Brisbane is such a lovely city. Easy to get around, everything is close and the weather is lovely. We were there for the Easter weekend and everyday was around 30 degrees which is amazing, especially when you have a 2 and a 4 year old to take around!
Brisbane have a “Go Travel” card which is their equivalent to the Myki in Melbourne and Opal in Sydney. The card is slightly different as you need to buy the card for $10 and then buy credit. As it’s a small city, you can really do a lot on public transport so a car is not really essential.
Brisbane with kids is so much fun. These are our favourite places to go and most of them are free:
New Farm Park
This would have to be the best park I have ever been to and the kids loved it as well. You can catch a ferry there from the city, Eagle Street Pier or Riverside, and be there in about 15 minutes. The playground is a 5 minute walk from the ferry wharf through the park. You can drive there from the city in around 7 minutes.
The park has swing, forts, this amazing wooden structure that snakes through the fig frees and roundabouts. Actually everything you can think of! It also has a lovely grass area for picnics, a cafe, toilets and it’s shady. The only thing it does not have is a fence but if your kids are not runners then it’s perfect.
New Farm is a great little suburb too to explore with cute cafes, boutiques and a Coles supermarket.
Botanical Gardens Park
The Botanical Gardens are in the city and the city centre is quite flat so it’s an easy walk with a pram or little ones on foot. The gardens themselves are lovely with duck ponds and great rocks to climb on. The BEST part is that it has a playground – take note Sydney Botanical Gardens! It is such a great idea and it’s a great park too. Lots of slides, and things and forts to climb on. It does not have a shade sail and a few mums there said it was best to visit in the afternoon. We went there a few times – once it was around 10.00am – not all of it is shaded but it’s still ok. There are also toilets close by and they cater for kids in wheelchairs.
There are lots of activities to do at South Bank. It’s either a 20 minute walk from the city or a 10 minute ferry ride. If you have time, you need at least a half a day to enjoy it all.
There are two great galleries we visited: the Queensland Art Gallery and the Gallery of Modern Art. They are just next to each other so it’s easy to visit both. The majority of the gallery is free unless there is a travelling exhibition. What we loved is that both of them have programs for kids – again, something that every gallery should offer! The kids programs might be different when you go but you can be rest assured, they will have something fun for kids to do.
The Queensland Art Gallery: had a colouring-in section and a fabulous lid pit (see picture). I never actually realised the joy of lids before! There were as many adults as kids building things out of lids and it was fun! It also has a gorgeous cafe in a beautiful garden with lots of water features – they don’t make milkshakes, a trivial point to make but one to highlight if you’ve promised your kids one!
The Gallery of Modern Art: as part of the Indigenous Australian Exhibition they had an area where the kids do crayon rubbing to make a pattern. The paper they use is in the shape of a tunic that they can wear.
Streets Beach at Southbank: this is a man-made beach and fabulous for kids and parents. It’s free to visit and a welcome reprieve from the heat.
Wheel of Brisbane: this is a giant ferris wheel with enclosed pods giving you a fantastic view over Brisbane. The wheel goes around at least 5 times and has a speaker letting you know what to look at as it goes. Tickets are around $19 for adults and $14 for kids over 4. Kids under 4 are free and it’s cheaper to book the tickets online first.