If you’re itching for a weekend getaway from the bustling streets of Brisbane, you’ve come to the right place.
And who better to guide you through these incredible escapes than Olivia from Defining Decade, a true-blue Aussie, born and bred in Brisbane?
In this blog post, she is going to take you on a journey through the eyes of a local, exploring the best weekend getaways from Brisbane.
Whether you’re seeking coastal adventures or hinterland hideaways this insider’s guide will help you plan the perfect weekend escape from the heart of Queensland’s capital.
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12 Weekend Getaways from Brisbane
Let’s dive into the best weekend getaways from Brisbane.
K’gari Island (formerly Fraser Island) – a great Brisbane weekend trip
K’gari Island, located off the coast of Queensland, is a pristine and captivating destination that’s earned its spot as the world’s largest sand island.
The island is renowned for its unique landscapes, including the stunning Lake McKenzie with its crystal-clear two-toned waters, the rusted remains of the SS Maheno shipwreck on the beach, and the breathtaking Champagne Pools where you can take a refreshing dip.
K’gari Island’s rainforests are home to diverse native wildlife, including dingoes, a variety of birds, and echidnas.
One of the island’s highlights is its sand tracks, perfect for 4WD adventures. You can explore the island at your own pace, from driving along the sandy beaches to through the rainforest. If you’re a fan of looking up at the stars, Fraser Island’s dark skies make it an ideal spot to observe the Milky Way and other celestial wonders.
The island also offers a range of accommodation options, from camping under the stars for budget Aussie travellers to eco-friendly resorts, ensuring there’s a place for every type of traveller. Whether you’re camping by the beach, exploring the island’s unique landscapes, or simply unwinding in the natural beauty of Fraser Island, it promises a wonderful weekend getaway from Brisbane.
Top tour on Fraser Island – 4-Hour Eco Sailing Adventure
North Stradbroke Island
North Stradbroke Island, known as “Straddie” to us locals, is undeniably one of the best weekend getaways from Brisbane. Just a short ferry ride away from the mainland, Straddie feels like a world apart.
As an Aussie who grew up in Brisbane, I can vouch for its allure. First off, the island is a paradise for beach lovers. From the pristine white sands of Main Beach to the rugged beauty of Cylinder Beach, you’ll find plenty of gorgeous stretches of coastline. Whether you’re keen on swimming, surfing, or simply sunbaking, Straddie has you covered.
But it’s not just about the beaches. Stradbroke boasts an abundance of wildlife, including dolphins, kangaroos, and even humpback whales during migration season.
Take a scenic walk along the North Gorge Walk for incredible ocean views and wildlife sightings.
Plus, you can explore the island’s rich Aboriginal heritage at the North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum.
Whether you’re seeking relaxation or adventure, North Stradbroke Island has that laid-back, beachy vibe that makes it a quintessential weekend getaway from Brisbane.
Moreton Island – the perfect weekend escape from Brisbane
Moreton Island is another hidden gem for a weekend getaway from Brisbane. I can’t recommend it enough as someone who’s explored this natural wonder countless times.
Located just a hop, skip, and a ferry ride away from the city, Moreton Island is a tropical paradise on Brisbane’s doorstep.
One of the standout features is the iconic Tangalooma Wrecks, where you can snorkel among sunken ships and vibrant marine life.
The island’s crystal-clear waters are also perfect for dolphin-feeding experiences at the Tangalooma Island Resort. That’s right get up close and personal with dolphins as you feed them in the shallows!
Don’t miss sand tobogganing on the island’s massive sand dunes, where you can slide down the slopes for a truly unique, yet epic experience.
There are also numerous hiking trails, including the trek to the stunning Cape Moreton Lighthouse, offering panoramic views of the island. And let’s not forget about the mesmerizing Champagne Pools and the tranquil Blue Lagoon, both perfect for unwinding and enjoying the island’s natural beauty.
Top Tour on Moreton Island – Dolphin and Tangalooma Wrecks Day Cruise
The Bunya Mountains, located in the heart of Queensland, is a pristine wilderness that’s a must-visit for anyone seeking a tranquil weekend getaway from Brisbane.
One of the highlights of a visit here is the opportunity to explore an ancient rainforest ecosystem that’s unlike any other in Australia. Hike through a range of scenic trails that lead you through dense forests, past cascading waterfalls, and mesmerizing lookout points.
