Churches and Shrines

Multiple Locations

Brisbane is a city filled with churches and even boasts no less than two separate cathedrals. These not only represent some of Brisbane's most exquisite examples of built heritage, they also help us to understand local values and beliefs. As you marvel at a handful of Brisbane's churches, featuring spectacular stone masonry, stained-glass windows, artworks and memorabilia, enjoy some of the sculptures accentuating the other fine heritage buildings, shrines, and open spaces along the way. This tour will surprise you with its many stories and connections to our fascinating city community.

The combined Churches and Shrines Tour takes around four hours. If you only have around two to three hours, the following sub-options are recommended: visit only the Cathedrals only; visit the Ann Street precinct and ANZAC Square only.

Journey Details

Duration
4 Hours
Distance
2.2 Kilometres

Full Itinerary

St Stephen's Cathedral to Anzac Square

Start your tour at the magnificent Cathedral of St Stephen (249 Elizabeth Street) - please take care to avoid mass times of 10am and 12.30pm.

The historical St Stephen's Chapel was completed only eight years after the coming of the free settlers to Brisbane (1842). St Stephen's Chapel was the first Catholic Church in Brisbane and today is known as the oldest church in Queensland.

Bishop Quinn, the first bishop of the diocese, laid the foundation stone of the cathedral on the feast of St Stephen, 26 December 1863. A larger and more ornate church was envisaged than the present one but the economic depression of the mid-1860s resulted in only part of the original foundations being laid. Using the existing foundations, work was re-commenced early in 1870. On Sunday, 17 May 1874, the still-incomplete cathedral was solemnly blessed and dedicated.

Archbishop John Bathersby blessed the Jubilee Pipe Organ on 29 October 2000. He also authorised the restoration of St Stephen's Chapel in which a diocesan shrine to Mary MacKillop was established.

From here, stroll across the road and through the GPO Laneway to ANZAC Square.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk
Anzac Square to St John's Cathedral

Visit the Shrine of Memories, the Queensland Women's War Memorial, and the Eternal Flame in the Shrine of Remembrance at ANZAC Square.

ANZAC Square, named in honour of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps, is a Queensland state memorial to men and women who participated in overseas armed service. It is located between Ann Street and Adelaide Street (opposite Post Office Square).

On 25 April, every year, a Dawn Service is held at the Shrine of Remembrance and ANZAC Square.

ANZAC Square contains the Shrine of Remembrance and the 'Eternal Flame of Remembrance' held in a continuously lit bronze urn, dedicated on Tuesday, 11 November 1930.

ANZAC Square also contains the World War II Shrine of Memories underneath the Shrine of Remembrance.

The external wall of the Shrine of Memories is dedicated to the 60,000 Queenslanders who fought in World War I. There are also war-related statues, for various wars, including memorial statues for the Queensland soldiers who fought during the Second Boer War (1899-1902), as well as World War II, the Vietnam War and campaigns in Korea, Borneo and New Guinea.

From here, stroll up to St John's Cathedral.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk
St John's Cathedral to All Saints Church

Absorb the exquisite stonemasonry at St John's Cathedral and St Martin's House (373 Ann Street).

St John's Cathedral is a fine example of nineteenth century Gothic-Revival architecture designed in 1888 by John Loughborough Pearson.

The three stages, 1906 to 1910 and 1963 to 1968, 1989 to 2009 have created a superb Gothic interior with a forest of elegant sandstone columns and arches supporting the only stone vaulted ceiling in Australia.

Once inside the Cathedral, with space to seat 1,000 people, the visitor can see many examples of superb creative arts: examples of exquisite wood carvings include the Choir stalls and Archbishop's seat intricately carved in Queensland Silkwood. There are more than 400 needlework cushions designed by Queensland College of Arts students, featuring Australian flora and fauna. St John's Cathedral is also home to a Coin Collection that reflects the history of Christianity and some flags from episodes of war.

Special note: every Wednesday morning, a free morning tea is offered to all visitors at St John's Cathedral. If you are taking this tour on a Wednesday, please keep this in mind as a refreshment/rest point as this tour does involve so many sites and a fair amount of walking.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk
All Saints Church to Masonic Memorial Temple

All Saints' is the oldest surviving church in use in the inner city area. In 1856 a portion of land on Windmill Hill was granted for the purpose of establishing a church to serve the infant colony of Brisbane.

