Hidden Brisbane: Weekend Ideas | MacRae Rentals

Hidden Brisbane: Weekend Ideas

Hidden Brisbane: Weekend Ideas


Brisbane is often labelled a ‘big country town’ and rejected by some city folk as ‘not as good as Melbourne or Sydney’. Well, I’ll have you know that Brisbane actually has a lot to offer, even for those who have lived here all their lives and think they know all the ins and outs of Brisbane. Whether you’re looking for something romantic, kid-friendly, cultural, or anything else you can think of, there will be something here just for you.

We’ve compiled a list of some great, lesser-known attractions and activities for you to experience on the weekend:

The State Library of Queensland

slqKid-Friendly, Cultural, Free
While it may not necessarily be ‘lesser-known’ than some other things in this list, the State Library is often overlooked through connotations of being a boring, dusty hall of books. It is quite the opposite, though, with stunning architecture and a vibrant community within. While its book collection is extensive and interesting, SLQ boasts various other cultural activities such as free art exhibitions throughout the year, including the current exhibition titled ‘A Thousand Words‘, which “showcases portraits by artists Cheryl Creed and Nickeema Williams as they capture Queensland Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander identities in fleeting moments in time.” – SLQ, 2014, and ‘CUSP‘, an exhibition about design and design thinking, featuring “a laboratory and an opportunity for learning and experiencing new ideas, CUSP takes us way beyond what we believe is possible when we think of design today”- SLQ, 2014. SLQ is also a haven for families because of their stimulating children’s activities which encourage kids to get creative and also to learn about indigenous Australians; again, most of these activities are free for the whole family. If you’re interested in a family day out, check out the Queensland Monster Manu-Factory – but be aware that they like you to book (just to alert them of expected numbers) for this specific workshop.

TWE-HoldArtspace3The Hold Artspace

Cultural, Free
The Hold Artspace is a great little art gallery located on 274 Montague Rd, West End, which often features work from the local university students studying at the Queensland College of Art. Their exhibitions are always unique, displaying jewellery, sculpture, fine art, and animation projects, among many others. The Hold is an intimate setting, with the artists and members of the art community being actively involved there, making it a great networking opportunity or just an opportunity to learn about contemporary art in a personal way.


Kid-Friendly, Cultural, Shopping, Food & Drink
There are so many Markets in Brisbane that you will be able to find one that exactly suits your needs. Jan Power’s Farmers’ Markets are pretty well known and popular, and they operate in five different locations in Brisbane: Queen Street Mall, Brisbane Powerhouse, Mitchelton, Manly, and Stones Corner. The Jan Power’s markets specialise in gourmet foods of all sorts, as well as plants and other goodies.

There’s also the Northey Street organic markets, where you can “Enjoy the freshest and purest certified organic fruit, vegetables, breads, meat, dairy, dry goods and preserves at Queensland’s first and only market selling certified organic produce”.

Or, if you’re more interested in arts and craft and fashion, there are still plenty of choices! The Young Designers Market operates on the first Sunday of every month and contains some amazing products from fashion to homewares to stationery and more. There’s also the BrisStyle Indie Markets on the second Saturday of each month, which sells “gorgeous wares, from fashion, jewellery and accessories to artworks, beauty products, children’s wear, gifts and decorative pieces for home while live entertainment is provided by local indie musos in the Sandgate courtyard.”

For a comprehensive list of Brisbane’s best markets, go here.

TWE-Jan-Powers-Markets-01-IMG_7640The Newstead Brewery

Food & Drink
The Newstead Brewery offers some of Brisbane’s greatest craft brews, as well as some delicious food, and contemporary decor. They have seven of their own beers (mainly ales of varying sorts) as well as an extensive bottled beer selection. The menu includes typical pub fare, but done beautifully, as well as some slightly more upper-class choices like lamb pie with eggplant caviar and kale. Come here for the beer, but stay for the great atmosphere, service, and, of course, the food.

teHJDhWQOuCwlvTutto Caffe Espresso Bar

Food & Drink
Tutto’s is one of the great hidden gems in Brisbane. It’s an Italian restaurant with a breakfast menu that is TO DIE FOR. It is extensive, it is unique, and it is delicious. They also serve beautiful Elixir coffee, which makes it perfect for coffee lovers. Try the big brekky, or the sweet potato fritters, but make sure you’re sufficiently starved or plan to share, as the servings are massive.

lSpice Valley

Food & Drink
Spice Valley is an amazing little Indian restaurant and grocery store out at Nundah. It may seem like a bit of a drive, but the authentic and cheap (really, really cheap) Indian street food is definitely worth the drive. Most of us in Australia would be used to curries and naan as the Indian staple foods; however, Spice Valley opens the door to so many new and different flavours, textures, and ways of eating. As it says on their website, “Curies and naan are one only type of food, amongst many others with exquisite sensations of the mouth, which is another reason for the introduction of many other traditional “dishes” other than just curry.” 

The delicious Chutney Puris are sweet, crunchy, and creamy on the inside, and have to be eaten in one mouthful, making it a fun food to share with the table. The Dosas are massive and delicious, something that you can’t wait to lick your fingers after eating. And the Thali plate offers four curries, bread, rice, and dessert for only $12 – a great way to sample various flavours for cheap. After dinner, check out the grocery store for some great things to make at home.

There’s just so much to see, do, eat, and drink in Brisbane, with a little research you’ll be able to find exactly what you’re after. In fact, Brisbane has a bustling music scene, with many bars and clubs presenting some talented Brisbane folks. For some more ideas, check out The Weekend Edition, and in particular their Stumble Guide, for some more hidden gems.

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