The round-up: Brisbane’s best picnic spots
Pack a hamper, put the rug in the car, grab some friends – it’s picnic time. If you’ve been craving some time in the sunshine on the weekend, a good old-fashioned picnic is the way to go. We’ve picked some choice spots to spend an afternoon with food and friends.
River Quay Green, South Bank
Why it’s perfect: As far as picturesque spots to chow down go, South Bank’s River Quay Green is pretty darn phenomenal. Not only do you get uninterrupted views of the Brisbane City skyline, but River Quay Green is also one of the few spots in the area where you can BYO. The only catch is you have to have food with you, which is no problem when you’re there to picnic. Several of South Bank’s retailers offer some great morsels and picnic packs to save you having to go shopping, including OTTO, Malt Traders, River Quay Fish and Popolo.
Pelican Park, Clontarf
Why it’s perfect: No, this isn’t a theme park dedicated to pelicans, but fans of the bird will find a lot to love. Situated on the Clontarf edge of the Redcliffe peninsula next to Bells Beach, Pelican Park is a waterside destination that offers not only a great spot to picnic but also acts as a great spot to observe some nature. Pelicans flock here en masse and you can watch the birds being fed by local volunteers at 10:00 am each day. This spot also features a boat-themed playground for sailors in the making, as well as electric barbecues, toilet facilities, a boat ramp and a beach.
Jollys Lookout, Mount Nebo
Why it’s perfect: Mount Nebo never seems to get as much love as its neighbour Mount Coot-tha – which is a big injustice in our opinion. All along the winding road to the top of Mount Nebo are a bunch of great spots to pull over and take in the view, but Jollys Lookout is one of the best ones. The views sweep from Moreton Bay to the D’Aguilar ranges, with tables and barbecue facilities for those that want to go all out. From here you can also access the Thylogale Walking Track, a fairly level hike that will take you through lush rainforest and promises plenty of native birds and wildlife to spot on the way.
Fig Tree Point Park, Lota
Why it’s perfect: This park on the Lota Esplanade boasts plenty of playground facilities for the kids, as well as lots of open grassy spaces, sheltered picnic tables, electric barbecue facilities and public toilets. Bring the cricket set and take advantage of the room, or take in the serenity afforded by the perfect blue water. You’re also nice and close to some excellent fish and chips dispensaries, should you forget to pack a picnic.
Mount Mee, D’Aguilar National Park
Why it’s perfect: In addition to the sprawling views afforded by lookouts along the tourist drive, Mount Mee also boasts a few special spots to put down the rug and relax. Make your way up the mountain and take your pick of green spaces such as the historical Gantry Day Use Area, which has picnic shelters and tables, barbecues and amenities. Work off the picnic feast with a stroll along the Piccabeen Walk or Somerset Trail before heading home.
Sherwood Arboretum, Sherwood
Why it’s perfect: This lush riverside 15-ha parkland is the perfect spot for a secluded picnic gathering, with plenty of shade, electric barbecues and picnic tables scattered throughout the site. The heritage-listed site was our city’s first arboretum devoted to native Australian trees and features a collection of more than 1000 specimen trees – many dating back to 1925 – spread across a variety of planting precincts, from wet rainforest to open eucalypt forest. In addition to the botanical collection (the avenue of 72 Queensland kauri pines are a wonder), the arboretum also features electric and wood barbecues, riverside picnic areas, playgrounds and wetlands where ducks often swim in the shallows.
Honourable mentions: New Farm Park, Orleigh Park, Roma Street Parkland, Davies Park, Rocks Riverside Park, Bellbird Grove, The Cedars, City Botanic Gardens, Mount Coot-tha Botanic Gardens, Wynnum Manly Foreshore, Captain Burke Park, Colmslie Beach Reserve, Kangaroo Point Cliffs
Image: eat South Bank