This colonial mansion on the edge of the city, is a wonderful place to step back in time and discover something of the beginnings of life in Brisbane. Now a museum, and part of Queensland University of Technology, I found Old Government House to be a haven of quiet and calm on the edge of the City Botanical Gardens.
As I stood on the Governor's bedroom verandah, I could imagine ships arriving up the Brisbane River in the 1860s. The Greek revival style house was designed to make a statement about the prosperity of the newly founded state of Queensland, as newcomers arrived and saw it perched on the hill at Gardens Point. The sandstone was quarried at Goodna and eleven governors resided there until the residence became too small to accommodate its purposes and was relocated to Fernberg in 1909.
Entry into the museum is free and you can wander around for as long as you wish. There are some wonderful interactive exhibits at Old Government House, led by the "ghost of Governor Musgrave". There is also a stunning William Robinson art exhibition on level two, which is well worth spending extra time to see.
After all that history, you may be hungry and there is a wonderful eatery called The Pantry Cafe located within the Old Government House kitchens (incidentally, where lamingtons themselves were invented). They serve breakfast, brunch and lunch refreshments and you can sit and eat in the Governor's shady inner courtyard where the carriages were kept.
Old Government House is listed with the National Trust and QUT undertake ongoing restorations to maintain the historically significant building. I highly recommend a visit to Old Government House as a relaxing and educational experience.