Brisbane experiences

Brisbane picnic spots

Everybody loves a picnic and there are plenty of prime picnic spots to enjoy in and around Brisbane. Nothing is better on a hot day than having lunch beside cool water, with the majority of our city’s favourite picnic spots being next to the Brisbane River.

Roma Street Parkland
These beautifully maintained formal gardens are perfect for picnics of any size. Lots of public transport nearby makes it easy to catch a train or bus to the Park. You can ride a bike, use rollerblades or skates and play a family game of soccer. There are some rules for the parkland. Flower fanciers will love the Spectacle Garden and the grounds are scattered with intriguing public art. It’s a wonderful green space, right in the centre of the city with plenty of electric BBQs, shelters and toilets. See a map. Melange Café is in the Parkland.

Roma Street Parkland

City Botanic Gardens
Nestled beside the QUT campus and surrounded by the Brisbane River, the Botanic Gardens have changed from their historic beginnings of a zoo and convict vegetable garden. These days, it is a popular spot for large gatherings and wedding photos. Areas can be booked for functions and it’s a perfect place to stop if you are riding or walking a loop around the city.
There are a few shelters and toilets but no barbecues provided. There isn’t a café on the grounds anymore but you can buy takeaway food from stores along Albert Street, heading up to the Queen Street Mall.

New Farm Park
Kids love it for the great playground near the fig trees, couples love it for the swathes of grass beside the rose gardens, groups love it for the barbecues, tables and inner-urban space to sprawl.
New Farm Park is a perfect picnic spot if you are taking a trip on the river via City Cat (it stops at New Farm Park) or perhaps you want to buy yummy cheese and organic sourdough for an instant picnic at the Saturday Farmers Markets (each fortnight) just beside the park.

Rocks Riverside Park
Note: Rocks Riverside Park is still closed after the January floods. Please check to see if they have reopened before making a trip.
Extensive grounds, fantastic playgrounds (including water play), bike paths and river frontage – Rocks Riverside Park at Seventeen Mile Rocks has it all. It’s also Brisbane’s biggest riverfront park.

Rocks Riverside Park

Anzac Park
Across the road from the Toowong Bus Depot, on Dean Street, is Anzac Park – one of the best places to take small children for a play. See a map.
On rolling hills, with many giant trees, a duck pond complete with families of ducks and a flying fox, Anzac Park has been set up with an Australian farmstead feel.
There’s a farmstead home, where children can run in and out, climbing ladders, sliding down slides and even sending secret messages on an intercom system. On the swings, seesaws, windmill and play equipment they’ll find images of possums and galahs to delight their imaginations.
Dean Street, Mt Coot-tha Road, Western Freeway and Wool Street

Other good city picnic spots
Captain Burke Park, under the Story Bridge – the best city views and yet tucked away. Catch a ferry there for fun.

Pelican Park, Clontarf – see the pelicans being fed at 10am each day. Super spot to fly a kite. (Hornibrook Esplanade)

Sherwood Forest Park – beside the river, with large spaces and constructed lakes. It isn’t just a picnic spot, it is used for research with over a 1000 trees of 300 species planted.

Newstead House – history and picnicking combined. See a photo of the rotunda or walk through the House for a small entry fee.

South Bank – always popular. For a quieter spot, try the picnic areas in Kurilpa Point Park, at the end of the Kurilpa Bridge in the city centre.

If you don’t want manicured grass and an urban park, then head to a picnic site surrounded by forest, tall trees and views.

Here are a few selections:

J.C Slaughter Falls and Simpson Falls
Part of the Mt Coot-tha bushland, these picnic areas have lots of trees and bush walking trails. There are a few wooden BBQs and tables too. Great for mountain bike riding along the Summit Track and seeing the waterfalls after heavy rain. You’ll feel like you are picnicking in a forest, but you’re so close to the city.

Mt Nebo
Take a short walk through the remnant rainforest or scrub when you go for a picnic at Mt Nebo. There are picnic grounds at Jolly’s Lookout, Boombana and Manorina, all part of D’Aguilar National Park. The views are fantastic and a picnic there makes for a good day trip or Sunday drive.
Dogs not permitted.

Daisy Hill Koala Centre
Want to see wildlife with your lunch? Then Daisy Hill Koala Centre is for you. There are short bush tracks and you can take the kids or overseas visitors to see the koalas in the information centre. Find facilities such as tables and wood bbqs at the upper and lower day use areas.
Entry is free and wheelchair accessibility is good. Bring your own drinking water and take all rubbish with you.

Further afield
Mary Cairncross Reserve at Maleny – take a walk through a small patch of rainforest. Watch bush turkeys. Café on site and a popular spot for taking photos of the Glasshouse Mountains.

Bribie Island – a long stretch of excellent picnic facilities beside the waters of Pumicestone Passage, from Banksia Beach down to Brennan Park at Bongaree.

The Spit at Southport – picnic on the beach, with the skyscrapers of the Gold Coast in the background. Opposite Sea World.

Mount Tamborine – take a walk along the trails of Tamborine National Park and then enjoy a picnic in the forest. Fresh produce galore in the area.

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