Brisbane was our first large city since Sydney and we arrived by Greyhound under pouring rain. Bad weather is less frustrating in the city than at the beach, we thought, and at least in Brisbane we could shelter in one of the numerous malls if we needed to.

We checked in in one of the large central backpacker hostels, a few minutes’ walk from the pedestrian streets. The hostel was in one of these old Victorian buildings, with balconies and elaborated balustrades with a touch of modernity (the busy bar downstairs and drunk 18-years-old).

A lot of travellers seem to dislike Brisbane but I found the city interesting. It certainly changed a lot since the last time we were there, in 2003. The skyline now looks like Shanghai’s, with tons of skyscrapers and locals obviously enjoy spending money—there was a line-up at Tiffany and Louis Vuitton when we walked by!

As soon as the weather got a little bit better, we took a side trip to Surfer Paradise, the closest beach on the Gold Coast. While it may have been a surfer’s paradise thirty years ago, the town is now like an Australian Cancun, complete with skyscrapers casting shadows on the busy stretch of sand and casinos everywhere.

While it’s not the best beach we’ve seen and the place is quite tacky, it’s a fun day trip.

Alright, last article of the year I guess… where will we be for New Year Eve? Not sure yet. It’s actually quite complicated because popular spots are booked weeks ahead. But hey, wherever we are, it can’t be bad!

I wish you all a happy new year, bonne année, and thank you for your support!

Kangaroo (waiting to cross?)
Meter Maids in Surfers Paradise
Brisbane\’s Freeway
By The River
Surfers Paradise Blvd
Kangaroo Signs For Souvenir
Surfers Paradise
Surfers Paradise
Surfers Paradise
Surfers Paradise
Another Shout, Mate?
Waiting for the Woman To Finish Shopping?
Late Night in Brisbane
Brisbane by Night
Windy Surfers Paradise

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  1. Soleil December 31, 2010 at 6:21 pm

    Happy New Year! I hope 2011 is a wonderful, healthy, happy year for you.

  2. Fran December 31, 2010 at 6:45 pm

    Happy New Year to you too. And thank you for your wonderful blog.
    Keep it going, such a pleasure to read.

  3. PhotoVigor December 31, 2010 at 10:32 pm

    Wish you and your family a very happy and prosperous new year, 2011.

  4. shionge December 31, 2010 at 10:48 pm

    Happy New Year Zhu…any countdown in Down Under ?

  5. Linguist-in-Waiting January 1, 2011 at 4:27 pm

    Ah, some cityscape! I suppose it would be nice to have a little respite from the beach, but I take it you’re back at the beach again even in the city!

  6. barbara January 3, 2011 at 2:50 am

    Hey Zhu,

    I kept on telling myself that the French would be drooling over the local version of the “contractuelles”. Il n’ya pas photo!
    Yes, this looks all so developed! A lot of travelers are looking for what they don’t have at home, esp the beautiful beaches.
    I loved the NYE photos in your last post,too!!


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