3 days around Suncorp Stadium
There’s no feeling quite like marching out of Suncorp Stadium when your team wins, hooking a right turn up towards Caxton Street and sitting down to celebratory beers with hundreds of cheering fans (aka your new best mates). But before and after your rugby league, rugby union or a soccer match at Lang Park – what else is there to do in Brisbane?
Answer: heaps. From a brewery tour to climbing the bridge, we’ve pulled together this loose itinerary to give you some ideas for things to do around the match so you can make the most of your short time in the city.
Arrive and check in
Need to hear the whistle blow? Treat yourself to a lush room at luxury boutique Gambaro Hotel. Located on Caxton Street you’ll be in the centre of the action all weekend and living it up in style. Brisbane CBD is very close to Suncorp Stadium, and Hotel Jen, Park Regis, Meriton Suites and Pullman King George Square are all great hotels on the west side of the city that are a short, easy walk to the stadium. Public transport to and from the game is usually free for ticket holders, so there’s no need to worry if you stay a little further away either.
Can you even begin to understand the state of Queensland if you haven’t stepped foot in the birth ground of the Milton Mango? Probably not. If you’ve ever wondered how this iconic brew got its name join a 90-minute factory tour in the heritage brewery at Milton. Tours go in depth covering the 140-year history, looking at the XXXX story, the raw ingredients, the state-of-the-art packing hall, and, of course, you’ll get to pour yourself the perfect beer and taste the freshest XXXX available.
Dress up and hit the town
Get dolled up and step out in the big smoke. In Brisbane City it’s easy to find dinner – from fancy restaurants by the river at Eagle Street Pier, through to cheap places tucked down CBD laneways. If your budget allows give in to Italian food at Otto, try modern Chinese at Donna Chang or upmarket Indian at Heritij. Alternatively the more casual modern Australian Three Blue Ducks or cheap and cheerful Japanese at Izakaya Kotobuki might be more your style.
Afterwards catch a blockbuster flick at the independent Elizabeth Street Theatre, head to Fortitude Valley for live music and late-night partying, or seek out a rooftop bar – we’ve got a bunch listed here.
The most important meal of the day
Brunch. Just west of Suncorp Stadium, the ultra quaint suburb of Paddington is known for its decorative wooden Queenslander homes that dot the hilly neighbourhood. Along the ridge, the main street is filled with cute cafes and little boutiques. It’s the perfect place to relax, tuck into a plate of eggs with a flat white and while away the morning Brisbane style. Try Naim, Chapter IV, Kettle & Tin or Anouk for your morning meal.
Make your way towards the stadium
Drop into the friendly neighbourhood bars in Paddington or Milton on your way towards the stadium. Little Social is a neighbourhood hangout with good beer, Darling & Co is a big, plush venue with everything you could want, and Newstead Brewing Co is a big beer hall and local brewery worth passing by for a tasting paddle or four.
When it’s game time nothing else matters. Finish that beer and get yourself to Suncorp Stadium at Lang Park. Don’t forget to take a selfie with the King outside.
Win or lose, time for a beer
There’s nothing like the atmosphere of Caxton Street on game days. This short strip is dense with bars, pubs and a brewery – the perfect spot to begin and end match day. After the game the Caxton Hotel will be pumping. Head here for a couple of schooners of XXXX and no frills service. If you’re hungry, microbrewery Fritzenburger does ~ would you believe it ~ a damn good burger (and fries), or Black Hide Steakhouse will serve you the best steak you may ever eat.
Looking to step it up to a boot scootin’, whisky shootin’ good time? Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall is the answer. Grab a whisky with freshly pressed apple juice from the bar and change into your dancing shoes – there’s almost always excellent live music that will be hard to sit still to. It’s arguably one of the best bars in the country, let alone Brisbane, and has the awards to prove it. Lefty’s is open late and also serves American-style bites.
We’re not your parents, so we won’t tell you what to do. Instead here are a few friendly suggestions as to how you might like to spend your day in Brisbane. A choose your own adventures, if you will.
Take to the skies
Rise and shine for a bucket list experience like no other. Feeling weightless while you watch the sun rise from a hot air balloon is a sensation, moment and memory like you’ve never had before. Brisbane’s closest hot air balloon company Floating Images Hot Air Balloon Flights flies a few times a week from Ipswich, 30-minutes west of the city. Further afield, Hot Air Balloon Brisbane flies from the Scenic Rim at Beaudesert.
Focus on the food
Food lovers, step right up. Brisbane is home to the best dining in Queensland and has a few of Australia’s top restaurants too. Call ahead to make a booking at the three-hatted Urbane Restaurant for a degustation experience to remember, or fit in a long lunch at ARIA Brisbane for riverside views with Australia’s best wine list (cheers to that). Keeping to the food theme, wander over to South Bank and check out the edible Epicurious Garden, or depending on the day of the week there may be a local market on.
Step up, up, up
Get an eagle-eye view from the heart of the city by climbing the Story Bridge. A two-hour experience will see you reach the top and reward with 360-degree views of Brisbane city, the river and surrounding mountain ranges. The truly adventurous can even opt to abseil 30m vertically down the anchor pier. If you’re not tired of adventurous activities just yet, head down to Riverlife afterwards and hire kayaks or rock climb up the natural Kangaroo Point cliffs.
Jump into history
Immerse yourself in a historical re-enactment at one of Australia’s most notorious prisons. Boggo Road Gaol was home to many infamous inmates until its closure in 1992. There’s a daily history tour at 11am, or better yet come after dark for a ghost tour on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday nights. If you’re a real history lover consider contacting the Brisbane Greeters for a free greet through the city too.
Ready for more?