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25 of the most effective day journeys from Brisbane

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On the lookout for enjoyable and fabulous day journeys from Brisbane. Now we have 25 high picks right here from the seaside to the rainforest, lakes and rivers, wildlife and journey.


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Brisbane is a good metropolis to each dwell and go to.  It’s informal and laid again however there are alternatives right here for tradition, nice foodie experiences and extra.  It doesn’t have to harm your pocket both, should you’re visiting the town be sure you additionally see our top ideas for free things to do in Brisbane.

The sub-tropical local weather you’ll discover in Brisbane is right, it doesn’t hit the scorching highs in summer time that some elements of the nation do however winter is generally spent in shorts and t-shirts with loads of seaside visits all yr round.

The town has it’s personal surf patrolled (artificial) seaside and loads of parks and points of interest however as with all metropolis after a day or two, or a stable 9-5 week, you’re in all probability going to wish to get exterior and discover additional afield so we’ve put collectively a listing of our 25 greatest choices for day journeys from Brisbane.  You’ll discover loads of selection right here to go well with everybody – {couples}, pals, households and singles.

Our suggestions for day journeys from Brisbane

1. Glasshouse Mountains

Wild Horse Mountain - Glasshouse Mountains

The Glasshouse mountains are on the southern finish of the Sunshine Coast solely an hour from the town.  This distinctive Nationwide Park contains 12 distinctive peaks which are the remnant cores of 26 million yr outdated volcanos that after towered above the area.

A few of the peaks have paths you’ll be able to stroll up simply corresponding to Wild Horse Mountain the place this photograph was taken from, different’s require climbing experience and gear for these we favor the strolling trails that circumnavigate them from beneath.  There are just a few cafes within the space, our choose is the Lookout Cafe for its beautiful outlook, then simply keep on just a few hundred meters additional up the mountain for the lookout park with unbelievable views, strolling trails and wildlife.

Use this guide to plan your visit to the Glasshouse Mountains

2. Lamington Nationwide Park

Elabana Falls from O'Reillys Rainforest Retreat

Heading south of Brisbane to the Gold Coast we are sometimes drawn to the great thing about the Lamington Nationwide Park.  There are 2 sections to this park that are accessed in very other ways so be sure you are headed to the best half.  The Inexperienced Mountain part is our favourite and generally often called O’Reillys for the household that initially settled right here and a person that carried out an inspiring rescue towards the chances when a passenger aircraft crashed within the space again in 1937.

As we speak you’ll discover quite a lot of walks many appropriate for the entire household in pristine rain forest and a few nice locations on these walks such because the Elabana Falls proven above.  There’s automobile parking, BBQ’s, loads of picnic area and a store and cafe right here.  For those who’re searching for one thing longer than a day journey there’s quite a lot of lodging proper on the park entrance from tenting to luxe flats with personal outside spa’s.  We’ve stayed right here a few occasions and should you’re this article gives you an concept of whats obtainable and a few of the different actions.

For those who love Australian wildlife it is a certain spot to see pademelons, a small species within the wallaby and kangaroo household and the chicken life is intensive, we’ve seen an enormous selection right here together with the elusive Alberts Lyrebird and rainbow pitta.

Find some of the best walks in the Lamington National Park

3. North Stradbroke Island

Gorge Walk on North Stradbroke Island

Only a 25 minute ferry journey throughout Morton Bay is North Stradbroke Island, a laid again island paradise proper on the door cease of the town.  There’s quite a bit to like a couple of day journey to ‘Straddie’ because it’s recognized domestically however for us it’s a tie between the wildlife, surroundings and fabulous seashores.  There’s additionally a few good cafes popped up on the island not too long ago.

You may take a automobile throughout on the automobile ferry however you’ll have only a a lot enjoyable leaping on the bus that meets the boat and heading as much as Level Lookout.  That is the place you’ll discover beautiful surf seashores, the gorge stroll, lookouts and extra superb seashores.  For those who go to within the ‘winter’ you’ll be able to watch the whales passing on their annual migration, pods of dolphins enjoying within the surf and sea turtles feeding within the gorge.  There’s additionally a giant mob of kangaroos and also you’ll normally spot a minimum of a few of these.  Browsing and seaside days are widespread on the island all yr spherical.  We met one younger Kiwi customer who was so impressed after having dolphins be a part of her on her wave whereas physique browsing that she was making an impromptu choice to show her day journey into an in a single day keep hoping to repeat the expertise once more the following day.

