Brisbane - The river city

Brisbane Airport Directory (BNE)
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The capital of Queensland, Brisbane, is a city that thrives on sunlight, which is around for 280 days a year. It is one of the fastest-growing cities in the world with a diverse population. Tall buildings that touch the sky, markets that have a diverse quality of everything you could need during your stay, and seeing koalas at a close range at a Koala home make Brisbane a tourist favourite. You are bound to have fun at remote beaches and other popular sites.

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Best time to visit: The best time to visit Brisbane is during the spring (September to November) and autumn (March to May) when the weather is mild and pleasant. You can enjoy soothing temperatures, less rainfall, and less humidity compared to the summer months (December to February). 

How to reach?

By air: Brisbane is served by Brisbane Airport (BNE), a major international and domestic airport. You can access the city centre via taxi, shuttle, or public transportation from the airport, which is about 21 km. Together with codeshare partnership, we at IndiGo can connect you from India to Brisbane with multiple flights to Brisbane.

By road: Brisbane is well-connected by road to Australian cities like Sydney, Melbourne, and the Gold Coast. The prominent highways leading to Brisbane are the Pacific Motorway (M1) and the Bruce Highway (M1). Interstate buses are easily available at the airport.

By sea: The Port of Brisbane is one of Australia's largest container ports. You can arrive in Brisbane by sea through cruise ships or ferries from nearby coastal areas. 

Getting around/transport in Brisbane: Getting around Brisbane is convenient, thanks to its efficient public transportation system. The city offers buses, trains, and ferries that connect various neighbourhoods and attractions. The TransLink network provides integrated ticketing for these modes of transport, making it easy to hop between them. Brisbane's pedestrian-friendly streets and well-maintained bike paths also make walking and cycling popular options. Ride-sharing services are also readily available for those who prefer private transportation.

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Places to visit

  • South Bank Parklands: South Bank is Brisbane's cultural precinct along the River Brisbane. It perfectly mixes green spaces, eateries, and cultural attractions. Stroll through the stunning parklands, take a dip at Streets Beach (Australia's only in-city beach), explore the Queensland Museum and Science Centre, and dine at one of the many waterfront restaurants.
  • Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary: As the world's oldest and largest koala sanctuary, Lone Pine is dedicated to preserving Australia's unique wildlife. Get a chance to be close and personal with adorable koalas, and hand-feed kangaroos and emus. Observe various native Australian animals in a natural bushland setting. It's an educational and heartwarming experience for visitors of all ages.
  • City Botanic Gardens: Located along the banks of the River Brisbane, the City Botanic Gardens provide a perfect escape from the urban environment. These lush gardens feature several native and exotic plants, and historic features like ornamental ponds and walking paths. It's also an ideal spot for a leisurely stroll, a picnic, or simply unwinding in the midst of nature.
  • Story Bridge: Brisbane's iconic Story Bridge is a vital transportation link and a symbol of the city. If you are seeking adventure, consider joining a guided climb to the bridge's summit, which offers panoramic views of the city and its surroundings. The bridge's evening illumination adds a touch of magic to Brisbane's skyline.
  • Roma Street Parkland: Roma Street Parkland is a horticultural heartland in the city. This beautifully landscaped park has a diverse range of gardens. You can explore lush rainforests and arid landscapes. They shed light on the beauty of Queensland's flora. The park has abundant walking trails, picnic areas, and a stunning lake. They provide a peaceful escape from city life and present a chance to connect with nature.
  • Wheel of Brisbane: While you are exploring the South Bank, the Wheel of Brisbane is unmissable. It is an iconic Ferris wheel that provides breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the river. The climate-controlled gondolas make it a comfortable experience year-round, while evening rides offer a utopian source of escapism. This demands your attention and a place in your itinerary.
  • Brisbane Powerhouse: Housed in a converted power station, the Brisbane Powerhouse is an arts and cultural centre that hosts many events, like theatre performances, art exhibitions, live music, and comedy shows. The centre's industrial-chic ambience and riverside location make it a perfect hub for creativity and entertainment. They offer a delightful taste of Brisbane's cultural scene.
  • Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art: The Queensland Art Gallery houses an extensive traditional art collection, including Indigenous and Australian pieces. The adjacent Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA) presents cutting-edge contemporary art exhibitions, interactive displays, sculptures, and installations. The ever-evolving shows and cultural events make this gallery a captivating destination for art enthusiasts.

Places to eat

  • Eat Street Northshore: This night market along the River Brisbane features a plethora of international street food stalls. It's a food lover's paradise with diverse options. Don't miss the unforgettable Loaded Fries during your time here.
  • The Vietnamese: If you wish to try a different cuisine and want a unique experience, then you wouldn’t want to miss out on this. Located in the West End, the Vietnamese offer authentic Vietnamese cuisine while you are touring this Australian land. You can find dishes like the famous photo banh mi sandwiches. It's a popular spot for fresh and flavourful dishes.
  • Pablo: Located in New Farm, Pablo is a cafe known for its speciality coffee, delicious brunch options, and relaxed atmosphere. It's a must-visit for coffee enthusiasts and those looking for a hearty breakfast.
  • E'cco Bistro: E'cco Bistro is in the Newstead area and is renowned for its contemporary Australian cuisine. It offers a sophisticated dining experience focusing on fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
  • Gerard's Bistro: Located in Fortitude Valley, Gerard's Bistro combines Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavours in a contemporary setting. Enjoy dishes like lamb shoulder and a wide range of mezze options.
  • Campos Coffee: Campos Coffee is another well-established cafe with multiple locations across Brisbane, including Fortitude Valley and Woolloongabba. They are known for their high-quality coffee, breakfast options, and peaceful ambience.
  • John Mills Himself: John Mills Himself is a hidden gem for coffee connoisseurs in the heart of Brisbane's central business district. This cafe is known for its unique coffee, brewed to perfection, and a selection of pastries and light bites. Its setting within a historic building is bound to enchant you.

