Friday, June 16, 2017

Gold Coast: Surfer's Paradise & The Island Hotel

I feel so blessed to have been able to travel to different cities in Australia this summer. I've already been to Sydney a few years before, and last month we were able to visit Brisbane and Gold Coast. We also just arrived from Cairns last week, so it was definitely an adventure filled summer for us.

I'd have to say though that out of all the places we visited, the kids loved Gold Coast the most. The Gold Coast is renowned for its white sand beaches as well as its famous theme parks, like Movie World and Sea World which we were able to visit.

From Brisbane, Gold Coast is just an hour away. We just took an Uber since we were with the kids plus we had luggage as well. It's very expensive though, one way will set you back about $100 AUS. You can choose to take the train, but we didn't want to deal with multiple transfers and having to take the bus and walk to get to our final destination. Travel time will also be much longer. Some people also choose to rent a car, but it's right-hand drive in Australia so hubby was a bit anxious to try.

Anyway, in choosing which area to book our hotel, I knew I wanted to be right where the action was which was definitely Surfers Paradise.

There are so many nice hotels in the area, but I chose one walking distance to the beach and Cavill Avenue, which is a popular street and pedestrian mall in Surfers Paradise.

Cavill Ave.

I ended up booking The Island Hotel which is situated in the heart of Surfers Paradise. I was able to get a good deal direct through their website.

hotel exterior
pool and rooftop bar

I really liked how they had 2 queen beds and free wi-fi (some hotels charge extra for this). They also just finished renovating so everything was new.

love the tiles in the bathroom
balcony view at night

Location wise, this place was perfect. From our balcony, you can see how close we were to the beach just down the road.

The beach itself was amazing. The sand was white and powdery soft so the kids loved running around (especially after birds). I also loved how clear and blue the sky was! Water was just really cold though, so we didn't swim. And I was afraid of sharks lol, but our Uber driver said it was safe since they put nets in the water.

Cavill Avenue and Cavill Mall were also just a short walk away. Most establishments in Australia close pretty early (like 5pm to 6pm) so it was nice that this place was still very much alive at night lined with shops, bars, and lots of restaurants.

There's a McDonald's and KFC nearby for the kids, but no rice huhu! Of course, we had to eat at Hurricane's which is famous for their ribs!

Another good resto is Guzman Y Gomez, which serves Mexican food.

We also checked out Pacific Fair Shopping Centre located in Broadbeach (a short bus or Uber ride from Surfers Paradise), which is a huge shopping mall with an outdoor ambience. Here you can find luxury brands like Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Prada and mega brands like H&M, Uniqlo, and Zara. And of course, our favorite TARGET! ;p

We definitely loved the vibe in Gold Coast and enjoyed every minute of our stay. This is one place I'd really love to come back to and stay longer next time. :)

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