It’s relatively easy to navigate around Brisbane. For a city of its breadth the width, you’ll find good connections for public transport as well as plenty of taxis or rental car options. TIP: All buses, ferries, CityCats and trains operate on the go card system (aside from free services). Purchasing a go card from a bus or train station or convenience store will ensure cheaper fares and a more fluid public transport experience. Plan your public transport journey through the excellent TransLink website.
Brisbane’s CBD is perfect for walkers, with attractions on both sides of the river accessible via several bridges connecting the city heart to the South Bank cultural precinct. Walking can be more challenging if you venture further afield. Inner-city Paddington’s hills, for example, will test you.
The city is served by a comprehensive bus network with sometimes express delivery between CBD and inner suburbs via exclusive bus ways and lanes.
The Loop is a free bus that circles the city area stopping at QUT Gardens Point, City Botanical Gardens, Queen Street Mall, Central Station and Riverside. Operating every 10 minutes on weekdays between 7am and 6pm, buses rule the city, connecting the suburbs to CBD in a fast, effective network.
The Blue CityGlider and Maroon CityGlider buses run 24 hours over the weekend. The Blue Glider connects West End, City and Valley, while the Maroon Glider connects Ashgrove and Stones Corner via Paddington, the City and Woolloongabba.
NightLink services operate from midnight until around 5am from entertainment precincts Fortitude Valley and Brisbane City. Most buses will issue you a paper ticket on board, however some buses (such as the Gliders) only accept go cards.
The River City makes great use of its waterways, providing effective transport that also doubles as a great mode for sightseeing. A free CityHopper ferry service runs every 30 minutes along the Brisbane River from North Quay to Sydney Street from 6am and midnight, seven days a week.
The CityCat and CityFerry services operate up and down stream seven days a week with regular services every 15-20 minutes during the day. Paper tickets are available on board, however using a go card means cheaper trips and extra convenience.
Brisbane is bike-friendly with many designated bicycle lanes and cycle routes in and around the centre, including the dedicated cycle and pedestrian bridge linking the city’s Gardens Point with South Bank and its parklands. The city council runs the CityCycle bike hire scheme with 150 pick-up and return stations around Brisbane.
In Brisbane, you are required by law to wear a helmet when riding a bike. It takes just a few minutes online to register for an account (you can also link up your go card), before you can and hop on a bike.
They’re available 24 hours, seven days a week. TIP: You can ride all day for free (aside from the $2 subscription fee) by returning the bike at half-hour intervals. The fees increase by the half hour ranging from $2.20 for up to 60 minutes. Users must be at least 17 years old.
Queensland Rail operates Brisbane’s train network. Citytrain runs over nearly 700 kilometres in and around Brisbane and surrounding areas, extending to the Gold and Sunshine Coasts, Morerton Bay, Ipswich and the Airport. The AirTrain is privately owned and is a flat rate of $17 one way.
Taxis are metered and reasonably priced. You can easily flag one down at designated taxi stands outside hotels, and throughout the City and Fortitude Valley precincts. During peak hours and for more timely travel, it is often best to phone ahead or use a booking app.