Visiting Brisbane: Top Things to Do for an Unforgettable Vacation
14 Jun 2019
Brisbane might not get the same number of tourists as more popular Sydney and Melbourne but doesn’t mean that there isn’t anything to do or see in Australia’s third largest city. The capital of Queensland offers a lot of fun things to do and the best thing about them is that most of them are free, as it is the case of most beach towns. Well, not really “towns” because Brisbane is home to over 2 million people, so you are bound to find a jovial Aussie to befriend.
An urban dip at Streets Beach
Streets Beach: funny name for a beach, right? Not actually if you have in mind that this beach is right in the heart of the city at South Bank, so instead of palm trees, you’ll swim surrounded by towering skyscrapers. The blue lagoon is the ideal place to take your kids while you can lounge in the beach bar. This is an excellent place to meet some locals because Streets Beach is as popular with tourists, as it is with the native population.
Exercising in the park
Staying in South Bank, you can hit the Parklands area for a fitness class. The Medibank Feel Good organizes exercise classes that last for one month twice a year. There is a wide range of exercises to choose from, like Pilates, yoga, dancing, and even water aerobics. The best thing about this program? It is completely free and open to everyone, as even the city’s official tourist organization advertises it.
Buying goods at the local farmer’s market
There are tens of farmer’s markets across the city and they are open one day of the week. In markets such as Lockyer Valley to the Scenic Rim, you can find produce that comes from the nearby farmland that locals are proud to buy and support the regional economy. There is a wide range of products you can buy here, from flowers and meat all the ways to arts and crafts. During the weekend, nearly every district opens its local farmer’s market that citizens flock to.
Being Greeted the right way
If you thought that getting a map of the city, whether digital or paper, is the ideal way to see all of Brisbane’s sights you aren’t on the right track, pun intended. Instead of looking at the city’s layout, you should be looking for people wearing red shirts because a clear signal they are one of Brisbane’s famous Greeters. There are greeters in nearly every metropolis in the world but the ones here are close to iconic. They’re really volunteers that will take you for a walk around the city and tell you interesting stories about all the significant sights. The tours usually take up to three hours, so put on some comfy sneakers!
Friday night anyone?
Brisbane might not possess the same hustle and bustle as Sydney and Melbourne but this doesn’t mean that Queenslanders don’t know how to party. There are numerous restaurants, bars, pubs, and night clubs that you can visit every Friday night. There are such establishments on both sides of the Brisbane River but most night clubs are located in Fortitude Valley, although rooftop parties have become a trend recently. You can enjoy various interactive entertainment forms, from singers to aerial artists. If you are a person who enjoys a good view, then head to Bar Spritz at Kangaroo Point Cliffs for a stunning vista of the entire urban area of Brisbane.
Time for art
If you are interested in a slower form of entertainment, then QAGOMA: Queensland Art Gallery & Gallery of Modern Art is where you need to be. The two galleries are joined into a single space dedicated to visual art from around the globe. They always have some sort of visitor discounts, so you’ll probably be able to get in for free. Even if you’re not a connoisseur of the arts, did we mention that all the hallways are air-conditioned so they present the ideal escape from the scorching sun outside?
The powerhouse of laughter
Getting a good laugh is the leitmotif of Brisbane. They even have a powerhouse of comedy appropriately named: The Brisbane Powerhouse. The comedy night starts here every Friday at 6PM but there are shows throughout the week and you can buy tickets online with a discount.
Up the City Hall
Brisbane’s City Hall features a clock tower that is open to visitation. The structure was built before WWII and it is listed as a heritage building. There is an old lift that takes you up the clock tower and it runs every 15 minutes. The tours are free and the height of the thrill is the bird’s-eye view over King George Square down below.
The venues we listed here are just the tip of the iceberg of what Brisbane has to offer to people visiting it. Take mental notes while in the company of a Greeter and come back later to places you deem the most fun to (re)visit.