Yet another place I didn’t have enough time to explore. This is becoming a bit of a theme on this road trip, isn’t it?
I arrived in Brisbane from the Gold Coast and first thing first, I wanted to visit what might be Australia’s best botanical garden in Mount Coot-tha.This is an absolute must-see if you’re in Brisbane. It’s free to visit and I happily killed four hours here, exploring the Bonsai house, rainforest walk, Japanese garden, fern house and the tropical display dome. Whilst in the area, I stopped by to see the Planetarium too.I drove to the city after that – free parking on Sundays yay! – and saw the Gallery of Modern Art and had a quick stroll down the river bank, already feeling that I absolutely love this city. Unlike Sydney and Melbourne, Brisbane is smaller, more accessible and I seemed to be surrounded by mostly locals rather than tourists. This was a refreshing change after the Gold Coast.I decided to park my camper up in New Town for the night, knowing there was a bunch place I wanted to check out the next day. Little did I know, I got lucky here as New Town is the only neighbourhood in central Brisbane you can park your camper inconspicuously.The next day, I ended up sticking exclusively to New Town for this reason. It was a charming neighbourhood with cool boutique shops, restaurants and a nice waterfront walk. I saw an art gallery, a park and even took a dip in a swimming pool so I could have a cheap shower. This ended up being a huge mistake as I’m not a strong swimmer. I did a lap and a half, then enjoyed a hot shower. My first hot shower since Sydney.
The lifeguard eyed me suspiciously as I was leaving so I made up a story about how I’m facing my fear of open water because I’m due to go snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef. This was true, but my fear was not. But I couldn’t openly say ‘I wanted a cheap shower’ without sounding like a weirdo, so I chatted to the lifeguard for a bit. The conversation was longer than my time in the water if that means anything.For the afternoon, I had plans to see the city, so I drove for a little bit, trying to find a free car parking spot closer to the CBD. After driving around for a bit, I discovered this might be an impossible feat so I returned to New Town and walked over Story Bridge to Kangaroo Point. You can see pretty views of the city over the Brisbane River here. Unfortunately, the storm clouds that had followed me from the Gold Coast were quickly catching up. I hurried back to my van in New Farm and stayed for the night. There was another brunch spot I wanted to visit the next day so I spent one extra night in Brisbane before venturing out to the Glasshouse Mountains.