After a couple of chaotic years, it’s time to reset, get back into nature and give yourself the opportunity to completely unwind—and where better to do it than The Sunshine State capital? Brisbane offers an endless amount of gorgeous natural wonders and breathtaking adventures, making it the ideal destination for your next escape. And with summer just around the corner, there’s no better time to visit.
Read on to find out why Brisbane is the nature escape you need to recharge your batteries.
Just a short 45-minute boat ride away lies the crystal shores of Moreton Island—a secluded oasis that’s home to some incredible marine wildlife. This unspoiled paradise has some of the whitest sands and most glorious azure seas. Here, you can snorkel through the Tangalooma Shipwrecks while discovering some beautiful creatures just below the surface. Spend the arvo exploring the epic sand dunes, then sit back with drink in hand to watch the sunset and dolphins swim in the shallows.
For adventure lovers, a hike through Mt Mee is just what the doctor ordered. This quiet, peaceful reserve is surrounded by endless greenery, plenty of chirping Bellbirds and loads of trickling rock pools to discover and take a well-earned break next to. There are two trails to choose from, and there’s even a child-friendly route if you want to take the whole family along for the hike.
If getting up close and personal with a cuddly koala is on your bucket list, then Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is an absolute must. Revel in the majesty of these beloved creatures whilst meeting some of Australia’s other most precious beings—from wild lorikeets to slithering snakes if you’re feeling brave—without leaving Brisbane.
Mt Coot-Tha boasts an extensive range of hikes and bike trails for everyone to enjoy, including a stunning panoramic view over Brisbane when you reach the top of the city's highest point. Our tip—ditch the sleep in and head up at sunrise for a phenomenal sunrise moment. To extend your exploration of this part of Brisbane, head to the nearby Mt Coot-Tha Botanic Gardens for a showcase of some of our country’s most unique flora.
This reservoir was the first dam to be created in Brisbane and is an ideal spot for an adrenaline-filled day out bursting with plenty of water sports and thrill seeking. From hiking and swimming to kayaking, there’s so much to do at this dazzling national park. Or, if you just need a rest, you can sit pretty on the shore and dig into a good book. How good.
There’s no more extraordinary way to see the hinterland and coastline of Brisbane than from above—so why not go luxe and head up into the clouds in your very own hot air balloon? You’ll be mesmerised by the views over Tamborine Mountain before heading down for a full breakfast and a tour of a local vineyard to finish. A truly breathtaking experience that's not to be missed.
For those travellers keen to venture outside the city, O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat is just under a two-hour drive from Brisbane and promises to wow you with its forest paradise complete with waterfalls, hidden coves and some seriously amazing birdlife. This retreat has welcomed explorers for almost 100 years, and it’s not hard to see why people keep coming back. Whether you’re in for a little meander through the tracks or need to cool down in the balmy Queensland heat, you’re guaranteed a very special day out.
For more information and to get started on your itinerary, head to Visit Brisbane for even more tips on how to reconnect with nature in beautiful Brisbane this summer.
Editor's note: this article was produced in partnership with Visit Brisbane. Thank you for supporting the partners who make Urban List possible. To read our editorial policy, click here.
Image credit: O'Rielly's Rainforest Retreat via Instagram
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