Brisbane is for brunch, bagels and long bus rides

There was only one way to start our first day in Brisbane, and that was with a good brunch.

After making the hour long trek by bus, from where John and I were staying with my close friend Dani at Nazarene Theological College, we arrived in Brisbane’s beautiful CBD.

Immediately we started on the hunt for a good brunch spot, having begun the search on Instagram during the bus ride but failing to turn up anything within close walking distance.

We stumbled upon Toby’s Estate and I enjoyed smashed avo, feta and lemon on a very healthy but delicious slice of rye sourdough (I didn’t even know that was a thing, but consider me a fan).20150901_11444820150901_113133After our bellies were prepared for the day ahead we took a stroll through Brisbane’s botanic gardens.

These are lovely, peaceful gardens right in the middle of the city and the perfect place to have a picnic, take a nap or enjoy a little walk.

We had fun exploring around the trees with the giant roots. You could walk in between all the branches right to the centre of the tree and through little gaps, it felt a bit like a jungle.20150901_12280920150901_12240320150901_123314

We headed back towards the centre of Brisbane and King George Square. Here sits Brisbane City Hall, an impressive looking building with a tall clock tower.20150901_143614Dani knew of a tour that ran inside City Hall, so we went in to take a look and found they operate small group tours of the clock tower every 15 minutes, and best of all they’re free!

We got there with about three minutes to go until the next tour and somehow nabbed the last three tickets – talk about providence.

For a free activity to do in Brisbane you can’t go past this. They take you up the clock tower in the original hand-operated elevator and you have a few minutes to enjoy the view of the city at the top. On the way down you stop inside the clock face while the bells chime above you.20150901_13293720150901_13265320150901_13202620150901_132124 (1)After all that exploring it was definitely time to refuel and Dani took us to the perfect places to do just that.

At the Noosa Chocolate factory, Dani picked up, what she laid claim to be, ‘the world’s best rocky road’ for sampling later. The verdict by all three of us was that she was, in fact, correct! The Rocky Road doesn’t contain any nuts but is filled with large marshmallow and real jelly layers. So yum!

I also picked up a couple of things for us to try after lunch including, freeze-dried strawberries, blueberries and mango white chocolate. The freeze-dried strawberries were John’s favourite. I enjoyed them also. The strawberry on the inside made your mouth tingle and fizz.20150901_134816The next pit stop was The Bagel Boys for our lunch. I’d actually never had a bagel before so I was excited to try one. I ordered the beet and feta on a rye bagel (yes, rye again).

It wasn’t until a long walk later, when we arrived at a nice shady spot in Southbank, that we actually ate our bagels. 20150901_150108After lunch Dani had to leave us to make her class that afternoon. John and I decided we would try and brave the bus system back ourselves so we could spend more time exploring in Brisbane, we weren’t quite done yet.

It was our search for toilets that led us to accidentally find Brisbane’s museum. We took a little look around at the dinosaur bones and the terrifying, preserved giant squid.

Our final activity for the day was a ride on the Brisbane wheel. The wheel gave great views of the city as a whole and was a lot of fun.20150901_160625 20150901_160549 (1)

When we came off we stumbled upon a very cool looking, friendly lizard. He followed me to the drinking fountain, and I will admit I did freak out when he came right up close.20150901_161734When it was time to go home, thankfully we found our way back out of the city on the bus ok.

It was crazy to reflect on everything we had done that day and think about how normally that would have just been one work day. But I am definitely grateful that I have a job that means I can enjoy things like this.20150901_144201

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