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Plan Your Brisbane Holiday: Best of Brisbane

By Management

Explore Brisbane

Australia’s third-largest city, Brisbane is a hub of Queensland culture, offering a peek at the past and a glimpse into the future. Visit the historic Windmill and Old Commissariat Store, built by convicts in 1828. Learn more about Aboriginal culture with Didgeridoo lessons. Then fast-forward to the present with a visit to the Gallery of Modern Art. Have more time? Head up to the top of Mount Coot-tha, cruise the Brisbane River to South Bank’s sandy beach on the City Cat, and boat watch with a beer at the Howard Smith Wharves. Experience cuteness overload at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, home to koalas and kangaroos. For the best panoramic city and ocean views, climb to the top of Story Bridge. Want more Queensland culture? We’ve got additional recs below.
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Essential Brisbane

How to do Brisbane in 3 days

Walk the waterfront, jam at a live music venue, and take an island day trip
Read on

A “brekky” to remember in Brisbane

I’ll be honest: I plan my trips back to Brisbane around breakfast. Whether it’s a hearty "smashed avo" on toast or an indulgent sand crab omelet, the morning meal is a big deal in this part of Australia. Going out for "brekky" is all this homesick Australian needs to feel like everything’s right with the world. These are my fave spots.
Kristin Reinhard, Switzerland
  • Mylk + Ko
    You’ll find “smashed avo” on the menu at almost every cafe in Brisbane, and that’s exactly what I ordered the first time I went to Mylk + Ko. It’s made here with whipped feta and pomegranate seeds and topped with microgreens. The seasonal menu, which includes creative dishes like citrus crumpets, is more than enough reason to return. Impressively, the barista remembered my strong, long black coffee order after only my second visit.
  • The Oasis On The Esplanade
    If my children had their way, they would have pancakes and chocolate milkshakes from this cafe every single day. Lucky for them, this beachfront eatery is one of my favourite spots as well, thanks to its veggie stack featuring halloumi cheese and corn and zucchini fritters. If we visit on Sunday, we finish our brekky with a stroll through the nearby Redcliffe Markets. During the week, it's off for a run along the ocean.
  • Flour and Chocolate Northgate
    If you’re craving something quick, tasty, and full of carbs, head straight to Flour and Chocolate to pick up a cup of coffee and a foodie-approved croissant. Of their three locations around Brisbane, I prefer the one at Northgate because of its easy parking. The pork and fennel sausage roll makes an equally good breakfast. Don’t forget to pick up a loaf of sourdough for sandwiches later in the day.
  • Savour Cafe
    In the nearby community of New Farm, Savour Cafe is an excellent breakfast stop before catching the City Cat ferry to the centre of Brisbane. It's got great coffee—that’s almost a given in Australia—as well as a modern take on the traditional Aussie breakfast. If you like it hot, try the chili scrambled eggs. Smashed avocado also makes an appearance here, this time with pepitas and lemon. The great people-watching is a nice bonus.
  • Manly Boathouse
    A trip to Brisbane wouldn't be complete without dining down by the bay, and one of my family’s favourite waterfront destinations is Manly Boathouse. While many locals come for lunch or dinner in the handsome dining room, I suggest that early risers grab an umbrella-shaded picnic table outside on the patio. After enjoying a sand crab omelet or hash browns with chili salt, pick up some local seafood from a refurbished fishing trawler (weekends only).
  • New Farm Deli & Cafe
    A Brisbane institution, New Farm Deli & Cafe has stocked authentic Italian meats and cheeses for almost 50 years. In the bright and airy cafe, the kitchen puts a European spin on Aussie breakfast classics. My favourite thing on the menu? The amazing eggs Benedict served with smoked salmon, roasted pumpkin, and fried capers. Pick up one of the crab lasagnas to reheat later for an easy dinner.