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Top 10 Unusual Things to do in Brisbane

Home > Brisbane > Family | Fun Things To Do | Lists | Long Weekend | Unusual Things to do
by Barry J (subscribe)
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Published October 11th 2018
The Best Things in Life are Out of the Ordinary
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Row your boat in Brisbane (by River Life)


Brisbane's entertainment options keep the interstate tourists happy, but brave Brisbanites have found new thrills. Join the in-crowd and delight your friends with these unusual activities in Brisbane.

Escape from Prison
Jailbreaks are discouraged unless you're Clint Eastwood or Tim Robbins. In Dutton Park, make your own break for freedom from the notorious Boggo Road Gaol.

For over a century, our most notorious felons, including a former Senate President, a wrestler, a surfer, our last bushranger and a boxing champion, have served time in this heritage-listed prison. Learn the secrets of escapologists on child-friendly tours inspired by the Houdini of Boggo Road.

Visit Boggo Road Gaol for details.

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Become a convict for day? (by MIH83 / CC0)


Paint a traffic box
As you wait for the red light to turn green, whip out your paintbrush and take creative revenge.

Brisbane City Council controls over 1000 of the metal boxes at traffic intersections throughout the city. Submit an application to paint a box with a design that will last up to 4 years.

Children can also submit a design that could win the Artforce annual award. The program's success led to a trial to paint our electricity network transformer boxes too.

Visit Brisbane City Council for details.


Study a shipwreck.
The HMQS Gayundah (Aboriginal for lightning) was commissioned to defend Queenslanders from seafaring invaders. The ship served as a training vessel, coal transport and wartime patrol against the Germans in WWI. It's crew faced illegal Dutch fishers and started a mutiny.

The haunted hull now lies beneath the waves at Woody Point near Redcliffe. Don your scuba gear to walk scan the ship in its final resting place.


Get Buzzed in a Bunker
During World War II, Aussies built bomb shelters as shelter from air strikes and kamikaze pilots.

Decades after the danger, one of these bunkers has swapped the sandbags and rations with chocolaty treats and barista-brewed coffee.

Grab your refreshment at Bunker Coffee, in the shelter where the concrete roof is sheltered with green ivy. The baristas behind the bar on 21 Railway Terrace, Milton, use organic ingredients, local beans and serve iced treats too.

Visit Bunker for details.


Test your Patience
Slow down for science to watch the world's longest running experiment.

In 1927, a professor shoved a chunk of tar, used to waterproof ships, into a glass funnel. At room temperature, it seemed solid but the black pitch is viscous. Since that day, 9 drops of pitch have fallen from the chunk.

While the professor missed his chance to see one, you might be lucky enough to see the slowest drip in science form into the 10th drop of pitch in over 90 years.

The experiment continues in the foyer of the School of Mathematics and Physics at The University of Queensland. Visit the UQ website for details.


Relax with a Reindeer
Show Santa you've been nice by feeding the deer at the Lyell Deer Sanctuary. Find your favourite among the varied mix of cuddly red deers and strong stags with magnificent antlers. Within the 7 acres of natural surroundings at Mt. Samson, it's a magical experience, just in time for Christmas.

Visit Lyell Deer Sanctuary for details.


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See deer before they start working for Santa (by Lyell Deer Sanctuary)


Sail on the River
It's not unusual to board a ferry or cruise ship to spy on Brisbane's riverside mansions.

Instead, take hold of the oars and pilot a kayak instead. Paddle through the city's creeks and rivers, entering secluded coves and building sand castles on secret beaches beyond the reach of hikers and cyclists.

Book your boat at Riverlife.


Park and Watch
If the giant footprint of your 4K television has pushed you out of your lounge room, go back in time to Brisbane's last drive-in cinema. Tilt your seat back and stock up on snacks to enjoy the show. In summer, bring a beanbag and pack a picnic to watch the Boxing Day blockbusters under the stars.

Visit Yatala Drive-In for details.


Go Vege with Govindas
Govindas has been spreading love with vegetables for decades.

In Brisbane, they serve a delicious spread of vege dishes, including Split mung dahl (Lentil soup), Koftas (Savoury vegetable puffs), Fresh tomato and herb chutney, Pappadams (Lentil tortillas), mixed curries and all the fragrant jasmine rice you'll need to soak up the last succulent drop of flavour.

Finish with a sweet treat of Halava (Semolina fruit pudding) with custard, homemade ginger & mint lemonade.

Hungry yet? Visit them at Vulture St on the West End or George Street in the City.

See the menu at Govindas.


Search for Street Art.
In 2014, the underpass in South Brissie was transformed with 7-metre tall murals designed by some of our best local artists. In the cold concrete jungle, the splashes of colour brighten our city ever since.

Experience the striking scene at the pillars along Merivale Street.

Visit The Pillars Project for a preview.


What's been your most unusual (and enjoyable) experience in Brisbane? Please let us know with a comment.



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Why? Live a Life Less Ordinary
When: Anytime
Where: Throughout Brisbane
Cost: Free Options Available!
Your Comment
Great list, Barry - I never ever knew there was a deer sanctuary - will have to check it out sometime!
by Elaine (score: 3|5599) 720 days ago
Thanks for the list! I am definitely going to try some of these.
by Kiesten McCauley (score: 2|536) 483 days ago
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