Gold Coast Explorer since Jan 2010. Always on the lookout for fun, family things to enjoy with my four kids.
Published October 29th 2011
The Green Challenge at Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary makes for an excellent family day out on a weekend or during the school holidays. The high ropes treetop course is a fun, fitness and team building activity for upper primary and teenage kids and adults too of course.
The Giant Flying Fox Image courtesy of Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary website)
It involves making your way around a high ropes adventure course, which is suspended in the trees. The different courses are graded according to difficulty and you need to be a certain height for each so you can reach the wire and clip your safety karabiner on. (Children must reach 160cm from heels to middle of both outstretched hands to enter the Green Challenge and 180 cm for the more advanced courses).
Overalls are supplied, together with gloves and all safety equipment. You will need to wear enclosed shoes. There are lockers for you to leave your bag, as you won't be allowed to carry one on the course. You can put your camera into the big glove pockets in your overalls although it's a long way down if you drop it.
Barrel game - they don't mention the famous gap
Image courtesy of Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary website)
Jumping off the platform on the Tarzan swing is a bit of a mind game with your confidence as you leap off, swing through the air and try to catch hold of the cargo net that appears before you. Aware that it will recede rapidly from your grasp if you miss it, you reach out with grim determination or the result is a pendulum swing and an embarrassing need for a guide to rescue you and haul you back across the gap.
In my opinion, the flying fox is far easier, unless of course you misjudge the part where you approach the tree. Get your speed wrong and you hug the tree very quickly. Crawling through the barrels, suspended high above the ground, is a bit of a challenge. There's not a great deal of room inside them and some cruel designer makes you crawl across a gap between barrels, when all you see is the ground far below as you try to wriggle out the first and into the next. The oscillating bridge is trickier than it looks and requires good balance.
Your heart will beat faster, you will have a bonding experience with your family or team mates as you talk each other out of trouble and you will feel you have achieved something at the end. It's a great experience. Challenging but not impossible (although I wouldn't advise tackling it if you can't do heights), with easier courses for beginners and plenty adrenalin rushes for the thrill seeker. Another thing I enjoyed was the venue itself. If you have a range of ages in your family, there really is something for everyone.
Toddlers can enjoy the playground and feeding the Roos, older kids will be interested in the animal information shows, while your teenagers will love the opportunity to swing through the trees like Tarzan. It's not often that you can keep everyone happy in one place. I think Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary deserves the title of a 'Perfect Family Day Out.'