Brisbane city tours make for a great day out for any ecotourist considering holidaying in Australia. The largest and most populated city in Australia, Brisbane is renowned for it's relaxed atmosphere and beautiful weather and is definitely a city for those looking for relaxation, whilst not worrying about their carbon footprint.
Brisbane city tours for the green traveller
Citycycle is a fun and convenient way of getting around Brisbane, for as little as $11 a week you can pay for a subscription that allows you to use one while on holiday, with the added bonus of never having to worry about locking it up or leaving it somewhere should you have plans for the evening. With 150 cycle stations, which are never more than 500 meters apart, you can pay your fee and grab a bike from any station and return it to any other station you want, whenever you want. The service is easy to use and definitely worth considering when visiting this great city.
A good base whilst visiting Brisbane
In the heart of Brisbane you will find the Econo Lodge City Star, a very good eco-friendly hotel for the green traveller. Located at Kangaroo Point and around 20 minutes drive from the airport, the Econo Lodge has the the environmental 'star of approval', so you can sleep safely knowing that you have picked accommodation that is concerned with the environment.
For those on a budget, there are more affordable options in Brisbane and as you can imagine, there are plenty of options available for those looking to stay in a hostel in Brisbane. With hundreds of thousands of backpackers visiting Australia every year it can be difficult to know which one to choose.
The Base Brisban Central Hostel is a good option as it combines good facilities with a convenient location. What's more, prices start at just over ?12 per night, so its not bad on the pocket at all. The hostel itself is located very close to the train station and there is a 24 hour check-in, so for those arriving late at night there is no need to call ahead. If you're planning on visiting more than one city on your trip to Australia, then you should definitely look further into this option. With hostels in other cities discounted packages are available, so you can pay one fee and stay at other hostels whilst you're touring the country.
Things to do for the green traveller in Brisbane
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is the biggest Koala sanctuary in the world and was recently voted one of the top ten zoos in the world. The sanctuary gives visitors the opportunity to see animals native to Australia in their natural habitat. Prices start at around ?12/$22; however, family passes can be obtained at a good discount.
For those who really want to immerse themselves in the various wildlife's habitat for a day, you can pay a fee and work as a keeper and learn a lot more about the wide variety of creatures ranging from lizards to the Tasmanian Devil. Whether its stroking Koalas or handling, snakes there are plenty of hands-on ways to enjoy yourself while visiting the sanctuary.
There are several parks worth visiting in Brisbane, but for me Roma Street Parkland is the one that really stands out. Located near the city centre, the park has a huge amount of things to do, ranging from guided tours to a beautiful picnic area. One of the unique aspects to the park is the variety of artwork spread throughout the area. Many local artists have contributed to the park and if you're interested in learning more, you can take a tour of the art, as well as the unique gardens. There is a caf? on site, but with BBQ and picnic areas throughout, as well as Brisbane's fantastic climate, you should consider taking your own food and relaxing for the day.
The Kookaburra River Queens provide cruises down the river and offer a variety of cruises from day trips to see the sites to evening excursions that will allow you to see the city lit up whilst enjoying a meal. There are also live bands, dancing and special events, with plenty going on throughout the year.
Places to eat for the ecotourist in Brisbane
Located in Eagle Street is the Nagomi Restaurant; this authentic Japanese restaurant is environmentally conscious, as well as having a good and affordable menu. It has some great reviews, especially the lunch menu and is located by the river and has such a calming atmosphere, this would be an ideal stop for a relaxing lunch.
Mondo Organics is an ideal choice for those who like their food natural; this restaurant uses locally sourced food from farms, fair trade coffee and avoids using any GM products. Mondo also has a take away menu, so if you are considering a picnic in the Brisbane sun but you don't fancy doing all the hard work, then this is a good option.
Brisbane is still a city that is really in its infancy. At less than 200 years old it may not have as long a history as many cities around the world, but that certainly doesn't mean it isn't worth a visit. For the ecotourist, this is a city that is concerned with self sustainability. There are many wonderful restaurants selling local produce, some beautiful parks for relaxing in and plenty of eco-friendly transport. The city also has a strong green ethos and is sure to keep improving over the coming years.
Photo credit by stephenk1977