Learn Extra:  Our tops picks of what to do on North Stradbroke Island

4. Morton Island

Tangalooma whale watching off Morton Island

Morton Island is typically known as Tangalooma after the most important resort on the island.  Whereas there may be a lot to see and do out right here on the island should you needed to remain just a few days it’s additionally a unbelievable day journey.  The boat runs out right here from Brisbane within the morning and after a brief cease you’ll be able to rejoin it through the ‘winter’ months to go out whale watching.  Early within the journey we noticed turtles, dolphins and off the coast of Morton Island is the place I noticed my very first dugong.  The whales are in transit from Antarctica to the Nice Barrier Reef however they nonetheless present a pure curiosity in trying out boats so the sightings have been good.

We had lunch on the boat then whenever you get again to there island there’s time to discover.  There are wrecks offshore which have fashioned into reefs and supply a house for a superb number of sea life, you’ll be able to rent a kayak to have a look should you don’t wish to snorkel or dive.  You can even rent cycles with sand tires or head out sand tobogganing.  As a day customer we have been in a position to make use of the resort services and we stayed on into the night taking the final boat again to see the nice sundown and the opposite particular points of interest of Tangalooma, the visiting dolphins.

Early within the night a pod of untamed dolphins come into shore and underneath a particular licence you’ll be able to feed them right here.  The historical past of this goes again a good distance and led to Nari, one of many dolphins a decade or so again with the ability to be rescued, healed and returned to his pod after he was badly mauled by a shark (you’ll be able to learn extra about Nari within the article beneath).  Care is taken to make sure they’re given domestically caught fish and that what they obtain solely makes up solely a small portion of their every day weight-reduction plan so that they eat and play naturally the remainder of the time.  Not each dolphin within the pod is available in, and people who do don’t are available in day-after-day, skilled workers supervise each encounter to make sure it’s finished in a secure manner and naturally you should not contact the dolphin.

For extra data see:  Whales, dugongs, dolphins and more at Morton Island

5. Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary

Koala at Currumbin Wildlife Park

Whereas I’ll spotlight many spots to come across Australia’s wildlife of their pure setting close to Brisbane in different sections of this publish,  guests could wish to embody a wildlife sanctuary throughout their time in Brisbane to see quite a lot of the Australian animals and for the tutorial side.

For that we’d advocate both Currumbin or the close by David Fleay Wildlife Park .  These two have a robust conservation focus, they prioritise native wildlife over exotics their precedence is animal welfare, conservation and schooling.

Read more about the Currumbin Wildlife SanctuaryCheck for deals at Currumbin Sanctuary

6. Sea World

Dolphins at Sea World

There are a selection of theme parks inside easy accessibility of Brisbane that make an amazing household day journey.  Sea World in Australia is closely concerned in marine rescue and most of the birds and animals listed here are rescues that have been unable to be launched again to the wild for varied causes associated to their very own security.

Sea World is positioned on The Spit on the Gold Coast round an hours drive from Brisbane.  It’s additionally potential to get right here with public transport or becoming a member of a tour that features transport however we’d extremely advocate driving so you’ll be able to cease off at a few of the beautiful seashores within the space.

Along with the animals there’s additionally water ski and jet bike reveals, thrill rides, a water park and the Nickelodeon space that includes reveals and rides for the youthful relations.

Learn our tips for a day at Sea World Australia  |  Take a look at deals on Sea World tickets

7. Bribie Island

Bribie Island

One other of Queensland’s giant sand islands, Bribie, is hooked up to the mainland by a causeway so that you received’t even want a ship to get out right here.  On the inland facet of the island are calm waters good for a day on the seaside with the household, on the seaward facet there’s some unbelievable surf.

Bribie has had elevated residential improvement lately however many of the island is Nationwide Park with no roads so that you’ll want a 4-wheel drive, allow and sand driving expertise to see greater than the southern tip.  That mentioned, the southern tip is gorgeous and also you don’t have to stroll very removed from the automobile parking to discover a good stretch of sand to your self.  The island can be a chicken watchers paradise and has some fascinating walkways and historical past to discover.

