SUNSHINE COASTAL CRUISING
With his adventurous family including wife Kerry and two children Billy (8) and Eloise (6), bestselling author and travel writer SCOTT PODMORE hightails it from the deep south of Victoria for Queensland’s east coast on an unforgettable road trip. This is the second of a five-part blog series ‘On The Road Again’, exclusive to Tourism Queensland.
WITH Brisbane behind us and a good time had by all, it was a bright and early start in the morning cruising down the mighty M1 and Bruce Highway in our Britz Renegade DriveNow campervan hire with our sights firmly fixed on the Sunshine Coast.
But we were in no rush, so turned what would normally be an 80-minute drive into a full day trip because of some “unmissables” along the way. First off we took in a couple of hours exploring beautiful Bribie Island Pumicestone Passage with the Glass Mountains setting the perfect backdrop is enchanting. It’s not quite the sleepy fishing village you might expect, either, as there are shopping centres, restaurants and other developments around the place good for a stick-beak, and there’s plenty of natural charms; none more so than the fact it’s teeming with wildlife and aquatic creatures of all shapes and sizes.
Back on the highway, next stop was a feast at the Beerwah pub and, well, a beer quite naturally, before spending the entire afternoon at nearby Australian Zoo. The home of the crocodile hunter is quite an experience with some amazing animal encounters and the opportunity to get up and close and personal with camels, blue macaws, koalas, wombats and more. Lucky visitors of the future will get to see a new Africa feature with the new resident rhinos strutting their stuff.
It didn’t take us long before we could unwind with a beaut night’s sleep in Maroochydore at the Maroochy Palms Holiday Village, one of the best holiday parks you are likely to find in Australia. The “Palms” is a ripsnorter for families thanks to its resort-like facilities, a mega pool (watch out for leering lizards!), the JayJay Express train (yep, it’s true, and the kids go nuts for it!), a cool kids club and fantastic barbecue facilities. Veteran park owner of more than 20 years Ray Fitton has this place humming beautifully, especially with nice touches like the train for families, spacious entertainment areas with cricket, basketball, jumping pillow and mini golf to name a few.
NEARBY HIGH 5:
NEXT TIME (PART III): MAROOCHYDORE TO HERVEY BAY – A WHALE OF A TIME!
Scott's trip was supported by DriveNow.com.au