If you want to do as the locals do, here are five activities you should add to your Brisbane to-hit list.
For market shopping
Sprawling beneath a line of enormous riverside fig trees every Saturday from 6am to 2pm is the Davies Park Market. Still often referred to as the West End Markets, it mainlines much of that inner suburb’s bohemian spirit with a heap of fresh produce, fashion and jewellery. Many punters simply come for coffee from The Gypsy Vardo cart and breakfast from one of the many food stalls.
Image by: David Chatfield
For authentic Asian food
Most locals bypass Fortitude Valley’s Chinatown and head instead for Inala and Sunnybank in the south, two suburbs with thriving Chinese, Korean, Vietnamese and Taiwanese communities. Check out Inala during the day, when its Civic Centre square buzzes with fresh produce and fish markets. At night Sunnybank comes alive, its neon-lit shopping areas crammed full of pho joints, dumpling restaurants and ramen shops.
For views over the city
Garfield Park in Paddington offers brilliant views of the CBD and the city’s northern bayside suburbs. It’s easy to get there – catch a 375 bus from the city and disembark high on the hill at Perrott Street. The park is then a two-minute walk away. Go late afternoon when the eastern skies turn soft pink in the humid haze.
Brisbane’s suburbs spread out in every direction except directly west. Here, the proximity of the mountains means a 20-minute drive from the CBD will have you climbing forest-lined country roads. Pack a picnic and aim for Mount Glorious, less than an hour away. If you’re going at sunset, head to Wivenhoe Lookout – it offers unreal views.
For sporting events
You can check out a cricket or AFL match at Brisbane’s famous Gabba stadium but the best way to get under the skin of this sporting icon is with someone who once stood in the middle of it. Fan+ arranges tours of the 42,000-seat venue hosted by former sports greats, who share personal anecdotes and insights, as well as photo opportunities. It’s a one-of-a-kind experience.