Learn extra | Tips on visiting Bribie Island

8. Tamborine Mountain


Mount Tambourine

Mount Tamborine is a relaxed hinterland space half manner between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.  It’s solely an hours drive to expertise this stunning space of rain forest on the Scenic Rim.  The Nationwide Park right here is split into 6 distinct elements containing strolling tracks, lookouts, waterfalls and different points of interest.  Some widespread sections we get pleasure from are the Witches Falls and Cedar Creek tracks.

On Mount Tamborine you’ll als discover the Gallery Stroll with eating places and fascinating outlets to discover, an botanic backyard, the Skywalk the place you’ll be able to observe the rain forest part from above and inside, glow worm caves plus quite a lot of foodie treats from cheese makers to wineries.

9. Springbrook Nationwide Park

Twin Falls Circuit

One other spot on the Scenic Rim with glorious Nationwide Park walks and fabulous surroundings is the Springbrook Nationwide Park.  There’s an entire checklist of walks and lookout’s we get pleasure from down right here however two I’d extremely advocate when visiting are the Twin Falls circuit proven above and the Natural Bridge, click on on both hyperlink for extra customer data.  It’s fairly potential to do one within the morning, go to one other spot corresponding to Goomoolahra Falls to your picnic lunch then full the opposite stroll within the afternoon.

10. Toowoomba

Toowoomba lookout

Toowoomba is a provincial metropolis 125 km inland from Brisbane.  A day journey out right here can embody the impressive lookout, probably the greatest Japanese gardens in Australia.  For foodies you’ll wish to take a look at the farmers markets, farm gate gross sales and cellar doorways.  Within the metropolis itself there’s a thriving cafe tradition that’s spring up lately and a wonderful assortment of street art murals.

11. Noosa

5 top ideas for a short break in Australia on the next long weekend - Noosa

On the northern finish of the Sunshine Coast, a couple of 90 minute drive from Brisbane is Noosa.  This widespread vacation space additionally makes a enjoyable and straightforward day journey from the town.  The primary seaside of Noosa is widespread with surfers and might be fairly busy however stroll slightly manner down in the direction of the river and the seaside is simply nearly as good and nearly abandoned a number of the time.  Hold strolling and also you’ll come to a sheltered calm water swimming seaside and the river.  From right here is a good place to look at the sundown.

The Noosa Nationwide Park has 15 km of strolling tracks throughout the forest, alongside the cliff high and down on the seashores.  For those who do the Coastal Observe remember that Alexandria Bay is illegally used as a nudist seaside particularly the southern finish which it’s worthwhile to move to rejoin and full the 10.Eight km return stroll to Sunshine Seaside. There are a selection of fantastic shorter strolling tracks and quite a lot of wildlife together with koala are commonly seen throughout the park

12. Burleigh Heads

The view from Burleigh Heads

The Burleigh Heads Nationwide park is simply 27 hectares however squeezed into this area you’ll discover rainforest habitat, eucalypt forest, groves of distinctive coastal pandanus, tussock grassland, coastal heath, creeks and mangroves, the rocky foreshore and wonderful sandy seashores.  The rainforest circuit the place this photograph is taken from is 2.Three km return, there’s additionally a ocean view observe which we usually prefer to tackle the return stroll however sadly it’s presently closed after some rockfalls.

For those who enter from the northern finish off of the Gold Coast freeway and switch into Goodwin Terrace you’ll discover public parking right here and in addition a superb choice of native cafes to finish you day journey expertise.

13. Mooloolaba

Mooloolaba beach

Mooloolaba is considered one of my private favourites on the Sunshine Coast.  You will have a protracted stretch of beautiful sandy seaside right here, a shady boardwalk, many park areas, the river and a break wall between the ocean and the river that’s a well-liked stroll and fishing spot.  You’ll additionally discover Sea Life Sunshine Coast which we’ve reviewed beforehand and a big selection of cafes, eating places and lodging.

It’s a 80 minute drive from Brisbane and makes an excellent day journey vacation spot with a lot to do.

