I'm a Brisbane based freelance writer who's fascinated by food, fashion and fitness.
Published October 20th 2013
Budget friendly weekend adventure inspiration
Avoid the wasted weekend syndrome by considering these wallet friendly weekend wanderings.
Get your feet wet
Built along a river and surrounded by the beautiful waters of Moreton Bay, Brisbane offers a range of opportunities to get your feet (and everything else) wet. Wander through Kangaroo Point and rent a kayak from Riverlife or have a dip at Southbank. Pop out to Redcliffe or Shorncliffe for a swim, wander along the foreshore or sit and watch the passing parade with a fish and chip lunch or early dinner. For the adventurous souls there's also stand-up paddle boarding and kite surfing.
Manly and Wynnum are also great choices for a day out at the (almost) beach. Check out the galleries and cafes or hire a bike and stop for a picnic on the foreshore.
On your bike
CityCycle Bike Hire Brisbane
Keen to get on a bike and explore the city but scared to battle the traffic? Brisbane's large network of bike paths provide you with options from all four points of the compass. The Brisbane City Council has even developed local area maps on Google maps to help you find bike paths in your area. Simply enter a Brisbane address or suburb into Google maps, select the bicycling option in the traffic dropdown list and you'll get info on bike trails, dedicated bike lanes and bicycle friendly roads. Ride along the river from the Botanic Gardens down to Toowong, along Kedron Brook, through the Boondall wetlands or around Newfarm.
No bike of your own? No problem! You can hire bikes from points all over the city from CityCycle Bike Hire. Open to people over 17, with discounts for students and up to 2000 bikes available for hire from 150 bike stations linked to public transport, it's a cost effective way to get around. Courtesy helmets are also available (subject to availability).
Water loving cats
Brisbane's fleet of CityCat ferries travel the Brisbane river from the University of Queensland at St Lucia to Hamilton in Brissie's northside. Start the day with a coffee on Racecourse Road at Hamilton then hop on the ferry for a ride out to St Lucia where you can go swimming, catch a bite to eat or go to the movies at the University of Queensland campus.
Or start at the other end, hopping off at Hamilton for a movie and meal at Portside or a picnic in New Farm Park.
CityCats operate seven days a week with services every 15 minutes for most of the day. For info on timetables, tickets and maps visit the Brisbane City Council website.
[ADVERT]This old thing?
For lovers of vintage and retro wares, Brisbane offers a plethora of antique window shopping opportunities. Browse antique and retro clothing, furniture, jewellery and brick-a-brac at the Antiques Centre and Absolutely Fabulous in the Gabba, the Paddington Antiques Centre in Paddington or the Southside Antiques Centre in Annerley.
Morning tea and lunch options abound with cafés along Latrobe Terrace in Paddington or the Gabba Antiques Centre's retro themed café and close-by food mecca that is Logan Road.
A packed lunch
For those days you just want to get outside and enjoy the weather, a picnic is the best budget friendly option around. Brisbane has a huge range of parks with walking and bike tracks, kid friendly playgrounds and for the adults, pubs within walking distance!
Make a day of it: take the kids, the dog and the frisbee out to the Bay, the Botanic Gardens or New Farm Park, making sure you have some loose change for an afternoon ice-cream. Have a barbie at the Kangaroo Point cliffs and a cold one at the Story Bridge Hotel or take a day trip to Mt Nebo or Mt Glorious. It's the perfect way to catch up with friends, get some Vitamin D, share good food and do a bit of exercise (or just lie under a tree).