We are leaving the Gold Coast after lunch today after having it as our home base for the last 4 weeks. As J's parents live here it is a great place to have as a base between all our trips to Victoria, NSW, New Zealand and Brisbane. Of the last 4 weeks we have been in Aus, we have spent 15 nights away in four seperate "mini holidays". J was with us for the first 2 weeks when we did most of our mini holidays.
How my in laws put up with us I am not sure - but they don't want us to go (we aren't flying out until Monday morning, but are visiting friends the next two nights). They always show our kids a lot of love and are no stricter than we are, so it all goes pretty well thankfully.
We went to Dreamworld with friends last week and spent a glorious winters day riding on everything (Munch is tall enough for every ride and it was only 15 minutes from home), yesterday we went to the huge Centro Timezone and spent 2 hours on their "$60 for 4 people" deal - (am expecting a medal for Super Mum any day (as I hate the noise in those places). But the absolutely best thing we've done on the coast was on Thursday night when we went to the Outback Spectacular (10 minutes from home). Although we had been last year, they have changed the show so it is a different story.
It now follows the story of the light horsemen and the first world war. Little is heard about the 14% of the males in Australia (this includes all males from 0 - 100) who volunteered to fight in Europe in the first world war and significantly aided in winning the war. The show is aimed at entertainment, but I spent most of the time wiping the tears from my eyes as I have done a lot of research into WWI and WWII and the kids asked their standard 100 questions per hour.
You are given a "outback hat" when you enter and you are served a 3 course dinner (steak, vegies, mashed potato and pavlova for desert), with free flow wine and beer throughout the show. The stadium seats around 1,000 people. We took the grandparents last year, but they didn't want to drive at night so chose not to go this year.
There is one segment near the end of the show where they have 4 children (2 from each "cattle station") chase a pig each in a race for the best station. All 3 kids were pig chasers this year. Last year only the oldest two were asked, this year all 3 were(the oldest had to pretend to come from the other station). Considering it's only 4 kids from the whole audience, the odds on being picked twice are pretty remote. Unfortunately I can't show you a photo as you aren't allowed cameras inside.
I can't comment on value for money, because I used my reward points for the tickets. But the show IS spectacular and if you are ever looking for an Aussie experience, it is definitely worth seeing once - gauranteed entertainment for anyone aged from age 2 - 100.