By Lauren Jade Hill
As the capital of the Australian state of Queensland, Brisbane bubbles over with activities, culture and entertainment, bringing together the appeal of its location on the Brisbane River, amid a landscape of pristine beaches, vineyards, forest and mountains, with the draw of a thriving cultural and arts scene, and a wealth of restaurants and bars. Get a taste for this exciting city by taking a look at our pick of the best things to do in Brisbane.
Arts and Culture
Brisbane’s Cultural Center lies on the opposite banks of the Brisbane River to the city’s CBD, encompassing a collection of galleries and museums such as Queensland Art Gallery, Queensland Gallery of Modern Art, the Queensland Museum and Queensland Performing Arts Center which is considered to be one of Australia’s leading venues for live performance. But this isn’t the only arts hub in the city; galleries exhibiting local, national and international art are dotted around Brisbane, along with an abundance of independent boutiques and a vibrant live music scene.
Aside from being celebrated for its arts, music and culture, Brisbane is home to astounding natural beauty and seemingly infinite opportunities to spend time outdoors, from climbing the Story Bridge and paying a visit to Lone Pine Park Sanctuary to strolling through Roma Street Parkland and the City Botanic Gardens. Venturing a little farther from the city center then leads to the hiking trails of Mount Coot-tha, Moreton Bay and the heritage-listed forest of the Scenic Rim, opening up the chance to set out on whale watching boat trips and horseback ride through national park.
WHERE TO STAY
Stamford Plaza Brisbane
Owing to its riverside location, this luxury hotel affords scenic river views from its suites, which are each spacious and elegantly furnished. The Stamford Suite is located on the highest floor with features such as a grand piano. The selection of restaurants and bars cover a spectrum of cuisines, from seafood to teppanyaki.
Emporium Hotel Brisbane
This luxury boutique hotel combines contemporary chic with lavish detail and unique design accents, housing glamorous restaurants and bars, including a Champagne Club and Belle Epoque Patisserie. The rooftop terrace is of particular note, featuring an outdoor heated saltwater lap pool and sauna.
Sofitel Brisbane Central
Located in the heart of Brisbane, Sofitel Brisbane Central stays true to the Sofitel style with sumptuous interiors combining classic décor with modern design. The hotel is home to the luxurious Stephanies Spa Retreat and a series of award-winning restaurants and bars including a popular champagne lounge.
The Point Brisbane
Named for its position on Kangaroo Point, a short distance from the CBD, The Point Brisbane provides the ideal location to stay, along with scenic views. In addition to an outdoor heated pool and fitness center, the five-star hotel is home to Lamberts restaurant, which overlooks the pool and gardens, and serves up cuisine that champions the local produce.