Gold Coast 2014 Day 1 & 2 – Arrival at the Sunshine State

So begins the last holiday trip for this year. The PIE was unusually busy today with a few accidents and vehicle breakdowns along the way. But we got to the airport pretty quickly to join a long queue at Scoot.

Upon looking at the itinerary, we noticed that the baggage was restricted to 15kg each and we knew for sure ours was way above that, 2×29″ Sam that we bought from the states. Sure enough after 10mins in the line, the weighs were 17kg and 19kg. No response from the staff and we were given our tickets! Cool!

Had a late dinner at one of the Local Delights before heading to the boarding gate. There was a rowdy crowd awaiting boarding. Soon we were cruising at altitude. Dinner was served earlier than expected, though I requested for it to be served later, it was rejected. The meals tasted ok but the free cans of Pringles were really out of place.

Day 2

The night on board was mainly sleepless due to the screams from kids every so often. The flight was mainly smooth except that there were quite a number of turbulence though not serious.

As dawn broke, I was having a chat with a lady from Brisbane who had had the worst holiday in Patong. Sharing our travel experiences till the plane landed in the tiny airport of Gold Coast.

The queue through immigrations was pretty long but fortunately, the Singapore passport was allowed epassport and that cut the waiting time by lots. There was also an auto photo station to do the verification in place of humans.

Luggage belt took a while to deliver our luggage but eventually we left for the carpark opposite the arrivals across the road for the shuttle bus to ferry us to the East Coast Car Rentals, 10 mins drive from the airport.

Coolangatta Airport

Coolangatta Airport

East Coast Car Rental shuttle bus

East Coast Car Rental shuttle bus

Getting the car was pretty quick. Wanted to pay in cash but only credit card facilities are available. Got my own GPS started up before driving the 18km to Vibe hotel.

Room wasn’t available yet and so we went to Coles to buy a toothpaste that we found we didn’t bring along. Went over to Bluewater Cruises jetty and waited for our morning tea cruise to arrive. Wasn’t sure what to do as the cruise company couldn’t be found, only the jetty. It wasn’t long before the open top, 2-storeys cruise arrived, people alighted and we boarded after the staff checked our reservation.

Blue Water Cruises ship coming to the jetty.

Blue Water Cruises ship coming to the jetty.

Travelled along the Nerang river, known to have bull sharks, we were introduced to various high end properties on the shores of the various islands, while at the same time, having free tea (other drinks payable) and some not-so-tasty light snacks. Haven’t heard of any of the names of these rich people though. Some hotel and shopping mall was introduced too. The skyline of Surfers Paradise was nice but all in all, not so interesting. They do offer a free photo service that you could download from their webpage for keeps.

Snacks onboard the cruise.

Snacks onboard the cruise.

Surfer's Paradise skyline.

Surfer’s Paradise skyline.

Palazzo Versace. Really expensive hotel.

Palazzo Versace. Really expensive hotel.

After the cruise, we walked back to the hotel to find that the room was still not ready. Proceeded to get some sushi in Chevron Renaissance.

Walked to the beach of Surfers’ Paradise and enjoyed the view where the waves meet the stretch of white sand, watched as people were learning how to surf board, as the tiny waves come onto them only to fall off.

Long stretch of white beach at Surfer's Paradise.

Long stretch of white beach at Surfer’s Paradise.

Walked to Skypoint and went up to the observation deck at 77th. Here we get an awesome 360 view of the surface paradise, from this tallest building in Gold Coast. There was an even more adventurous option of walking on the roof of this building but we weren’t ready for that. Spent quite a bit of time at the observatory before making our way back to the hotel.

Towering building with Skypoint at the top.

Towering building with Skypoint at the top.

Entire floor for panorama viewing.

Entire floor for panorama viewing.

Bird's eye view of Surfer's Paradise.

Bird’s eye view of Surfer’s Paradise.

Initially wanted to take the tram, G-Linq, a transport system that just recently came in operations but the fees were not cheap. It was AUD5.20 per ticket, as we were only a stop away and thinking that it would cost more than 10bucks in total for a 15mins walk for both of us, we walked.

Riding the G. Not cheap.

Riding the G. Not cheap.

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The room on the 22nd floor was ready. The highest one with a great view of the river was given to us! The room itself was very spacious, with enough room for a small table and a sofa and the balcony looking into the direction of the river was fantastic. Jumping into bed, we instantly dozed off.

Living room.

Living room.

Bed.

Bed.

Toilet.

Toilet.

Bathtub.

Bathtub.

Balcony view.

Balcony view.

Woke up at 5pm and washed up. There was no wifi in room; although there was a LAN cable, our flat laptop didn’t have the port. Got out of the hotel to search for dinner. There was a little drizzle going on but stopped after we left the hotel.

Sunset view pano using Iphone.

Sunset view pano using Iphone.

Went around and there were still some retail shops opened. Popped into Quiksilver for a look and didn’t get any stuff. We ended up eventually in a Korean Kitchen restaurant for dinner. Kimchi and hot pot were great choices especially in the chill of the evening. The pancakes were softer than the ones in Singapore though it was still tasty. The hotpot stew was huge, we were both filled to the brim after the dinner.

Night view of the shopping streets.

Night view of the shopping streets.

Korean Kitchen for dinner.

Korean Kitchen for dinner.

Korean starters.

Korean starters.

Chicken Stew.

Chicken Stew.

Kimchi pancake

Kimchi pancake

Went back to the hotel to avoid the cold and eventually ended up in bed. The pitiful thing about the hotel was the lack of wifi. I tried to use it again at 11pm at the lobby but the free 30mins of internet was used up, apparently the clock started ticking once I logged in. Everything from here was payable. Wasn’t desperate and I returned to room where I saw a cockroach running across the room which I stomped it to death. I wondered how it got up to 22 storeys high.

Illuminations alongside the Nerang river at night.

Illuminations alongside the Nerang river at night.

The lack of sleep from the flight made us turned in early for the night.

ziyi

About ziyi

A travel addict from the little red dot otherwise known as Singapore. Started blogging during travel to help the aging forgetful mind remember the experience of each destination.

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