The interior contains a fine example of hammer-beam roof construction which is very rare in Australia. The east end windows were installed in 1870 and are the oldest stained glass church windows in Brisbane.

All Saints' Church architecture is Early English Gothic Revival style.

From the steps just outside All Saints, there is a great view of your next stop, the rather imposing and impressive Masonic Temple, located at 311 Ann Street.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk
Masonic Memorial Temple to St Andrew's Uniting Church

Imagine a heritage building resembling a sacred cathedral, a royal palace and an antiquities museum all rolled into one.

Brisbane has such a building, but it is rarely seen. The Masonic Memorial Temple in Ann Street, a trove of Freemason history, has been hidden away for 80 years behind towering Corinthian columns. Guided Tours are now available daily at 2pm. Phone to make a booking and/or visit their website for more information on Freemasons Queensland.

The Masonic Temple, steeped as it is in history and architectural intrigue is yet still a mystery to most Queenslanders as it has not always been open to the public.

The temple was built as a shrine and monument as well as to accommodate large Masonic events. It comes complete with grand ceremonial spaces, particularly the Grand Hall, the Court of Remembrance and the massive urn of remembrance built in memory of masons who fell in World War I. Designed by Lange Powell, himself a Freemason, and constructed between 1928 and 1930, the temple was built solely from Queensland materials.

From here, stroll just a few doors away to St Andrew's Uniting Church on the corner of Creek and Ann Streets.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk
St Andrew's Uniting Church to Albert Street Uniting Church

St Andrew's was built during 1904 under the supervision of its architect George D. Payne. It was opened and dedicated as a Presbyterian Church in 1905. Situated on the corner of Creek Street and Ann Street, the red brick and concrete building has been a Brisbane landmark since its construction in the days of the horse and cart. Its design with strong architectural forms including prominent tower, semi-circular arched openings and steeply pitched gables brilliantly exploits the potential of the constrained sloping site.

Continue your stroll down Ann Street to your final destination, Albert Street Uniting Church. This places you back close to the city's centre.

The five foundation stones for Albert Street Uniting Church were laid on August 18, 1888, and the completed church was opened by Lady Norman, wife of Sir Henry Norman, the Governor of the day, on November 8 1889.

This church always has been popular with its congregation and there must be many couples who remember taking their wedding vows here, especially during the World War II years when as many as sixteen weddings took place each day.

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Route Details

Route Type
One Way
Level of Difficulty
Level 1: Suitable for the disabled with assistance
Mode of Travel
Walk

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Spicers Balfour Hotel

New Farm, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$249 - 429
From the outside, Spicers Balfour Hotel resembles many of the large and beautiful classic Queenslander homes found in its neighbourhood, the fashionable inner-city Brisbane suburb of New Farm. But inside it holds a secret that sets it apart from the other luxury hotels in Brisbane. Ideal for couples, exclusive groups and corporate stays. Located only 13 kilometres from Brisbane airport, three kilometres from Brisbane Central Business District, and in the heart of Brisbane's fashionable suburb of New Farm, Spicers Balfour Hotel offers a central, stylish escape for both work and leisure. New Farm offers Brisbane's best restaurants, cafes, bars, day spas, and designer boutiques - all within a five minute walk from the hotel. Just minutes away, Brisbane's Central Business District offers a multitude of attractions, activities and events. Comprehensive facilities: Guests are privy to the hotel's butler service, dining room, rooftop bar (with views of Brisbane's city skyline and Story Bridge), wifi access and conference room - creating a luxury retreat that is modern and functional, yet comforting and private. The Balfour Kitchen is open for Breakfast, Royal High Tea, Lunch Events and Dinner. Booking is recommended.

Cedar Lookout

Wynnum, Brisbane Area
From AU$170 - 240
Cedar Lookout is a fully furnished air-conditioned house located 100 metres from the stunning waterfront of Moreton Bay with the islands as a backdrop. Being a self contained house, it caters for groups, families, or relocation to Brisbane where a three bedroom house is more comfortable. (The whole house is booked by your group, not just individual rooms.) Cedar Lookout is located in Wynnum, is a 25 minute drive from Brisbane City, only one hour south to the Gold Coast and one hour north to the Sunshine Coast. Wynnum is the water front suburb of Brisbane where the city meets the bay. Cedar lookout is perfectly located to base yourself while exploring Brisbane and all it has to offer. Wynnum Manly as the area is known, boasts one of the largest Marina's in Australia and caters for tourists with many activities. 200 metres to the Wynnum wading pool, a Brisbane icon and the new water adventure playground for the children. Close to many restaurants and clubs when you are not in the mood to cook. Join a fishing trip, boat cruise or explore the fabulous shops of the impressive shopping centre nearby, or sit and enjoy the view and weather!

