While all of the major commercial buildings associated with tourism are clustered close to the beach at Surfers Paradise, there is a whole different world less than a kilometre inland. The Nerang River wanders its way from The Broardwater at is mouth, snaking its way behind the tall buildings. What at one time were small swampy islands in the river have, over the years, been reclaimed and built on with low-rise residential development connected to the mainland by bridges. Canal systems have been developed along the edges of the river where homeowners can park their boats at the front door.
This can be seen clearly on the Google Map below:
The Gold Coast has been a magnet for retirees from the south-eastern states of Australia, as well as from New Zealand, for years. The warm climate has also attracted families to the area. The south-eastern part of Queensland has been one of the most rapidly developing parts of Australia for more than 40 years. New housing developments are always on the go, and developers and “investment” advisors continue to lure new investors to part with their money in return for prospective rental income and capital gains. Many shady schemes have come and gone over the years, but for those who bought wisely and held on for the long-term have received reasonable market returns on their investment in this property market. Others have lost money through unwise and dubiously promoted schemes. Such is life in a rapidly moving environment like the Gold Coast.
An early morning walk on a beach is always interesting. As the sun rises above the horizon the light is golden and the shadows are long. People emerge from entry points to walk, run, contemplate, or go surfing as they do at Surfers Paradise.
As I observed this girl preparing to go surfing I became aware of a couple of lads who appeared to be trying to impress her. As she went through her stretching regime one of the fellows began to imitate by going through a programme of his own. It was amusing to follow the routine, with the occasional glance along the beach to see whether she was watching. As the comedy developed he began doing hand stands to draw more attention to himself.
Finally she picked up her board and nonchalantly walked to the water’s edge and launched herself at the waves.
The lad was still posing, even as I left the beach!