The focal point for those living near to the coast in Queensland, is certainly the beach. Be it for evening barbecues, morning breakfasts, taking part in sport, meeting friends for coffee, or just hanging around in general – the beach is very much where things are going on.
I spoke to a number of parents one morning, who all spoke enthusiastically of the lifestyle that comes with living right near the beach. A number had actively moved there – from bigger cities to get a quieter pace of life, or from smaller towns because of the opportunities it provided; and all indicated that a large factor in this was also the quality of life they felt it offered their children. Many felt Mooloolaba provided an ideal balance; an hour from Brisbane with all the things that a big city provides, and yet right near the beach, and so bringing a quieter pace of life overall.
‘It’s really safe and a nice place for kids to grow up. We purposefully tried to move here from further inland, although it took a while for it all to come together.’
Whilst in Australia I also met a large number of people who had emigrated from their home countries in order to live in Australia. I spoke with one couple – originally from Bulgaria and South Africa respectively, who echoed the same sentiments for moving to the Sunshine Coast.
‘It is very very safe here. We wanted this lifestyle for our family. I grew up under communism and so always wanted to get abroad. My advice? I would have taken a gap year and travelled earlier. There is just so much out there’.
Perhaps the most iconic image though of coastal Australia are the lifeguards who patrol the beach and the surf clubs that are based there. What were their thoughts on ambitions?
‘My advice? Not to be as shy and introverted. Don’t sweat the small stuff.’
‘I wish I’d joined the surf club earlier. It gave me a sport, a community that is supportive, and a great network.’