A Pine Cottage

Wynnum, Brisbane Area
From AU$195 - 210
Holiday accommodation in Brisbane Bayside for the family doesn't get better than A Pine Cottage. It is a three bedroom, fully self contained holiday house. Ideal for holidays, short term rent and relocations. Pet friendly by arrangement. Being fully renovated this cottage is fully air-conditioned and only 50 metres to the waters edge in Wynnum, the waterfront suburb of Brisbane. Ideal location to use as a base while visiting Brisbane, only 25 minutes drive or train ride and you are in the city, an hour south to the bustling Gold Coast or an hour north to the Sunshine Coast to major tourist destinations. Home again by the Bay to relax or maybe join a boat charter, whale watching or just relax and enjoy one of the many restaurants on the waterfront. Relax in the private outdoor established bush setting, with dinner sizzling on the barbecue, you could be forgiven if you think you had stepped back in time.

Brisbane Gateway Resort

Rochedale, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$43 - 380
Brisbane Gateway Resort is one of Queensland's best caravan and tourist holiday parks. Located in Rochedale on the south-side of Brisbane, it's just 20 minutes into the City and 35 minutes from the Gold Coast. Catering to travellers and holiday makers who appreciate quality, cleanliness and excellent value for money, the resort has a full range of modern holiday cabin accommodation suitable for single travellers, couples, families and groups. A wide range of sites for touring caravans, motorhomes, campervans, camper-trailers and tents are also available. The sites are shady, spacious, neatly landscaped, well-drained and have electricity, water and waste-water services. Guest facilities include a large resort-style swimming pool, full-size day/night tennis court, fully-fenced adventure playground - all set within beautifully landscaped grounds. Other facilities include free guest wi-fi, recreation lounge and television room, free kid's Xbox games, free gas barbecues, undercover eating areas, camper's kitchen and modern laundry. If you are looking for a fresh holiday experience and a friendly place to stay and relax, you must come and see Brisbane Gateway Resort and discover the wonderful accommodation and facilities on offer... so close to the city!

Quest Chermside Apartment Hotel

Chermside, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$165.00 - 339.00
Quest Chermside Apartment Hotel offers guests a relaxed and comfortable accommodation experience. Quest Chermside is conveniently located in the thriving northern suburb of Chermside, 10km west of Brisbane’s International & Domestic Airports and 10km north of Brisbane’s Central Business District. With Chermside being one of Brisbane’s key business and shopping centres, Quest Chermside is ideally positioned to service the needs of corporate and leisure guests alike. Their accommodation features 54 stylish studio, 1 & 2 bedroom apartments (including a number of wheel chair accessible apartments) and includes their Atrium Room to accommodate your corporate meetings. Each apartment featuring work desks, fully equipped kitchens (extensive kitchenette in studios), broadband internet access, direct dial phones and in-room safes. Their spacious 1 & 2 bedroom apartments are fully self-contained with full kitchen and laundry facilities for those longer stays. All apartments include a balcony and individually controlled reverse-cycle air-conditioning for total relaxation and comfort.

