Free And Cheap Things To Do In Brisbane
Most travellers to Australia will find themselves in Brisbane as they begin their journey up the Queensland coast. Most travellers will end up staying for a few days, as Brisbane offers one of the first opportunities for travellers to start organizing their Whitsunday Island cruises and Fraser Island tours.
Many travellers also have the false impression that there is nothing to do in Brisbane. Which couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, Brisbane is full of activities and diversions, and best of all – many of them are free (or cheap).
So here are 5 free and cheap things to do on the south side of the Brisbane river.
1) Southbank Lagoon And Parklands
Southbank is the region of Brisbane just south of the river. This area has been developed into a fantastic public space with parklands, river side board walks, plenty of restaurants and cafe’s, and of course, the Street’s Beach. The beach is an artificial lagoon that was created in Southbank to make up for the lack of an easily accessible beach for Brisbanites. The lagoon is very well maintained and patrolled by lifeguards. There is a sandy area for sunbathers, an adult swimming area, and a kids swimming area complete with all sorts of water features and fountains to keep them entertained.
Street’s beach and the parklands are both completely free to the public.
2) Queensland Art Gallery
The Queensland Gallery Of Modern Art is free to visit the permanent collections, although some of the special exhibitions may cost to enter. This small gallery is just the right size for someone who wants to check out some Australian art, but who doesn’t want to commit and entire day (and suffer from art exhaustion afterwards!).
The Queensland Art Gallery is located in the Cultural Centre Precinct, which is adjacent to Southbank, and walking distance to the CBD and West End.
The art gallery also has a wonderful little cinema which plays art house and foreign films. Check the cinematheque listings for more information.
3) Queensland Museum
The Queensland Museum recently reopened after extensive renovations in 2011 and is celebrating by hosting several world class exhibitions. General admission to the museum is free, but it does cost if you want to have a look at some of the special exhibitions.
They have a great play area for kids, and an engaging science exhibition (although their is an admission fee to this exhibition), which will entertain any children travelling with you, or just those who are young at heart.
4) State Library Of Queensland And The Edge
The State Library of Queensland is always full of travellers. But why? Well – its comfortable, its air conditioned, and the ground level is full of comfy and couches and desks – but most importantly – free hi speed wifi and computer connections are available throughout the whole complex.
The Edge is a facility which is attached to the State Library complex. It is Queensland’s digital cultural centre and offer a variety of free programs to the public. You can book to use one of their beautiful Mac computers for free which has access to all sorts of lovely software, such as, photoshop, final cut pro, and other editing software.
The Edge also runs a variety of free workshops several times per week. Check out their calender to learn more. An example of the programs they run include introductory photography, into to wordpress, and an intro to film making. All courses are free, but you must sign up in advance to guarantee a place for yourself.
5) West End Cafe’s
West End is one of the suburbs directly attached to South Bank, where all our other recommended things to do have been located. West End is well known for it’s vibrant cultural offerings, great restaurants and cafe’s, and cute little boutique shops. It’s a great place to go an relax with a great coffee and do some people watching after a long day hanging out in Southbank.
What is your favourite thing to do in South Bank?
When you are visiting Brisbane, you can use your base jumping cards at one of the two Base Hostel locations in Brisbane. Both hostels are located in the CBD, just a short walk across the bridge from Southbank. The Brisbane Central Base in particular is a great hostel just to have a look at, and is a beautiful example of Queenslander architecture.
Our base jumping cards were provided complimentary by Base Hostels, but all opinions remain our own.