Got some free time after the Gold Coast marathon? Check these places out


Gold Coast Marathon, which typically takes place on the first weekend of every July, attracts more than 24,000 runners annually. If you’ve just crossed the finish line at Gold Coast Marathon, don’t pack your bags just yet.

Check out what else you can do at Gold Coast and just over an hour’s drive away, Brisbane, while you give your running shoes a break.

Miami Marketta

Miami Marketta

Refuel from your run earlier in the day with a wide variety of cuisines at Miami Marketta.

This charming street food market is made up of vendors selling sumptuous delights from different parts of the world, from paellas to burgers.

It’s the perfect spot especially if you’re coming in a large group – order a bit of everything for everyone to share!

 

SkyPoint Climb

SkyPoint Climb

SkyPoint Climb

SkyPoint Climb is the highest external building climb in Australia.

What this means is participants go up an open-air stairway (comprising 298 steps to be exact) beyond the top floor of the tallest building in Australia, Q1.

I was a little nervous about this at first. But seeing the safety precautions taken – I was equipped with a climbing suit and my full body harness is hooked to the stair’s railings – I felt safe.

Standing at 270m above ground, taking in all of Gold Coast, its golden sands and blue waters, with the wind in my face, felt simply magical.

 

 

 

Harbour Town Gold Coast

I’m a shopaholic. So shopping at Harbour Town Gold Coast, Australia’s largest outlet shopping centre with over 240 stores, felt like paradise.

Here’s a tip: look out for the local brands as they tend to be cheaper.

 

Dreamworld

Dreamworld

Dreamworld

To say it was exhilarating is an understatement. Going on The Giant Drop at Dreamworld, which once held the record for the tallest tower drop in the world for 14 years, was the scariest, most thrilling ride I’ve ever been on.

Just as its name suggests, the ride took me 119m above ground (equivalent to a 39-storey building) and when I got to the top, without warning, a drop that lasts five seconds ensues.

Not a fan of heart-pumping rides? There’s a host of other rides with varying degrees of intensity to try. Otherwise, you can also take a stroll around the zoo here, where you can learn more about the animals native to Australia.

 

South Bank

A drive to Brisbane takes a little over an hour from Gold Coast and it’s really worth it. I love the fact that a river flows through the heart of the city, Brisbane River, giving off a sense of tranquillity in the middle of a bustling metropolis.

And on one of its stops, South Bank, features a gorgeous recreational area locals go to unwind. Lay out a picnic mat on the grass or take a stroll in the herb and floral gardens.

Streets Beach

Streets Beach

The popular Streets Beach is not-to-be-missed. Go for a dip in this cute little man-made beach, equipped with lifeguards!

Walk a little further and you’ll arrive at the cultural precinct, home to a number of museums such as the Queensland Art Gallery and the Queensland Gallery of Modern Arts.

To make the most out of your trip to Brisbane, be sure to go on a free guided tour led by the Brisbane Greeters. The guides – who are locals themselves – provide historical context and little-known facts that colour the places and buildings on each stop.

 

Howard Smith Wharves

Having dinner at Howard Smith Wharves, a dining and lifestyle hub in Brisbane, was both a feast for the eyes and the tummy.

Restaurants here line the riverfront, which means diners get a view of the water, the skyline, and one of the city’s most iconic structures, Story Bridge. The view is even more arresting in the evenings, with the city all lit up.

I had the opportunity to try out Greek restaurant, Greca, here which makes wonderful Saganaki – pan-fried Greek cheese bathed in honey.

Howard Smith Wharves

Howard Smith Wharves in Brisbane is one of the best places to be at night in the city. Photos: The Star/Kenneth Chaw



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