Busing the East Coast Part 2 – the countdown to Christmas

It’s strange to say it, but as we worked our way down the coast through party towns like Noosa and Byron Bay we became more and more disillusioned with the culture on the East Coast, particularly on our last night in a hostel… but more about that later.

There’s no denying the natural beauty of the eastern coastline, it’s absolutely incredible, but there are some ugly things that thrive there too. And I’m not talking about the sharks – I think they have every right to be there…

After our turtle experience in Hervey Bay and Mon Repos our next stop was Surfer’s Paradise. Fooled and beguiled by the name, the place was VERY disappointing. It’s essentially a city on the ocean with very little personality. While the beaches are attractive there was very little else that was (excusing this quaint cafe we found). You have huge high-rise buildings blocking the view of the ocean and trashy stores that make up the waterfront strip.

After a few days in ‘paradise’ we were headed for Byron Bay. Because of its reputation we had booked a week in Byron, hoping to fall in love with the place.

The hostel, Arts Factory, was cool and the town, beach and coastal pathways in Bryon were phenomenal. Everyday there were markets and events to go to in the city. But the ugly element here was sadly the people.

As our last stop on the east coast, and after some pretty anal bus drivers on the last few runs, we were about ready for Sydney and our glorious Airbnb. It was our final hostel and we were in a dorm in bunk beds that were at the opposite sides of the room.

Our roomies were all friendly, and luckily into their alcohol binges so we rarely saw them. However, this blessing actually turned into an absolute nightmare.

On our last night in the hostel we got back at around 11pm after a few budget beers and were ready to sleep well before our flight in the morning. That wasn’t meant to be.

One of the all-night ladies decided she didn’t want to stay out that night and appeared in the dorm at around midnight very, very drunk. She conversed with us on her night and how she’d met a guy who she didn’t really like… (you can probably see what’s coming) but he was coming over to the dorm anyway. She told us, we wasn’t to worry she didn’t fancy him or anything. And after many assurances we reluctantly agreed he could come in.

We managed to get some sleep until we were rudely awoken by… you guessed it. This was the first time this has happened, and it was utterly horrific. I’d rather not say anymore about that (small amount of sick in mouth).

We couldn’t be happier to leave Byron and get to our Sydney home for Christmas and New Year – a beautiful Airbnb in Alexandria – although we were pretty pleased with these gopro action shots that were ‘too easy’ to take in those wild Byron waves.

We invested in copious amounts of food and treats, replicating all of our Christmas fantasies, many of which we couldn’t do in last year’s apartment in Buenos Aires.

Christmas Day was quiet until we got to Coogee beach and toasted to this perfectly-timed holiday. We were also fortunate enough to meet up with an old family friend of Stephen’s, Michelle, and be whizzed out on her father-in-law’s boat across the harbours of the northern shores and up to Palm Beach on a day filled with mince pies, champers and swimming.

It was most certainly a Christmas to remember, but might forego the hostels for a while…