Discover Brisbane's top day trips

Jump in the car, pack a picnic and spend a day discovering the natural beauty and history of the diverse Greater Brisbane region.

North Stradbroke Island

Family eat ice cream at The Gorge

Just a short ferry trip from Cleveland Marina, North Stradbroke Island is a perfect day out for beach goers and nature lovers. Start your day along the scenic North Gorge Headland Walk. Keep your eyes peeled for whales frolicking in the distance, and turtles and manta rays in the clear waters of the gorge. Follow the coastline along to Cylinder Beach, the perfect spot to enjoy a leisurely afternoon in the waves or on the sand. Find out more about spending the day here.

St Helena Island National Park

Transport yourself back to colonial Australia as you cruise from the mainland across Moreton Bay to St Helena Island. From its Aboriginal beginnings to its foundation as a 19th-century prison settlement, learn from knowledgeable local tour guides about the history of the island and its people. Choose a day tour or a spooky night tour to enjoy the surroundings, a hearty meal and the colourful stories passed down through the years.

Moreton Island – Tangalooma Wrecks Dive Site

Tangalooma ship wrecks on Moreton Island

Take a dive with some of Queensland’s most colourful sea life at the Tangalooma Wrecks Dive Site. Located only metres off the sandy shores of Moreton Island, the wrecks provide a shallow haven for snorkelling beginners, and reach depths of up to 10m for more experienced divers. Diving and snorkelling boat tours are available, or bring your own gear to explore the wrecks at your leisure. Getting to Moreton Island is easy, with MICAT departing from the Pinkenba terminal every morning from Wednesday to Monday. 

Samford and Mount Nebo

Escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and take a short drive through the green surrounds of Brisbane’s west. Only 45 minutes’ drive from the CBD, Samford embraces its country town feel with plenty of quaint cafes, craft shops and museums. Take a leisurely walk along the Samford Valley Heritage Trail as it meanders through 13 historical sites, including galleries and other points of interest. Continue your drive up to nearby Mount Nebo or Mount Glorious (choose your own adventure!) for a mountain walk and afternoon tea at one of its cafes. 

Tamborine Mountain

Father and son get back to nature at Mt Tamborine

Standing proudly in the Scenic Rim is Tamborine Mountain, a spectacular oasis for nature lovers, art enthusiasts and adventurers. Spend your morning wandering the dense forests of Tamborine National Park and catch a glimpse of some of the area’s most colourful birds and wildlife. A short drive away, Main St and the nearby Gallery Walk boast more than 60 art and craft stores and local cafes, perfect to refuel after your walk. Be sure to visit a fudge shop and the Tamborine Mountain Distillery.  If you’re feeling adventurous, visit the Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk and enjoy the spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean from high in the trees. 

Wivenhoe Dam

Only one hour’s drive from Brisbane CBD, Lake Wivenhoe is a spectacular water reserve boasting idyllic views, peaceful surrounds and water-based activities. Picnic on the grassy banks of Logan’s Inlet, with plenty of free barbecues, tables and playgrounds available. The calm waters also make for the perfect spot to cast a fishing line, have a swim or kayak and enjoy the natural beauty of the lake – Brisbane’s main source of drinking water.

Bribie Island 

Family play in the sand at Bribie Island

Separating Bribie Island from the mainland lies Pumicestone Passage, a popular escape for water sports enthusiasts, nature lovers and families. Just an hour’s drive from Brisbane CBD, spend your day relaxing on the sand or get among the action and take a guided kayak, windsurfing or kite surfing tour along the sheltered channel. Pumicestone Passage is also one of the east coast’s most vibrant marine environments, so be sure to bring your binoculars to watch the impressive range of shorebirds dart across the sandbanks and mangroves. You may also be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of a dugong as they make their way through the seagrass beds.  

Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology/Redcliffe

Spend the morning inside a treasure house of world history and ancient possessions at the Abbey Museum of Art and Archaeology. From ancient Egyptian artefacts to local historical tours, the museum offers interesting activities to engage kids and adults. For lunch, drive just 15 minutes to Redcliffe’s Suttons Beach and find a shady spot to enjoy some of Brisbane’s best fish and chips. Spend the afternoon walking along the sandy beaches and letting the waves lap at your feet. 

Koala and River Cruise by Mirimar Cruises

Couple pat kangaroos atone Pine Koala Sanctuary

What better way to enjoy the Brisbane sunshine than by sharing it with some of your furry friends! Departing from the heart of the city, spend your morning cruising along the Brisbane River as it meanders through some of the best historic landscapes, iconic attractions and spectacular home sites. Arriving at the doorstep of Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, you will be able to enjoy two-and-a-half hours exploring the park and visiting some of Australia’s most iconic and interesting animals. Come face-to-face with over 130 koalas, hand-feed kangaroos, spot a shy platypus and witness birds of prey in action during their special showcase. Hop back on the boat afterwards to relax and share your stories as you head back into the city. 

D’Aguilar National Park

Discover subtropical rainforest, shady gorges, luscious woodland and spectacular views of Moreton Bay at D’Aguilar National Park. Split into two distinct sections, marvel at the contrasting landscapes and natural habitats as you make your way around the 90-minute circuit drive. At the southern edge, take a visit to the South East Queensland Wildlife Centre and grab a bite to eat at the Green Tree Frog Cafe. As you make your way north, keep an eye out for lookout points near the Mount Nebo and Mount Glorious townships for beautiful views of the eucalypt forest.

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