Game on, Gold Coast

By | Travel
Gold Coast City with its high-rise sky scrappers and contrasting white sand beaches. Credit@Roger via flcikr.com

The 20th Commonwealth Games finished in style in Glasgow last week, showing the world what Scotland was made of. However half of the ending ceremony was dedicated to Australia’s Gold Coast, as they finally got the handover for the next Commonwealth Games in four years. Their part of the ceremony was impressive, showing all aspects of what they had to give in the brightest light. Offering a natural sporting playground, endless sandy landscapes and vibrant parties, Gold Coast’s game for 2018 is on and expectations are high.

If Australia is a top destination for sport, then Gold Coast City is the absolute summit. Located on the east coast of Australia, the Gold Coast is a coastal city in south-eastern state Queensland. It is the second most populous city in the state and with its sunny subtropical climate, high-rise skylines, theme parks, nightlife that goes long beyond the night and idyllic surfing beaches, it is obvious why.

Australia is home to hundreds of medal-winning athletes in a range of sports, particularly in swimming, athletics and hockey. Australian athletes, in particular those Gold Coast born and bred, will be ecstatic that the 2018 Games are being held in their city. They may also be the largest international sporting event staged in Australia for a decade, with more than 6500 athletes and officials from 71 Commonwealth nations heading to the “Surfers Paradise” in four years.

Surfers Paradise, Queensland. Credit@Daniel Dimarco via flickr.com

Surfers Paradise, Queensland. Credit@Daniel Dimarco via flickr.com

The nickname Surfers Paradise was formed after the establishment of the Surfers Paradise hotel in the late 1920s and since then, the Gold Coast region has grown significantly in terms of tourism. The city aims to attract and welcome as many people as they can from across the globe for the Games, including athletes, fans and spectators. Being just under 100 kilometres south of the state capital Brisbane, Gold Coast is a perfect place to get stuck in with the Games and at the same time, enjoy an Aussie holiday of relaxation and exploration.

The Gold Coast offers so much, and does so with its iconic contrasting landscapes. Inside the city, high-rise sky scrapers fill your eye-line. However take a step back and see that the concrete jungle is surrounded by long bays of white sand and blue waved beaches, and these beaches are each unique. With soft, rolling waves and a warm sun shining throughout the year, it is clear why the collection of Gold Coast’s beaches form the ultimate surfer’s playground. Some of these beaches include Broadbeach, Mermaid beach, Rainbow Bay, Nobby Beach, Palm Beach and of course, Surfers Paradise beach.

Step inside the concrete city and it is like another world. Australia has more skyscrapers per person than any other country in the world with a population greater than five million. With quirky designs at impressive heights, the Gold Coast sky-line is one of a kind. The SkyPoint Observation Deck is one of best places to see the city from above, located on level 77 and 78 of the Q1 building. Abbreviated from Queensland Number One, Q1 is a skyscraper of 322.5 metres. Before the 2011 Marina Torch in Dubai, it took pride in its title as the world’s tallest residential tower. However today, the Q1 still remains the tallest building in Australia.

Looking north from the Q1 building. Credit@Gordon Wrigley via flickr.com

Looking north from the Q1 building. Credit@Gordon Wrigley via flickr.com

The Skypoint Observation Deck is Australia’s only beachside observation deck and has enough room for 400 people. Up 230 metres, viewers can see a panoramic view of Brisbane to the north, the Gold Coast Hinterland to the west, Byron Bay to the south and the Pacific Ocean to the east. Viewers may also be able to see the multiple adventure and theme parks that have become renowned in Gold Coast.

Every Commonwealth Games is different and each reflects the particular culture and spirit of the nation and city. Australia’s Gold Coast has already shown the world a snippet of their diverse culture and exhilarating spirit they will use to shape the 2018 Games with. With the Games in Glasgow being a success, the game is on for Gold Coast to shine, and with its people, energy, dedication and breath-taking landscapes, it is clear the city will produce an ultimate gold performance.

Which part of the Gold Coast would you like to see?

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