Brisbane is a lovely city to explore. Although it is a very peaceful and calm location, there are several things to see. In a place like Brisbane, you may have a lot of fun exploring the area’s beauties for endless hours. Brisbane is home to several activities and features lakes, islands, mountains, wineries, the Gold Coast, and a national park.
To make your weekend worthwhile, we are recommending the top 12 sites. You’ll adore these locations.
12 Brisbane’s Famous Weekend Getaways 2023
1. Moreton island
The natural wonder of Australia is Moreton Island, situated in South East Queensland. Moreton Island is a genuinely distinctive and remarkable destination because it is one of the biggest sand islands in the nation. Moreton Island, also known as Mulgumpin, is a tropical island located 75 minutes from Brisbane. Having such easy access to Moreton Island makes the Gold Coast and Brisbane tremendously fortunate. The area is fortunate enough to have it nearby as it is so well-known for its beauty. It is popular with adventurers due to its steep, sweeping dunes and crystal-clear, blue waters teeming with marine life.
Take a snorkelling tour of the island with about 100 different types of fish. Dolphins, wobbegongs, and dugongs can also be seen here. Sandboarding, ATV tours, and dolphin-feeding excursions are among the other activities that the island offers. With several daily cruises leaving Brisbane, you may visit the island in one day. Or, stay at the Tangalooma Island Resort, which offers hotel rooms, family suites, and beachfront villas to extend your island time.
Ipswich has pleasant and beautiful weather. It has a long and well-known history and architectural legacy. Ipswich has worldwide rankings as a developing tourist destination. Visit this fascinating historical hometown if you enjoy historical sites. Ipswich’s jewel is Christchurch Mansion, a magnificent 15th-century manor in Christchurch Park a short stroll from the city centre. The Wolsey Art Gallery, which houses loaned items from international collections, is located behind the mansion near the lavender-filled Wolsey Garden.
The waterfront and the town centre see the highest foot traffic out of all the different neighbourhoods that make up the town. High-rise residential complexes, eateries and cafés border the waterfront, a trendy spot featuring several luxury yachts. The Ipswich Maritime Festival, SPILL, and PhotoEast are biennial festivals hosted along the waterfront throughout the year. The best international films, documentaries, independent films, and cult classics are shown at King Street Cinema. The King Street Cinema has all the vintage movie theatre vibes as its infrastructure has brick walls and small screens that deliver an emotional punch.
The weather in Caloundra is pleasant and sunny. The beach has it all: a lovely atmosphere with grassy expanses, sandy beaches, and surf areas galore. There are many beaches to choose from when it comes to the sea and sand, including Currimundi, Golden Beach, Bulcock Beach, Shelly Beach, Moffat Beach, and Kings Beach, which is popular with families because it has a water park area with a play area for the kids and a swimming pool on the foreshore. It provides a wide range of activities for adults and children. Along with the gorgeous beaches bordering its coastline, it is well-known for the Caloundra Street Fair. Australia Zoo, Aussie World, and SEA LIFE Mooloolaba are a few of the nearby well-known tourist attractions and are just a short drive away, so take the kids there for the day to keep them occupied and go outside and relax.
Kings Beach has a playground and free barbecues where you may eat after a swim. A bit further away, Currimundi Lake’s lakeside playground offers a variety of water activities to enjoy. You and your family can engage in a variety of water sports, including kayaking, paddle boarding, windsurfing, fishing, and jet skiing in the aquatic paradise that is Caloundra. For those who enjoy the outdoors, the Pumicestone Passage is an ideal place to explore, it has a variety of migratory birds, dolphins and dugongs.
4. Lamington National Park
Along with being a living museum featuring modern Australian flora, Lamington Park is known for its extensive biodiversity. Over 160 species of mammals, insects, reptiles, and frogs can be seen in Lamington National Park, along with various subtropical birds. It is renowned for its ancient trees, including Antarctic beech trees, and its roots are over 5000 years old. It also has a variety of birds, walking trails, mountain views, uncommon and unusual species, and a fascinating natural environment. The park provides an excellent range of walking routes covering around 120 kilometres. Find over 500 waterfalls in Lamington National Park. Elabana Falls and Box Log Falls are the most popular.
Also, exploring the beautiful campground close to the Green Mountains offers simple camping amenities for camping enthusiasts. One of the rarest orchids, the Lamington Underground Orchid, can be found in the park. This blossoming orchid completes its life cycle underground. The park provides a variety of activities aside from nature retreats, including horseback riding, fishing, rock climbing, mountain biking, and four-wheel drive.
