Surfer's, Bryon and Brizzie!
25.11.2010 - 30.11.2010 27 °C
We headed to Surfer`s Paradise, a few hours south of Hervey Bay. It’s a busy city, with tons of attractions, a lot of nightlife and turns out a lot of Schoolies! Now “Schoolies” is when all of the grade 12 high school students graduate and they spend a week in a beach town basically taking over the place! So we decided to only stay 1 night, as we heard it’s a must see.
At this point, Jesse was not feeling well as he was starting to suffer from a cold. We all decided to take it easy, so we found a good Sushi restaurant and then took a walk around Surfer’s before calling it a night.
Byron Bay was for a lack of a better word – delicious!
This is the one town in which we were forced to to step up our accommodations as the schoolies were in full force here and had booked up anything relatively cheap over a month ago. Although we had to pay a bit more to stay in a cute beach house called Atlantic Guesthouses, it was well worth it!
Soon after we arrived and settled in, our friend Jamal, who has been going to school and living in Brisbane, arrived at the bus station to join us. We hadn’t seen him since he was in Canada almost a year ago so it was amazing that he could come out and meet us in Byron for the weekend!
We decided to walk along the beach and over to the lighthouse walk, which had amazing views. We timed it perfectly, as the sun was setting, so we got some amazing shots.
The hike took a bit longer than expected, so when we finally finished, it was just before 8 pm and we were starving! We grabbed some pizzas and burgers at a pub in town, along with a few beers. There was an amazing band playing on the street a few shops down – so we ate outside and enjoyed the music. After dinner, we went back to the beach house, where we drank some beers and sangria. Then we called it a night – as we had to get up early for surf lessons the next morning!
We took our surf lessons from “Black Dog Surfing” which proposes that if you don’t get up on your first lesson, they’ll take you on another lesson free – so we thought it was worth trying out!
The staff there were awesome! Very friendly and they certainly knew their stuff. Before we knew it, everyone had gotten up on their surf board! Jesse even got up on his first try – which he still says was his best one!
Now if you have a cold – surfing might be the best cure. After the salt water has washed down your throat, ears, and nose – your sinuses will be cleared right out!
After surfing, we grabbed a burger at the “Rail station” restaurant, which was recommended by our surf instructors. It was delicious and much needed after surfing all morning – one thing we’ve learned, anytime a local recommends a place to eat, just do it!
We spent the rest of the afternoon at the Beach, working on our tan, swimming in the ocean and playing beach volleyball.
The second evening in Byron was round 1 of Andy’s birthday celebrations! We tried to go to the Beach Hotel, which had live music, but given the Schoolies, the line was ridiculous – so we headed to Cheekey Monkey’s – a famous backpacker’s party. At midnight we sang happy birthday as Andy turned 26! Party Jesse was in full force that night. Whether it was Picnic tables, tables in booths, or anything that had 4 legs, Jesse was dancing on it that night – especially when the song Barbra Streisand by Duck Sauce came on -
We ended the night by sharing a noodle box, at yes, “the noodle box.”
The next morning we made breakfast and grabbed a coffee at a local coffee shop and then waited for our bus to Brisbane (Brizzie!)
Brisbane is Australia’s 3rd largest City and currently home to our good friend Jamal Lake. As such, we spent two days and two nights exploring Brizzie with Jamal, meeting his friends and experiencing the Brisbane nightlife.
Our first day, we checked out the downtown core, walked through the queen street mall and to this awesome bar called the Beach house. This was Andy’s official birthday so naturally we went straight to the bar. However since this was already day 2 of our celebrations, we decided to ease our way into the night with some mimosas. To our surprise, the bartender picked up the fact that we were Canadians right away and insisted we have a round on the house!
Soon afterwards, we found ourselves by the pier meeting all of Jamal’s friends and having a $7 pizza and a schooner at the Boardwalk! We had a few more drinks and then we made our way to the Vic bar where we bought Andy a few more Birthday shots and hit the dance floor.
Brisbane marked the last stop of our 2 week excursion down the East coast of Australia.
On our second day we spent the first half of the day at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, Australia’s first and largest Koala sanctuary. There we got to hold Koalas and feed Kangaroos and Wallabees.
Afterwards, we checked out South Bank park – where there is an outdoor lagoon. We ended up having a relatively quiet evening as we were all pretty “tired” from the last two nights.
Next , we meet up with Jacqueline’s family in Portsea (a small town south of Melbourne) where we’ll be spending the next two and half weeks getting some much needed R&R followed up by some visits to Melbourne (Australia’s second largest City) and the island of Tasmania. We’ll also be visiting a few of the many wineries in the area and taking the scenic drive on the Great Ocean Road. Stay tuned!