Arriving in Surfers Paradise, the heavens opened and we got soaked in the midst of sorting out the camper van. It was not the welcome we had all anticipated.
That evening George, with a little help from myself, cooked us a roast chicken dinner using a cooked chicken that we had bought from Coles. I cannot tell you how good it was to have those potatoes, veg and chicken with the gravy drizzled on top at that very moment.
The rain decided to persist during the following day but we headed into the centre of Surfers anyway. We were able to bounce from shop to shop, the choice was vast, to avoid the rain. I treated myself to a Doughnut Time doughnut, a recommendation from a friend. It was big, beautiful and delicious.
As the rain eased off we were able to wonder around the streets more freely. This also meant that we were stopped by tour groups trying to sell us things. The boys were drawn in by the bar crawls on offer and I ended up being roped into spending $25 to join them on one. This was at a discounted price…they had to pay $60.
The one we booked was with a company called The Hangover and on reflection we should have gone with the company called Wicked as theirs had far more people on it.
That being said we still ended up having a good night. The club we ended up in, Vanity, was very lively and played the top songs of the moment.
The girls toilets in particular were what stood out for me. Pretty strange, I know, but they weren’t like your average toilets. There was a big red circular seat that was an inviting place to sit in order to take a break from all the dancing. A wall was lined with individual mirrors with seats below so you could take your time to reapply your make up (not that I had any with me). There was also a couple of hair straighteners that were free to use so many girls came in to tame the frizz (again I decided against it as my hair looked beyond fixable after spending weeks without a hairdryer or straighteners). It was all very fancy and I guess they had gone literal when they called the place Vanity.
That night I managed to get approximately two hours sleep so I spent the following day sleeping by the pool. This was detrimental in preparation for the upcoming three days, which were to be spent at theme parks.
We bought a combined ticket which gained us access to three of the parks based near Surfers Paradise. It cost us $99
Firstly, Wet ‘n’ Wild. A water park, which sadly makes you pay $10 for a locker. I always find that rude because you have already paid for your entry ticket to use the facilities. Apart from the locker charge it was a pretty good. They had slides that would suit the thrill seekers but also the people who are happy to slide down something that isn’t a vertical drop. It was a tiring (I swear it’s all the stairs you have to climb) but enjoyable day!
Secondly, Warner Brother Movie World. A small theme park that offers five big roller coasters, which the boys assured me were good (I’m a bit of a chicken when it comes to roller coasters). I spent the day hopping from souvenir shop to sweet shop in a hunt for the coldest air conditioning. This particular day was extremely humid and I could barely walk ten feet without wanting to pass out. The boys enjoyed themselves though.
Lastly, Sea World. I was assured that there were no whales at this particular park but I still wasn’t sure if I should be going. However it was all part of the package so we ended up popping in. I thought the dolphin and sea lion shows that we saw were very good. It is impressive how they manage to train these animals to do what they do but I’m just not sure how ethical it is. All three parks allow you to take your own food in and I would highly recommend doing so as food prices are ridiculous!
After visiting the centre of Surfers for the day I felt like I had seen what I needed to. The night life was pretty good but other than shops, sky scrapers and clubs I don’t see what else the place has to offer. Luckily the theme parks filled up the remainder of our time their and I would therefore recommend the stop off.
Campsite: Main Beach Tourist Park, $80 weekends per camper an on powered site. $71 weekdays. Stay more than four nights and price drops to $64.
Recommendations: Vanity night club | Wet ‘n’ Wild