Sunday, 15 November 2015

Bluewater Cruise, Gold Coast: Review And Photos

It was still too early to check in when we arrived at our hotel so we decided to go for a cruise. There are two main river cruises operating in Surfers Paradise. The good thing is both the cruise terminals are just beside the accommodation that we lodge in (Tiki Village International Resort). Walking a few steps out and we were already at the ticketing booths. 
Wyndham Cruise offers three and Bluewater Cruise, four cruises a day plying more or less the same route along Nerang River and its network of canals and waterways.
It happened to be lunch time so we bought tickets for the Lunch Cruise. What better way to take lunch than to enjoy the scenery and cool river breeze. That would be killing two birds with one stone.
The main difference between Wyndham and Bluewater Lunch Cruise is in the food menu. While Wyndham lunch menu is more elaborate (with local trawler prawns, fruits, tea/coffee), Bluewater's lunch menu tends to be simpler. Wyndham also stays extra half hour in the water. The rate between the two is however a world of difference. Wyndham charges AUD59/adult (or AUD99.95 for two), Bluewater only charges AUD25/adult (AUD50 for two). Our natural choice is Bluewater Cruise as I don't particularly enjoy prawns. 
The cruise duration is an hour and a half. The Lunch Cruise starts at 12pm and ends at the same terminal at 1.30pm.
There is a covered indoor deck with tables and chairs. The helmsman and a staff who gives the commentary during the cruise can be seen here. 
Lunch buffet was ready as soon as the boat took off. The menu consists of salad, cold rice, cold macaroni, two types of cold shredded ham and bread rolls. Beverages are not included and have to be purchased from the bar counter.
This is what we had for lunch - a cold lunch indeed. It was also our first meal in Gold Coast. Ironically it was a satisfying. We must have been very hungry.
Passengers are free to make their way to the sundeck to enjoy  better views.
It was a sunny day yet the breeze was cool and invigorating.
Cruising along the Nerang River is a great way to view the skyline of Gold Coast. 
We cruised past the million dollar homes of the rich and super rich. Only the affluent can afford to own such waterfront homes.
Many houses even have their own piers.
And this home has a gazebo above the river.
We cruised past Chevron Island, Cronin Island and Paradise Waters and went under a couple of bridges.
The boat sailed to the Broadwater past Southport Yacht Club.
We spotted a narrow strip of islet with birds basking under the midday sun.
We were introduced to a few spectacular buildings along the river banks.
This is Palazzo Versace, a luxury hotel at Main Beach.
This is Marina Mirage, a high-end shopping centre.
High-rises at Main Beach
Australia Fair is another shopping complex we saw from our cruise boat.
At the Broadwater, the boat made a U-turn and cruised back to the terminal. After the U-turn is Happy Hour. Discounts for beers and cocktails are announced. Our cruise ended at 1.30pm sharp.

Phew! That was one great introduction to our Gold Coast getaway! Taking the Lunch Cruise on Bluewater is really value for money and a highly recommended activity in Gold Coast. 

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