Central Hillcrest Apartment Hotel

South Brisbane, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$143 - 595
At Central Hillcrest they offer not only offer stunning views but proximity to everything you need during your stay in Brisbane. They have the Central Business District, GABBA, South Bank, the new Lady Cilento Children's Hospital and the Mater Hospital all on their doorstep. Their facilities are second to none offering an outdoor pool, heated spa, sauna, barbecue area and gym. Central Hillcrest Apartments tick all the boxes! Central Hillcrest Apartments offer complimentary parking, an outdoor pool, sauna, newly refurbished tennis court, barbecue area and a sun terrace. Fig Tree Bistro, located on the lower floor, is open for breakfast and dinner Monday to Friday offering modern dining to guests and visitors alike. Their warm and friendly service combined with the facilities, convenience and spaciousness of a studio, one or two-bedroom fully self-contained apartment will ensure your stay at Central Hillcrest is beyond your expectations.
  • Free WiFi
From AU$110 - 130
Nestled comfortably on the calming shores of South-East Queensland's beautiful Moreton Bay, The Friendly Chat Bed and Breakfast is yours to discover and enjoy. Travelling, visiting family, on business, or just trying to get away from the crowds? The Friendly Chat Bed and Breakfast welcomes you. Conveniently located a mere 30 minute drive from Brisbane City, and with easy day access to the Gold or Sunshine Coasts, The Friendly Chat Bed and Breakfast will not leave you stranded or short of things to do. The Friendly Chat Bed and Breakfast offers choices - King/Twin Room (private bathroom, not ensuite) OR Queen Ensuite Room, OR you are able to book the whole space - user-friendly for people travelling alone, couples, small groups or families. Prices are based on two people sharing one room. A well equipped kitchen allows you the option to self cater with ease, as you utilise the guest lounge, private covered veranda and spacious garden. But if a little pampering is what you are after, don't be afraid to engage your hosts in chat of the friendly kind! So why not come and experience this home away from home accommodation, kick up your feet and enjoy the hospitality?
  • Free WiFi
From AU$140 - 225
With a unique Aussie backyard feel, Comfort Inn and Suites Robertson Gardens are conveniently located between Griffith University, Garden City Shopping Centre, ANZ Stadium and QEII Hospital, and only 15 minute drive to the city centre. The modern and spacious accommodation consists of 60 one, two and three bedroom self-contained villas and 76 full service Deluxe Hotel rooms. Facilities include 24 hour reception, no credit card surcharges, free parking, free WiFi and free gymnasium. If staying in a Hotel Room, a full hot and cold buffet breakfast is included. The hotel is set on 10 acres of beautiful landscaped gardens. It boasts Gardens Restaurant for breakfast and dinner. Garden's caters for casual or business dining and packed lunches. Multi-sized rooms, flexible packages and an outdoor exhibition of 4,000 square metres of space, the property has a range of functions and uses when it comes to creative events including magical weddings. They are located in the southern suburbs of Brisbane with an ideal proximity to the commercial and business districts with direct access to Brisbane Airport via the Gateway Motorway within five kilometres.

Mantra Richmont Hotel

Spring Hill, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$125 - 284
For a hotel ideally located to explore the best of Brisbane, you can’t go past Mantra Richmont Hotel in the historical suburb of Spring Hill. Just two kilometres from the heart of the central business district, you are just a short walk or five minute drive from world-class shopping, riverside restaurants, trendy nightlife spots and cultural entertainment. Whether you happen to be in the city for business or leisure, at Mantra Richmont Hotel you will find an effortlessly suited accommodation option. For the solo traveller or a couple on a city weekend escape, a Hotel Room is the ideal choice. If you are travelling in a group of up to four, a Richmont Room with two queen beds will accommodate you perfectly. To begin the day with a spring in your step, schedule in a visit to the hotel’s fully equipped gymnasium. Before venturing out and exploring the city, grab a coffee and bite to eat at the Grab n Go Café conveniently located in the lobby. If you feel like a trip to the Gold Coast or Sunshine Coast, why not speak with the Tour Desk to plan out your day.

Alpha Mosaic Hotel Brisbane

Fortitude Valley, Brisbane Area
  • Free WiFi
From AU$175 - 400
Alpha Mosaic Hotel Brisbane is a sophisticated boutique Hotel and Apartment accommodation complex that is part of Fortitude Valley's transformation as the new heartbeat of Brisbane. Just one and a half kilometres from Brisbane's Central Business District, you'll experience the best of urban convenience and cosmopolitan design, combined with exceptional facilities and service that revolves around you - right throughout your stay. You'll be spoilt for choice when it comes to accommodation whether you're staying for a short while or an extended period. Inner city living for the style-conscious traveller is right there at Alpha Mosaic Brisbane with design-savvy hotel rooms, one and two bedroom apartments with free unlimited wi-fi, mini-bar, in-room dining and balcony on most rooms. Security onsite parking is available for only AUD25 per night. Alpha Mosaic Hotel Brisbane is designed for the ultimate in convenience and cosmopolitan living. Soak up the stunning Brisbane climate in the Plaza garden square, kick back for a drink in the free-flowing lobby and bar, or enjoy a delicious meal in the restaurant.
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Note: Information on listed products and services are provided by the operator and were correct at the time of publishing. Rates are indicative based on the minimum and maximum available prices of products and services. Please visit the operator’s website for further information. All prices quoted are in Australian dollars (AUD).