Brisbane is Australia’s most up and coming city! Often overlooked by its much bigger sisters Melbourne and Sydney, Brisbane is upping it’s game and earning its place on the map! When cruising down the East Coast of Australia so many travellers often roll pass Brisbane without a second thought! After living in Brisbane for six months I can say that they are are missing out! After spending a lot of time in this gorgeous city I urge you to give it a shot even if just for the weekend! This guide to 3 days in Brisbane has all the information you need to make this city your next destination!
Where is Brisbane
Brisbane is a beautiful city located in the sunshine state of Australia, Queensland. With great weather all year round it’s a favourite for those hunting for the sunshine. With the East Coast literally on it’s doorstep Brisbane is a gateway to many of Australia’s most popular hotspots. With Byron Bay and Noosa just a couple of hours drive away it’s a great spot for weekend breaks.
It’s also a great place in itself to take a weekend break. Brisbane has an international airport so is easy to get to from other places in Australia and from overseas. Brisbane is easily to get to from the airport once you arrive with the air-train stopping in all the major suburbs for $20 PP. If you’re penciling it in as part of a road down the East Coast then you’ll pretty much drive through so it’s worth stopping by in Brisbane for at least 3 days.
3 Days in Brisbane – Itinerary
Day 1 Morning – New Farm River Walk, Story Bridge, Eagle Street Pier and the Botanic Gardens
For these 3 days in Brisbane start off early morning so it’s easier to fit everything this has to offer in. The New Farm River walk is a great way to kick off 3 days in Brisbane. But before hitting the walk make sure you’ve got a great breakfast in you first! The New Farm River Walk starts in New Farm, funnily enough, and is home to one of my favourite breakfast or brunch spots in the city which is The Moray Cafe.
Sit outside in luxurious New Farm bustling with yoga studios, puppies in strollers and shoppers wearing their best active wear! You’ll realise that New Farm is quite an affulent area in the city and is a great spot to stay in Brisbane for a few days. It’s easy to navigate to the into the city and has everything you need. New Farm was where we stayed in our first Air BnB when we first arrived in Brisbane and we fell in the love with the location!
After enjoying this breakfast lets walk or cycle it off on the New Farm River Walk! This scenic walk runs from New Farm across the river to the city. It was recently re-built after the previous walk way was destroyed in the 2011 Brisbane Floods.
The walk itself is just over half a mile long and easily walked in 20-30 minutes. The views of the city are incredible and you’ll walk straight under Story Bridge, a suspension Bridge connecting two sides of the city. If you’d rather cycle the Brisbane has City Cycles all over which you can hire! The first 30 minutes of any cycle journey is free, for 31 minutes – 1 hour is $2 then $5 for every hour thereafter.
Stop to ‘Hydrate’ at Felons Brewery
As you approach the city you’ll see various resturants and bars lining the river. Take a break from the walk and have a beer in Felons Brewery with great views of the city. It’s reasonably priced with great food options too. If you’re in Brisbane on a Monday night then Felons Brewery also holds a free Yoga class on the lawn at 05:30 every week!
Eagle Street Pier
After a hydration stop continue the river walk right around to the Eagle Street Pier. Eagle street pier is another hub located on the river filled with cafes and restaurants with brilliant views. The Riverbar and Kitchen is a great spot for a coffee, food or beer.
Brisbane Botanic Gardens
Continue walking the river until the Botanic Gardens. Brisbane’s Botanic Gardens are beautiful, filled with flowers, gardens, play areas for the little ones and lagoons! Make sure you check out this page for things that are going at the Botanic Gardens! For one Saturday every month they host ‘Gigs and Picnics’ a free event with live music and food trucks. The Botanic Gardens is a must-see whilst spending 3 days in Brisbane.
I’ve put all the places mentioned in this section of the post in the map below!
Day 1 Afternoon – South Bank
Once you’ve explored the Botanic Gardens the next gem to explore in Brisbane is South Bank! The South Bank Parklands is located on the other side of the river in South Brisbane. You can either use google maps and walk there from the Botanic Gardens which will take you approximately 30-45 minutes. It’s also easy to get the ferry as well. Head back to Eagle Street Pier and hop on the CityHopper to South Bank. The City Hopper is a free hop on hop off ferry service.
South Bank is lined with shops, cafes and resturants but it’s also home to Brisbane’s only beach. Streets Beach brings a little bit of the coast to the city. It’s a man made beach overlooking the city which is so cool and very popular. It’s the place to be to cool down in the summer and where all the action takes place in Brisbane. If chilling out just isn’t your style then there is much more to explore at South Bank! South Bank is home to the Brisbane Wheel, Segway tours and other riverside activities so you won’t be stuck for something to do.