Shopping places

  • Queen Street Mall: Queen Street Mall is Brisbane's premier shopping precinct. It has a diverse range of boutiques, department stores, and speciality shops. From fashion to electronics and homewares, you'll find many options here. 
  • Westfield Chermside: As one of the largest shopping centres in Queensland, Westfield Chermside is a retail haven in the northern suburbs of Brisbane. It boasts many shops, major department stores, fashion outlets, and dining options.
  • James Street: In Fortitude Valley, James Street is known for its high-end fashion boutiques, designer stores, and stylish homeware shops. It's a prime hub for fashion enthusiasts and those seeking unique items.
  • The Brunswick Street Markets: The Brunswick Street Markets are held every weekend, where you can find artisanal crafts, vintage treasures, fashion boutiques, handmade jewellery, and gourmet food stalls. Several local and independent vendors showcase their unique creations as you stroll through the streets. Whether you're searching for one-of-a-kind gifts or stylish apparel, the Brunswick Street Mall Markets provide a perfect shopping adventure.
  • The Collective Markets: The Collective Markets bring together a community of talented artisans, designers, and entrepreneurs. Here, you can explore several handmade goods, from art and fashion to jewellery and homewares. The relaxed and scenic setting of South Bank adds to the charm of these markets. All of this makes it a fantastic place to discover unique and locally made treasures while enjoying the picturesque riverside views.


  • Strike Bowling: Located in the Wintergarden shopping centre in the heart of the city, Strike Bowling is a lively venue for an evening full of fun. Enjoy a game of bowling, laser tag, or even karaoke with friends and family. 
  • La Boite Theatre: La Boite Theatre is an iconic performing arts venue in Brisbane. It hosts various live performances, including plays, contemporary theatre, and experimental shows. It is a fantastic option if you're interested in experiencing the city's cultural scene. Look for shows and book tickets in advance while planning your trip.
  • X-Golf Fortitude Valley: For a unique nighttime activity, consider X-Golf in Fortitude Valley, an indoor golfing area. Learn the basics of the game and get that rush of competition with your loved ones.

Where to stay? 

  • Emporium Hotel South Bank: Located in the South Bank precinct, the Emporium Hotel is a luxurious boutique hotel where you can enjoy stunning views of the River Brisbane and the city’s skyline. The hotel has elegantly-designed rooms and suites with modern amenities, including a rooftop pool, spa, and multiple dining options. Its central location makes it an ideal choice for both leisure and business travellers.
  • The Westin Brisbane: The Westin provides a sophisticated and contemporary stay. It is situated in the heart of Brisbane's CBD. You will find spacious rooms with great interiors. The hotel has a dedicated fitness centre and pool area. 
  • Ovolo The Valley: Ovolo The Valley is located in Fortitude Valley. It is a stylish and quirky hotel with a unique design aesthetic. It offers spacious rooms with artistic decor. The hotel's atmosphere extends to its restaurant and rooftop pool.
  • The Calile Hotel: If you are looking for a hotel that is close to the James Street precinct, the Calile Hotel is a chic urban oasis. Its modern rooms and suites feature private balconies and a contemporary design. Guests can unwind at the stunning pool with cabanas or enjoy a spa treatment. The hotel's restaurant serves delectable cuisine, making it an ideal choice for those seeking a relaxing stay in Brisbane.

More reasons to visit

  • Cultural diversity: Brisbane is where you can get close to several cultures that are reflected in its diverse communities, festivals, and cuisine. Explore neighbourhoods like West End, Fortitude Valley, and Sunnybank to sample diverse cuisines, attend cultural events, and gain insights to the city's multicultural existence and harmony.
  • Natural beauty: Beyond the urban landscape, Brisbane is surrounded by natural wonders. Take a short drive to explore the stunning beaches of Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, or venture to the nearby rainforests and national parks for hiking, wildlife encounters and scenic vistas.
  • Adventure Activities: Brisbane offers a plethora of adventure activities. You can kayak on the River Brisbane, climb the Story Bridge, try indoor skydiving, or embark on a hot air balloon ride. Be prepared to witness astounding views of the city and its surroundings. This city has that perfect mix of elegance and unpredictability.
  • River City Cruises: Taking a river cruise is a fantastic way to see the city from a different perspective. You can choose from a number of guided cruises, including sightseeing tours, dinner cruises, and wildlife-spotting excursions, all while enjoying the riverside scenery.


  • Brisbane Festival: Brisbane Festival is an annual celebration of arts and culture, held over several weeks in September. It features a diverse programme of live performances, music, theatre, dances, visual arts, and more. The festival transforms the city into a creative hub, with events taking place at various venues like the South Bank and the Cultural Precinct.
  • Laneway Festival: The Laneway Festival is a music extravaganza that brings together local and international artists across various genres. Held in January, it a a day of live music, food, and art in the city’s urban laneways. Consider planning your trip around this time if you are a music enthusiast and seek a memorable experience.
  • Paniyiri Greek Festival: Paniyiri is Brisbane's largest cultural festival, celebrating Greek heritage and culture. It is usually held in May, featuring Greek cuisine, music, dance, and traditional performances. You can indulge in delicious Greek dishes, learn traditional dances, and immerse yourself in the Greek atmosphere.

Visa and immigration

To visit this vast and diverse country located in the southern hemisphere, Indians require an Australia visa. You can apply for various Australian visas from India, such as tourist visa (subclass 600), which allows leisure and family visits, while students can pursue their education with the student visa (subclass 500). To apply for an Australian visa, you need to create an account on the ImmiAccount, and apply for a new visa application for Australia. 

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