Day Tripping

Right on Brisbane’s doorstep is a wonderland of changing landscapes perfect for day trips or a quick weekend getaway. If you head east, you will be greeted with the aquatic playground of Moreton Bay as well as islands brimming with wildlife and stunning beaches. If you venture west, you can discover the World Heritage National Parks of the Scenic Rim and nature escapes in the Somerset region.

Islands from Brisbane

Home to two of the largest sand islands in the world, Moreton Island and North Stradbroke Island are only a hop, skip and a short boat ride from Brisbane. Fly down the sand dunes of Moreton Island or follow the headland and take the North Gorge Walk on North Stradbroke Island for views so good you'll never want to leave.

Take the family and go exploring on Bribie Island, the only Moreton Bay sand island that you can drive to. Go four wheel driving along the beaches or hire a BBQ boat and cruise down Pumicestone Passage.


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Lamb Island

Lamb Island, Redland City Area
Get away from it all and rest in the peaceful and tranquil waters of Moreton Bay. Lamb Island was known by the Aboriginal people of Moreton Bay as Nguderoo, or paperbark trees. It is the second smallest of the Southern Moreton Bay Islands, is easily navigable, has a general store, recreation club and a swimming enclosure for cooling off in the bay waters.

The Pines Dive Site

Moreton Island, Brisbane Area
Free Entry
One of the more unusual dive sites off Brisbane, The Pines is a coffee rock reef, or in other words a dirt boulder reef. Now a dirt boulder reef might not sound very exciting but cut with ledges and caves these dirt boulders are home to a surprising amount of marine life.

Hutchinson Shoal Dive Site

Moreton Island, Brisbane Area
Hutchinson Shoal is the largest reef system off Brisbane and also one of the least dived. Located north of Moreton Island, Hutchinson Shoal is washed by strong currents and offers no protection in rough weather.

Lake Maroon

Maroon, Scenic Rim Area
Free Entry
Just one hour's drive from the centre of Brisbane, Lake Maroon is located in the heart of the Scenic Rim, Boonah. Lake Maroon is ideal for camping and one of Queensland's most popular places for sailing, fishing, water skiing, parasailing and paddle boating.

Moreton Island

Moreton Island, Brisbane Area
No island in Moreton Bay says 'fun' more than Moreton. Located in the northern part of the bay, you only need to take a short boat trip from Scarborough or Manly to discover the island's long list of bragging rights.

Boonah

Boonah, Scenic Rim Area
Just one hour west of Brisbane, located in the heart of the Scenic Rim is beautiful Boonah, one of the most picturesque areas in South East Queensland. The superb scenery of rugged mountains and peaceful lakes allow for great scenic drives, horse riding, bushwalking, mountaineering, sky diving, gliding and water sports.

Marietta Dal Shipwreck Dive Site

Moreton Island, Brisbane Area
The Marietta Dal was a 7500 tonne liberty ship built in the USA in 1944 and is one of the most interesting shipwrecks off Brisbane. On May 15 1950, the 140 metre long ship was carrying a cargo of sulphur, oil, tractors and other general cargo when it ran aground on Smith Rock.

Helidon

Helidon, Lockyer Valley Area
The quiet hamlet of Helidon lies in the picturesque Lockyer Valley, approximately one hour west of Brisbane and just 15 minutes east of Toowoomba. Sandstone from this area has been used in many of Queensland's beautiful historic buildings.

Flinders-Goolman Conservation Estate

Ipswich Area
Located 20 minutes drive from the Ipswich City, the Flinders-Goolman Conservation Estate covers over 2,200 hectares. The conservation estate supports extensive forests and rugged volcanic peaks and slopes including Flinders Peak, Mt Blaine, Mt Catherine and Mt Goolman.

Boondall

Boondall, Brisbane Area
Best known as the home of Brisbane's premier concert hall, entertainment centre and sporting complex, the suburb of Boondall is located approximately 20 minutes drive north-east of Brisbane's city centre.
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National parks from Brisbane

Strap up your boots and hit the bush walking trails of D’Aguilar National Park, Tamborine National Park or Main Range National Park. 

Climb prehistoric boulders at Girraween National Park and explore the dramatic peaks of the Great Driving Range and the World Heritage-listed rainforest in Lamington National Park. 

Pack a picnic and immerse yourself in a wealth of natural wonders with scenic lookouts, waterfalls and wildlife spotting right on Brisbane’s doorstep.

If you’re looking for shorter walks for little feet, make like Dora and take the kids to burn off some energy at the easily accessible walking tracks of Mount Cootha, Brisbane Forest Park or Walkabout Creek.

Waterfalls near Brisbane

With almost 300 days of sunshine per year, there is always a good time to chase waterfalls or cool off in natural swimming holes in Brisbane.

Only an hour’s drive from Brisbane, you’ll find Mount Tamborine in the Scenic Rim. Dip your toe into the cool waters of Curtis Falls or make a splash and dive right into Cedar Creek Falls. 

Lamington National Park is home to some stunning falls, with Coomera and Yarrabilgong Falls found in the Binna Burra section of the park and Moran Falls just down the road from O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat in the Green Mountains section.

Cedar Creek and Stony Creek, both in the Moreton Bay Region are perfect for a BYO picnic and to let the kids run free to explore the rock pools and cool off in the swimming hole. 

Brisbane beaches

From surf beaches to secluded island bays, there are plenty of places to throw a towel down on a beach near Brisbane.

Cylinder Beach and Main Beach on North Stradbroke Island are perfect for catching a wave or learning to surf if you haven’t hit pro status yet. Not to mention, breathtakingly beautiful.

If you’re heading to Moreton Island you can swim, snorkel, kayak or SUP the waters of Tangalooma Beach or take a dip at picture-perfect Honeymoon Bay. Catch a wave at Eastern Surfside or explore the champagne pools at the North Eastern tip of the island.  

For calmer beaches for safe swimming, take the kids to Bribie Island. Sylvan Beach or Bongaree Beach both provide great options for the kids to frolic in the water, build sandcastles, and burn off some energy in the nearby playground.

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