Explore Brisbane

Brisbane Travel Guide

Australia's third largest city has a relaxed, easy-going ambience that is well suited to its moniker: 'The City of Sundays'. As the capital of the state of Queensland, however, it has a serious side too, and despite it's laid-back aura it is filled with the cosmopolitan hustle and bustle of a major urban hub. Brisbane has several interesting districts, a good selection of street cafes, a wonderful riverside park, a very full cultural calendar, and a vibrant nightlife. Culture vultures should head for the South Bank, home to the Queensland Museum with its interactive displays; the Queensland Art Gallery with its magnificent collection; and the Performing Arts Centre, where international theatre companies and performing artists take to the stage.<br /><br /> There is plenty to keep shopaholics busy too, with the designer boutiques and department stores of Queens Street Mall ready to welcome visitors and numerous bustling markets dotted around the city. Sport fanatics, as always the case in Australia, are well catered for thanks to the Gabba sports ground and Suncorp Stadium, where the Wallabies often take on the world at rugby. The city is generally easy to explore on foot, and provides the perfect base from which to make daytrips to popular surrounding areas.<br /><br /> Situated on Australia's fabled Gold Coast, a holiday in Brisbane means fun in the sun, providing easy access to Australia's east coast resorts and theme parks on the Pacific Motorway. A sub-tropical climate ensures that a holiday in Brisbane will be a sunny experience no matter what time of year is chosen. Most of the rain falls in summer, but not enough to deter holidaymakers. Most of those who travel to Brisbane come for leisure and pleasure. It is an ideal destination for a family holiday, a surfing holiday, or as a good base for anyone wanting to visit the nearby National Parks.<br /><br />

The Gabba

Address: Vulture Street, Woolloongabba Brisbane

Named after the suburb of Woolloongabba in which it is located, and with a seating capacity of 42,000, the famous Gabba Cricket Ground is just a short bus ride from the city of Brisbane. Visitors can check out locals, the Queensland Bulls Cricket team or the Brisbane Lions Australian Rules football team, depending on when you choose to visit. Over the years The Gabba has hosted athletics, Australian Rules football, baseball, concerts, cricket, cycling, rugby league, rugby union, soccer and pony and greyhound races. Those lucky enough to catch an international cricket match are ensured a great day out. Sport is integral to Australian culture and even for those who are not themselves fanatical a visit to this passionately supported sports ground will be an exciting experience.<br /><br />

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary

Address: 708 Jesmond Road, Fig Tree Pocket Brisbane

The world's oldest and largest koala sanctuary, the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is home to more than just the cute and cuddly koala, but also to kangaroos, Tasmanian devils, wombats, echidnas and various species of reptiles as well as Australian parrots, cockatoos, kookaburras and cassowaries. Lucky visitors are actually able to handle the koalas here (for a fee) making this one of only a few sanctuaries in the world where this is possible - a dream come true for many. Feeding and petting is also permitted and is carefully monitored, making this an ideal activity for families travelling with small children. The Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is arguably the best place to get up close and personal with Australia's unique animals, and a delight for the whole family.<br /><br />

South Bank

Address: Brisbane

The South Bank is a central Brisbane district packed with world-class attractions and experiences for visitors. It attracts nearly 10 million people each year, mostly to the South Bank Parklands, which were established on the former site of World Expo 88. The Parklands contain Australia's only man-made beach and lagoon, right in the heart of the city, known as South Bank Beach. There are also rainforest walks, picnic and barbecue areas and water features. One of Brisbane's most popular tourist attractions, South Bank is also home to the Queensland Cultural Centre, which includes Queensland Museum, Queensland Art Gallery, the State Library of Queensland, the Greater Union Hoyt's South Bank Cinemas and the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, which all line the Brisbane River proudly.<br /><br /> Shoppers and fashion lovers will enjoy Little Stanley Street, where all the latest in fashion can be picked up from the boutiques and retails stores lining the strip. The South Bank Art and Craft Markets take place every Friday night, as well as every Saturday and Sunday during the day. Visitors should head to the South Bank Visitors Centre which provides information on current events, including cultural activities, accommodation options, event information and details regarding restaurant and bar facilities.<br /><br />

Story Bridge

Address: Level 1, 170 Main Street, Kangaroo Point Brisbane

One of the oldest bridges in Australia, the Story Bridge is a 3,517-foot (1,072m) long cantilevered bridge which spans the Brisbane River, connecting Fortitude Valley to Kangaroo Point. Brave visitors who are certain they don't suffer from vertigo can climb to the top of the bridge and be rewarded with breathtaking views over Brisbane's cityscape. One of only a handful of bridge climbs in the world, the Story Bridge is well worth a visit for those travelling through Brisbane. Advance bookings are recommended and money can sometimes be saved by booking online. Special deals are available for groups and there is even an abseiling option. Check out the official website listed below for more details.<br /><br />

Gondwana Rainforests of Australia

Address: Brisbane

Formerly known as the Central Eastern Rainforest Reserves, the Gondwana Rainforests are so-named as the fossil records show that when Gondwana existed it was covered by the same kind of rainforests. Gondwana was a southern supercontinent that existed approximately 550 million years ago, about 250 million years before Pangaea.<br /><br /> The reserve includes 50 national parks which include Lamington National Park, Mount Chinghee National Park, Springbrook National Park, Mount Barney National Park and Main Range National Park, among many others that lie on the New South Wales side of Queensland. There are very few places on earth that contain so many plants and animals which remain fairly unchanged from their fossil records. The rainforests are remarkable and hugely rewarding for hikers and nature-lovers. Unsurprisingly, the forests have been UNESCO-listed.<br /><br /> There are a number of entry-points to the rainforest and despite the pristine nature of the region, there is sufficient infrastructure to enable in-depth exploration of the forest, with well-maintained access-roads and walking trails, a number of adventure tour operators offering activities, and various accommodation options.<br /><br />

Sea World

Address: Sea World Drive, Main Beach Brisbane

One of Queensland's most popular attractions for visitors of all ages and an absolute must while on holiday with the kids in Brisbane, Sea World offers marine attractions, rides, shows and much more. Check out the ocean's most fearsome predator at Shark Bay, get up close and personal with Australia's only polar bears at Polar Bear Shores or check out the Fairy penguins in their penguin suits, before taking a stroll through the Sea World Aquarium to discover Australia's exotic marine life. The adventurous can climb aboard the Jet Rescue rollercoaster ride - an exhilarating ride for kids of all ages.<br /><br />

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