14. South Stradbroke Island

South Stradbroke Island

There are a selection of excursions that run out to South Stradbroke Island from the Gold Coast, it’s truly solely 200 metres off the top of the Spit so it’s a fast journey over then you’ll be able to spend your day as you would like, benefit from the services of the Couran Cove Resort, swim and discover the 22 km of sandy seashores & 1800 hectare conservation park.

For one thing a bit totally different you’ll be able to kayak out to Wavebreak and South Stradbroke Islands on a full day journey with time to discover, lunch, leisure and actions on the island.  We’ve kayaked out with a bunch just a few years in the past and it was manner simpler than we anticipated.

15. Northern Gold Coast Seashores


Essentially the most well-known and longest established of the Gold Coast seashores is Surfers Paradise, it’s nonetheless a stunning stretch of sand with a large promenade and a few nice cafes, eating places and lodging.  Through the years Broadbeach & Mermaid Seaside, one seaside south, has develop into our favorite being slightly extra laid again and residential to a few of our top picks for cafes on the Gold Coast.

All three are surf seashores with vast expanses of soppy white sand and have designated patrolled swimming areas.  Additionally within the northern group of seashores to discover are Essential Seaside, the Spit and the Broadwater.

16. Whale watching on the Gold Coast

Tangalooma whale watching off Morton Island

We’ve been whale watching many occasions alongside the east coast of Australia.  Our most up-to-date outing was on the Gold Coast.

This migratory group of humpback whales make their manner from Antarctica to the Nice Barrier Reef every year.  They’re estimated to quantity over 30,000 primarily based on an annual whale census and their numbers are recovering yearly.  This implies you may have a good chance of some good sightings between August and October every year.  We booked for the morning journey as winds and waves have a tendency to extend later within the day and noticed a superb variety of whales, should you’re unfortunate and for some motive don’t see a whale you’ll be able to take a second journey without cost.

Check Gold Coast whale watch prices and reviews

17. Wivenhoe Dam

Wivenhoe dam

The Wivenhoe dam was constructed on the Brisbane river within the 1970’s to guard the town from floods.  Not solely is it now the principle water provide for the town nevertheless it’s additionally an amazing leisure vacation spot for swimming, kayaking and crusing.  There are a selection of leisure parklands across the lake and never all of them enable for water primarily based actions with restrictions for security causes across the spillwall.  This one closest to the spillway is one which doesn’t enable direct entry to the water nevertheless it has intensive park and picnic areas and it’s an amazing spot for koala recognizing.

18. Eumundi

Eumundi Market

The city of Eumundi is well-known for the large and various Eumundi market, an ever rising market encompassing native artists, craft, produce and extra.  Initially it was all outside stalls however developments lately have expanded the market space together with some undercover choices.

The city has bars and cafes to cease and chill out if you would like someplace to cease for some time or seize one thing from the market itself and also you’ll discover loads of locations to sit down on the grassy banks.  There are common occasions right here too, one we actually loved is the Eumundi body art festival.

Simply 15 minutes away is the Noosa Botanical Gardens on the shores of Lake Mackenzie and Eumundi is on the way in which to Noosa so the 2 might be simply mixed right into a day journey,

19. Mary Cairncross Reserve

Mary Cairncross Scenic Reserve

Within the Blackall ranges on the Sunshine Coast you’ll discover the Mary Cairncross conservation park round 90 km from Brisbane.   There are 55 hectares of sub-tropical rainforest on the mountain right here and a effectively developed strolling path and boardwalk in elements.  Regardless of that it’s a great place from seeing native wildlife together with birds, pademelons a small marsupial within the kangaroo household and even the endangered mountain crayfish, a blue colored discovered solely in a few mountain ranges round right here above 240 metres.

Along with the walkway you’ll discover parklands, BBQ and picnic services an data centre and cafe.  A go to right here is right to mix with exploring the mountain villages of Malaney and Montville.

20. Southern Gold Coast seashores

Currumbin Beach

With 66km of beautiful Gold Coast seashores it’s going to take a number of time to go to all of them so it’s essential to make some selections to slim it down.  The attraction of the southern Gold Coast seashores together with Burleigh, Currumbin, Tugan and Kirra are that they’re rather less developed and quieter than the northern seashores.

