Emma Campbell, 15, works as a ‘teen concierge’ for the Marriott Surfers Paradise. The avid surfer and aspiring musician wants to show what the Gold Coast has to offer for visitors her own age.
Bored? Get on a board
The Gold Coast Surf Academy knows that a trip to the Gold Coast wouldn’t be complete without trying out the feeling of riding a surfboard! There are has two locations: Broadbeach (10-minute drive from Surfers Paradise) and one closer to town, on the southern side of Surfers, just off Frederick Street. I can recommend the school’s friendly assistance, encouraging instructors and skills development.
Surfers all scream for ice scream
For that authentic Italian gelato experience, I always head to Gelatissimo on Cavill Avenue. With 32 flavours all made in house, the hardest part is choosing which will best satisfy your sweet cravings!
If there’s one thing more vibrant than Cold Rock Surfers Paradise’s endless display of ice creams, it’s the lively atmosphere. You can’t go past the experience of watching the staff smash up lollies, chocolate, and biscuits to make the most unique flavour for you.
Ben & Jerry’s has evolved from being just pints in freezers to a buzzing scoop shop on Cavill Avenue. The ice cream’s balanced buttery texture is transformed into some weird and whacky flavours like Phish Food and Maple Tree Hugger.
If I’m feeling like a healthy kick, I always make time to swing by Delisssh frozen yoghurt, located in a pulsing Nobby’s Beach pocket. You can’t go past theMiloflavour.
To indulge in an ice cream at Gelateria Dolce Follia, Burleigh Heads is a little more expensive, but this place serves up the most delicately crafted traditional Italian gelato to eat by the beach or takeaway in box for dessert back at home. Blood orange in a cone, or the mouth-watering caramel and vanilla bean combination?
Pick your theme (park)
As families encompass a range of different characters, it can be hard to find a fun day out that will keep everybody happy. However, the Gold Coast’s vast range of theme parks, satisfy the adrenaline-junky, Hollywood lover, parade watcher, big eater, mad shopper, animal enthusiast and hydro-fanatic.
The line-up along the Gold Coast Motorway begins with Wet ‘n’ Wild and Movie World, side by side. Continue a few more minutes and you’ll reach neighbours Dream World and White Water World. Sea World is a bit further away, however, all the parks will have you going back for one more ride, one more pat, and one more bite.
Natural Bridge to another world
Zigzag your way through a labyrinth of felt-like, mossy logs and darting bush turkeys and you’ll find yourself at the foot of the Gold Coast’s hidden gem: the Natural Bridge in Springbrook National Park. The naturally sprouted arch melds with the national park’s boisterous rainforest to create an environmental wonder, which will leave you in disbelief that you are just 50km away from the coastline. The real magic, however, lies engulfed in the cave of the bridge, where a waterfall cascades into a pool that is perfect for swimming during the day, and with the thousands of glow worms it is home to.
Outlet shopping, Ashmore
Lets be honest, a visit to a factory cluttered with boxes half-opened here, and clothes of every colour strewn off hangers there, doesn’t quite capture the ideal shopping image. However, there is something to be said about the satisfaction of finding the last pair of jeans in your size, half price.
A pocket at Ashmore has a collection of Surf Outlets where bargains and big brands are ubiquitous. Harbour Town, Biggera Waters, on the other hand, is more fashion orientated, and with over a hundred shops and restaurants located on its outdoor shopping strip, it is a must-go-to destination.