28 October 2012

Gold Coast - Surf World Museum

I love the waters especially when spending time at the beach, but I do not surf. Surf World Gold Coast is Queensland's only surfing museum and it is located just across the street from the Wildlife Currumbin Sanctuary. The entry fee to the museum is included into the ticket price to the Wildlife Currumbin Sanctuary. So is the entry to the Superbee Honeyworld next door.

While Margaret is at the Honeyworld, I decided to step into the surf world to see what I will find.

Surf World Gold Coast opened its doors in June 2009 and there is a story behind its opening, which you can read about it in their web-site. Today, there are over a 100+ surfboards dating from 1915 to the present day plus photos, posters, newspaper articles, artwork, clothing and other artefacts.

Many of the surf celebrities do not ring a bell with me, obviously, but it was interesting to read about their stories and the competitions they were in. There is a lot of history and science behind the surf boards too. The museum highlights the evolution of the design and technology from the early 1930s to today.

Some of the surf boards look ancient and heavy but there were a few surprises, like the motorized surf board.

It is a fun and interesting place to spend an hour or so and to see a very different world. I found the staff friendly and there is even a small gift shop.

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25 October 2012

Gold Coast - Wildlife Carrumbin Sanctuary

On our way to Surfers Paradise from the Gold Coast airport, we passed a Wildlife Currumbin Sanctuary signboard and noticed that it is one of the many theme parks promoted. The Currumbin suburb is just 5 to 10 minutes from the airport.

So we decided to include the wildlife sanctuary as one of the things to do for this trip. Besides, the car rental also includes a 20% discount voucher on the entrance fee for two persons.

Sadly, we could not take advantage of it. The forgetful me did not bring it with us on the day we visited. Here's a cost saving travel tip; always check for discount vouchers to any destination places, theme parks or restaurants, before leaving the hotel room for the day.

One of the first things we notice as we enter into the sanctuary compound was the wide open space with many lizards running around the place to greet us, Welcome! or so it seems. This open space is before the ticket booth and is where you may experience, for free, the feeding of wild Rainbow Lorikeet held twice a day. It was a practise dated back to when the sanctuary started.

A bit of history; the sanctuary was opened as the Currumbin Bird Sanctuary by Alex Griffiths in 1947 as a scheme to stop the local lorikeet population destroying his flower plantations. Today, the sanctuary is 27 hectares in size with lush eucalypt and rainforest trees within.

The sanctuary has one of the largest collections of Australian native species in the world. Included as part of its exhibits are the Dingos, Tasmanian Devils, a reptile house and the largest walk-through aviary in the southern hemisphere.

It also has a miniature railway that started in 1964. Still in good working order and a popular means of transportation around the sanctuary. It sure beats walking. Stop at Kangaroo Crossing and you can mingle with the kangaroos or emus before you head up a slope to the reptile house or aviary.

Included with the ticket is the must see, Flight Bird Show. You just have to plan your walk around the time of the show. Catch the train back to the location of the show, if you find yourself at the other end of the sanctuary.

Here's a short clip of a bird of action, from the show. Enjoy!

22 October 2012

Gold Coast - Day and Night

One do not expected to find a Statue of David at the Gold Coast of Queensland, Australia, but there is a replica of the real one at one of its shopping mall. David is a masterpiece of Renaissance sculpture created between 1501 and 1504, by the Italian artist Michelangelo.

This posting however is not about Michelangelo art work. It is about one of the most visited place of Queensland, the Gold Coast, a coastal city located in the South East of the state.

The city is 94 km south of the state capital Brisbane. It is the second most populous city in the state after Brisbane, the sixth most populous city in the country, and also the most populous non-capital city in Australia. You can read all about this and more from the Wikipedia links.

During the day, the Gold Coast is known primarily for its beaches. The city consists of 57 kilometres of coastline with some of the most popular surf breaks in Australia and in the world. Within the Gold Coast is a suburb called Surfers Paradise a major tourist destination, the jewel of Queensland's Gold Coast. Surfers Paradise is just 30 minutes from the Gold Coast Airport and its life beat is centred around the Cavill Mall, with easy access to the Surfers Paradise beach, cafes, restaurants, fashion and shopping malls. There are accommodation options to suit every budget.

The photo above shows a typical day at the beach and at Cavill Mall. For day time activities, the Gold Coast is not limited to just Surfers Paradise and the beach. There are a number of theme parks and family attractions like the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary, the Warner Bros. Movie World, Dreamworld, Sea World, and many others, which will be postings of their own and for another time.

Surfers Paradise has its own unique nightlife hub. If you are looking for that unique Surfers Paradise souvenir gift to take home, be sure to get down to the Surfers Paradise Beachfront markets every Wednesday and Friday night between 5:30pm and 10:00pm. It is just the place for bargain hunters and after-dinner strollers, making their way among the 100+ market stalls, along the Surfers Paradise Foreshore, north and south of Cavill Mall. There are also live entertainers, some of which do not like videos taken of their performance.

If the night market is not your scene, there are an array of nightclubs, pubs and bars all within a two kilometre range and most operating into the early hours of the night.

For more images of Surfer Paradise click here.

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19 October 2012

Jesus You Are My Healer - Don Moen

Proverbs 4:20-22 (NLT)
20Pay attention, my child, to what I say. Listen carefully. 21Don't lose sight of my words. Let them penetrate deep within your heart, 22for they bring life and radiant health to anyone who discovers their meaning.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)
5Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6Seek his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths.

Mark 2:17 (NLT)
17When Jesus heard this, he told them, "Healthy people don't need a doctor--sick people do. I have come to call sinners, not those who think they are already good enough."

1 Peter 2:24 (NLT)
24He personally carried away our sins in his own body on the cross so we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. You have been healed by his wounds!

15 October 2012

Mt Dandenong - Tulip Festival

It's already spring here at Down Under. It is a perfectly good time of the year to be at the Tulip Festival, at Mt Dandenong, just an hour drive from the city of Melbourne. But this early in spring is also a time of pollens in the air, rain and quick weather changes; one of the attractions or complaint of Melbourne. As an aside, Melbourne is known for its four season in one day experience.

This spring I got the running nose and the shivers, so did not make it to this year tulip festival. But I so want you to get a glimpse of the tulips flowers and the feel of the festival which lasts for 3 weeks, but has 4 weekend, from mid-Sept to early October. There is a different theme for each week-end; Turkish, Dutch, Irish and a Food, Wine and Jazz week-end, not necessarily in that order.

It is one of those all day family outing that you have to bring along your cameras and/or videos to just capture that family moment.

So I am posting last year '2011 view of the tulip farm.

It was a cold, at times windy, at times sunny and cloudy day with some light rain in between. Still, the weather could not remove the joy of seeing all the colourful tulip flowers on display and in such abundant numbers, over half a million Tulips made up of more than a hundred different varieties.

Apart from the flowers, there are also sculptures on display. The work is from sculptors from across Australia, exhibiting their works between the colourful beds of the tulips.

There is even a little something for the children; fairies, a wishing well, leprechauns and even llamas, a domesticated South American pack animal.

Not forgetting the shoppers, there are some stalls and a small gift shop to take back with them, a little something of the place and the day, like their favourite tulips for their own patch at home.

The address of the Tesselaar Tulip Farm is, 357 Monbulk Road Silvan, Victoria 3795.
Note there is an entry fee to the farm, during the festival.

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