The ultimate tour guide for anyone new to Brisbane

Brisbane city explore bike

Whether it be permanent or just temporary, welcome to the city of good food, great nightlife and incredible adventures. Brisbane is a pretty big city and at first it can be overwhelming trying to navigate your way around and learn about all this city has to offer. 

To help you get to know your new city, MyBrisbane has compiled a list of some of Brisbane’s city, river and bridge tours. Believe it or not, here in Brisbane there are more ways to explore the city than you’d think: by foot, car, bus, bicycle, segway, kayak, boat – you name it. You’ll find at least one of each listed below. 

City Tours

By foot

Explore your new city by foot in this three hour City Essentials walking tour run by The Big Bus. The tour covers all the main city-centre sights, taking you where buses can’t. You will see King George Square, the Story Bridge, the City Botanic Gardens, Queensland’s oldest church, Eagle Street Pier, the City Hall Clocktower and much more. To book click here.

You can also explore the city in a guided walk operated by the Brisbane Visitor Centre. During the 1.5 hour guided walk, you will see City Hall, Treasury Casino, Queens Gardens, the Old State Library, the Botanic Gardens, Old Government House and the statue of Queen Victoria. Bookings essential. For more information and to book call (07) 3006 6290.

By bus

Sit back, relax and enjoy a day spent exploring your city. The Big Bus runs a handful of tours in Brisbane City including a morning city tour and river cruise, an afternoon city tour and brewery visit and a full day city tour and river cruise – what a score!

For more information, prices and to book visit or call 1300 330 189. 

By bicycle

Enjoy a bike ride around some of Brisbane’s best spots while also learning about the city’s history and landmarks with cycling tours on offer by Brisbane by Bicycle. There are tours to suit everyone including a morning tour, essentials tour, Eat Street Markets tour (with river cruise return) or a summer twilight tour. For more information and to book visit

For those who wish to see Brisbane unguided, you can find CityCycle bicycles docked in and around the city at one of the 150 Brisbane stations. Available for hiring and returning 24/7. For more information visit

Image: @ashleyandrew_ – Brisbane City explored by CityCycle

By segway

Here in Brisbane we like to keep it interesting. Jump on a segway and explore all Brisbane has to offer and have fun while doing it! Whether you’re a first-timer or more advanced, Kangaroo Segway Tours offers tours for everyone. For more information or to book visit If you’re after something a little bit different, this after dark segway tour is the perfect opportunity for you to admire the city’s vibrant skyline as it comes to life at night. 

By kayak

What better way to see Brisbane than by kayaking down the river on a beautiful summer’s day. Whether you are a first time or experienced paddler, this guided kayak session will allow you to experience seeing Brisbane in an entirely unique way. To experience two full hours of kayaking down the Brisbane river in full daylight, you can book a tour here. But if you’re after something even more niche, this 90 minute illuminated river night kayak tour is the one for you.

Image: @shawreelkayaking down the Brisbane river

By e-scooter

It’s no doubt you’ve already seen e-scooters left in random locations all over the city. Yep, they have practically taken over Brisbane! Now, you can join in on the craze and explore the city by jumping on a Lime Scooter or Neuron Scooter at any time in the day or night. To start riding, download the app and follow the instructions.

City Botanic Gardens

The City Botanic Gardens is the place to be if you want to escape the crowds and discover one of Brisbane’s most tranquil destinations. Explore the City Botanic Gardens in this hour-long free, guided discovery tour on January 28. For more information click here. Alternatively, you can go on a City Botanic Gardens self-guided walk.

Please note: guided walks will return on Monday January 27, 2020. For groups of more than 10 phone (07) 3403 2535. 

River Tours

Brisbane City is built around the Brisbane River (also known locally as ‘the brown snake’), so it’s only fitting that you are able to see the city from the water in a handful of river tours on offer. If you love the idea of seeing your new city from the water but kayaking just isn’t for you, here are some river cruises you are sure to enjoy: River City Cruises, a Brisbane River Sightseeing Cruise, a lunchtime river cruise by Kookaburra Showboat Cruises and a river dinner cruise

Bridge Tours

It’s time to conquer your fear of heights. New city, new adventure! Since your arrival in Brisbane it’s no doubt you would have noticed the Story Bridge standing tall over the Brisbane River. The bridge, built in 1940, connects Fortitude Valley and Kangaroo Point.

Climb the Story Bridge at day or night and enjoy 360 degree views of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, the Glass House Mountains, Lamington National Park and the Brisbane River. For all the thrill seekers out there, earlier this month Story Bridge Adventure Climb also welcomed two brand new experiences – ‘cantilever lean out’ and ‘walk the plank’! For more information about the experience and to book click here.

Just to keep it interesting, for those who love running, there is also a 13km Bridges of Brisbane running tour you can participate in. For information and to book click here.

Jess is a journalist who grew up on the Sunshine Coast before relocating to Sydney to finish her final years of schooling and then returning to Brisbane for university. Her passions lay in food and drink, event and entertainment editorial pieces and she enjoys keeping up to date with all things Brisbane. She credits her dedication, passion and love for journalism to her time spent in Gladstone as a cadet journalist – what she considers her most valuable experience in the field to date. On her days off (which are rare) you will find her with an almond chai latte in one hand and a book in another while probably still answering her work emails