‘Switzerland without the snow’ is how people refer to Boonah. Located in a valley surrounded by hills, it is a charming small town with many timber homes. Boonah has become a popular “weekend getaway” location featuring numerous top-notch eateries and various lodging options, including retreats, lodges, cabins and cottages. It is highly worth a visit due to its many well-known attractions, including Summerland Camels, Kooroomba Vineyards and Lavender Farm, and Mount French National Park. Beautiful scenic drives, horseback riding, bushwalking, mountaineering, skydiving, gliding, and water sports are all possible because of the picturesque scenery of the untamed mountains and serene lakes.
Seven national parks are nearby, along with various picnic and camping places. Lake Moogerah and Lake Maroon are perfect spots for camping. Both lakes are Queensland’s most popular spots for sailing, water skiing, parasailing, fishing and paddle boating. Everyone can find something to enjoy with options ranging from gliding clubs to rose farms, a golf club, vineyards, and bushwalking.
6. Queen Mary Falls
Queen Mary Falls experiences a subtropical climate. Take some time on a hot summer day to stop and enjoy the refreshing spray of a waterfall. The path passes through many species of ferns and native Australian trees. Experience family-friendly walking at Queen Mary Falls. Park rangers advise making the round clockwise as it is easier on your legs. Parking, barbecues, picnic tables, restrooms, a covered area, and untreated water are all available at Queen Mary Falls. With a large picnic area and amenities close to the parking lot, the Falls offer lots of space to chill out. The glow worms and fireflies are the finest features of the location.
As evening falls, fireflies and glow worms emerge to play, transforming the National Park from late October to late November into a fairy woodland. Taking beautiful images is highly recommended because Queen Mary Falls is so stunning. The foliage, wildlife, viewing platforms and cascading water provide numerous gorgeous backdrops for photos, so you don’t need to be an expert to snap them. You’ll be hungry after all that walking, so stop by one of the many eateries in the neighbourhood. The village also offers a variety of lodging options, including camping areas and oddball cottages.
7. North Stradbroke Island Sunset Tour
Incredibly picturesque cliffs, beaches, and forests, as well as native Australian animals, are just a few of North Stradbroke Island’s many natural attractions. There are numerous sights and activities to enjoy in a single day: freshwater lakes, brisk coastal walks, lovely beaches, abundant wildlife and marine life, and historical and cultural sites. The Gorge Walk is one of Australia’s most stunning coastline treks. Furthermore, several stops contribute to amazing photos. As you discover the island’s history, culture, and wildlife, enjoy breathtaking walks, lovely lakes, and peaceful beaches.
Observe the sun setting in the ocean as you return to land. Utilise the clean, gorgeous lake water to revitalise and renew oneself. There are many possibilities to see manta rays, dolphins, turtles, and more during your 40- to 45-minute walk. In addition to swimming at Amity Point Beach, you can see koalas in the wild in a hidden location. Concentrate on having fun, unwinding, and establishing connections with history, culture, and nature.
8. Dolphin & Tangalooma Wrecks Day Cruise
On a dolphin cruise to Moreton Bay Marine Park, you can view some of Queensland’s most spectacular marine life up close. You’ll encounter dolphins, turtles, dugongs, and more. Sail on a boat trip to the magnificent Moreton Bay Marine Park, which is on Brisbane’s coast and home to around 700 Bottlenose dolphins. While on the voyage, you will see these curious and intelligent animals up close. You will also learn about their eating habits, surroundings, behaviour, and other fascinating details. Before reaching the island enjoy the picturesque seas while sipping morning tea.
Participate in a snorkel tour with experts to get a close-up look at marine life in this area. See the famous wrecks of Tangalooma, a collection of 15 shipwrecks that attract marine life. Be astounded by a variety of coral and subtropical fish species with stunning colour variations. After a delicious tropical buffet lunch and some free time on the beach, feed the fish at the wreck. After the adventure is complete, embark on a cruise to find additional dolphins, dugongs, and turtles.
9. Gold Coast Helicopter Pub Crawl
You can get a fascinating perspective of Brisbane and its surroundings by taking a helicopter flight over it. It’s a magnificent sight for most people, whether they are residents, frequent tourists, or first-timers, and an adventurous opportunity to see the city skyline, Brisbane River, and shoreline. Discover some of the region’s top-choice pubs. You will visit three to five distinctive and authentic local pubs throughout the day. Don’t only visit the region’s top-rated bars, but also explore the popular nearby places that will make you fall in love with them.
