Greetings from down under!
After our journey flying across the world and the International Date Line, we finally made it to the beautiful land of Oz and to our first stop: Surfers Paradise. Just like the name suggests, we have truly been in paradise with sunny skies and beautiful beach days. We wasted no time and started our trip off with some thrills at Dreamworld, Australia’s largest theme park. Some of our daring trip members took the plunge on the Big Drop, a 150 foot drop with views overlooking the entire coast – a truly unforgettable welcome to Australia!.
The next morning we splashed right in to our adventure by driving over to Coolangatta beach for a surfing lesson with Pepe and the surfer men of Walking on Water. We practiced our “chicken wings” and surfer poses as we attempted to catch some waves. Jenna and Jared were naturals and rode the waves like pros.
Did you know that the Australian sand makes noise? Everyone loved playing in the squeaky sand. In honor of the 4th of July, the boys played a huge game of beach football in front of the rest of the trip who enthusiastically cheered them on. From surfing to beach sports to relaxation, the beach day was enjoyed by all.
Later in that evening we transitioned from playing football to watching the athletic Gold Coast Suns take on the North Melbourne Kangaroos in an exciting Aussie Rules Football (AFL) match. Aussie Rules is a combination of rugby, soccer, and American football. This season the Gold Coast Suns had a losing record of 1-11.
We brought the team lots of luck from North America and cheered on the Suns to a 125-70 victory; their second victory of the season. We even got to join the celebrations on the field after the game!
Finally, we wrapped up our stay in Paradise with a kayak excursion in a nearby estuary. We kayaked over 3 miles to Snakebite Island, where we saw professional surfers practice on the tremendous and private waves. Morgan and Alec shared their kayak expertise with the group to power through the waves. After our little island trek, we found a clear spot to snorkel where we spotted some square pufferfish. Lucy and Julia provided some musical entertainment as we rode back to shore.
Our adventure down under is off to a great start! Next stop: Fraser Island.
-The Westcoast Blogger