A ‘Destination Race’ is a term I use to describe an event which attracts athletes not just for the competition aspect of the race, but mainly -above all else- for the location and picturesque beauty of the course and the atmosphere that surrounds the event(s).
Looking to take that long overdue family holiday, but also wanting to sneak a quick event in while you are there? Then here are 5 of the best East Coast Triathlon ‘destination events’
5 – Mooloolabah Triathlon Festival
Located on the beautiful white sands of Queenslands Sunshine Coast lies the busting coastal city of Mooloolabah. Located far away from the crowd of Brisbane, and soaring towers of the Gold Coast this destination event will keep you coming back year after year. With events for the whole family, as well as a multitude of accomodation to suit all budgets the Mooloolbah Festival easily makes this list.
4 – Challenge Forster
How often can you say that a race is NEW and OLD at the same time?… Not very often. Forster was the previous location for Ironman Australia which was held in the quiet town for many years until moving to Port Macqurie almost a decade ago. The event consists of a course very similar -albeit much shorter- than the Ironman distance that was held in years gone by, but the event is still one of stunning scenery while still having that small town vibe.
Forster is one of NSWs hidden gems, located on the mid-north coast and comprising of a bridge that links the town with its twin (Tuncurry). Fishing is excellent here, and so is the Challenge brand who do an excellent job in running this event.
3 – Big Husky Festival
As iconic as the opera house is to Sydney, Big Husky is to multisport racing. A must do event for all triathletes; big husky is usually a sell-out event on the south east coast of Australia (Huskisson NSW). Known for its huge run up the sand from the swim exit into transition, the challenge of the event can be just to survive the stairs as it can to survive the race.
2 – Noosa Triathlon Festival
Takes a lot to keep this off the top. Noosa triathlon festival is simply awesome!! The atmosphere is electric and the racing is unique. Labeled the oldest triathlon festival in the world Noosa hosts many of the worlds best triathletes who all want a piece of that Noosa trophy. Here, there are possibly more events then any other festival in Australia, meaning heaps more opportunity for your spouse and kids to get involved with something. Noosa as a destination is something that cannot be described in words, as words cannot do this destination justice. The only way to get a true idea of what the Noosa Triathlon Festival is like would be to actually go there and experience it for yourself.
1 – Port Macquarie Ironman and Ironman 70.3
Had to be my number one. Port Macquarie has it all. And that is why Ironman Australia is held here every year. The airport can bring you and your family directly from most capital cities around Australia. It is not over-developed and if you are looking for a true holiday whilst racing than the chilled out nature of the tourists and the multitude of different accomodation options will suit you to a tee. Port Mac Ironman is one of The worlds most enticing events, the locals love it, and there is no shortage of support right along the coast. But best of all the event holds both an Ironman and an Ironman 70.3 on the same day. So athletes can experience the thrills of Ironman racing, whilst still finishing their event before the glow-sticks come out. Experience Ironman Port Macquarie and you will want to keep going back to that place every year!