favourite family fun experience on the GC! Known as the premier native wildlife sanctuary in Australia, there is perfect blend of entertainment and education on offer. Famous for their daily wild rainbow lorikeet feed, you can also have your photo taken with a wedge tailed eagle or giant python, marvel at the majestic Wild Skies Free Flight Bird Show or for the younger family members, sing and dance along with Blinky Bill and friends. A ride on the miniature train is a must for everyone to enjoy, and the real heartbeat of the Sanctuary is the incredible onsite Wildlife Hospital that rescues, rehabilitates and releases thousands of injured and orphaned wildlife back into the wild each year.
*tip – pre-register your entry ticket online as numbers are currently limited.
We chose to stay at the Broadwater Tourist Park located on the northern end of the Gold Coast. With 9 parks and campgrounds located across the GC there are accommodation options to suit every traveller! https://goldcoasttouristparks.com.au
~ Katie Guerin