Discover the 11 best day trips from Brisbane, with topics such as beaches, rainforests, lakes and rivers, wildlife, family fun and adventure.
Brisbane is a great city to visit, from the beaches to the food and culture. It’s relaxed and unpretentious, but there’s everything you need for culture, great foodie experiences and more. Brisbane doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg either.
Brisbane has a mild climate and is mostly sunny throughout the year with people can enjoy outdoor activities. The temperatures are not as hot as they are in some parts of the country, but people generally wear shorts and t-shirts throughout winter.
With Brisbane’s 365 days of sunshine, we’ve put together a list of our favourite day trips from the city. For couples, friends, families and singles alike, there is something for everyone to enjoy!.
Tamborine Mountain, Scenic Rim and Surroundings
Just 1 hour drive from the Brisbane, Tamborine Mountain is a futuristic yet secluded retreat. Home to boutique wineries, antique pubs, quirky gift shops and art galleries, Tamborine Mountain offers visitors an eclectic experience.
The town has a welcoming and homelike feeling. The central hub has lots of shops and restaurants that are both unique and characterful. Tamborine Mountain Distillery, Tamborine Mountain Coffee Plantation, and many other attractions can be found here as well.
A river meanders around the country roads in a way that feels like it is taking you to its destination. Stop at the elevated lookout on the 550m of elevation above sea level to admire the views from there.
Take a break from the hustle of society and enjoy a serene environment with nature and cultural beauty – the Tamborine National Park offers top attractions like the Tamborine Mountain Regional Botanic Gardens, Thunderbird Park, Glow Worm Cave, and Cedar Creek Lodges.
The Scenic Rim is a year-round destination filled with incredible natural beauty, accessible rainforests and cultural experiences. The region is about 3 hours by car from the Gold Coast, Brisbane or South East Queensland.
Moreton Island is located just 40km northeast of Brisbane and its entire island is made out of sand. There are some notable exceptions, such as the stone at Cape Moreton that has been there for 400,000 years. It has been designated as the third largest sand island in the world, and it also provides stunning views across its breathtaking 260 meters to Mount Tempest.
New research projects find that this ecosystem is less polluted than areas elsewhere on the Queensland/New South Wales coast.
Lamington National Park
The Gondwana Rainforests in Australia includes Lamington National Park, lush with dense rainforest and a variety of animals.
Visitors to the park can see birds like pademelons in the undergrowth or bowerbirds in mating arches from a walk high up in the trees.
From coast to hinterland, the Sunshine Coast is a vast region. You’ll find white sand beaches and pristine waterways mixed with lush rainforests, close to Heritage-listed national parks.
There are charming historic villages mixed throughout and quality local produce, seafood and drinking experiences galore. If the climate isn’t warm enough for you, the Sunshine Coast’s temperate subtropical region is perfect all year round!
One of the most highly-regarded wildlife facilities in Australia and home to Steve Irwin, which showcases a wide variety of animals and many exhibits. The 105-acre zoo, located one hour north of Brisbane on the Sunshine Coast, is home to some 1,200 wild animals and features interactive wildlife conservation.
Be entertained at the Wildlife Warriors show, featuring crocodiles, pythons, birds, and all other animals live. With animal encounters or daily free wildlife shows to explore, there’s no reason not to spend a day in the zoo.
Springbrook National Park
If you travel less than 100km from the Brisbane central business district, you’ll discover Springbrook National Park – a wilderness land that’s more than 10,000 of years old. The ancient forest gives visitors an unsurpassable feeling of time.
The trees are so old that they remember a time when Australia was connected to Antarctica. If you camp here, you’ll be able to see ancient trees that have been alive longer than the history of Australia itself.
Springbrook is a stunning destination filled with spectacular waterfalls, lush rainforest, ancient trees and impressive views. Among these natural wonders is the wildlife that Springbrook has to offer. Although, hiking to the top of a dormant volcano is still one of the best things to do in Australia.
Springbrook National Park is part of the Gondwana Rainforests of Australia World Heritage Area, one of Queensland’s five World Heritage properties. Its ecological importance also makes Springbrook one of Australia’s most exciting locations.
Glass House Mountains
The Queensland Glass House Mountains are a stretch of mountains that offer walks, waterholes and foodie locations for those looking for an escape.
The area offers family-friendly outdoor experiences near the coast. Take in the quaint townships and nature reserves or check out the luxe accommodation options to simply enjoy the views.
Although a large modern city, Toowoomba is still connected to the outdoors and nature with its growing coffee scene as well as an evolving street art scene.
In Toowoomba, there are hundreds of parks and gardens, including the popular Garden City Flower Festival celebrated in September. The city is also home to a bright sunflower farm and quaint hamlets. Visit in September to join the celebrations as the sign of spring arrives with the annual Garden City Carnival of Flowers.
The Bribie Island is a picturesque destination in an ideal location for tourists who want to vacation or take a day trip from Brisbane.
If you’re traveling on a Bribie trip, there are many activities to explore such as surf beaches, national reserves, camping sites in calmer zones, and fishing spots.
With tours available and a protected marine park, you can explore the gorgeous Pumicestone Passage while learning fascinating facts about it. The passage is home to dugongs, turtles, dolphins and diverse birds.
Take a scenic day trip to the Bribie Island National Park to see goannas, kangaroos, emus, kookaburras and migrating birds from Kakadu. Make sure to take only photos and leave no footprints while exploring the national parks.
This wonderful shoreline in Bongaree is a great place for a family outing. Along the way there are plenty of picnic facilities and areas, including designated areas for swimming and good water quality. There’s also a flying fox at Brunelle Park to provide extra entertainment.
The options are endless for a vacation in Bribie. There are jet ski rentals, boats you can rent, fishing trips and paddle board rentals. If those options sound overwhelming, vacation packages would be an option there as well!
With tourist attractions, beautiful beaches, shopping and dining on the agenda, Gold Coast is a top tourism destination for Australians.
One of the top things to do in Gold Coast is perfect for thrill seekers and foodies, with plenty of activities to keep you entertained. It has easy access by water and land, so it’s perfect for whatever path you take.
There are a lot of beaches on the Gold Coast, some better than others and always looking to have something to offer. Surfers Paradise is one of the most famous of these but if you want to uncover something new this holiday spot, explore more than just this one location.
A popular tourist destination west of the Gold Coast, the stunning rainforest region is home to spectacular mountain ranges, cultural heritage and scenic views. Tamborine Mountain is a must-visit curiosity while Numinbah Valley and Lamington National Park are both UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
At each of the major theme parks in the Coast area, there is a wide range of entertainment options, shows, animal encounters and activities available. You can enjoy your day at the park to the fullest with a child-friendly option or you can try out one of many rides with high thrill factors. The adults in your group can spend their time relaxing in the water, at the coasters or even just exploring what each park has to offer.
North Stradbroke Island
The North Stradbroke Island is a popular Brisbane day trip and Straddie is a beautiful Australian island known for its scenic views, natural wildlife, freshwater lakes, rolling surf, remarkable headlands, endless white sandy beaches recreational opportunities, as well as its whale-watching site (Point Lookout).
The area is popular with locals and travellers who want to relax in a leisurely environment. With small towns filled with inviting charm, you’ll always find something new and exciting to try out here.