In this week's post, Lorenzo shares highlights from his trip to Gold Coast for his Spring Break, how he made it cost effective, and what his overall experience with the city was.
In the middle of the CAPA program students can enjoy a one week spring break-fall break in the location where they’re studying abroad. This is a great opportunity to catch up on anything you struggled with during the program, whether that is sleep, study time or exploring the host city. More than other activities though, the break allows students to travel and visit places that would be very difficult to get to once back home. From my program, since a majority of people had never been to Asia, most students flew to Bali, looking for an exotic experience. Others went for Pacific Islands, New Zealand or other places within Australia, maybe the Great Barrier Reef or a fascinating city like Melbourne. Where you go depends on what your budget is, if you want to travel alone or in group and obviously what interests you.
Gold Coast is reminiscent of Miami.
I went to Gold Coast, a new and modern city on the coast of Queensland, just a one hour flight away from Sydney. The way the town is laid out, as well as its endless coastline and modern, tall buildings create an incredible resemblance with Miami, Florida. That is the experience I was looking for so I was quite satisfied with my decision and had a blast in Gold Coast. When I went it was definitely low season, as we are in the middle of spring here in Australia, so I suppose it would be different if I would have gone one month or two from now. My Airbnb wasn’t expensive at all, at about 25 AUD a night but I guess if you take a room closer to the beach you’ll pay more. The range of accommodation there can really go from surfers hostels for a few bucks a night to the fancy luxury hotel with inside casino, Las Vegas style!
A view of Gold Coast from Burleigh Heads
My experience also got shaped by the fact that my funds were not very high but I was still able to find something to do throughout the four days I was there. The views in Gold Coast are breathtaking and if the sun is out, you can easily spend a day just laying on the beach, going for a quick swim, or taking a walk on the beautiful seaside road. The impression walking around is that the city is very new and is growing very fast. A big part of the city is also built on canals and it is possible to take a cruise through the waterways and then into the ocean to see whales migrating. Another area I visited is called Burleigh Heads and is a little hill covered with rainforest vegetation right on the ocean. The views are amazing and there are also a bunch of wild turkeys and big lizards running around. Transportation was incredibly efficient and I ended up taking Uber a lot less than expected because every part of the city was easily connected.
The canals of Gold Coast
If you’re in Sydney or Brisbane, going to Gold Coast can be a fast weekend getaway from the busy vibe of the city, where you can enjoy beautiful beaches, lively nightlife and a relaxed atmosphere. If you’re studying abroad, get excited about what is near the location you’ve chosen because you might find some nice surprise. For me it is very exciting every time I travel around this part of the world, just because it is so different looking and new to me. Taking time off of school and work can be useful to reflect, think and redirect yourself in the direction you want, I’ve actually got some great ideas while getting burning on the beach.
A view of the city from the beach.
Lorenzo Corazzin is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2018, sharing his story in weekly posts on CAPA World. A Global Studies major at the Arizona State University, he is studying abroad in Sydney this semester.
Lorenzo's journey continues every Friday so stay tuned.