South Bank also comes alive in the evening. Find live music on at almost every venue so grab a beer and relax in one of the many bars for the evening!
My Top Picks for Bar’s on South Bank Brisbane
- The Plough Inn
- The Munich
- South Bank Beer Garden
- Big Little House
- Tipplers Tap
South Bank is also host to small market featuring some great small businesses from Friday to Sunday.
Day Two – Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary! If you haven’t already seen a Koala during your Australian adventure then wait no longer! Brisbane is home to one of the biggest Koala sanctuaries in the whole of Australia! It also features some other Australian natives including, kangaroos, crocodiles, dingoes and even a very friendly platypus!
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is a day out that I would highly recommend! The sanctuary itself isn’t that big so you only need 4 hours maximum, get up early so you can be back in the city for the afternoon/evening! The sanctuary has been rehabilitating Koala’s since the 1920’s. You can have the oppurtunity to hold a Koala but personally I don’t believe it’s ethical to do so. There is an oppurtunity to take a river cruise to the sanctuary. This is what we did as we were bought it as a gift from a friend and it was so interesting. As you cruise down the river listen to the commentry and learn a lot about the history of Brisbane.
For more information about Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary I have written a whole other post on it here!
Day Two Afternoon – Eat Streets Market
Now this could be one of my favourites places in Brisbane! Once you arrive back in the city be ready for a foodie packed afternoon/evening! Down the river at North Shore Hamilton is the home to the Eat Streets Markets, or what I like to call Brisbane Foodie Heaven! Now I’m not just talking your average food market I’m talking huge shipping containers filled with every food cuisine you could think of! In the centre is a huge stage where you can dance along to live music every weekend!
Eat Streets is something you do not wanna miss! To get there hop on the CityCat ferry. The fare only costs $4.20 and entry into Eat Streets is just $3! Honestly you won’t be disappointed kick back relax and enjoy the live music which is what the city of Brisbane is all about.
Day 3 – Mount Coot Tha
Ready for an adventure filled Sunday to finish up 3 days in Brisbane time in this vibrant city?
Just outside Brisbane lives the suburb Mount Coot Tha which funnily enough is also a great mountain to explore! Mount Coot Tha offers some epic views of the city which you just can’t miss! Mount Coot Tha is easily accessible from the CBD via bus. (I’ll leave all transport links at the end of the post!) On arrival you can depart the bus at the bottom of the Mountain or at the summit! If you get off at the bottom you can climb to top of the mountain following some fun hiking trails! When you reach the summit the views of the city are pretty awesome! On a clear day you can see Moreton and North Stradbroke Island too! This spot is wonderful for both sunrise and sunset.
Day 3 Afternoon – Kangaroo Point
Once back in the city head over to the Kangaroo Point cliffs! Depending on where in the city you are when you return from Mount Coot Tha will depend how you get there. If you’re in the city centre then head to Eagle Street Pier and catch the city hopper across to Thornton Street. When you depart the ferry turn left and enjoy the stroll at the bottom of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, the views of the city are amazing!
You’ve got a few options when visiting the Kangaroo cliffs! Kangaroo point is home to River life an adventure centre where you can get up to all sorts of activities the big attractions being, kayaking and climbing up the cliffs themselves! You can hire kayaks for $45 and take part in a climb starting at around $50 as you walk along the river at Kangaroo point you won’t miss the River Life centre!
If you just fancy a quiet afternoon you can continue you stroll along the water front. When you reach the open cliff face you’ll come to some steps. CLIMB THEM! As well as being a great workout the view of the city from the top is brilliant! As you look towards the city keep walking left and you’ll come to another awesome look out point for the river!
Ready to enjoy 3 days in Brisbane for the weekend? By following this 3 day in Brisbane guid you cannot possibly go wrong.
Eassentials when Planning a 3 Days in Brisbane
Brisbane Transport Links
City Hopper: The city hopper is a free ferry service that operates in the city centre of Brisbane stopping at: Sydney Street, Holman Street, Eagle Street Pier, Thornton Street, Maritime Museum, South Bank and North Quay only, you can see the time table here.
CityCat: The city cat is a paid ferry service which is in turn a lot quicker than the city hopper and covers a lot more stops. You can see the time table for the city cat and fares here.
Bus/Train: The bus/train network within Brisbane is pretty good and you venture around the city quite easily using the either mode of transport I however prefer the ferry! You can use the Translink website here to navigate where you need to be and it’ll give you the best transport options.
Go Card: If your in Brisbane for more than a weekend then it could be worth purchasing a GoCard as you get reduced fares and you can use it all mode’s of a transport. Check it out here more for more information.
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I hope that this weekend guide to Brisbane shows you a little snippet of this wonderful city has to offer! If you would like an more information or recommendations on the city then you can contact us at: [email protected]