AUSTRALIA | A Brisbane Day Tour from Gold Coast | Lakad Pilipinas

Brisbane Day Tour From Gold Coast

Finding nothing that really interests us at Surfers Paradise, we decided on booking a day trip to the nearby city of Brisbane. It was just an hour away and booking a tour was easy and affordable enough via Klook. We simply fired up the app on our phone, checked out the available tours, decided on the Grand Brisbane Tour, and was whisked off to Brisbane with no fuss.

A van was supposed to pick us up right in front of our hotel, but the tour company affiliated with Klook requested that we rendezvous on another hotel about five minutes by foot from where we were. It was no biggie so off we went to the hotel on the morning of our second to the last day in Australia.

Brisbane Day Tour From Gold Coast Bus
THE SPACIOUS MINI-BUS WE USED TO TOUR BRISBANE

A chirpy fellow greeted us and we were soon zooming off across the wide highways of Gold Coast. The guy was quite impressive, shuffling between English and Japanese—for the benefit of our Japanese companions—as we passed points of interests en route to Brisbane. We were dropped at bus depot, then transferred to a larger van—or rather a mini-bus—picking up a few more tour participants before the tour proper commenced.

 

 

BRISBANE CBD


Bob, a chunky Australian dude, was our designated driver and tour guide. Soft-spoken, negating his brusque physique, we nevertheless heard everything he was saying since he was wearing a mic all throughout the tour. We comfortably sat at the back of the mini-bus, C and I hogging a window seat—well, everyone has a window seat since it wasn’t that full—as we wound around Brisbane’s CBD.

Brisbane is Australia’s third largest city and we found its vibe to be quite similar with Sydney’s CBD, albeit toned down by a few notches. Old buildings made from sandstone abound, perfectly contrasting with modern steel and glass structures, lively districts, made colorful with street art, and boutique shops.

We excitedly gazed all these from the window of our bus, craning our necks more than once to catch an ornate cathedral or a restored hotel from a bygone era. We so wished we could’ve explored the streets of Brisbane on our own two feet, on our own slow pace, but alas, we chose Surfers Paradise over Brisbane.

Brisbane Day Tour CBD
A MIX OF OLD AND NEW BUILDINGS

Brisbane Day Tour CBDBrisbane Day Tour CBD
CATHEDRALS AND OFFICE BUILDINGS

Brisbane Day Tour CBD
BRISBANE’S GORGEOUS CITY HALL

 

 

BRISBANE CITY BOTANIC GARDENS


Our first real stop is the Brisbane Botanic Gardens. Alighting from the bus, we followed a path that led to the Brisbane River, which our guide said is home to crazy bull sharks. He pointed a cliff at the other side of the waters, the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, a popular recreational park formed when it was mined by convicts for volcanic rocks during colonial times.

After which, we then proceeded to the City Botanic Gardens. Laid out in 1828, it houses rare plant species which horticulture fans would probably go crazy over. But horticulturists we are not, so it looked like any old park to our untrained eye. Frankly, we were more excited by the colorful birds flitting from branches to branches across the park than anything else.

A local protest about aboriginal treatment greeted us as we exited the park. And on the background was Brisbane’s handsome Parliament House. I was happily taking photos of its French Renaissance sandstone façade when the rain started to pour.

Brisbane Day Tour CBD
ALONG THE BRISBANE RIVER

Brisbane Day Tour Bridge
THE FAMOUS BRISBANE STORY BRIDGE

Brisbane Day Tour City Botanic Garden
POND AT THE CITY BOTANIC GARDEN

Brisbane Day Tour City Parliament House
THE BRISBANE PARLIAMENT HOUSE

 

 

KANGAROO POINT LOOKOUT


Driving around the other side of the river, the rain abated just in time for a ten-minute quickie look over the Brisbane River. We were on top of Kangaroo Point Cliffs. With a high vantage, we were afforded an excellent panorama of the city’s riverside development.

I saw some stairs that accesses The Cliffs Boardwalk and down the river below. It would’ve been nice if we could actually go down, watch the rock climbers go about scaling the rock face, or simply enjoy a jaunt on the river’s edge, but as our guide said, ten minutes! So ten minutes it was.

Brisbane Day Tour Kangaroo Point Lookout
A PANORAMIC VIEW OF BRISBANE

Brisbane Day Tour Kangaroo Point LookoutBrisbane Day Tour Kangaroo Point Lookout
CROSSING THE STORY BRIDGE

 

 

BREAKFAST CREEK HOTEL


The heavens unloaded everything it got as we entered the doors of Breakfast Creek Hotel. We went in just in the nick of time. We weren’t here to check in though, or dine on its restaurant, or even have a pint of XXXX Beer—which is proudly advertised on its roof. We’re here for a quick tour, alas. Lol.

