Mt Coot-tha Forest
Our favourite walk starts at Simpsons Falls picnic area at the end of our street and takes about 50 minutes though you can walk for longer. While the waterfalls are there only after lots of rain, the walk through the forest is peaceful and refreshing. Mt Coot-tha is home to many of Australia's unique birds, plants and animals such as wallabies, possums, pythons, kookaburras and if you are very lucky, you might catch a glimpse of a Powerful Owl, Australia's biggest owl which grows to about 65 centimetres in height. http://www.100roads.com/images/australia/bri/brisbane_mt-coot-tha_track_map.pdf
Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens and Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium
Five minutes away by car are the wonderful gardens with lots of walking tracks, and the amazing planetarium. You do have book the planetarium which is definitely worth a visit. https://www.brisbane.qld.gov.au/things-to-see-and-do/council-venues-and-precincts/sir-thomas-brisbane-planetarium
A short bus trip takes you to the city where you can access South Bank where the major art galleries, museums and performance venues are located. South Bank is a recreational area along the river with restaurants, walks, cycle paths and picnic area. The Brisbane Festival is held here each September. https://www.visitbrisbane.com.au/South-Bank
One of the best ways to get to know Brisbane is to use our river. The 'CityCats' go up and down the river stopping at the city centre, South Bank and another interesting area, New Farm. Or you can head west and get out at the Queensland University and explore the Great Court. Beautiful sandstone buildings and look for the gargoyles of well known people. You can catch a CityCat at Toowong which is a short five minute drive from our home. https://www.brisbane.qld.gov.au/traffic-and-transport/public-transport/citycat-and-ferry-services
New Farm and the Powerhouse.
New Farm is an inner city suburb and it's worth visiting the Powerhouse which hosts all sort of entertainment from plays, art exhibitions, live music, debates (look up Politics in the Pub) and a weekly farmers' market and once a year, the Festival of Tibet. Sit out on the deck watching the river go by with a beer or cider. The fantastic rose garden in New Farm Park is next to the Powerhouse and worth a visit in spring. Nearby is the well known New Farm Deli which is great for lunches. Go by CitiCat and the Powerhouse is a short walk away from the terminus. https://brisbanepowerhouse.org, https://newfarmdeli.com.au, https://www.facebook.com/events/brisbane-powerhouse/politics-in-the-pub
Close to the city is West End which has some great shops such as Avid Reader or if you want secondhand, Bent Books. And the wonderful Kazuyo's Collection with amazing Japanese fabrics. Try the iconic vegetarian/vegan bakery and cafe, Sol Breads, in Vulture Street. https://www.solbreads.com.au/, http://kimonobag.blogspot.com/
Paddington, just five minutes away by car or ten by bus, has lots of cafes, galleries, boutiques and antiques. If you love browsing for antiques, visit the Empire Revival Centre which is a huge collection of small stalls selling just about everything. https://empirerevival.com.au/
Brisbane has lots of markets on the weekend selling breakfasts, fresh vegetables and fruit, crafts, clothing and lots of other stuff. Our favourite is the Milton Market at Cribb Street, Milton on Sundays which is ten minutes from home by car. It's a bit like being in an Asian street market as you wander up and down trying to decide what to have for breakfast this week. Look out for Peter at the tomato stall which has the best tasting tomatoes or Enzo with his fresh pasta. Or the potato stall with fresh produce from the Darling Downs. http://miltonmarkets.com.au/
Or you could try the Northey Street Organic Market also on a Sunday. Based at Brisbane's city farm, this market has the freshest organic produce and lots of interesting stalls selling handmade products. Look out for Adam who gives the best shiatsu head massages.