3rd January 2017
Today we drove 51 miles to the river city of Brisbane. Brisbane was named after Scottish born Sir Thomas Brisbane. It began as a prison without walls for convicts who had recommitted crimes in New South Wales after being shipped from England for committing crimes. This area is now known as the Brisbane central business district.
We are currently staying in an apartment at the Meriton building, Hershel Street which is the tallest building in Brisbane.. so we shouldn’t get lost!
4th January 2017
Today we wanted to explore Brisbane so we headed across the river to Southbank where we found theatres, restaurants and lagoon style swimming pools free for the city to use. After a brief look around we headed back to Brisbanes CBD to the City Hall (known as the million pound hall) which is home to the Museam of Brisbane. It was nice to learn a bit about Brisbanes history and present day values.
My favourite section in the museum was an exhibition called 100% Brisbane and in particular a section called Brisbane DNA which is the first of its kind. It explores the thoughts and real lives of Brisbanes residents to reveal the heart of modern day Brisbane. It is supposed to create a reflection on our own lives and the world around us. The exhibition involved an interactive experience which allowed you to have your say about who you are, as well as how you feel about the part of the world you are from. We had a go at the radio booth which selects people’s stories to go on the local ABC Brisbane radio but I’m pretty sure ours won’t be chosen!
After all the walking around stopping briefly at the Myer shopping Centre and Queen St Mall it was nice to return home and chill out! Today we got a feel for the city, it definitely feels a lot more laid back here compared to similar cities such as Melbourne.
5th January 2017
Today we visited Lone Pina Koala Sanctuary which is home to 130 Koalas, Dingos, Wombats, Wallabies, Kangeroo and Platypus! It’s the worlds first and largest Koala Sanctuary.
We were VIPs for the day which meant we had our own personal keeper who took us around the sanctuary to visit the Koala Kindergartens (which were adorable) and the Koala retirement home! We were able to meet a Koala Vet who showed us how to give them medicine. We watched as she gave Mr Peabody (a male Koala) medicine disguised in Paste which he seemed very happy to eat.
Next it was our turn to hold a Koala! We’ve both been looking forward to this for the whole trip so was amazing to finally be here! We held an adult male called Maximus who weighed 9kg. We had to hold our hands out as if they were branches and we were the tree so the Koala would sit confidently. It was amazing to be holding one of these beautiful animals and I could’ve cuddled him all day!
We were then allowed to enter the enclosure of the Koala Forest. It was so funny to see them sleeping whilst balancing on the tiniest branch. We learnt how Koalas are currently at risk of being endangered basically because of human impact. Their habitats are being destroyed which had led to smaller groups of Koalas going their separate ways. They are in danger of being hit crossing on the roads and they were hunted in their millions a hundred years ago which has majorly decreased their numbers. That’s why at the sanctuary it was amazing seeing so many Koalas together, a sight we surprisingly haven’t been able to see so far on our journey through Australia. I think I’ve found my new favourite animal.
6th January 2017
Today we went to DFO, Brisbanes Designer Factory Outlets. As soon as we stepped out of the car it chucked it down so we ended up looking around the shops soaking wet.
7th January 2017
Today we did a little bit of souvenir and gift shopping then we went to the Brisbane Event cinema to see the new Disney film Moana which was really good! I may have shed a tear or two at the end! This afternoon we spent time in the hotels gym and swimming pool.
8th January 2017
This morning we went to the Brisbane Sunday markets in Southbank. We ended up buying some dictionary art which sounds a bit weird but it’s actually well done and is one of my favourite things we have purchased recently.
We then stopped for a lunch on one of the bridges over the Brisbane River where we had a beautiful panoramic view of the city.
9th January 2017
Today we went back to Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary but this time it was all about the Kangaroos! Kangaroos are the largest marsupials in the Macropodidae family (meaning large foot) which also includes wallabies, who are the smallest! There are currently 50-60 million Kangaroos in Australia! We bought some Kangaroo food and headed for the field. Straight away we found a few Kangaroos which were quite sleepy and I wasn’t sure we were going to be able to get up close to them.
It didn’t take us long to come across a lot of them and we were certainly spoilt for choice. Up close they are so beautiful and calm and it’s such a rare sighting seeing them bounce around. Pete wins on the selfie with a Kangaroo!
Our favourite Kangaroo (we named Bruce) was absolutely huge, definitely the biggest adult male in the field. When he sat forward you could see his huge muscles which reminded me of all story’s you here about how dangerous and strong they can be! But he seemed happy enough to accept food from us and posed for some photos.
So our week in Brisbane has come to an end and for us it’s been all about the animals. It’s been so nice to finally be up close to these famous Australian icons and they are even more speculator in real life.