Australia > Queensland > Coolangatta

Coolangatta, 15 February 2009

At KLIA, it’s boarding time for AirAsia’s brand new 9M-XXB. Nice ‘new-plane’ odour, but the seat is terrifyingly narrow. Big bums better beware.

So what’s interesting? The USB charger at every seat looks cool.

And the RM30 all-in inflight entertainment system too.

Yup, some decent shows …

… and audio. Thanks, but I’ll stick to my MP3 stick.

But other services are still nowhere to be seen.

Anyway, 7.5hrs after leaving KUL, daybreak over central Queensland.

The Gold Coast is covered with thick low clouds, and as the plane breaks through the muck, the spectacular coastline is shoved into my face.

I flew the same route last August (in much, much better weather), and I love this little manoeuvre – the plane flies a straight southeasterly path along the beach, then a quick right turn …

… followed by a quick left for the landing. I dunno why.

The A330 lands smoothly in a drizzle at Coolangatta Airport, but 30min later chaos starts as the full storm arrives, with planes diverted to Brisbane or put on holding patterns. Me? I’m already at my favourite kebab shop along main street, Coolangatta, for lunch. biggrin.gif

I’ve been dying for this combo ever since I discovered it during my trip here last August – a tasty Turkish lamb kebab washed with a bottle of tangy Bundaberg ginger beer – truly awesome!

A short walk from kebab heaven, the Queensland – New South Wales is clearly marked on the footpath, NSW to the right. At the far end of the line, there is a monument …

… commemorating the border demarcation. I’m on the Queensland side, and that’s Tweed Heads over there, the twin town to Coolangatta. The monument sits in the middle of the road, aptly named … Boundary Street. How original.

Done with surveying the Queensland-NSW border, I head for the well-regarded Coolangatta Beach, they say the best for surfing, the huge waves that is. And there’s Surfers Paradise skyline above the water, more than 20km away.

Surfers are strolling towards the southern end of the beach, and since the weather is holding, I follow them and find myself on high ground overlooking the fine beach.

Even the local bloke looks bemused.

Yes, folks, this is a real surfer, a tough guy, unlike us wimpish, pugnacious keyboard surfers.

Out in the raging sea, I see brave men paddling like insects to meet and challenge the angry waves.

The good ones ride the surf like a cowboy taming a wild bronco …

… but in most cases the water mercilessly spits you out, before swallowing you into its depths. Dang, this is more dangerous than riding a bronco for sure, especially when there’s a shark lurking!

They definitely start them young here, even the ladies.

Up on the rocky ledge, the viewing platform is getting crowded.

Watching those show-offs in the sea is quite fun …

… as long as they do not smash themselves into these vicious-looking rocks.

But the waves are even more interesting to watch.

It’s beginning to drizzle again, as I leave, one final glance at this amazing accidental playground.

Overhead, the rescue chopper is always on patrol. There has been shark sightings here, but that’s not enough to scare the surfers away, thanks to the shark mesh installed.

I walk back to Coolangatta town to catch a cab back to the airport.

What a dreary day, and I’m back at the airport. I was expecting a fine day to spend on the beach, but alas …

Coolangatta Airport is single-story and long-ish as it fronts the driveway. At times, it’s serenely quiet.

I do a harmless kiosk check-in, and return to my quiet spot to doze off. A traveller always naps at every opportunity. biggrin.gif

Suddenly I’m rudely awaken by a horde of crowd. A couple of planes have just landed!

A while later, I’m onboard my Jetstar flight to Sydney. Despite the horrendous weather, the plane is only 15min late arriving SYD, a bumpy ride in wet weather. Btw, I just have to check out the dramatic safety card. Are those ants, by the way? smile.gif



  1. Kingsley 8 April 2009
  2. Nisha n sister 11 February 2010
  3. naimAuthor 11 February 2010

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