We recently had six nights at Burleigh Heads on the Gold Coast and boy was it appreciated, and needed. I find that I need regular grounding and resetting by getting some time in nature of the kind that I can’t really get at home. For some time now I have been craving time at the beach. I also crave other forms of nature. I love the hinterlands as well and rainforests and Australian countryside!
CHILDHOOD MEMORIES OF BURLEIGH
Burleigh is a bit special to me as it’s where we used to go a lot as kids, mostly for a 2 week holiday in the January school holidays. I have so many lovely memories – things like Dad putting sunscreen on us kids. He used to slap it on and we’d whinge but what a trooper he was because he did it twice a day (there were 5 of us once all of us were born) as he took us to the beach in the morning and again in the afternoon. Mum would often stay at the apartment with a baby and as I now realise, to read her book, enjoy the view, and of course – some peace and quiet! I remember the late afternoon walks along the beach as a family, and my obsession with finding unique and special shells. I remember the excitement of eating fish and chips out of paper at a table by the beach and the strolls around the shops that Mum and Dad seemed to enjoy and that we endured with the hope of a treat along the way. I recall the frequent stops at real estate windows while Mum and Dad dreamed about owning their own place down there one day. We quite often used to play board games at night or on rainy days – like Monopoly, Colombo, Life, and Scrabble. I could write a whole post on the memories I have from those holidays at Burleigh but I’ll stop there except to say that we used to stay at Hillhaven, right up on the Burleigh headland next to the Burleigh Heads National Park. The view from our apartment was always magnificent, and the beautiful roar of the ocean could always be heard and relied on to lull us to sleep at night. Of course I went for a walk up there and snapped some photos to send back to Mum and my siblings (see below but you can also spot it in the photo at the top of this post). We were going to do the national park walk around the headland to Tallebudgera Creek but it was gated off and locked due to fallen rocks which was a shame. This headland area is a favourite spot for surfers. Check out this post I published in 2015 – A few moments with a surfer dude – for Wordless Wednesday which means there’s few words and lots of photos!
BREKKY AT TARTE BAKERY & CAFE
These days, I tend to gravitate more often to the Sunshine Coast and its hinterland areas but now and then I like to visit the Gold Coast and when I do, it’s generally to Burleigh. This time, I especially wanted some time on the Gold Coast because that is where my daughter is now living and working. We managed to catch up with her a couple of times, including once for breakfast at Tarte Bakery & Cafe in Burleigh, a divine little place that is a bakery and cafe that serves breakfast, lunch and fresh pastries daily.
THE VIEW FROM OUR APARTMENT
We stayed at 2nd Avenue Beachside Apartments in an apartment on the 18th floor. To book it was necessary to request an ‘Executive Apartment’ in order to get a high level apartment that would guarantee the gorgeous view that we were wanting. We’ve stayed at these apartments before and really like its location and outstanding views. The apartment on this occasion had the magnificent views but the decor was rather tired and in need of some love and attention. However, it had everything we needed, and that view!!
I took heaps of video’s as well as photos (can’t help myself) so it is with great restraint that I share just one video that shows what I woke to each morning – simply stunning!
One of my most favourite thing about beach holidays nowadays (in my more mature years) is the early morning and late afternoon beach walks. I absolutely love them! I walk barefoot along the water’s edge and love it when the water comes in and surprises me. I love the sounds, the shells, the birds, the people watching, the everything beachy! I would add ‘smells’ to that list if I could smell, but I can’t (if you didn’t already know). Here’s a few photos from my beach walks.
COUSIN, DRINKIES & CURRUMBIN
As it turns out, my cousin and her husband were holidaying at Currumbin on the Gold Coast at the same time as we were so they came to us for drinks & nibblies one day and we went to them another day. It was really fun because usually I only see them at family events and we never have time alone like that so it was pretty special.
BURLEIGH FARMERS MARKETS
We went to the Burleigh Farmers Markets on the Saturday which are held at the Burleigh Heads State School and just a short walk from our apartment.
One day we went for a drive down to Coolangatta and over the border into NSW to check out old haunts Kingscliff and Pottsville. Wow they’ve grown and changed! It was while I was down this way that my mind went to my old workmate Sue. Before I explain about Sue, here’s a few photo’s taken at Kingscliff. We had a lovely coffee at Kettles On Cafe.
