Brisbane for history buffs - Visit Brisbane

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Brisbane for history buffs

There’s nothing quite like stepping back in time to discover what life was like for those in times gone by. Take the time to explore the world’s colourful history, and also Brisbane and the surrounding region’s past at a local museum, cultural event, or on an historical tour. 

Fort Lytton at Night

Fort Lytton at Night – Image credit: Steve Browne, Queensland Government

Image: Steve Browne, Queensland Government

Fort Lytton National Park 
Thursdays 7pm

Be transported back in time and around the world to see what life was like for World War I hero and Brisbane local, Raymond Augustus Stanley, who served at Gallipoli and the Western Front. The unique promenade theatrical performance uses sound and light to bring the colonial fortifications to life. 

Brisbane Greeters
Brisbane Greeters

For a personalised tour, join a knowledgeable Brisbane Greeter to discover a side of Brisbane you didn’t know. Tours depart from Brisbane City Hall for a Greeter’s Choice tour, or let your interests take you down your own path with a Your Choice tour. Bookings can be made online or by phone. 

Queensland Museum 

South Bank 
Daily 10am-5pm

From dinosaurs and devastating wars, to ancient Egypt and Indigenous civil rights, the Queensland Museum uncovers some of the state’s unique collections of natural, geological and cultural specimens and objects that tell our story.

XXXX Brewery Tour
XXXX Brewery Tours

Milton
Monday to Saturday - 11am to 5pm every 2 hours with more tours available on Saturdays

Have you ever wondered how the XXXX Brewery got its name? Or how it’s made? Or what it tastes like when it’s poured fresh at the brewery? Well this is your lucky day when all these questions get answered. Find out the 135-year history behind Brisbane's most established brewery and treat yourself to Queensland’s freshest Milton Mangos.

Museum of Brisbane and City Hall

King George Square
Daily 10am-5pm

Explore Brisbane’s history at a local level at the Museum of Brisbane. The museum's displays reveal the individual stories of residents and the milestones of the city’s evolution. Take a look at the history of the Brisbane River where you’ll be taken on a meandering journey from Brisbane’s earliest settlement to the modern city of today. Don't miss the 15-minute tours of the clock tower where you'll take the original caged lift to the viewing platform. Spaces are limited, so be sure to book at the reception desk on level three. 

History Alive: A Journey Through Time

Fort Lytton National Park
10-11 June 2017

As you stroll through the pop-up marketplace, you’ll experience everything from Viking cooking demonstrations, Colonial dance workshops, historical talks, Medieval tournaments and WWI re-enactments. Connect with history in a way you’ve never done before. 

Abbey Medieval Festival
Abbey Museum

Abbey Museum, Caboolture
9-10 July

See Medieval history come to life at the Abbey Medieval Festival. Experience a traditional medieval banquet, street performers, craftsmen and larger-than-life jousting tournaments that’ll have you on the edge of your seat. 

Boggo Road Gaol

Dutton Park
Daily at 11am

One of the most notorious prisons of the 20th century, Boggo Road Gaol was home to many infamous inmates until its closure in 1992. Immerse yourself in the history and learn the gaol's tumultuous story on a history tour, ex-inmate tour or escapes tour.

North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum
North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum

Dunwich
Tuesday to Saturday 10am-2pm
Sunday 11am-3pm

The history of North Stradbroke Island’s Quandamooka people and that of early European settlers can be explored in depth at the North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum. Connect with the people and history of the land by browsing the permanent displays about the island’s convict past, shipwrecks and maritime history. 

Newstead House 
Newstead House

Newstead
Friday & Saturday - 10am to 2pm
Sunday - 10am to 4pm 

Brisbane's oldest surviving residence was built in 1846 and is now painted and refurnished to reflect the exuberant style of the late-Victorian period. You can wander through many of the rooms and learn more about the history of the land that now occupies the suburb of Newstead. Book a tour with one of the experienced guides who will share stories of the houses collection, the people and the history of this iconic home.

Queensland Maritime Museum
Queensland Maritime Museum on show

South Bank Parklands
Daily 9.30am - 4.30pm

In the first 70 years of settlement, the maritime industry was booming and the people of Queensland relied heavily on maritime transport for the movement of freight and passengers. Founded in 1971, the Queensland Maritime Museum displays a collection of maritime artefacts, books, documents and photographs that delve into the history of ship models, navigation, lighthouses, marine engines, vessels, and the dry dock. 

Caboolture Historical Village

Daily 9am-4pm

For those with an interest in early Australian history, the Caboolture Historical Village is the perfect place to get lost in a village of yesteryear. Step through the visitor centre and into the village street lined with an old post office, barber, butcher and general store. 

Ipswich

The city of Ipswich, located 40 minutes west of Brisbane, is Queensland’s oldest provincial city and, as a result, is rich in history. Renowned for its architectural, natural and cultural heritage, Ipswich is a charming city to explore with many heritage trails weaving through the city showcasing grand churches and cemeteries, to old country pubs. 

Caboolture Warplane Museum
Caboolture Warplane Museum

Daily 9am-3pm

Proudly marketed as Queensland’s only flying museum, the Caboolture Warplane Museum’s aircraft have been restored to full flying condition, with joy flights available to be booked from the museum. The museum’s aim is to present and preserve part of Australia’s history, particularly WWII aircraft. 

Abbey Museum

The Abbey Place, Caboolture 
Monday to Saturday 10am - 4pm

Presenting 500,000 years of human history, the Abbey Museum takes you on a journey through the centuries giving you an up-close look at artefacts from the golden age of Europe’s Renaissance to ancient Greece. 

Queensland Parliament tours
Parliament House

Monday to Friday on the hour from 1-4pm, unless Parliament is sitting, then one tour is available at 2pm.

Whether you’ve got legislation lingo down pat or are curious to see inside the four walls where important decisions are made, a tour of Queensland Parliament is a great way to understand a little more about Brisbane’s history. Fun fact: In 1883 the building was one of the first in Brisbane to receive electricity. 

Lockyer Valley
Spring Bluff Railway Station

Bursting at the seams with rich rail history and historical sites, the Lockyer Valley is a place where the past comes to life through the amazing stories of pioneering times. Rail buffs will love a visit to Spring Bluff Rail Station and the Queensland Transport Museum, while the Laidley Pioneer Village provides an insight into the lives of local lawbreakers, and the Das Neumann House Museum tells the story of German furniture-makers Hermann and Annie Neumann.  

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