Everyone knows someone who has studied abroad in Europe. It seems like every weekend they’re in a new country doing something fun and exciting. Well when you study abroad in Australia, it isn’t the easiest to get to a new country for every trip, but there are still tons of places to spend the weekend. After settling in at Bond Uni, my friends and I planned our first weekend trip to South Stradbroke Island, or ‘Straddie’ as the locals called it. It was super easy to get there because there was a ferry directly from the Gold Coast to the island. After about an hour traveling across the water, we arrived at the Ramada Couran Cove resort. If you’re planning to study abroad and want to travel on a budget, you MUST utilize Groupon. We found a great rate on our cute eco-cabin, complete with a full kitchen, 2 bedrooms, and a living room, through Groupon.
If you’re interested in visiting South Straddie, I would recommend visiting Couran Cove resort for the most part. There was a great pool where I spent lots of time relaxing. It didn’t hurt that there was a great little patio restaurant where we could get refreshing salads and sandwiches. There were also a bunch of adorable wallabies roaming the premises (which I took tons of pictures of). Activities were easy to come by at the resort; my friends and I spent time kayaking, playing volleyball, and exploring the rain forest on the island. We also had access to sunset beach, which was a beautiful beach on the west coast of the island where we could see the sun set.
We were also able to find things to do outside of the resort. Lucky for us, there was a cyclone off the coast of the island the weekend we were there. So, although we had a beautiful beach at our finger tips, the wind kept us from spending too much time there. The ocean was so beautiful, but the frequent shark attacks right off the coast and the venomous jellyfish kept us away. We were able to sneak out to the beach before sunrise to watch the sun come up one morning. The view was so beautiful and the wind actually stopped long enough for us to enjoy the morning. Overall, I would definitely recommend to anyone visiting the area to make a stop at North or South Stradbroke island for an unforgettable weekend with breathtaking views and amazing wildlife.