Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland, is a vibrant metropolis blessed with sunny subtropical weather, distinctive architecture, and a buzzing cultural scene. This guide introduces you to 15 must-visit locations in this bustling city.
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- South Bank Parklands: Nestled on the southern banks of the Brisbane River, South Bank Parklands offers a stunning man-made beach, lush gardens, and a range of restaurants and shops. Website
- Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary: Meet koalas, kangaroos, Tasmanian devils, and other native Australian wildlife up close in the world’s oldest and largest koala sanctuary. Website
- Mount Coot-tha Lookout: Offering panoramic views of the city, this lookout is a perfect spot for a picnic, with walking trails and the Botanic Gardens nearby. Website
- Gallery of Modern Art: This art museum, also known as GoMA, hosts a dynamic range of Australian and international exhibits, with a special focus on contemporary and Indigenous art. Website
- Brisbane Powerhouse: This former power station turned arts venue offers a diverse program of theatre, music, dance, comedy, and visual arts. Website
- Queen Street Mall: With more than 700 retailers, this vibrant shopping hub offers a mix of local, national, and international labels and flagship stores. Website
- City Botanic Gardens: The heritage-listed gardens house various themed sections, a bamboo grove, weeping fig avenue, and offer free guided walks. Website
- Story Bridge Adventure Climb: Climb Brisbane’s iconic Story Bridge for a 360-degree view of the city. Website
- Eat Street Northshore: Discover a wealth of global cuisines in shipping containers that have been converted into mini restaurants at this unique dining spot. Website
- Howard Smith Wharves: Situated beneath the Story Bridge, this revitalized historic area hosts restaurants, and bars, and offers stunning views of the city skyline. Website
- Roma Street Parkland: Covering 16 hectares in the city centre, Roma Street Parkland features themed gardens, picnic areas, and a children’s playground. Website
- Fortitude Valley: This suburb is a hub of nightlife and entertainment, featuring bars, nightclubs, boutiques, and Chinatown. Website
- Queensland Art Gallery: This art museum displays a diverse collection of Australian and international art and hosts travelling exhibitions. Website
- Queensland Museum: This natural history museum and science centre offer interactive displays and exhibitions about Queensland’s culture and environment. Website
- Brisbane City Hall and Museum of Brisbane: Brisbane City Hall is an architectural gem, and the Museum of Brisbane, located inside, explores the city’s history. Website
Now, let’s shift our focus to family-friendly destinations in Brisbane:
- Sea World Gold Coast: This marine mammal park, oceanarium, and theme park offers fun rides, animal exhibits, and shows. Website
- Australia Zoo: Run by the Irwins – and home to a wide variety of animals worldwide and crocodiles! Website
- Queensland Maritime Museum: Kids can explore a submarine, a pearl lugger, and other historic vessels at this hands-on museum. Website
- New Farm Park: This popular picnic spot also features a large playground designed like a fantasy treehouse. Website
- Sciencentre: Located in the Queensland Museum, this interactive science centre offers a wealth of hands-on exhibits. Website
- Brisbane Planetarium: Explore the universe’s wonders in immersive shows at the Cosmic Skydome, and check out the Display Zone’s astronomical exhibits. Website
- The Workshops Rail Museum: Discover the compelling history of Queensland Rail in this award-winning interactive museum. Website
- Daisy Hill Koala Centre: This educational facility allows kids to learn about koalas and their conservation in a dedicated outdoor koala enclosure. Website
- Riverlife Adventure Centre: Located at the base of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, Riverlife offers kayaking, abseiling, rock climbing, and rollerblading. Website
- Walkabout Creek Wildlife Centre: Just a short drive from the city centre, this wildlife centre provides up-close encounters with Queensland’s unique wildlife. Website
Getting Around Brisbane
Public transportation is plentiful in Brisbane, with options including buses, trains, CityCats (a type of ferry), and taxis. The ‘TransLink’ system runs these services and also provides a Go Card – a handy contactless payment method for travel across South East Queensland. Car rentals are available for those who prefer driving. Bike rentals are popular, too, with plenty of dedicated bike paths around the city.
For information on public transport and to plan your journey, visit the TransLink Website
Top 5 Hotels in Brisbane
- Emporium Hotel South Bank: This luxurious boutique hotel offers a rooftop pool and stunning views of the city. Website
- The Calile Hotel: Nestled in the stylish James Street precinct, The Calile Hotel offers urban luxury with a resort feel. Website
- W Brisbane: This vibrant hotel offers stylish rooms, a spa, and three restaurants and bars. Website
- Stamford Plaza Brisbane: This five-star hotel on the Brisbane River offers elegant rooms and a variety of dining options. Website
- Ovolo The Valley Brisbane: Known for its eclectic design and art installations, this boutique hotel offers a unique stay experience. Website
Climate Data for Brisbane
|Season||Average Temperature (°C)||Average Temperature (°F)|
|Summer (Dec – Feb)||21-29||70-84|
|Autumn (Mar – May)||18-28||64-82|
|Winter (Jun – Aug)||11-22||52-72|
|Spring (Sep – Nov)||16-26||61-79|
Travel Tips for Brisbane
- Always have sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses handy. Brisbane has a subtropical climate and can be very sunny.
- Make use of the city’s excellent public transport system, including the CityCat ferries.
- Carry a water bottle. It’s important to stay hydrated, particularly in the summer.
- If planning to visit the beaches or national parks outside the city, renting a car is advisable.
- Check out the “What’s On” section of the Brisbane City Council Website for current events and festivals.
Plan your trip with this comprehensive guide, and have an unforgettable experience exploring Brisbane!