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Brisbane City Centre - Brisbane Tourist Guide

The great thing about Brisbane is that you can spend days sightseeing your way around the city whilst soaking up some of that brilliant Queensland sun and barely touching your bank balance.

Brisbane City has a unique blend of historic and modern buildings dotted with city parks and gardens where you can sit back, unwind and watch the thriving city go about it's business.

Visit museums, go shopping, eat a picnic in one of the gardens or take in a show at the theatre. There's something for everyone in the Brisbane City CBD.

When sightseeing you can choose from a number of ways to get around including bus tours, via the waterways or simply walking.

Albert Street Literary Walk

Start at Central Station and follow a trail of 32 brass plaques set into the pavement. These plaques showcase various observations on Brisbane by a variety of famous authors. The tour is completely free and takes around 30 minutes to an hour, depending on how fast you want to take it. 

Albert Street, Brisbane

Anzac Square

Anzac SquareANZAC Square is named in honour of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps who served in overseas armed service including the Second Boer War, World War I and II, the Vietnam War and campaigns in Korea, Borneo and New Guinea. It is located in the heart of Brisbane’s CBD in immaculately groomed gardens which have radial paths leading to the Shrine of Remembrance. If you are in Brisbane on the 25 of April a Dawn Service is held at the Shrine of Remembrance to honour the men who fought at Gallipoli in World War 1.

Located between Ann and Adelaide streets

City Botanic Gardens

City Botanic GardensThe Brisbane City Botanic Gardens are located at Gardens Point on the Brisbane River and are bordered by the Brisbane CBD. The gardens inside are Brisbane’s oldest and most mature with many rare and unusual botanic species for you to discover. A notable feature of the gardens is the mangrove boardwalk with an avenue of bunya pines. There is a cafe nestled amongst the garden with a fresh innovative menu.

The Riverstage is located in the gardens and is a popular venue for concerts and events, with an estimated 100,000 people attending events here each year.

Read more about the City Botanic Gardens.

Museum of Brisbane

Museum of Brisbane (formerly Brisbane City Gallery) has a host of exhibits that celebrates the communities and culture of Brisbane through an original and contemporary blend of social history and visual arts. The Museum of Brisbane is usually located in Brisbane City Hall but as it is closed for restoration the museum has taken up a new residence.

Ground Floor, 157 Ann Street
Open daily 10am - 5pm
Phone: (07) 3403 8888
Web: www.museumofbrisbane.com.au

Brisbane City Hall

Brisbane City HallBrisbane City Hall was officially open in April 1930 and is the seat of the Brisbane City Council. This building is one of Brisbane’s finest and is listed on the Register of the National Estate. It has a large, imposing 70 metre clock tower with the main entrance made of bronze. Extending on each side of the entrance are ionic colonnades. It’s an exceptional building to look at, however currently it is undergoing extensive restoration which is hoped to be finished by 2012.

In March 2011 while restoration work was being carried out, workers discovered a streetscape dating from the mid 1800's under the floor of the Auditorium. The City Hall Visitor Experience Centre offers the public a chance to get up close and personal with the restoration work.

Article: City Hall restoration uncovers hidden treasure
Video: Historic street found under City Hall
Facebook page: www.facebook.com/BrisbaneCityHall
Flickr: www.flickr.com/photos/brisbanecityhall

The Brisbane City Hall is located adjacent from King George Square

King George Square

King George Square is a public square located adjacent from Brisbane City Hall in the CBD. It was originally the site of the city markets and then following the death of King George V in 1936 it was renamed in his honour. You’ll notice the bronze lion sculptures, there to help guard the entrance to the square. Visit “Speaker’s Corner”, a corner of the square where you’ll see statues of famous Queenslanders like Sir Charles Lilley and Steele Rudd.

Open daily 9am - 5pm
Phone: 07 3403 888
Web: King George Square

Customs House

Customs House is situated on the Brisbane River in the CBD and is one of Brisbane’s heritage listen icons. It is a cultural, educational and heritage facility owned by the University of Queensland. Located inside the grand Corinthian columns is a striking ballroom, fine boardrooms, seminar rooms as well as a restaurant serving a tasty selection of food with a great view from the terrace overlooking the river and Story Bridge.

Queen Street, Brisbane
Open daily from 9am except Public Holidays
Phone: 07 3365 8999
Web: www.customshouse.com.au

Old Government House

Old Government house was constructed to house the first Governor of Brisbane, Sir George Bowen and his family. The site was chosen for its beautiful vistas of the Botanic Gardens and Brisbane River. Custodianship of the house now belongs to the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) and has recently been restored to celebrate its 150th anniversary in June 2009. It is thought that the Lamington, one of Australia’s culinary icons, was invented by a cook at Government House during the time of Queensland Governor, Lord Lamington.

George Street, Brisbane
Open daily 9am - 4:30pm 
Phone: 07 3864 8005
Web: www.ogh.qut.edu.au

Old Windmill

The Old Windmill is actually (believe it or not) Brisbane's oldest surviving building. It is a sandstone tower that was constructed in 1828 as a mill for grinding corn. However, the incorrect engineering of the sails rendered it as a signal station, fire lookout tower and meteorological station all rolled into one.

More info: On Wikipedia
View video:
Discover Brisbane - The Old Windmill
Wickham Terrace, Brisbane

Queen Street Mall

Queen Street MallRecently refurbished, the Queen Street Mall always has great events happening. It is known as the retail and cinema entertainment heart of Brisbane. Queen Street Mall consists of more than 600 shops, 45 cafes and restaurants, two cinema complexes, the Treasury Casino and 11 shopping malls. You can stop by the Brisbane Visitor Information & Booking Centre in the mall to organise tour bookings, brochures and maps and just general tourist advice.

Queen Street, Brisbane
Open Daily. 
Phone: 07 3006 6200
Web: www.bnecity.com.au

Roma Street Parkland

Roma Street Parkland is located in the direct heart of Brisbane and has been dubbed the world's largest subtropical garden in a city centre. The park is amazingly diverse in the range of flora on offer with over 100,000 varieties of shrubs, and 1,200 mature trees. There are many pathways interspersed throughout the parkland with shelters, seating, barbecue facilities and beautiful viewpoints. For the kids, or those young at heart, there is the Jellybean Express or Lollipop Express for a 1.3km trackless train ride around the various parkland habitats. ($5 adults, $3 children).

Just north of the Roma Street Transit Centre;
Open daily 24 hours
Web: www.romastreetparkland.com

Treasury Casino 

The Treasury Casino was opened in 1995 in the old Treasury Building which is a stunning 19th century building on George Street. The casino is open 24 hours a day and is popular with tourists and residents alike. The casino accommodates over 1,100 gaming machines and 100 tables. Within the casino there are five bars, six restaurants and a lively world of ever-changing entertainment. You can also choose to stay at the Treasury Heritage Hotel which is a hotel experience not like any other with its combination of old world charm and contemporary comfort.

George Street, Brisbane
Open daily, 24 hrs
Phone: 07 3306 8888
Web: www.treasurybrisbane.com.au

State Parliament House

State Parliament HouseThis building was initially constructed in 1868.

Free tours are provided five times daily on weekdays, unless it is a parliamentary sitting day, when visitors are welcome to watch proceedings from the public gallery.

William Street, Brisbane
Tours: Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm
Phone: 07 3406 7111