Keep an eye out for the abundant birdlife and wildlife, including loads of wallabies, that call the Bunya Mountains home.
And, of course, you can’t visit without participating in a quintessential bunya nut festival if your timing aligns with this traditional Indigenous event. It’s a rare chance to connect with the cultural history of the area.
The Bunya Mountains offer a serene and captivating escape that’s perfect for unwinding and reconnecting with nature, all just a short drive from Brisbane.
Just a stone’s throw away from Brisbane, Mount Tamborine is a beloved weekend retreat that holds a special place in the hearts of locals. It’s a place where the pace of life slows down, and nature’s beauty takes centre stage.
At Mount Tamborine, you’ll discover rainforest walks, cascading waterfalls, and panoramic lookout points. Stroll through the canopy of towering trees in the Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk or embark on a hiking adventure to reach the mesmerizing Curtis Falls.
Plus, the vibrant Gallery Walk is a charming strip of art galleries, boutique shops, and cafes, making it a delightful spot to explore. And don’t forget to stop in at the local fudge shop for some free tastings!
Wine lovers take note: Tamborine is known for its boutique wineries and distilleries, so a tasting session or two is an absolute must.
Whether you’re hiking through the tranquil rainforest, sipping local wines, or simply savouring the fresh mountain air, Mount Tamborine offers a wonderful escape that’s just a short drive from the hustle and bustle of Brisbane.
Enjoy a half-day winery Tour From Mount TambourineBook Now
Twin Waters, located on the picturesque Sunshine Coast of Queensland, is a coastal paradise that is nothing short of spectacular.
The centrepiece of Twin Waters is its stunning waterfront location, with the tranquil Maroochy River on one side and the pristine Mudjimba Beach on the other. You can spend your days kayaking along the river, stand-up paddleboarding, or simply basking in the sun on the sandy shores. Golf enthusiasts will appreciate the challenging Twin Waters Golf Club.
One of the standout features of Twin Waters is the Novotel Twin Waters Resort, which offers a wide range of amenities, including a restaurant and bar, and a range of pools. The resort is an ideal base for exploring the region, whether you want to visit the nearby Australia Zoo, go hiking in the nearby national parks, or simply relax and enjoy the coastal ambience.
And, Twin Waters Resort is home to kangaroos and wallabies or bask in the beautiful scenery, particularly as the sun begins to set so make sure to keep your eyes peeled.
Noosa – weekend getaways for couples
Noosa, located on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, is a coastal gem that captivates the hearts of locals and visitors alike. Noosa’s charm is defined by its pristine beaches, national parks, and vibrant dining scene.
The main draw of Noosa is its stunning Main Beach, a perfect spot for swimming and surfing, and the iconic Noosa National Park, where you can explore scenic coastal trails and may even spot dolphins or koalas.
The bustling Hastings Street is a hub of activity with its boutique shops, art galleries, and world-class restaurants, making it an excellent place to unwind at the end of the day. Noosa also offers a unique blend of outdoor activities, from paddleboarding on the Noosa River to kayaking in the serene Everglades.
Noosa’s laid-back yet sophisticated atmosphere, combined with its natural beauty and outdoor adventures, makes it a top choice for a weekend getaway from Brisbane.
Stanthorpe – a country getaway from Brisbane
Stanthorpe, located in the Granite Belt region of Queensland, is a charming and picturesque town that offers a great escape from the Brisbane city buzz. As someone who has spent several family getaways in the area, I can vouch for Stanthorpe’s unique appeal, especially for those seeking a tranquil countryside retreat.
The town is renowned for its vineyards and wineries, producing some of Australia’s finest cool-climate wines. A visit to Stanthorpe isn’t complete without exploring the Granite Belt Wine Country, where you can enjoy wine tastings, cellar door experiences, and even cheese platters amid the vineyard landscapes.
The region also has delicious fresh produce that you can sample including, apples, olives, and artisan cheeses at the various farmers’ markets and boutique stores.
The town itself is filled with quaint cafes, art galleries, and cosy accommodation options, making it a perfect base.
Girraween National Park is a must, for exploring its unique granite formations and tackling the stunning hiking trails.
Gold Coast – weekend away from Brisbane for all the family
The Gold Coast, located over an hour’s drive from Brisbane, is an iconic destination in Australia. It’s a place where stunning beaches, thrilling theme parks, and a bustling city scene come together.
