How to Spend 1 Day in Brisbane
With just one day in the capital of Queensland, planning ahead will help you maximize your time. Choose a Brisbane tour that covers all the top sights—you don’t want to waste time queuing or getting lost—stroll the South Bank, and more. Here’s how to spend your one day in Brisbane.
Morning: Walk, Bike, or Segway
A half-day city tour is a good way to get your bearings. Explore downtown sights on a walking tour, or travel further on a bike or Segway tour. Stop to see landmarks such as City Hall, King George Square, and Cathedral of St. Stephen; browse the shops and Brisbane City Markets (weekends only) around Queen Street Mall; and take a stroll through idyllic City Botanic Gardens. Continue along Brisbane River's scenic waterfront, with views from Kangaroo Point Cliffs lookout. Follow the waterfront gardens to Story Bridge, one of Brisbane’s most photographed landmarks—adventurous travelers can challenge themselves to a guided bridge climb.
Afternoon: Strolling the South Bank
The South Bank district (on Brisbane River's southern shore) is the city’s main cultural precinct, and there’s plenty to see and do. Cool off with a swim at Streets Beach, Australia’s only inner city beach; ride the Wheel of Brisbane for a view over the city; and visit landmarks such as the Nepalese Pagoda and Bougainvillea Arbour. Some of Brisbane’s most important museums are also located here, including the Gallery of Modern Art, Queensland Maritime Museum, and Queensland Museum and Science Centre.
Night: Sunsets and Sundowners
Set sail along the Brisbane River on a traditional paddle steamer and watch the sunset along the riverfront. Enjoy on-board dinner and live entertainment as you cruise under the Story Bridge and past the glittering city skyline. Back in Brisbane, head to the Fortitude Valley quarter, just north of the Story Bridge, where you find a buzzing nightlife scene, full of bars, pubs, live music venues, and nightclubs that stay open well into the early hours.