Free Things to do in Brisbane

Brisbane. What a lovely city. A place I hadn’t really heard much from when talking to other travellers (apart from a good friend from Canada who was absolutely besotted by it!) and researching Australia, but a city I very much enjoyed!

Quite a big city if I’m honest, I arrived in Brisbane not really knowing what to do! I was staying at Summerhouse Backpackers – probably the best hostel I stayed at tbh (hello free wifi (IN THE ROOM & that ACTUALLY worked!) free breakfast (& crepes on a sunday!) and they had pretty good events every night of the week including a free rooftop BBQ and pub crawl, would recommend! – and it was probably the first proper city I got to in Australia.

I’ll admit it’s not the most amazing place in Australia but it’s a beautiful city with plenty of nice bits to do – and for free I might add!

  1.  Take a stroll (and an ice-cream obviously! It’s always summer in Brisbane!) along the beautiful river bank.

2. Just yards in from the river bank, take a dip and sunbathe at the Southbank ‘ Streets beach’

3. On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings pop into the Epicurious garden to learn about or just pick up some freshly grown produce!

4. Take a trip to some of the many markets dotted around Brisbane.

Some of the ones I went to are: 

Milton Markets – Food Market – Cribb St, Milton – Every Sunday 6-Midday

The Collective Markets – Clothing, Jewellery, Accessories, Art etc – Stanley St Plaza, South Bank – Friday/Saturday/Sunday

Jan Power’s Brisbane City Market – All things FOOD – George St – Every Wednesday 8-6

Pop Up Suitcase Rummage – Second-hand market – Powerhouse Plaza – Check online for date details 

(Eat Street Markets are meant to be the best!)

But I’d recommend asking at your hotel/hostel check-in desk for their recommendations and maybe checking some of the ones online, there’s a big list here!

5. Head to the B.R.I.S.B.A.N.E letters! Gotta get that snap!

6. Take a walk by the river over to Kangaroo Point for a great view of the city at sunset!

7. Take a FREE ride on the CityHopper ferry down the Brisbane River and stop off at some of the spots.

8. Mount Coot-Tha – Unfortunately I didn’t get time to get up here, a little bit further from the City Centre, Mount Coot-Tha is meant to give you a stunning view (excellent at sunrise apparently if you fancy heading on the walk early) – just google it! There’s also some Botanical Gardens with a Planetarium near by so you could make a bit of a day of it!

9. Pop into the many Museums in Brisbane; QAGOMA (Art Gallery), Queensland Museum or Museum of Brisbane.

10. Head for an evening/night out in Fortitude Valley

So that’s 10 of my recommendations for some free/cheap backpacker things to do while you stop off in the East Coast Half-way City of Brisbane! I believe most of these happen all year round but if you’re looking for more things to do, I’d say have a quick look here and see if there’s anything else on while you’re there!

Anyone been/planning to visit Brisbane? What did you get up to/think?


  1. Kimberly van Menxel
    January 7, 2018 / 6:44 pm

    The pictures are so pretty! Brisbane is one of the places i want to go see and hopefully i will soon. Great post!

    • Josie Brownlee
      January 7, 2018 / 9:25 pm

      Thanks so much Kim, I really appreciate it! Ooh I hope you do it was a lovely city!

  2. Jan Eleven, CEO
    January 9, 2018 / 2:39 pm

    Your pictures are breathtaking!!! I hope to reach each and every one of these places one day!!

    • Josie Brownlee
      January 9, 2018 / 4:08 pm

      Thanks Jan! I hope you do too, it was a really lovely city to explore!

  3. Layla Sprinkles
    January 13, 2018 / 2:10 pm

    Oh wow – this is such a beautiful post and all your photos are absolutely gorgeous! Hope you're well and looking forward to seeing more! :)Layla xx

    • Josie Brownlee
      January 14, 2018 / 9:57 am

      Thank You ever so much Layla! I'm good thanks, hope you are well too! I've got so many Australia posts ready!!

Carry on the conversation, I'd love to know your thoughts

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