Helicopter rides are among the most fascinating Brisbane activities. With breathtaking vistas and an exhilarating experience assured for those with a sense of adventure, these flights are a must-do for thrill seekers of all ages. The views are spectacular. Travel is effortless, allowing you to relax and take it all in. Bring your camera or smartphone for beautiful vacation treasures since most helicopter trips promote photography and offer incredible aerial picture opportunities.
10. Byron Bay Tour
Byron is a distinctive alternative lifestyle destination complemented by its beautiful coastal surroundings and activities. Visit the trendy areas of Byron Bay and Bangalow. Take pleasure in the quaint inland’s shaded, green alleys. Start your tour at a gorgeous waterfall in the Hinterland, where you may enjoy a cooling swim or absorb the landscape. Reach one of the highest waterfalls in the area with a short stroll while soaking in spectacular views. Swim at Killen Falls to cool off and look for turtles, then take in the scenery around Lake Ainsworth and learn about Tea Tree Lake’s therapeutic qualities.
For panoramic ocean views, go to Cape Byron Lighthouse. Cape Byron Lighthouse is a must-see because of its breathtaking 360-degree views and prime location for whale watching. Enjoy a wholesome organic vegetarian meal in the sunshine outdoors. Explore the glowworm experience as night falls, watching these fascinating creatures illuminate the environment. While the sun sets, embark on an unforgettable glowworm voyage. These fantastical creatures brighten the landscape while you listen to the sacred flute. In picturesque Byron Bay, paddle a kayak next to bottlenose dolphins. Beyond its surf beaches and shopping areas, Byron Bay offers much more.
11. Hinterland Heritage Wine Tour
Experience this winery tour to explore some of the most stunning historical structures in the region. In addition, you will visit vineyards that make excellent wine. Explore all four separate estates during this tour, including the residence of three former Queensland premiers. Indulge in a glass or two of delicious wine while learning about winemaking and the region’s history. This Hinterland Scenic Food & Wine tour includes a local cheese tasting in Maleny, a delicious 2-course lunch, wine sampling, a visit to the charming Hinterland village of Montville, and a platter of handcrafted Belgian chocolates for a touch of luxury. This all-day excursion features some of the Sunshine Coast Hinterland’s most exquisite regional fare with breathtaking views. You can enjoy a variety of local and foreign cheeses in the dairy village of Maleny. From Maleny, travel to The Barrel, an iconic location shaped like a giant wine barrel on the grounds of Clouds Vineyard Maleny. Enjoy a flight of wine, followed by a delicious two-course lakeside lunch. Finally, travel to the charming hinterland village of Montville via a scenic lookout. Enjoy free time to browse the shops and boutiques, buy locally made goods, and take in the fresh mountain air.
12. Glasshouse Mountains
In the Sunshine Coast hinterland, the Glass House Mountain peaks are well-known. A picturesque mosaic of pine plantations, untamed wilderness, and farmed fields by craggy peaks. The Glass House Mountains National Park protects several peaks and is recognised for national significance by both the Queensland and National Heritage Registers. The Glass House Mountains are intrusive plugs created by ancient volcanic activity. The breathtaking Glass House Mountains, a group of 11 mountains in South East Queensland, are ideal for trekking, exploring, and taking in the scenery. The Sunshine Coast’s patchwork of farming plains, home to the Jinibara and Gubbi Gubbi people, is the foundation of the range. These are build-ups of molten lava volcano peaks.
The peaks are referred to by their Aboriginal names, including Mount Tibrogargan, Mount Beerburrum, Mount Beerwah, Wild Horse Mountain, Mount Coochin, Mount Coonowrin, Mount Elimbah, Mount Miketeebumulgrai, Mount Ngungun, Mount Tibberoowuccum and Mount Tunbubudla. Experience the panoramic views from the viewpoint and enjoy the picturesque views from the Beerburrum State Forest overlook or take a stroll along one of the walking trails through open woodlands to lookouts with expansive vistas. If you’re on the Sunshine Coast, don’t forget to explore these peaks. With numerous ceremonial sites still under protection, the Glass House Mountains region holds spiritual significance for Aboriginal Traditional Owners. Experience a whole day of rock climbing adventure. It is so satisfying to reach the summit of a rock face and feel successful!
Brisbane is a lovely city with many fascinating and picturesque locations that you will want to discover. We highly recommend visiting each of the locations we list. All of these locations will win your heart. Mountains, wineries, clubs, national parks, and tranquil beaches—Brisbane has it all. Brisbane is the ideal destination for a getaway where you can unwind with friends and family.