The Gold Coast is known for its golden sands and world-famous surf breaks. Whether you’re catching waves at Surfers Paradise, exploring the quieter beaches of Burleigh Heads, or simply sunbaking along the coastline, there’s no shortage of beachside fun. For thrill-seekers, the Gold Coast boasts some of the best theme parks in Australia, including Dreamworld, Warner Bros. Movie World, and Wet’n’Wild, offering a dose of adrenaline and family-friendly fun.
But the Gold Coast is more than just its beaches and theme parks. It’s also a cultural hub with a thriving dining and nightlife scene. Explore the trendy cafes and restaurants of Broadbeach, or hit the iconic Cavill Avenue in Surfers Paradise for a night out.
The Gold Coast provides the perfect balance of relaxation and excitement for weekend getaways from Brisbane.
Bryon Bay – Brisbane weekend getaway for friends
Byron Bay, situated in northern New South Wales, is an iconic coastal destination drawing people from all over the world, including Zac Efron and Chris Hemsworth.
Byron is renowned for its pristine beaches, including the famous Main Beach, Clarkes Beach, and the more secluded Tallow Beach. Whether you’re into surfing, relaxing with a good book, or simply strolling along the shores, Byron Bay’s beaches offer the perfect setting. The Cape Byron Lighthouse, perched atop the easternmost point of Australia, provides breathtaking panoramic views and the chance to spot migrating whales during the season.
Byron Bay’s vibrant arts and cultural scene are also worth exploring. The town boasts a thriving community of artists, musicians, and creatives, creating a lively atmosphere filled with art galleries, live music venues, and eclectic markets. The town’s bustling heart along Jonson Street offers a variety of boutique shops, health-conscious eateries, and cafes serving locally sourced cuisine.
For nature enthusiasts, a hike in the nearby rainforests of Nightcap National Park or a visit to the hinterland to explore gorgeous waterfalls are a must.
Byron Bay offers a unique blend of relaxation, culture, and natural beauty, making it an ideal weekend getaway from Brisbane, just a 2-hour drive away.
Top Tour: Sunset Eco Rainforest River CruiseBook Now
You may be interested in reading Things To Do in Lennox Head just 20 minutes away
Montville – a romantic escape from Brisbane
Montville is a gem in the Sunshine Coast hinterlands that offers a charming and picturesque village, perfect for escaping the hustle and bustle of city life.
This quaint village is home to stunning scenery, with rolling green hills, rainforests, and panoramic views that stretch out to the Sunny Coast coastline. The main street of Montville is filled with boutique shops, art galleries, and cosy cafes. Stroll along the main street and explore the unique offerings, from handcrafted goods to locally made fudge.
The surrounding natural beauty provides ample opportunities for outdoor lovers. The nearby Kondalilla National Park offers a network of walking trails leading to the magnificent Kondalilla Falls, where you can cool off in the freshwater rock pool.
If you’re looking for a romantic escape, Montville’s luxury cottages and bed-and-breakfasts provide a tranquil retreat. Montville and its surrounding region are also known for their boutique wineries, where you can enjoy wine-tasting sessions. Sip on award-winning wines and savour the flavours of the Sunshine Coast while taking in picturesque vineyard settings.
Bribie Island, located off the coast of Queensland, is a spot that offers an unspoiled escape for those seeking a weekend getaway from Brisbane.
One of the island’s main draws is its stunning beaches. Bribie Island boasts both calm, family-friendly beaches along the Pumicestone Passage and the rugged, surf-worthy waves of Woorim Beach on the eastern side. It draws water sports enthusiasts, with opportunities for swimming, paddleboarding, kayaking, and even fishing.
The Bribie Island National Park covers a significant portion of the island and is home to diverse wildlife and ecosystems. You can take a walk along the hiking tracks or explore the wilderness on a 4WD adventure. Keep an eye out for the island’s resident kangaroos, wallabies, and a wide variety of bird species.
Bribie Island also offers an array of outdoor activities, including golfing, boating, and birdwatching. You can visit the Bribie Island Seaside Museum to learn about the island’s history and its unique natural environment.
Olivia is an accomplished Australian travel blogger in her 20s on a mission to seize every opportunity, one destination at a time. Her blog Defining Decade is here to be your trusty travel sidekick, your go-to for inspiration, and your roadmap for making the most of this pivotal chapter in your life. Every adventure lays the foundation for the amazing paths that lie ahead, let’s create memories that your future self will truly envy.
Travel Information for Brisbane Weekend Getaways
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