Non-convict settlement in the Brisbane region began in the mid-1800s but it wasn’t until the 1960s and 1970s that the Government focused on developing a world-class city. As such, Brisbane attracted world-wide attention during 1982 Commonwealth Games and the 1988 World Exposition. Today Brisbane is the fastest growing Australian city, with more people deciding to relocate to Brissie than any other Aussie city. The secret seems to be catching on quickly, so now is the ideal time to explore this fascinating destination.
Just under 100km south of the state capital, the Gold Coast is the most populous non-capital city in Australia. Visually the coast line is known for its high rise apartment blocks, which are a far cry from how James Cook saw the coast when he documented the region in May 1770, having only one month earlier dropped anchor at Botany Bay. But the pristine sandy beaches that the early explorers saw continue to entice visitors to the region today.
Brisbane offers the perfect sub tropical climate ensuring great weather year round. In summer temperatures peak at around 30 degrees, while in winter the mercury rises to around 22 degrees. The winter months are generally dry with the majority of rain falling in December.
Brisbane is smack bang in the middle of two sun-blessed coastal regions. To the north is the tranquil serenity of the Sunshine Coast with the laid back towns of Caloundra, Maroochydore and the exclusive Noosa. To the south is the Gold Coast, which attracts party animals in search of fun, sun and endless summers. Whatever your interests are, there are many holiday experiences to enjoy between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
Brisbane airport is 20 kilometres north-east of the CBD and handles passengers from major Australian cities. The following airlines fly to the Brisbane:
Flying from Sydney to Brisbane takes about one and half hours and Melbourne to Brisbane takes just over two hours. Perth to Brisbane takes just over six hours.
Brisbane boasts many of the major five-star international hotel chains including the Marriott, Hilton and the Sofitel. For a boutique, funky hotel experience check out the Emporium in Fortitude Valley. Also the Conrad Treasury located in a heritage building overlooking the river offers a unique sleeping opportunity. View Resort options
To find out more about the range of holiday accommodation available with Travel Associates call 1800 017 849 or enquire online.
Sights to See
The boardwalk skirting the stunning Brisbane River provides a great opportunity of savouring the beauty of the city and there are plenty of sights to see along the way.
The South Bank precinct is a must for culture vultures and families. The Queensland Performing Arts Centre of just QPAC regularly hosts international musicals and acts. The Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) boasts an incredible collection of modern art by famed artists such as Andy Warhol and Pablo Picasso and the Queensland Art Gallery houses more traditional works from classical artists. Also along South Bank, the Wheel of Brisbane offers a bird’s eye view of the city, while the man-made beach is a great way to cool off after a day’s sight-seeing.
To appreciate scenic natural beauty head to Mt Coot-tha, Brisbane’s tallest mountain about six kilometres from the centre, for the panoramic views of the city. Also on the mountain are oodles of walking and cycling tracks. Back in town, the City Botanic Gardens offer great respite after shopping yourself silly in Queen Street and the Roma Street Parklands boast the world’s largest subtropical garden in a city centre.
Architecture enthusiasts and history buffs will appreciate the plethora of historic buildings dotted throughout the city. Be sure to check out the Queensland Parliament, the Old Government House, Customs House and Newstead House.
Along the 40 kilometres of coast line that make up the Gold Coast there are over 30 beaches calling irresistibly for attention. Naturally some are crowded; however with such a mammoth stretch of sand, it’s not hard to find a secluded plot to while away the hours. When the sun sets try your luck at Conrad Jupiters Casino on Broadbeach or jive the night away in one of the many clubs on Orchid Ave, Surfers Paradise.
The Gold Coast is theme park central to keep you and your family entertained for days. Discover movie magic at Hollywood on the Gold Coast aka Warner Bros Movie World, cool off at Wet’n’Wild, admire the sea life at Sea World or free fall 38 storeys on the Giant Drop at Dreamworld.
Don’t Leave Without…
Brisbane is a modern, cosmopolitan city, so the chances are, if you accidentally forget your favourite moisturiser for example, it’s easily replaced at a local chemist or supermarket.
Things to be careful of…
Apply plenty of sunscreen when even if only going for a short stroll. The Brisbane sun is deceptively strong.
Avoid beaches during the stinger season, October to May, when box jellyfish and other marine stingers are abundant. In extreme circumstances a sting can result in death. Some beaches have stinger nets and afford a high degree of protection. If snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef during this time, wear the full body stinger suit offered by most tour companies.
Be beach smart and swim between the flags. Never swim against a rip but rather signal a lifeguard for assistance.
The region is not immune to alcohol-fuelled violence