1 Week Travel Guide To Brisbane

Brisbane is a beautiful city and it’s also home for now. I’ve heard a lot of people talk down on Brisbane because they compare it to larger cities with a lot more going on, but I’ve visited tons of small cities and appreciated them more. Brisbane is still huge compared to where I grew up (it has 2.2 million people and its the third largest city in Australia) but since it isn’t as large as Sydney for example, it’s a lot more affordable. When comparing rent and the quality of apartments between the two cities, it was vastly different. The only downside to Brisbane is that there is no beach here. Brisbane is not completely on the coast so to get to a beach one must head down to Gold Coast (45 min roughly) or go up to Sunshine Coast. Not a huge deal but that’s definitely a deal breaker for some people. Regardless of this, I believe everyone should visit Brisbane at some point in their life and really experience what this city has to offer!

If you should choose to visit Brisbane, here is a week guide to the city and surrounding area that I believe everyone should see.

Day 1

South Bank

Definitely head into the South Bank area and cross over to the CBD on Victoria Bridge. From here you can see the Brisbane sign, the Brisbane Ferris Wheel and the whole city pretty much. It’s really beautiful and there’s always something going on in South Bank around the exhibition centre. On weekends, there’s almost always a festival or market happening as well as tons of restaurants. Down in this area is also Street’s Beach which is the closest thing to a beach that Brisbane has to offer and its awesome! After you’re done swimming at the “beach” you can also head into the tropical rainforest walk and see the Nepalese Peace Pagoda.

Nepalese Peace Pagoda
View of CBD from South Bank
Street’s Beach
Brisbane sign

Day 2

On your second day I would check out the City Botanic Gardens since you had such a busy first day. This is a nice way to unwind and relax and still see the beauty in Bris. The Botanic Gardens are located south of the CBD area, right against the river. You could easily walk to the park and have a picnic and go for a walk through it. Brandon and I have done this on chill days and it’s so relaxing and stunning. Definitely check it out. After you are done that, I would head over to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary and see some Aussie animals. This is kind of a must do when you are in Australia so if Brisbane is your first or only stop, get it done!

Day 3

For day three, I would head down to Gold Coast. If you don’t have a car, you can use the public transport and get there in roughly an hour. Brisbane has an amazing public transport system (I’ve never even attempted using a Bus until I moved to this city). If you are going to use public transport during your time in Bris, I would 100% recommend getting a Go Card. You pay $10 for the card (and get $10 back when returned) and in the time you have it, you load it up with how ever much money you want and use this to pay for buses, trains, boats, etc. Each bus has a touch pad that you tap your card on once you enter, and then you tap the card again while exiting and it charges you 30% less I believe for your ride. It’s so helpful honestly. The buses are also much quicker than going through Bris traffic because they have their own roads and underground tunnels – it’s pretty cool! To get to Gold Coast, go to any Bus terminal and catch the bus to a train station (I recommend just walking to either Roma or South Bank) and catching the Gold Coast train. Once you get to Gold Coast feel free to explore whatever you like! Brandon and I haven’t done too much exploring here. We’ve hit up Surfer’s Paradise a few times and also headed down to Coolangatta as well, so it’s really about what you want to see. If you don’t want an area as touristy… I would not recommend Surfer’s. None the less, the beaches and atmosphere are beautiful here and remind me of a Florida spring break trip.

Surfer’s Paradise Beach

Day 4

Theme parks! Definitely check out the theme parks near Gold Coast if you’re spending a week in Bris. They have a lot to choose from like Dream World, Wet n’ Wild, Warner Brother’s Movie World, etc. Brandon and I got a membership year pass because we love rollercoasters and its fun to just catch the bus there randomly and spend the day like children. These parks are not on the same level as Universal Studios or Disney (they are much much smaller) but they’re a fun time and it’s nice being in a different environment! Just a heads up though, since they are smaller parks, they all close at 5pm everyday so make sure to head out early as opposed to around 2pm with the assumption they are open until 9pm or midnight.

Superman ride at Movie World
Warner Brother’s Movie World

Day 5

On your fifth day I would personally check out The Treasury Casino and Fortitude Valley (both during the day and night). This is the night life central of Brisbane. ‘The Valley’ is pretty much where all the nightclubs and bars are. This place is crazy on weekend nights so if you’re into clubbing and having some drinks definitely check out bars like Prohibition, Cloudland, Woolly Mammoth, etc. It’s a pretty good time and nice to unwind after sight seeing everyday. The Casino isn’t in the Valley but it’s a good place to start your night off before heading up to that area!

The Treasury Casino

Day 6

Since you’re in Australia, everyone always suggests going to a rugby game! I personally have not gone (I don’t understand the sport haha) but I do want to go for the social aspect at least. I know there are two stadiums I have personally seen and before game time, it looks BUMPIN. I always regret not going after it’s too late. I believe Suncorp Stadium or The Gabba both hold games (don’t quote me on that) and getting tickets is straight forward (box office or online). Since I have not gone myself this is just a suggestion, because I have always wanted to go and keep telling myself since I have a year here that I have time. People seem to love it and have a blast so if any friends or family visit me, this is definitely something I plan on taking them too therefore I am tossing the suggestion to you as well!

Day 7

Last day in Brisbane! Since your time in Brisbane has come to an end and you got to enjoy a lot of the city life, i would head down to Mt. Tamborine and explore some nature honey! This area is south of Brisbane (very close to the theme parks near Gold Coast) and an easy day trip. You can either check it out or self (I would recommend saving money and doing this) or you can pay for a guided tour trough multiple tour companies. The area has multiple waterfalls and rock pools to see. It’s super beautiful. You can check out this website right here on it http://www.discovertamborine.com.au/tamborine-national-park/waterfalls-swimming-holes/.


And this concludes my week long guide to Brisbane! There’s obviously so much more to do and tons of natural attractions near by you could check out. I haven’t been in Brisbane too long and haven’t seen everything yet so I didn’t want to recommend a bunch of places I personally haven’t been to but if you did want to see/do more than on this guide just google up places and natural attractions in Brisbane and you’ll see a lot more options! Hope you enjoyed this guide and stay tuned for more coming soon.