REUNION WITH AN ‘OL WORK COLLEAGUE
So, a fabulous thing that happened. I managed to track down Sue, a girl I used to work with years ago. We worked in the same room for years – just the two of us. We were both Executive Assistants at the time. I knew that she’d retired with her husband somewhere in Northern NSW at the beach. After much texting with former work colleagues (and friends) I got her contact details and we got in touch. Turns out she lives at Casuarina in northern NSW (right next door to Kingscliff) and she invited us to lunch on our last day. So off we went driving back over the border into NSW again. Thank goodness the borders were open so this reunion could happen! I took no photos – just soaked up the time with her (and her husband) after not seeing her for over 10 years!
Though this post is primarily about Queensland’s beautiful Burleigh Heads, I had to mention our lunch at the Tumbulgum Tavern on the Tweed River in Northern NSW on the way back from our first trip into northern NSW. I love this gorgeous quaint little spot and can’t resist sharing a quick video and a few snaps. Imagine it on a glorious blue skied day! lol
We didn’t eat out much as we thought we would, preferring to do our late afternoon beach walk and then go back to the apartment and enjoy the view and sounds of the ocean and to relax. We had dinner with my cousin and her husband at their apartment once. We had lunch out once at the Tumbulgum Tavern and we had breakfast out once with our daughter, as mentioned earlier in this post. Our fridge was pretty well stocked and we had easy meals the rest of the time. No cooking was done at all!
FISH ‘N’ CHIPS DINNER ATTEMPT
I’ll finish with the story of our attempted fish ‘n’ chips dinner with our daughter. It was the final night. We’d been to visit with Sue & her hubby that day. It had been a long and very hot day. Tonight we planned to catch up with our daughter again before we headed back home to Brisbane the next day. A storm was forecast for that evening so we decided rather than going out to eat, we’d grab some fish ‘n’ chips and eat in, enjoying the storm show from the comfort of the apartment. Our daughter finished work and headed our way, texting when she was downstairs. The storm was already here. I texted back saying her Dad was on his way down to get her (you needed a special tag to be able to access our floor via the lifts). The Tennis Player went out to the lifts and soon re-entered the apartment saying the lifts weren’t working. To cut a long story short, my poor daughter ended up having to walk up 18 flights of stairs (she was not impressed), and we never did get our fish ‘n’ chips dinner. I mean would you want to walk down 18 flights of stairs, then walk to the fish ‘n’ chip shop, wait ages, then walk back to apartments and then up 18 flights of stairs? Um, no! So I threw something together out of what was left in the fridge. It wasn’t too bad at all! Luckily the lifts were working again when she was ready to leave. Phew!
ALL OVER RED ROVER!
So the six nights at Burleigh went by very quickly. I was just starting to relax and could’ve done with more time to lounge about reading books and enjoy my beach walks but it was still a lovely break. Next time I’ll go for longer!
Have you been to Burleigh? Do you have a different favourite Gold Coast spot?
Ciao for now,
[Note that whilst most of the photos within this post are from our recent February 2021 holiday, some of the photos were taken on previous holidays at Burleigh in recent years]
This post is linked up with Denyse Whelan Blogs for #LifeThisWeek
What a lovely read Min! We used to visit relatives in Murwillumbah on a regular basis so know the area well, driving to Burleigh, Kingscliff and Coolangatta. We are currently in Scarborough which is entirely different to our home in the mountains, I always appreciate the ‘feel’ of the sea and the air – but the humidity is hard to take at times! I’m so glad you enjoyed your trip away and made the most of the time. Thanks for letting us in for a peek! #lifethisweek
Glad you enjoyed the read Deb, thank you. Yes the humidity is hard to take – even for me, a Queenslander! I love the beach but also really love the Tweed area around Murwillumbah – so beautiful!
A lovely read and your photos are (as always) good. I haven’t been to the gold coast properly for years and really must get there at some point. We’re so lucky here in Southeast Queensland to have so many choices. And no, I wouldn’t be walking back up 18 floors of stairs with fish and chips either.
