After our time in Noosa, we headed down the coast a little further to Brisbane. Well when I say a little, it was a 12 hour overnight Greyhound trip. But that’s still just popping down the road here in Australia.
Arriving at the Brisbane Transport Centre pretty early in the morning, we made our way across the road to Tinbilly’s Travellers, a well located, reasonably priced hostel which we’d call home for the next 9 nights. The longest we’ve stayed anywhere to date.
Easter Weekend in Brisbane
The first couple of days we’re a quiet affair. It was Easter weekend so a lot of places we’re closed so our options were limited to walking & drinking. We did manage our own walking tour of the city, and we were impressed by what we saw. Brisbane was by far the biggest https://buycbdproducts.com we’d stopped in yet in Australia. Monday was also ANZAC day, a military based memorial day with a huge parade through the CBD (Central Business District). The turnout was fantastic too with people flag waving, cheering & singing, much greater than any we’ve seen in the UK.
Other highlights of our two day orientation tour included the botanical gardens, a tropical heaven in the centre of this ever growing city. It was really relaxing to sit & enjoy the sun (we’d soon realise there wouldn’t be much more to enjoy in Brisbane or Australia in general). Jemma even expressed a desire to sit any listen to the creaking of the bamboo in the middle of the park with an almost hippy tree hugger-esque desire. Weirdo!
Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA)
With the passing of the Easter weekend came regular opening hours and much more to see & do. One of our first ports of call was GoMA, the gallery of modern art, which was actually really good fun with some interesting hands on exhibits. My personal favourites were the giant spiral slides, the YouTube video wall, becoming an honorary alien citizen and the room full of purple balloons for you to walk through. I think this is the first gallery that we both enjoyed. I guess it means our horizons are certainly been broadened and we’re becoming more cultural. Or it was just a good fun morning.
Castlemaine Brewery Tour
Of course, those of you who know us well, know any opportunity to spend the day surrounded by beer is an opportunity we won’t pass up on. So, in Brisbane is the Castlemaine Brewery and we were there. For $20 we had a 90 minute tour of the history of Castlemain, the brewing process & the packaging process (although the bottling line wasn’t running). At the end of the tour, we then received 4 drinks. Sweet!
Jemma, being the very social smoker that she is, managed to get chatting outside to a couple of employees who were so keen to find out more about her trip offered to get her even more free drinks and their generosity spilled over into offering me & our new friend Sarah drinks too. Employees at the Castlemaine Brewery are allowed to drink in the bar for free after their shift or on days off (they also get discount on slabs, so working here sounds quite good to me).
However, before we got too carried away and comfortable we decided it would be best to make the 20 minute walk back to our hostel. It could quite easily have turned into an all night session; another example of Australian hospitality which we’ve been lucky to enjoy quite a bit.
Brisbane Lagoon & Buddha’s Birthday
Brisbane, like a lot of places on the east coast also has it’s own lagoon for people to chill out and swim. Unfortunately, only a small portion is still open as it recovers from the floods earlier in the year. Apparently, when the flood waters subsided, the lagoon was quite fit for swimming as it had caught several bull sharks in there. How true that is we don’t know.
On our way over to the lagoon, we stumbled through the park to find it was Buddah’s birthday. It was like stepping back in to south-east Asia with some great food, dancing lions, music and plenty of shrines set up. This proved to be one of the few sunny days we’d get while here in Brisbane, much to Jemma’s dismay as apparently her darker than dark tan is starting to fade, so we spent a bit of time catching a few rays.
Between the downpours, there wasn’t much else happening in Brisbane. We would quite often find ourselves falling down the sloppy slope of goon! What would start out as an afternoon of quiet drinking with our many Irish friends & room mates would turn into an early morning finish and a hang over from hell. We did learn some good drinking games along the way though.
Other highlights of our time would include a trip up Mount Kutah for panoramic views over the city, which were very nice, meeting up with friends from home to share travel tips & watch the united game with, applying our crime solving skills to solve a murder at the Queensland Police Museum (Jem got it completely wrong by over complicating things).
Oh yeah, and TwoFromWales became three (if only for a couple of weeks) with the arrival of Steph, Jem’s bessie from home. An arrival which would have been a surprise which we’d been working on for a couple of weeks if Jemma hadn’t been snooping through my emails to ruin her own surprise. Although it turned out to be a good job really as poor old Steph felt a bit worse for her epic journey and needed to be wheeled through customs! What a way to make an entrance.
Next stop for all three of us, Byron Bay. Hopefully for much better weather and some surf!