A Brisbane landmark with its ornate façade and mansard roof, the hotel opened its doors in 1890 and sports a French Renaissance architecture popular at the time. Ownership has since changed hands but it still serves beer off the wood—in fact it’s now the only place you can get this in the city. Other than that, it boasts of having one of the most extensive rum collection in the world.

Brisbane Day Tour Breakfast Creek Hotel
BREAKFAST CREEK HOTEL’S FLAMBOYANT FACADE

Brisbane Day Tour Breakfast Creek Hotel
EXTENSIVE RUM COLLECTION

Brisbane Day Tour Breakfast Creek Hotel
WOULD’VE LOVED A PINT OR TWO

 

 

BRISBANE RIVER CRUISE


The heavens continued to pour as we drove to the nearby Newstead House, the oldest surviving home this side of Australia. It’s now a museum, but we didn’t have the time to check out its collections—we headed straight to the nearby dock for our cruise.

Unlike our Sydney Harbour Cruise, our ship was much smaller this time. Thankfully, the rain has finally abated and we were able to sit on the top deck, savoring the cool Brisbane air while having cake and tea as we glided over the silty waters of Brisbane River.

Brisbane Day Tour Newstead House
THE NONDESCRIPT NEWSTEAD HOUSE

Brisbane Day Tour Cruise
OUR CRUISE SHIP

Brisbane Day Tour Cruise
CRUISING AROUND BRISBANE RIVER

Brisbane Day Tour Cruise
KANGAROO CLIFF

 

 

SOUTH BANK PARKLANDS


We were dropped at the South Bank Parklands for lunch. Lunch wasn’t included on the tour so we were all left to our own devices, free to choose over the numerous cafes and restaurants to dine on. But we weren’t really that keen on eating here, since restaurants in Australia are extremely expensive. Instead, we whipped out our packed sandwiches—thank you, Coles Supermarket—and proceeded on exploring the area.

Passing by The Wheel of Brisbane, a sixty-meter Ferris Wheel, and a Nepalese Peace Pagoda featured during the Brisbane World Expo '88, we were surprised to find a public pool right on the park. One part is your typical kidney pool, but its extension, The Streets Beach, is a beach-like pool complete with sand and babes on bikinis! Entrance is all free, of course, and we would’ve stripped and joined the fun if not for the sixteen-degree weather.

Brisbane Day Tour The Wheel of Brisbane
THE WHEEL OF BRISBANE

Brisbane Day Tour Nepalese Peace Pagoda
NEPALESE PEACE PAGODA, A THROWBACK FROM THE WORLD EXPO ‘88

Brisbane Day Tour The Streets Beach
STREETS BEACH, IT HAS REAL SAND!

 

 

LONE PINE KOALA SANCTUARY


With everyone full from lunch, we took a long drive to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in the suburb of Fig Tree Pocket. We’ve previously visited the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary where we saw kangaroos and lazy koalas, so we weren’t really that excited over visiting another zoo.

The eighteen-hectare sanctuary was founded in 1927 and is considered as the oldest and largest koala sanctuary in Australia. Well, there really aren’t koalas anywhere else on Earth, so I guess, it is the largest in the world.

It is home to over a hundred thirty of these cuddly creatures, but besides that, it also houses Tasmanian devils, wombats, kangaroos, and two platypuses. Those last two really got our attention and we took quite a long while at the platypus dugout to watch the couple swim. Marvelous creatures.

Brisbane Day Tour Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
A SLEEPING KOALA

Brisbane Day Tour Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
AN ALLIGATOR HIDING AMONG THE GRASSES

Brisbane Day Tour Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
A SLEEPING WOMBAT

 

 

MOUNT COOT-THA LOOKOUT


And to cap our tour, our bus dropped us off at the Mount Coot-tha Lookout at the suburb of the same name. There really isn’t much to the place, it has a couple of restaurants—which we can’t dine in since we’re pressed for time. It’s main attraction really is the view of Brisbane from its deck. Perched 287 meters above sea level, it’s particularly dramatic during sunsets, which we were actually aiming for except that it was pretty cloudy. Still, the view was a worthy ending to our Brisbane day tour.

Brisbane Day Tour Mount Coot-tha Lookout
MOUNT COOT-THA LOOKOUT

Brisbane Day Tour Mount Coot-tha Lookout
A VIEW OF BRISBANE 287 METERS ABOVE SEA LEVEL

Brisbane Day Tour Mount Coot-tha Lookout
FINISHING OFF OUR BRISBANE DAY TOUR

 

SCOOT HAS DAILY PROMO FARES FROM MANILA TO AUSTRALIA

SCOOT, KLOOK, AND ONE VINE MIGRATION MADE OUR TRIP TO AUSTRALIA POSSIBLE. VIEWS AND OPINION ALL MINE.

 






Posted by Christian Sangoyo on Tuesday, June 19, 2018

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