Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Still a Kid's Paradise; Surfers Ticks All the Boxes as a Great Place for a Family Holiday

Newspaper article The Daily Mercury (Mackay, Australia)

Still a Kid's Paradise; Surfers Ticks All the Boxes as a Great Place for a Family Holiday

Article excerpt

Byline: gEOFF CROCKETT

WITH two girls under the age of seven who have lived nowhere else but the Sunshine Coast, and a much better half who can take or leave the beach most of the time, taking a short break on the Gold Coast was fraught with danger.

Timing the break to coincide with Valentine's Day and a milestone birthday just upped the ante.

Thankfully, for my own survival, Surfers Paradise came through with the goods.

After four days of near perfect weather spent in family-friendly two-bedroom accommodation at the Mantra Wings resort, and with plenty of daytime action to be had in and around Surfers Paradise, we all came home smiling.

For the little ones the Mantra's huge pool, complete with a warm spa and waterfalls made life at the resort a treat.

Yet it was out and about that the most fun was had.

We were lucky enough to be visiting Surfers Paradise in the middle of the Sand Safari event presented by Streets Ice Cream.

Walking the 1.5km stretch along waterfront streets from the resort to the heart of Surfers Paradise on our first day we stumbled upon a sea of marquees providing shelter and protection for an array of amazing sand sculptures of the DreamWorks movie heroes the kids know so well.

Kung Fu Panda, Shrek, the Penguins of Madagascar and the rest of the cast, were among the favourites. We marvelled at the artists as they put the finishing touches on their masterpieces and were lucky enough to still be in town a few days later to see who won the Australian Sand Sculpting Competition.

For the kids, the beach itself, chasing seagulls, dipping their feet in the water and marvelling at the huge expanses of sand and the striking architecture created by the sorts of residential towers that don't exist at the Sunshine Coast added to the excitement.

Away from the beach Surfers continued to deliver.

From day one the children had a love/fear relationship with Ripley's Believe it or Not. They loved the music, the giant robot musicians and the idea of going in and exploring the oddities on show, yet they were wary of the Lizard Man who stands guard on the mall and a bit scared in the darkened rooms downstairs. …

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