Move over rainforest walks and secret hike spots, because Brisbane is coming at you with some seriously stunning urban walks. Think gorgeous city-scapes, riverside strolls and enough greenery to have you reconsidering ever needing to leave our humble city.
All you have to do is don your best active wear and pick a path (or four). Completely convinced? Here are the best walks in Brisbane.
Combining the best of North Brisbane’s coastal scenery with the opportunity to stop and partake in more than a few café brunches, the Shorncliffe Walk is nothing to scoff at. Starting from the intersection of Friday Street and Allpass Parade, this 2.5km return track winds along the bayside until it reaches the stunning Shorncliffe Pier. Shorncliffe, and neighbouring Sandgate, are home to a number of heritage-listed buildings and its well-worth keeping your eyes peeled for their facades, which you’ll find peeking out from behind more familiar surroundings.
Kangaroo Point To City
Kangaroo Point, Brisbane City And South Bank
No walking guide to Brisbane would be complete without mention of the Kangaroo Point to City Walk. This 5km inner city walking track covers everything from mangroves to botanic gardens to Riverside’s collection of mouth-watering bars and restaurants. Start your walk at the Maritime Museum, head towards Kangaroo Point for stunning views over the CBD, cross over the Story Bridge, then wind your way back towards the city along the riverfront. With plenty of pitstops to take in the killer views of course.
Not many people know that Boondall has more than just an entertainment centre, let alone an awesome boardwalk through stunning wetlands. On this peaceful ride, you can see a different side to Brisbane and meet some of the wetland creatures, including some very unique bird life.
New Farm To Teneriffe
New Farm And Teneriffe
Traditionally utilised by cycling enthusiasts, locals walking their four-legged companions and the occasional tourist, the New Farm to Teneriffe walk was made for urban exploring. The trail is about 6km return and passes along a leafy riverside path to the Brisbane Powerhouse alongside a number of fur-baby friendly cafes, including Double Shot New Farm. Start your walk at the Sydney Street Ferry, wind your way through Merthyr Park and New Farm Park before arriving at the Brisbane Powerhouse. Your journey will end at the ferry stop, but you could always keep going all the way to the Story Bridge, with just a minor detour through the suburban streets, until you hit the Brisbane Riverwalk below.
If there’s one thing you can say about Brisbanites, it’s that we love our river. The Brisbane Riverwalk takes this passion to a whole new level. The 870m long track juts literally from the deep and allows you to tramp along the most scenic area of the river between New Farm and the historic Howard Street Wharves. The path is segregated for cyclists and walkers, so you can enjoy a relaxing stroll without worrying about being mowed down by a stray peloton. Brisbane Riverwalk also links up with the riverside boardwalk to the CBD, so if you can’t get enough of those river views you can continue exploring straight into the heart of Brisbane. Now that’s what we call a win-win.
Wynnum To Manly Shoreline
Wynnum And Manly
Breath in some salty air along this 10km return walk from Brisbane’s southern bayside promenade to the Manly Boat Harbour—perfect for a sunset photo or two. You'll also take in Wynnum’s 1930-built tidal pool, not to mention plenty of ocean views. All that wide open sea will have you feeling less cooped-up in no time.
The University Of Queensland Loop
Guys, if you’ve never seen the University of Queensland’s St Lucia campus during jacaranda season, you’re not living. UQ—located only a hop, skip and jump from the CBD—is not only a hallowed hall of learning (or dreaded beast, depending on which student you ask) but also doubles as one of the prettiest urban walks in Brisbane. The aptly named UQ Loop winds through the stunning lakes, home to a number of native Australian wildlife, before continuing up into the campus itself, which provides more than a few spots to chill out with a book or mate. Plus, if you time your visit right, you might just spot the adorable fluffy waddle of tiny ducklings. UQ, we’re ready.
West End To QAGOMA
West End And South Brisbane
Over on the other side of the river, West End's riverside walk features wide open pathways all the way up to South Bank. From Davies Park, just follow Riverside Drive along the curve of the river that will eventually bring you to the South Bank Boardwalk, where you nip in to one of the local cafes for a takeaway coffee, or even a Nodo doughnut to reward yourself.
One of Brisbane’s best kept secrets, Toohey Forest Reserve in Tarragindi covers 260 hectares of land, ensuring there's plenty of room to move. There are lots of trails surrounded by super green undergrowth making it a zen place to get away from it all. The best part about Toohey Forest is that pooches are welcome on all the trails.
Starting from the Mt Coot-tha lookout and winding down to the JC Slaughter Falls picnic area, Summit Track is one of the most iconic bushwalks in Brisbane for very good reason. This trail, located only a hop, skip and jump from the CBD, features an aboriginal art trail, a gushing waterfall (after a good rain day) and spectacular views over the city from the summit. Sunset is a particular favourite, as the sun paints the sky in the most gorgeous colours, while many locals use the trail purely for exercise. Trust us, those killer views are definitely worth the effort.
Springwood Conservation Park
What used to be a quarry site is now a hidden forest paradise set in the middle of suburban Brisbane. The area boasts caves and cliffs, a gorge and rocks precariously balanced atop one another as well as wildlife including koalas and sugar gliders. Try the short Stringybark Lookout track at 570m or the Gorge Discover Circuit at 1.45km which will take you out to the gorge and back. Just be prepared to tackle a deathly set of stairs that will put your buns and legs to the test.
Daisy Hill Conservation Park
Daisy Hill Conservation Park is a slice of natural paradise right on Brisbane’s doorstop. The Buhot Creek Circuit covers 9km of towering eucalyptus trees, tranquil waterholes and a plethora of Australian wildlife—including kookaburras and the odd wallaby.
Had enough of walking? Here are the best bike trails around Brisbane.
Image credit: Brisbane Local Marketing