Find adventure, art, dining and relaxation in these top 10 things to do in Brisbane.
Visit Brisbane and you'll find a modern, vibrant city with a sunny, sub-tropical climate and unsurpassed natural beauty. Best of all, you'll find friendly locals keen to show you around this pretty riverside city. They love their city and so will you.
Climb Brisbane’s iconic Story Bridge for a glimpse of this amazing city. Whether you climb at dawn, during the day, in the twilight or at night, you will discover exhilarating views north to the Glasshouse Mountains and south to the World Heritage-listed Gold Coast Hinterland. Keep the adrenalin going with an optional 30-metre abseil back down.
Walk or cycle around South Bank on the Brisbane River and see the best of the city while you exercise. Famous for its diverse mix of entertainment, recreation and leisure activities, South Bank includes 17 hectares of parklands, restaurants, cafes, bars, boutiques, museums and galleries. For a fun perspective, take a ride on the Wheel of Brisbane.
Experience the Aussie beach vibe in the heart of the city. This fully patrolled, man-made beach is free to use and boasts a sparkling lagoon surrounded by white sand and sub-tropical plants. Relax with an ice cream, have a swim and soak up the famous Queensland sunshine. Nearby Aquativity is a fun, interactive water-play park, ideal for young families.
Enjoy the perfect meal at Esquire, renowned as Brisbane’s finest restaurant, overlooking the twinkling lights of Story Bridge and the river ferries. Dine a la carte or choose the degustation menu from chef Ryan Squires, matched with Australian and international wines. Gerard’s Bistro, Public, Aria, Stokehouse and The Foraging Quail are also highly recommended.
Explore GoMA, Australia's largest gallery of modern and contemporary art and the iconic Queensland Art Gallery. The galleries are architectural wonders themselves, boasting a diversity of Australian and international art as well as two galleries devoted to contemporary Indigenous work. Friday nights are perfect for drinks with friends in GoMA’s stylish bar.
Guide your own illuminated kayak up the Brisbane River on Friday and Saturday nights. Take in the shimmering lights of the cityscape on a leisurely 90-minute paddle before relaxing with a riverside meal of fresh king prawns (Friday) or a barbecue (Saturday) with famous Queensland lamingtons for dessert. Wash it all down with Australian beer and wine.
Spend a night under the stars just 90 minutes south of Brisbane. Limited to six guests, Nightfall is an intimate camping experience situated on 257 acres beside crystal-clear rapids in the ancient rainforest of the Lamington National Park. Explore, relax and enjoy a fire-cooked organic dinner before drifting off to sleep in a private luxury tent.
Sweet-toothed travellers will love the Chocolate Tour, more than two hours of all things cocoa with experts leading you to eight different stores. There’s plenty of taste testing along the way! The Craft Beer Tour takes in four venues – each with a colourful past – and includes tastings of 20 craft beers plus a history of brewing in Brisbane.
Browse the stalls for unique and eclectic clothing by emerging artisans. This fun and friendly market in the bustling Stanley Street Plaza is held on Friday evenings and weekends. The designers are mostly creative young people and the emphasis is on effortless cool. Listen to live music as you look over handmade jewellery, art, antiques, photographs and vintage fashions.
Expect a laid-back time at North Stradbroke Island (known affectionately as “Straddie”) just short ferry ride across Moreton Bay from Brisbane. Packages can be customised to include eco-touring, 4WD tours, kayaking, fishing and sandboarding. Watch the dolphins surf, photograph the birdlife and wildflowers or just wander miles of untouched beach.