Coolangatta Holiday


Easter time in my family has, for many years, meant a week at Coolangatta at a time share my folks bought more years ago than I can even remember. Just about all the family who aren’t overseas comes down for at least a couple of days to have a swim, read, relax and eat fish’n’chips. My mum wasn’t going to get much of a chance to swim this year cos she’s got a broken ankle.

Coolangatta always seemed like it was really wanting to become another Surfers Paradise. Quite a few high rise apartment/time share blocks went up and it was close to the NSW border at a time when pokie machines were illegal in Queensland. But in the end, the beach was a little too small, QLD opened up to gambling and Coolangatta never really became the international tourist magnet that Surfers is.

Having said that, it has its own charm. More family orientated these days, it doesn’t suffer from the extravagance that has taken over Surfers. There’s no huge casino, no stores selling tacky tourist crap aimed at Asian tourists, no nightclubs that attract under-age drinkers.

The Beach House Seaside Resort is one of the oldest properties on the Coolangatta strip that runs along the main street, Marine Parade. It’s showing its age in some ways (the two elevators take forver!), but it also has prime location on the corner with great views down the beach to Greenmount Resort, and clear sight to Mt Warning towards the Gold Coast hinterland. In Coolangatta, everything you need is within walking distance. There’s plenty of shops, cafes, banks, post office, restaurants, and two pubs, along Marine Parade and Griffith Street (one block off the beach).

I only had a couple of days to enjoy the beach so I tried to make the most of it. It’s changed a bit since the last time I was here. Some development in NSW caused a wole heap of sand to be dumped on the beach and now it’s a fair trek to get to the water. The weather was perfect and the water was warm. It’s a good beach although there was a strong pull the days that I was there. It was only pulling north, not out to sea, so there wasn’t much danger, you just got a workout trying to stay between the surf lifesavers’ flags.

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One morning as we were heading out to pick up some beer we saw the reason why our TV reception was a bit scratchy. Actually the TV was fine, but this guy was certainly not worried by us falling over ourselves to get the cameras out. Could it have been Frodo?

Getting There:
Coolangatta airport is only 2km away and services all domestic airlines, as well as a couple of international ones to Asia and New Zealand.

From Brisbane, you can catch a coach from Roma Street to Coolangatta (not sure of the price) and it will take about 2 hours depending on traffic.

There is also a citytrain service from Brisbane to Robina with a connecting bus service that will drop you right in the middle of Coolangatta. It takes about 2.5 hours and costs under $15 depending on where you catch the train in Brisbane.