July 6, 2012

Australia Gold Coast - Surfers' Paradise

Australia is probably one of the most popular holiday destination for Singaporeans. Well, I am one of those who has not been there in his entire life. I guess I am more of a North Asia traveler than a down under fan, as good food, especially noodle dishes, are some of my favorite food. My sis have resort to emotional blackmail to get my sorry ass to the down under and to take advantage of the low promotional rates offered by the newly minted long haul budget airline, Scoot. So off I went on a 6 days gold coast trip with my sis and my two years old niece.

The brightly yellow wacky design of Scoot
The first few days were spend in a farm near sunshine coast. I have every intention try to make an attempt a run around the farm but the uneven, rocky ground plus the winter cold is sufficient to persuade me to stay indoors, away from the freezing outdoors.

Later in the trip, we drove back to gold coast surfer paradise where the weather is much Warmer. Our apartment fronts the famous surfer paradise beach and a nice long running track parallel to the beach makes it a irresistible temptation for any runner.

By 630am, I am suited up for the cold in surfer shorts, a long sleeve rash guard and a windbreaker. This is the first time I am running in the dead of winter anyway so, despite seeing other joggers in t-shirt and short. I rather not take the risk.

Looks like a mugger...
The sunrise is glorious and the beach is beautiful. The running track is smooth and well paved and it stretches all along the entire beach of gold coast. Running in the cold is fantastic too as you do not even perspire much, just feeling comfortably warm even with my pretty warm running gear. My apartment is near the Eileen Peters Park along Esplanade road and with the sea on my right, I head north.
The start point of my run
Glorious Sunrise

Vietnam War Memorial
Its a nice long flat track!!
Life guard Kiosk. See the security camera?
There are no hordes of tourists in the early morning, just the early cleaning crew and a steady stream of joggers. The beach is dotted with numerous unisex toilets and life guard kiosks. As compared to a single high chair in the middle of the beach under the burning sun, the life guard kiosks are a luxury as compared to what I see in Singapore and around Asia. I suspect that they may even have air-con in the kiosks, to help the life guards keep cool, so that they can focus on their jobs spotting distressed swimmers among the swells of the sea.
This Warning sign is everywhere!

 They also have designated swimming area marked out by multi color flags. The beach looks pretty uniform to me, so why do they need to mark out a no swimming area? Is it because that area is out of sight of the life guard kiosk or there is a Great White Shark lurking just below the surface on that stretch of the beach. On my left, are block and blocks of residential apartments and I see a lot of signs at the entrance of these apartments signalling that they have rooms to let. It seems like the whole of surfer paradise is one big weekend vacation spot, as most of the buildings have apartments out for short and long term rental. These are also prime beachfront apartments where you can actually enjoy the sun rising over the coast. In Singapore, residents will queue to get an apartment like that, just for the good Feng Shui.
Prime beachfront properties or just weekend rental apartments?

A rough guide to Surfers Paradise
  I hit the end of surfer paradise and turned back on hitting another stretch of the beach called "main beach".After 5 km, I don't even feel tired, thanks to the cold weather. I could have done another km or two but I need to bring my niece for her McDonald breakfast.

Turning back on reaching the Main Beach
I saw a couple of joggers doing beach jogging and I thought that they look pretty cool, so I did a short distance by the beach just beside the surf. The sand is just hard enough for running and not too soft that it becomes too tiring. If I have another morning at gold coast, I would have done beach running! Yes, I have only one morning at surfer paradise before flying back to Singapore the following morning.

Running on the beach! Beautiful!
The morning sun is fully risen and the weather getting warm
Anyway, I headed back to the apartment I change and get ready for breakfast, knowing that running in the cold, is a fantastic experience! At least I know how much clothes I need to wear to run in the dead of winter! What's left is to try to run, when it is snowing. I wonder what the experience will be like!??


  1. Sunrise in the Gold Coast beaches is truly epic. With those great views, no wonder why Australia's Gold Coast is a perfect choice for a holiday destination.



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