The down under city on a rise
Ten years back when I was planning my first trip to Australia and asked for recommendations, hardly anyone recommended the Queensland capital. However, a lot has changed in the last decade.
Brisbane, the third-largest city of Australia has successfully come out of the shadow of Sydney and Melbourne by becoming an incubator for forward-thinking creativity. Fine art and live music lovers rejoice in the diversity of the city’s offerings, and nature lovers can’t get enough of the koalas. Newly opened rooftop bars and restaurants have added the mega-city style to this subtropical metropolis. But what I like the most here is its casual and easy-going character. Despite becoming hipper and more fun with times; it still hasn’t traded off its flip-flops for formal footwear.
The outdoorsy, sunny and friendly Brisbane welcomes you with open arms year-round and is worth at least three days of your time. Here are the places you must visit.
10 things to do in Brisbane today
1. Stroll or cycle around South Bank
Hit South Bank on the Brisbane River to relish the see the best of the city – diverse mix of entertainment, recreation and leisure activities. Evenings are a great time to watch a live band performance while the sun goes down. You’ll never run out of options, thanks to 17 hectares of parklands, restaurants, cafes, bars, boutiques, museums and galleries. While the city is beautiful during the day I love exploring various things to do in Brisbane at night when its cooler and looks very romantic with all the lights.
2. Enjoy the Beach life in the Middle of the City
There is no better way to enjoy the Aussie laidback life than enjoying the beach vibe in the heart of the city. This man-made beach is a top draw in free things to do in Brisbane. No wonder it is a favourite of locals and tourists alike for its sparkling lagoon with white sand and sub-tropical plants. Great place to take a dip or soak up the famous Queensland sunshine.
3. Hop on board for a boat tour
The sunny Brisbane has a lot of good vantage points to enjoy the golden hour, but there’s something extraordinary about watching it from the water. Whether it’s cruising up and down the winding Brisbane River, or putting about on the expansive blue of Moreton Bay, being out on the water is a real treat. You can choose a boat tour as per your liking – lunch, high tea and dinner cruises or a wildlife boat cruise to cuddle the koalas of Lone Pine
4. Soak up the Art at GoMA and the Queensland Art Gallery
Art lovers will have a great time exploring GoMA, Australia’s largest gallery of modern and contemporary art and Queensland Art Gallery. The galleries are loaded with an assorted range of Australian, international and indigenous art.
5. Dabble in the arts on campus
If you are a someone who likes smaller but more specialist art shows then visiting Brisbane universities is not a bad idea. Interesting art exhibitions and collections can be found at the University of Queensland, the Queensland College of Art and the Queensland University of Technology’s Art Museum.
6. Climb Brisbane’s Story Bridge and Abseil Down
Brisbane looks extremely picturesque when you climb its iconic Story Bridge. Whatever daypart you climb, the exhilarating views will take your breath away – Glasshouse Mountains in the north to Moreton Bay in the east and stretching towards the Scenic Rim Mountains in the south along with the brilliant views of the Brisbane skyline and its environs. The adventurous souls can try 30-metre abseiling back down. While it doesn’t fall in the category of free things to do in Brisbane today but it is definitely worth the price.
7. Enjoy the panoramic view of Brisbane
Unlike its uber-popular cousins, Melbourne or Sydney, Brisbane is much more diverse in its elevation. Within 15 minutes of short drive from the city
8. Get close to nature in Lamington National Park
If you are a person who loves forests then you’ll love the Lamington National Park, which is home to some of the oldest trees in Australia. And not just that, the Park is filled with flowing waterfalls, lush Gondwana Rainforest and trails suitable for all. Pitch a tent in the wilderness or retreat to O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat. This is one of my favourite things to do in Brisbane today, tomorrow and forever.
9. Take the plunge with Skydive Ramblers
Brisbane is great for adrenaline junkies to get over their fear of heights and take in the adrenaline rush of a lifetime at Skydive Ramblers in Toogoolawah. The parachute centre is Queensland’s largest and longest established operation, where you can go for a tandem skydive.
10. Get a together for a barbecue at Kangaroo Point
No other area in Brisbane can match Kangaroo Point and Woolloongabba for its natural beauty, laid-back vibes and location. Decked with unmatched river and city views, the beautiful Kangaroo Point cliffs is a great place to have a barbecue get together. It’s a place where you find everything under the sun – a haven for food lovers, sports fanatics, keen shoppers, cultural experiences, socialites, thrill seekers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Hope you liked the things to do in Brisbane today. If you have suggestions on free things to do in Brisbane tonight or tomorrow, please don’t hesitate to share. So, when are you booking a trip to the down under city on a rise?
Have you been to Brisbane or Australia? I would love to know about your experience. In case you are planning to visit, don’t forget to read these Australia travel guides:
Why Melbourne is the most liveable city in the world
10 reasons why Adelaide is a must-visit in Australia
Travel guide for your first time visit to Australia
10 reasons why I love Australia
Malindo Mag: February 2019 issue