Hi! I’m alive and I’ve landed safely in Australia! I’m officially on the other side of the world to some, although it doesn’t feel like it. The only thing confusing me is time zones; it’s a bit of a pain having to wait for you lot to wake up over in England before you message me back and, chances are, when you do I’m asleep!
But back to the point of this post, Brisbane City! I spent 3 days and 4 nights here in the YHA where I met the most wonderful group of boys and girls and felt instantly comfortable and okay with travelling alone. I knew I had nothing to worry about! The girls which I shared a room with were from Hong Kong, Germany and Italy – they all thought I was Scottish but we had a great time learning slang words in all of our languages and looking each other in the eye when cheersing drinks (apparently it’s a curse of a lifetime of bad sex if you don’t)!
For the first day I wondered around the city, explored the South Bank and then we had a hilarious night trying the local delicacy that is ‘goon’ (wine in a box) and riding the Brisbane wheel drunk. On the second, the girls from the room (Irene from Italy and Marie from Germany) and I went to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, (see pictures below) where we cuddled koalas, hand fed kangaroos and took selfies with them! And on the final day in Brissy I met an old school friend and toured the local bars with him, which was lovely!
Must Sees in Brisbane
- The Brisbane Wheel (South Bank)– Pricey to go on (around $20pp) but worth the money if you want an in depth history of the city and panoramic views from the top.
- Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary (Fig Tree Pocket, Australia has the cutest place names) – Take the bus for a short ride from the city centre to Lone Pine, the worlds oldest and largest Koala Sanctuary, renowned for being the go to place to see and get up close and personal with Australia’s fluffiest marsupial. An adult pass into the sanctuary is around $35 and it’s an additional $18 to hold a koala (includes 1 photo. Additional photo packages are available for an additional cost).
- South Bank Lagoon – Situated on the South Bank is Brisbane’s man-made Lagoon, perfect for cooling off in during a hot day in the city.
Where to Stay
- Brisbane YHA – Lets face it, I had never travelled by myself before jetting off to Australia and therefore I was naive when it came to booking hostels. This would be the first place I would stay upon landing in Australia and so I booked what looked like the comfiest hostel, even going as far to purchase YHA Memrship, which I have not used since (and therefore was not worth the membership fee). It turns out that YHA Hostels, while as nice as any other hostel, are miles away from anything and not the greatest place for meeting likeminded travellers as their main focus is making more money from you instead of hosting social events like some of the other hostels.
- Brisbane Backpackers – Another hostel booked without any prior research, oops. This was the hostel I booked on my return to Brisbane after popping down to Byron Bay and it turned out to be on the opposite side of the city to where I wanted to be, which meant in order to get to my bus on time the next morning I had to wake up an hour early and lug my backpack all the way over the bridge. Yuk.
Onwards now to Surfers Paradise, I’ve heard good and bad things so we shall see how it goes!