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A Day Out on the CityCat

by Sally Foster (follow)
The perfect Brisbane day out on the River

Is there anything more lovely than Brisbane in the Springtime? The weather is just warming up, nothing but blue skies and the trees are just beginning to break out in flower. It is the perfect time of year to get out on the water and soak in the sights of Brisbane.

Credit: Visit Brisbane Website

The City Cat is a wonderful way to get around some of the most popular water front suburbs and sights of Brisbane. Operating seven days a week with regular services every 15 minutes for most of the day, you can hop on and hop off at whichever stop suits your fancy. Terminals are located along the Brisbane River between UQ St Lucia and Northshore Hamilton.

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Check out the stops and timetable here.

So what are some of the best stops along the CityCat? Pack a picnic, pop your little ones in the prams or in their best walking shoes and head out for a fun filled family day at some of these spots:

1. Northshore Riverside Park, Hamilton

A lovely place to spend a few hours, or even a day, Northshore boasts the lovely Northshore Harbour Cafe right on the water, as well as a small sandy beach for dipping your toes in. With a new, very small but picturesque, pirate playground, there is also lots of green areas with imagination play areas, barbecues and places to kick a ball.

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The ferry terminal is also really close by to Eat Street Markets, which is Brisbane's premier foodie destination. With more food and drink than you could every possibly try, there is also live music to keep you entertained.

Credit: Visit Brisbane Website

2. Apollo Road and Oxford Street, Bulimba

Apollo Road is the gateway to Oxford Street at Bulimba which is a bustling and trendy strip filled with cafes, shops and restaurants. Perfect for a morning brunch.

3. Brett's Wharf, Hamilton

If you are looking for a day out at the races, Brett's Wharf is close by to Eagle Farm and Doomben racecourses. There is often family run events there. Also close by is Racecourse Road at Ascot, which has cafes, restaurants and shops, as well as Portside, which is another foodie destination. Portside is where the cruise ships pull in, so there are many many international restaurant options to choose from.

4. Commercial Road, Teneriffe

Teneriffe is undoubtedly one of the most picturesque suburbs of Brisbane. Surrounded by historical residential buildings, you will feel like you are brushing up against the fanciest brunch spots that Brisbane has to offer. Perfect for people watching.

5. Gordon Park, Hawthorne

Hardcastle Park at Hawthorne is located right at the ferry terminal, so if you are looking for a wonderful playground to take the kids, then this is the place for you.

6. New Farm Park

Arguably the best park in Brisbane, New Farm Park is an icon for locals. With a fantastic all ages playground interwoven amongst the fig trees, the bustling weekend markets and the vibrant events held at Powerhouse Markets, there is something here for everyone. Even just having a picnic on the lush lawns and gardens makes for the perfect day out.

Credit: Visit Brisbane Website

7. Holman Street, Kangaroo Point

The closest spot to the iconic Story Bridge, you can even organise a bridge climb at certain parts of the day. You can watch the sun come up, or even do a twilight climb as a family. Otherwise you can have a play at Captain Burke Park, which is an excellent playground.

8. Eagle Street Pier

The financial district of Brisbane City, Eagle Street offers some spectacular riverside restaurants, including some very family friendly ones. You can take a beautiful walk along the riverwalk and get some exercise in the fresh air.

9. Thornton Street, Kangaroo Point

The Kangaroo Point Cliffs are extremely popular with rock climbers, but also a really popular place for picnics. After the Commonwealth Games, there is now some outdoor games that you can enjoy for free like the open air table tennis table.

10. Dock Street, South Brisbane

This is the closest stop to the Goodwill Bridge which is a wonderful bridge to walk across and take in the Brisbane City skyline views. It leads straight into the Brisbane Botanic Gardens which has a wonderful playground for the kids and lots of space for a picnic.

11. South Bank Parklands

The best spot in Brisbane and one of the places that makes this city so special. Go for a swim in the lagoon, check out the multiple playgrounds, take in the free children's activities that are often run in the amphitheatre, or even visit the Cultural Centre for the museum, science centre, state library and art gallery.

12. Queens Wharf Road, North Quay

This terminal gives access to Roma Street Parklands which are an incredible oasis close to the city. There are playgrounds, a duck pond and even a little train that you can ride around the park.

13. UQ St Lucia

More than just a university, UQ is actually a really wonderful day trip for families. You can have a picnic on the lawns and have a stroll through the beautiful grounds. Just be careful for all the ducks and geese that roam around which may want to steal your food!

These are just some of the highlights. If you have any more you want to add, please do not hesitate to comment below!

While you have to pay for the CityCat, if you want a free day out, the CityHopper runs ferries every 30 minutes between 6am and midnight, seven days a week. It stops at North Quay, South Bank 3, Maritime Museum, Thornton Street, Eagle Street Pier, Holman Street, Dockside and Sydney Street terminals. Check out the map here.

Have a lovely day on your CityCat adventure!

Did I miss any highlights? Please let us know in the comments below!

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