Hi everyone!

As part of my photography course, I have to track my development on a blog. The posts from September 2011 until January 2012 are part of a module called Project Management, for which I was required to work in a group of eight students to create an exhibition. The blog followed every step we took in order to create a successful gallery. The blog posts starting from September 2012 follow my final year on the course. I'll be documenting my research and analysis of my final year projects, as well as include notes of my Professional Practice unit - which prepares us for a range of post graduate options. Finally it also looks at a project called New Creatives, where I'll be working alongside an artists to help college students get more involved with art.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

East Coast Travels - Surfers Paradise

6th - 8th May

We left Byron Bay at 10.15 on the 6th of May and arrived in Surfers Paradise at 13.10. Along the way we drove past a place called Tweed, where we had a beautiful view of Surfers Paradise in the distance. We then drove through Palm Beach and Miami and arrived in Surfers Paradise.

I had heard a lot of bad things about Surfers, that it’s very Miami-like, commercial and fake. I didn’t want to form an opinion before I arrive and dislike it before I even get there, so I stayed very open minded. I absolutely loved it.

We stayed at the Beachcomber Resort, which is just next to the beach and incredibly tall, I think it had 30 floors? We stayed on the 20th floor and had an ocean view. I feel like every hotel just gets better and better! The room was pretty large with a great view and a balcony that goes around the corner, meaning we had a view of the beach, the city beside us and the sunset behind us.

We arrived at a great time and meant we had the majority of the day to explore. We started off strolling along Surfers Paradise Beach. It was another one of those moments where I’d seen tons of photos of the place, and now I’m there in real life. It’s the complete opposite of Byron Bay. Byron Bay was really relaxed and quiet and the beach was surrounded by the rain forest, but Surfers Paradise is busy, glamorous and modern. The beach itself was really great, the sand was light and soft and the water was cold but not freezing. When you look back though, all you see are skyscrapers! It’s a bit of a weird sight, but I quite liked it!

We then decided to walk through the town and grab some lunch. We found the most amazing burger place. We’re pretty loyal to grill’d, it’s a fantastic place with healthy burgers, but Mos Burger is in a league of its own. I had the Wagyucado, I’m not sure how to say that, but it was amazing, and the burgers are presented beautifully too. As part of the meal deal you also get an iced tea, which is literally iced tea. I had the peach flavour which was infused with real bits of chopped up peach. It’s a Japanese brand so I have a feeling we’ll be going when when we’re in Tokyo!

Everyone says Surfers Paradise reminds them of Miami and I totally agree. I went to Miami a few years ago and loved it. As we drove into Surfers Paradise it had the same layout as Miami, the thin island on the beach divided by a river which has all the expensive looking houses. In Miami we loved going to Lincoln Road Mall, an outdoor shopping street with amazing shops. The shopping area in Surfers definitely has a similar feel to it. It’s very modern, spacious, clean and new. We did some shopping and just walked around the town. There are a lot of club promoters trying to offer you the best deal to the best clubs etc, which I guess is the stereotypical view people have of the place.

We watched the sunset on the beach, which was no where near as spectacular as it was in Byron Bay since the sun sets on the other side, and then went back to the hotel. The next morning we actually got up to watch the sunrise, but that was a bit disappointing too unfortunately.

On the second day we didn’t really do too much more, we strolled along the beach and sat in the sun for a while. It was an amazing day with bright blue skies so a great day to be on the beach. The water had pretty strong currents so you were only allowed to swim in designated areas. The rest of the day we spent walking around and exploring the place. We finished the day off by watching a beautiful sunset from our balcony and going to a night market.

The market was amazing! It wasn’t an ordinary market, but a real Surfers Paradise market, with shirts that light up and creating your hand in wax and other weird things. It was more of a young people market. I actually ended up buying a mothers day present there...

We absolutely loved Surfers Paradise. It had a completely different vibe from all the other places we’ve been so far and a nice change from Byron Bay. I’m not sure why Surfers Paradise has such a bad name and why we heard from so many people that it’s rubbish, because there was nothing about it we didn’t like. We had some amazing food, the beach was great, the shops were great, the market was great, the hotel was great, the weather was great. It was just a great atmosphere overall.

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