6 Fun Things to Do in Brisbane, Australia

6 Fun Things to Do in Brisbane, Australia

G’day, curious travelers! I’m guessing that you’ve heard of Brisbane, but don’t know much about it. Most first-time visitors to Australia want to include Sydney in their itinerary, but Brisbane is another great choice.

Brisbane is located on Australia’s eastern coast and is the capital of Queensland. It has sunny weather, is a cultural hotspot, and is also close to natural attractions. And there are lots of direct flights from the US to Brisbane.

Are you familiar with Bluey, the Australian animated television for preschoolers that is also wildly popular in the US? You can find it on Disney+. Bluey is a Blue Heeler dog who lives with her family in Brisbane.

I know you’ll be hearing more about Brisbane in the future because it will be hosting the 2032 Summer Olympics.

I was invited by Tourism Australia to visit Queensland with a group of other travel advisors. Here are six fun things that I did while we were in Brisbane.

1. Go on a Guided City Tour of Brisbane

Jumpstart your Brisbane adventure with a guided city tour. A walking tour of the city provides an insider’s view of the city’s history and landmarks. Every street has a story, and you’ll be amazed by the anecdotes and hidden gems shared by your local guide.

2. Appreciate the City Views of Brisbane at Night

As the sun sets, Brisbane transforms into a city of lights.

The panoramic views from rooftop bars are sure to take your breath away. The sparkling skyline against the darkening sky creates a beautiful, serene atmosphere – perfect for a romantic evening or a tranquil end to a busy day of exploration.

Our hotel was near the Story Bridge which was beautifully lit at night.

3. Take a Day Trip to North Stradbroke Island

This one’s for the nature lovers! Just a short trip from Brisbane, North Stradbroke Island (Straddie, if you’re a local, or Minjerribah, the original indigenous name) is a haven of natural beauty and wildlife. We were guided by a lovely indigenous woman who grew up on the island. Here are some of the things we saw and experienced:

  • Brown Lake: This stunning lake gets its name from nearby tea trees that tint the water a rich brown with naturally occurring tea tree oils.
    The color is brown, but the lake is not murky. It’s a tranquil spot, perfect for swimming or simply relaxing by the shore. The tea tree oils are said to have beneficial properties, so a dip here is not just refreshing but also rejuvenating.
  • Picnic on the Beach: Relax on the pristine sands with a leisurely picnic, soaking up the Aussie sun. Then go for a swim in the warm ocean water.

  • Spotting Koalas and Kangaroos: View Australia’s iconic wildlife in their natural habitat – there’s nothing like seeing a koala munching on eucalyptus leaves or kangaroos hopping around! They aren’t just in zoos.

  • Watching Surfers: North Stradbroke is a popular spot for surfers. Enjoy the thrill of watching them catch waves and perform tricks on the beautiful surf breaks. Or just admire the spectacular views of the waves rolling in.

4. Ride the Free Ferries Around Brisbane

Want to see Brisbane from a new perspective without spending a dime? Hop on one of the city’s free ferries. The CityHopper service offers stunning views of the river and the cityscape from the water. It’s a relaxing, scenic way to get around.

5. Explore the Brisbane Botanic Gardens

Located on the edge of the Brisbane River, these historic gardens offer 20 hectares of horticultural beauty right in the heart of the city. Wander through the lush greenery of bamboo groves, palm lawns, and ornamental ponds. Whether you’re looking for a serene stroll, a scenic picnic spot, or a picturesque jog, the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens are a lovely urban oasis. I love flowers and found the gardens delightful.

6. Day Trip to Tamborine Mountain

Just an hour’s drive from Brisbane, Tamborine Mountain is a perfect day trip to experience lush rainforests and charming villages.

  • Gallery Walk: Stroll through the famous Gallery Walk, a vibrant street lined with arts and craft shops, local galleries, and boutique stores. My favorite was a tea shop where they offered several kinds of tea grown in Australia.

  • Tamborine National Park: Lace up your hiking boots and venture into the national park. The highlight? A serene walk through a eucalyptus forest leading to the picturesque Curtis Falls, where you can unwind to the sounds of cascading water.

Ready to visit Brisbane?

There is much to like about Brisbane. I hope you’ll consider a stop in Brisbane on your Australia itinerary. Are you ready to start planning a trip to the Land Down Under? I would love to help. Read about the services I offer to my clients and then contact me.

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