Unusual activities to do in Brisbane

Think you’ve done everything Brisbane has to offer? Think again! Here’s a list of quirky things to do around Brisbane, from finding your inner Picasso to getting involved in a public games night with the locals.

Visit the old Brisbane Gaol
Just 3km from the CBD is the site of one of Australia’s most notorious former prisons. Originally opened in 1883 as Brisbane Gaol, today, 24 years after its closure as a prison, the Boggo Road Gaol is open to the public with a variety of tours on offer. For an authentic perspective on the life and times of the gaol, time your visit with an ex-inmate/ex-officer tour where your guide will be either a former prisoner or former warden of the gaol.

Sunnybank Plaza Sunnybank Plaza

See where to eat and shop for the best Asian food
Renowned tour guide and chef Tony Ching offers an inside look into where to find the best Asian food in Sunnybank. Along the way you’ll also get great tips on choosing the best produce and ingredients to make your favourite dishes. Lunch or dinner is provided depending on the time of your tour, and the afternoon tours end with a visit to several vibrant restaurants. Participants receive a takeaway bag of goodies and you can also sign up for an optional cooking class to take along with the tour.

Play gigantic games with the locals
Games Night is a monthly free public event that takes place one night every month between Post Office Square and the Valley Malls. On this one night, anyone – stranger or friend – is welcome to play giant-sized versions of the world’s favourite games, including Scrabble, Jenga, Dominos, Connect Four and many more. Regular-sized games and board games like Cluedo, Pictionary and Monopoly are also available, and attendees are encouraged to bring their own games to the event. This is a fantastic way to get to know some of the locals and have a free night of fun, so check upcoming dates at the website.

Brisbane public art Brisbane public art

Follow a public art trail
Learn about the Brisbane River and the city’s development by following the 2.4km Art and the River Public Art Trail. Starting on the Kangaroo Point side of the Goodwill Bridge and Maritime Museum, the trail heads downstream along the river finishing at the Thornton Street ferry terminal, before a short detour atop the Kangaroo Point Cliffs. Along the route you will see 12 installations telling the story of the city’s connection with the river, including the maritime and industrial history of the city and Expo ’88 – Brisbane’s biggest party ever.

Travel secret: Hire one of the Brisbane City Council bikes and cycle the route to get a bit of exercise and save money on transport. There is a cycle station at both ends of the route, and one near the steep steps to the top of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs.

Brisbane City Bikes Brisbane City Bikes

Have a drink while creating art
Unleash your inner Picasso while enjoying your favourite drink at Brisbane’s first and only paint and sip workshop at Cork & Chroma. Located in the inner city suburb of West End in the heart of the arts district, you’ll be guided by an artist to paint your very own masterpiece to take home. During the two-and-a-half-hour workshop you’ll also learn some basic acrylic painting techniques. No artistic flair necessary, just a desire to have some laughs along the way. Paint and sip sessions are popular with the locals, so book early.

By Monica McInnes

Monica has been fortunate to have travelled or lived in all of Australia's state's and territories, but her heart is in her hometown of Brisbane, Queensland. Passionate about travelling and writing about her exploits, you can find her camping, skiing, bushwalking, museum hopping or sipping a latte and dreaming about her next adventure.

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