Brisbane Tourist Attractions

Brisbane tourist attractions include all of the must-do activities that you will find located in and around Brisbane. Not all of the attractions on this page are within the city centre, but many are accessible as day or weekend trips using hire cars or public transport.

You can pre-book for many of the attractions in and around Brisbane by clicking on the 'Brisbane Tours' link to the right.

If you don't have access to a car there's regular bus and train transportation to most of the tourist attractions Brisbane... nearby anyhow. However it will take longer to get there. For example, public transportation down to Surfers Paradise adds about half an hour to the trip.

Moreton Bay

Moreton Bay is just pleasant 30 km drive north from the Brisbane City Centre, and offers an interesting choice of tourist attractions for visitors.

These popular attractions include:

  • Bee Gees Way (a tribute to Redcliffe’s world-famous pop group).
  • Bribie Steam Train Rides
  • Brisbane Whale Watching at Moreton Bay
  • Dolphin Wild Island Cruises - an eco-cruise to Moreton Island which includes snorkeling, boom-netting and fish feeding.
  • Ferryman Cruises through the Pumicestone Passage Marine Park
  • Snorkel Safari Brisbane for dive trips on the reefs and around the wrecks in Moreton Bay and weekend live aboard trips.

Attractions a Bit Farther Afield

The Gold Coast is only around a 45-55 minute drive, depending on traffic and which beach you are aiming for. Surfers Paradise, the most famous beach of the Gold Coast, is 45 minutes from Brisbane.

If you want to head farther south to the quieter beaches around Coolangatta, it's about an hour and 15 minutes.

© Anthony Cramp | Flickr - Surfers Paradise

There are also great beaches to the north at the Sunshine Coast. Caloundra, in the south of the Sunshine Coast is about one hour from Brisbane and Noosa Heads, at the northern side, is about 2 hours. Another area to visit in this region is Glasshouse Mountains National Park, in the Sunshine Coast hinterland.

© Bert Knottenbeld | Flickr - Noosa

If you're looking for a sight of Australia's famous scenery and wildlife, Lamington National Park is about 1.5 hours drive south from Brisbane, Australia Zoo (the Crocodile Hunter Steve Irwin's place) is about the same distance but north, and David Fleay's Wildlife park is about 2 hours south near Burleigh Heads.

Australia's most easterly point, near Byron Bay

Even further south, over the state border in New South Wales is Byron Bay, the most easterly point on the Australian mainland.

This is beautiful beach beloved by backpackers. It's about 2.5 hours from Brisbane or about 1.5 hours from the Gold Coast.

If you are heading to the Fraser Coast and Fraser Island, then Hervey Bay (where the ferry to the island leaves from) is around 3.5 hours drive from Brisbane.

One of Queensland's most renowned attractions is the Great Barrier Reef. The closest place to catch a boat to the reef is from Bundaberg and it's around a 5 hour drive from Brisbane.

However some of the best reef sights are from Cairns or the Whitsundays, both of which are more accessible by flights, a 3 hour and 1.5 hour flight respectively.

Colourful fish at Australia's Great Barrier Reef
Seashells and Starfish, Great Barrier Reef, Australia

You can also visit Australia's underwater world from Rockhampton and Rocky's nearby beach attraction at Great Keppel Island.

Or sample Australia's underground beauty near Rockhampton at the Capricorn Caves and Australia's gold mining history at Mount Morgan.

Driving down to Sydney is also not impossible, however it is just over 1000km and takes about 12 hours.

Since most of the highway follows the coast down there are some spectacular views and quaint places to stop along the way which would make for a leisurely way to spend a week.

You may choose to drive down and stop in at the Gold Coast, Byron Bay, Coffs Harbour and other coastal towns along the way. If it's the destination and not the journey that interests you, fairly inexpensive flights will get you there in about 2 hours.

And be sure to visit our other tourist attractions Brisbane page here.

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