Thanks Jo. The GC has such a different feel to it than the Sunshine Coast as you’d probably know. I think I’m more a SC girl but there are parts of the GC like Burleigh that are gorgeous. I do love the areas around the Tweed River. Driving around there is just so beautiful! You’re right – we are lucky in SEQ – so many beautiful places to visit and enjoy!
Great photos Min! It was a pity we didn’t organise catch up but perhaps next time. I only live up the road from Burleigh Heads but rarely get there. Now you’ve inspired me to encourage hubby to take a trip down for some brekky at Tarte Bakery. I love a good brekky! So pleased you had some time away despite the weather not being kind on some of the days. The views from the apartment are glorious and I would have just stayed there with a good book. Have a great week. #lifethisweek
Thanks Sue. I had planned to organise a catch up with you while I was at the GC but in my last post you said lets catch up when you return to Brisbane so I gathered you were going to be busy. You’ve just had a Brizzy bloggers catch up so ours might be a while off now I guess. If you’re at Burleigh definitely check out Tarte – delicious food! I would’ve liked longer at relax and enjoy the view and read books. I’ll know to book longer next time.
I have a vague memory of being in the national park there with a minor bushfire and them occasionally closing off the pathway to water bomb. But it sounds so wrong now that we’d be allowed in at all if that was happening – I guess it was the standards of the day?
Wow – I’ve never experienced bushfires and waterbombs in that area! What year was that I wonder?
I’ve got to say 90s, I’m assuming I was primary school aged. But it’s a big guess! It’s a bizarre memory for sure.
Min, Burleigh Heads beach views are stunning. So great that you got in some relaxation and meet-ups with your family and friends. The food at Tarte Bakery looks good. Thank you for sharing your holiday memories, photos and videos. #lifethisweek
Thanks Natalie – the views were just beautiful. They totally make the holiday I gotta say! It was a lovely getaway that already seems so long ago! Pooh!
Good tip on the Farmers Market. We might go there should our trip go ahead…
Unlike other Farmer’s Markets these ones are every Saturday from 7am to 12 noon. Burleigh has other markets on Sundays too – Google can fill you in. Hope your trip goes ahead!
We haven’t been tp Burleigh Heads in years and years; glad to see it’s just as beautiful as I remember it. Stunning photos, thanks so much for sharing. It might be time for us to take some time off and head to the beach too.
Thanks Melissa! It had been a few years since I’d been there too but always lovely to revisit!
Oh lovely Min and gorgeous photos. I really feel like I need a holiday at the moment but it’s hard to justify given the whole unemployed thing AND the fact I live at the beach. Perhaps it’s more about a change of scenery? Getting out of a rut perhaps?
I could be going for walks on the beach here….
Thanks Deb. It’s all about the change of scenery and being on actual ‘holiday’. It kinda gives us permission to relax and go into a different mode. Doesn’t matter that you live at the beach – going somewhere different and being ‘on holiday’ are always worthwhile. I recommend that you find a way to do it. You deserve it!
I’m lucky to live on the Gold Coast so I’ve been to Burleigh and all the other places you mentioned plenty of times. We love to take our dogs to Kingscliff because there’s an awesome off leash beach there. Even when we go on holidays it’s often to the beach in Northern NSW or even Coolangatta. The beaches here are the best in the world so why would we want to go anywhere else?!
You are so lucky Christina! I noticed dogs on Burleigh Beach which surprised me. I didn’t realise they were allowed. I think it might be more the North Burleigh beach area though that they’re allowed? Kingscliff is a lovely beach – we had a brief visit there. We do have the best beaches don’t we?!
Great recount with lots of stories and pics too Min. I am so glad you finally got your beach holiday.
Mum and Dad, in the latter years of their retirement rented a unit a few steps back from the beach at Burleigh for 6-8 weeks of Winter. Mum loved that she could sit in the sun and Dad loved he could walk on the beach. They had many friends living in Qld by then and socially they were very busy. Sadly, the last time they were there Mum must have been becoming very unwell, as Dad tells me now, and after 2005 they did not return. They’d been going to Gold Coast since 1984.
Thanks so much for linking up for Life This Week. Next week, we are #11 and the optional prompt is Floral. Hope to see you there and in the meantime, may you be well, may you be safe and may you be content. Denyse.
It’s lovely to hear how your Mum & Dad enjoyed Burleigh too Denyse. My holiday seems so long ago already!