Given the shitshow that has been the year 2020, I feel very lucky to have managed a lovely, albeit brief, getaway.
My partner and I decided to spend four nights in Mooloolaba, Queensland. We chose somewhere within driving distance because at the time of booking our holiday, the rules with air travel were changing daily. We were both not keen on the idea of having a trip cancelled yet again, so decided to play it safe.
After spending several days at this seaside town, I concluded the following:
It’s filled with bogans.
I mean this as a compliment in every possible way. I don’t know if the clientele the weekend we were there were tourists, locals, or a mixture of the two, but you can’t argue with facts. Sitting at The Pub, surrounded by people with mullets and mouths dirtier than sin, was my idea of a perfect afternoon. Highly recommend visiting this establishment for a pint and a pub feed, especially if there are sporting events screening that weekend.
Fun fact: I placed my first ever bets that weekend and won all three. Being such a risk-taker resulted in me winning $14.00. Go me.
It’s always windy.
I don’t know if it was just the time of year we went (end of September), or if it’s daily occurrence all year round, but it was choppy every day. Whether there were white caps on the ocean or not, whether the sun was beaming down or not, it was always windy (and chilly). Take a bloody cardi bro.
There are bars and restaurants to suit everybody.
We couldn’t sample every establishment, but we gave it a good crack. Rest assured that no matter what vibe you’re into, Mooloolaba will have something for you:
- Taps – A grungey sort of bar, with dirty food and fun games to keep you entertained. We ended up joining in on a few games of Jenga with a bunch of strangers (who ended up showing us several other bars later in the evening).
- Lot 104 – We only stopped in for one drink and a snack here, but it looked like a crackin’ place to treat yourself to a coffee or cocktail. And they had Bloody Mary’s on the menu so #winnerwinner
- The Surf Club – Set out like most other surf clubs, it was a nice place to stop in for a beer with a wicked view of the ocean (remember: sit directly in the sunlight/bring extra clothing cos shit is windy). I was in my usual attire of Cambodian pants and no makeup and whilst I am sure some of the better dressed patrons were eye-balling me, I was only asked to remove my cap when I walked in. Everyone’s welcome at the Surf Club.
- The Good Bar – A burger and cocktail joint which we didn’t get to appreciate fully as we were well on our way to intoxication station at this point. Josh ended up having to settle the bill of our newly made friends who didn’t pay their share (in their defence, I am pretty sure they were so drunk they just forgot). Josh was obvs stoked, but hey, at least the bartenders felt sorry for us and gave us free vodka shots. YUCK.
- Backlane Bar – Another pitstop on our crawl. This was place was very trendy and kitch and from all accounts would be a lovely place to have dinner if a party of about 15 people didn’t come barreling in being all loud and mouthy.
- OneUp – We didn’t get to try this one out. The first time they were fully booked and the second time they were closed. BUT the menu and view looks amazing, so if you get time, book a table and try it for my benefit and let me know if it lives up to the hype.
- The Beach Bar and Grill – We scored a table by the balcony/window so we had an okay view. The food was heavy and delicious and the beers even better, but maybe that’s because we’d been driving for 2.5 hours and I was hangry AF. I’m not sure.
Recommendation #1: Book ahead where you can, especially if you’re in a bigger group and it’s on the weekend or during school holidays. COVID-19 has ruined the luxury of dropping in to places for a drink with friends, so save yourself the hassle of walking for miles only to be turned away at the door.
Recommendation #2: Check opening hours. Lots of places be closed Mondays, Tuesdays and even Wednesdays.
Don’t be fooled – the Surf Club is lovely, but it’s breezy.
I am sure Mooloolaba has an array of other fun activities to offer.
Such as whale-watching, aquarium-visiting and beach-frolicking, but we didn’t really leave the vicinity of our hotel/street. Literally. Our only goal was to try and switch off for a few days to forget about a lot of stressful things happening in our lives, COVID and non-COVID related. That was the goal of our visit.
If you can’t make it to Mooloolaba, or can’t manage a visit somewhere, I hope you can manage to give yourself some sort of downtime. To try and look after your mental and emotional wellbeing, in what has been one of the most bizarre and difficult years for so many of us. Look after yourselves and each other.
And hug your dogs.