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Published May 3rd 2020
Safely visit sites close to Brisbane
As the Queensland Government trials easing the COVID pandemic restrictions, Queenslanders can leave their homes for recreation and the distance they can travel has been extended to 50 kilometres. If you are looking to get back in the car and take a scenic drive, here are 4 of my favourite drive ideas to get out of the house and back into nature.
The beaches of Redcliffe Redcliffe has long been a sweet, seaside suburb, where for years, families with a holiday adventure in mind hooked up the caravan and headed to the beach. Redcliffe's proximity to the city makes for a great scenic and coastal drive and gives you that relaxing feeling of sand between your toes.
Redcliffe has a unique place in Australia's heritage. Queensland's first penal colony was established on the Redcliffe Peninsula in 1824 by a group of soldiers, convicts and government officials.
Pass through the salty trio of Suttons Beach, Margate Beach and Scarborough Beach and get a taste of what beachside communities are like, minus the high-end glitz and glamour of some of the more developed northern and southern neighbours.
But not to be outdone, Redcliffe has also had some internationally famous residents. Singing trio, The Bee Gees (the leaders of disco and who featured on the soundtracks of Grease and Saturday Night Fever), began their musical careers in Redcliffe. That's right. 'Staying Alive' and 'Jive Talkin'' had their musical foundations formed here.
Be sure to take the Bee Gee Way tourist walk and recount some of the major highlights and the early years of their successful musical career, which spanned four decades. It's definitely an added bonus and will make you feel a little proud of the stature of talent to come from this little, coastal community.
See photos and videos of the Bee Gees, along with a light show and hear their distinctive voices sounding their unmissable tracks as you wander through the trail. Recount the times when the trio were musical and fashion leaders, who influenced flared pants, and open-necked shirts to expose that 70s fashion accessory, the chunky gold medallion.
Bee Gee Way is free and located right in the centre of town and is super easy to find opposite the beach and between the shops. It is open day and night.
The distance between Redcliffe and Brisbane City Hall is 28 km. The road distance is 32.8 km.
If you are more of a mountain person, these next two are for you. Samford Valley has a village feel with quaint local shops The distance between Brisbane and Samford Valley is 19 km. The road distance is 23.3 km.
Access to Samford from Brisbane is via Samford Road, through the Samford State Forest, and takes about 10 minutes from Ferny Grove.
Samford was first settled in the mid-1850s and is now a place many hobby farmers call home, being one of the closest semi-rural acreage townships to Brisbane.
Driving through the curving slopes leads you to John Scott Park, in the main village which has an expansive grassy green, where you can drop a picnic blanket and grab some sunshine before driving back. The main street has some historical museums and halls, which are worth a wander past before heading home.
The ranges of Mount Glorious
If you want to take your country drive up a notch, then perhaps Mount Glorious is for you. Mount Glorious Village is situated in the D'Aguilar Range north-west of Brisbane City and is 42 kilometres from Brisbane. It is described as "a beautiful natural hilltop that offers four small cafes, some spectacular forest walks as well as several BBQ areas set in rolling parkland."
Home to lush rainforests and mountain views, it will have you forgetting your weeks of isolation within seconds. The rainforests are home to palms, ravenous strangler figs, a range of birdlife and fallen trees covered in a myriad of fungi and moss species.
The popular Mount Glorious cafe is open for take-aways, so maybe grab a coffee on your way through.
If you live in the western suburbs, you have a headstart. The main access to Mount Glorious is by travelling along Waterworks Road in Ashgrove, towards the Enoggera Reservoir and The Gap. Follow the Mt Nebo-Mt Glorious road from here, as it winds up through the hills and you will find yourself at Jolly's Lookout and Boombana National Parks.
The acreage of Brookfield
Why still considered a Brisbane suburb, Brookfield has a semi-rural vibe with acreage properties and is located 18.4 km from the Brisbane CBD in the western suburbs. It is renowned for its rural atmosphere, great views and million-dollar acreage properties.
Brookfield is about 20 minutes from Brisbane CBD. Your drive will take you through its neighbouring suburbs of Indooroopilly and Kenmore.
The suburb is home to the Brookfield Showgrounds, which hosts the annual, popular community event, the Brookfield Show. The show has a long history and dates back to 1910.
So jump in the car and take your pick. With so much diversity on offer, you can make the most of a scenic drive in some of Brisbane's most picturesque locations without going very far while at the same time feeling like you have enjoyed a little mini-break. Whichever journey you take, enjoy the ride.
(Please note that any references to places, activities or events should take account to adhere to the Government restrictions for the COVID 19 pandemic. All photos were taken before the pandemic).