The Mt Coot-tha Scenic Drive takes a circuitous route through the Mount Coot-tha Forest and Brisbane Forest Park, beginning at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens and Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium before winding past picturesque barbecue and picnic sites to the city's premier lookout. The lookout is a highlight, boasting breathtaking views out to Moreton Bay and the Sunshine Coast Hinterland during the day and Brisbane's glittering cityscape at night.
The entire Mount Coot-tha area is a natural reserve featuring a number of moderate to steep walks throughout the Mt Coot-tha Forest. The open eucalypt forest is home to a range of wildlife, and a huge variety of bird species.
Visit the J C Slaughter Falls Park where a moderate walk will lead you to the semi-rainforest shrouded falls. An Aboriginal art trail adjacent to this walk allows you to view indigenous art blended into the environment.
Begin your journey at the base of Mt Coot-tha and explore the Brisbane Botanic Gardens, Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium and Herbarium.
Brisbane Botanic Gardens at Mt Coot-tha is Queensland's premier subtropical garden. Offering 25 hectares of exotic plants in geographic displays as well as the Australian Plant Communities (27 hectares) which includes the world's largest collection of Australian Native Rainforest trees. It's the perfect place to have a picnic with family and friends.
Turn your attention to the stars at the Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium. See recreations of Brisbane's night sky in the cosmic Skydome, fragments of asteroids and spacecraft models in the Display Zone, short feature shows on astronomy and space missions in the Mini Theatre or stargaze with one of the Planetarium's astronomers in the Observatory.
Turn left onto Sir Samual Griffith Drive and begin the climb up the mountain, displaying breathtaking views of the city.
Take the time to walk the Mt Coot-tha Aboriginal Art Trail. This trail showcases Aboriginal art in its natural setting. You can see how Aboriginal art is used as a way of mapping the land and passing on cultural information.
Next stop is the iconic Brisbane Lookout.
After enjoying the views and lunch or a snack at the Brisbane Lookout, continue along Sir Samuel Griffith Drive. This leg goes through Mt Coot-tha Forest and past the television studios of Channel 7, 9 and 10. There are numerous picnic spots along the way as well as trails suitable for bush walking, horse riding and dirt biking.
The Simpson Falls is a popular area for birdwatching, barbecues and picnics and includes a scenic walk up to the top of the falls.
As you descend down Mt Coot-tha, stop in at JC Slaughter Falls, a picnic area,walking track and waterfall set in the beautiful surrounds of a eucalypt forest.