They’re all strikingly stunning surf seashores with vast white sandy stretches, many have dune areas and a pair have lagoon, mangrove and creeks heading inland.

21. Obi Obi Gorge

Obi Obi Creek

The Obi Obi gorge is a various pure space on the Sunshine Coast close to Maleney.  It’s positioned subsequent to the Baroon Pocket Dam and from right here you’ll be able to take a 7 km return stroll on the Baroon Lookout observe, the views from the observe are fabulous and also you typically see various chicken life alongside the observe.  Not removed from the automobile park there’s a detour right down to the gorge and swimming gap.  One other different is rock hopping alongside the gorge however be ready to get moist in elements.

The are picnic and BBQ services close by on the lake edge and throughout the dam wall or head again up the highway into Malaney for quite a lot of cafe choices.

22. Byron Bay

Sunset in Byron Bay

Byron Bay is a 2 hour drive from Brisbane and I’ve to confess I do favor to remain down there for an evening or two after we go however we’ve finished it as a day journey a number of occasions with pals and guests and if that’s what works to your itinerary then I’d positively make this journey for the day, you’ll be able to see and do a lot in that point.

Byron Bay retains it’s laid again surf vibe regardless of it’s ever growing reputation and whereas getting a parking lot is usually a problem some days you might be certain to search out your self a wave and area on the sand at considered one of it’s 9 beautiful seashores.  Byron is an iconic Aussie vacation spot and we extremely advocate a go to.

Read more about the Byron Bay beaches and other attractions in this article

23. The northern New South Wales seashores

Fingal Head

Round an hour and a half from Brisbane you’ll attain the northern New South Wales seashores together with Fingal Head, Kingscliff and Salt seaside.  It’s a well-liked vacation vacation spot and more and more rising as a residential subdivision however nonetheless comparatively quiet.

The seashores listed here are beautiful for lengthy relaxed walks, seaside days and there’s a large strolling and bike path shaded partly by the casuarina timber alongside the seaside edge at Kingscliff.  From Fingal head and most of the different headlands alongside right here you’ll see whales passing through the migration season and don’t miss the Giants Causeway, an fascinating basalt lava rock formation that extends underneath the water to Prepare dinner Island.

Learn extra | What to see and do around the Northern  NSW beaches

24. Currumbin Sculpture Pageant

Swell Sculpture Festival

My 2 last strategies are annual occasions,, these are simply 2 examples however there are numerous common occasions that make an amazing addition to a day journey within the area.  The Swell Pageant has been working for a few years through the month of September and contains many native and worldwide artists who create sculptures, typically of serious measurement on the seaside and foreshore in Currumbin.  In the course of the pageant you’ll discover espresso vans and meals vehicles providing selection on high of the native cafes, dwell music and different leisure.  The sculptures are additionally lit at evening including a unique technique to get pleasure from them.

Helpful tips for planning a visit to the Swell Festival

25. Sand Safari

The Sand Safari is one other annual occasion, this time in February and held predominantly at Surfers Paradise though associated shows pop up across the Gold Coast.  The large sand castles are created by worldwide and native artists alongside the vast promenade in entrance of the seaside,  The artworks normally take the form of fantasy and cartoon characters that are beloved by children and adults alike.  They’re made completely of sand and water then sprayed with an environmentally secure sealant to assist them stand as much as the weather in the course of the pageant.

In the course of the occasion you an vote for the one you want the most effective and there’s an additional giant central show which is labored on by many artists so that you can watch the creators at work and ask any questions.  The pageant is ideal mixed with a day on the seaside  or exploring Surfers Paradise, the most effective recognized of the Gold Coast seashores.

Have you ever visited one, or all, of those unbelievable locations close to Brisbane?  Do you get pleasure from day journeys as a manner of exploring a area?  When you have any questions when planning your go to please ask within the feedback part beneath.  For these locations you wish to add to your itinerary we now have in depth articles stuffed with tips about lots of them that we’ve additionally linked up above.

?  Save these photos to Pinterest to search out once more later

25 of the best day trips from Brisbane
25 of the best day trips from Brisbane

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