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Brisbane

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DON’T get me wrong, I really do
love Sydney,
However, if I was pushed to declare
my favourite Australian city, then,
sorry Sydney, but Brizzy gets my vote.
The site of the early settlement of
Brisbane was originally called
Edinglassie – a name created as a
blend of Edinburgh and Glasgow.
The links with Scotland are
plentiful – after all, the city is named
after Sir Thomas Brisbane from lovely
Largs. No wonder I feel at home here!
Brisbane is way more than just the
gateway to the delights of
sub-tropical Queensland. It’s now a
city well worth visiting in its own
right and has well and truly come of
age.

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Brisbane

  1. 1. TRAVEL By Katie Wood massive redevelopment and in 1992, this 40-acre urban oasis in the middle of the city opened to great acclaim. Pathways meander through floral display – public artworks are dotted around, there are markets, a giant Ferris wheel, bars and restaurants, while street performers abound. Oh, and being Brisbane, there really had to be a beach, so the architects made one. A man-made beach stands right slap-bang in the middle of the city. The Brisbane Cultural Precinct in South Brisbane is the state’s epicentre of artistic life. Here, DON’T get me wrong, I really do love Sydney, However, if I was pushed to declare my favourite Australian city, then, sorry Sydney, but Brizzy gets my vote. The site of the early settlement of Brisbane was originally called Edinglassie – a name created as a blend of Edinburgh and Glasgow. The links with Scotland are plentiful – after all, the city is named after Sir Thomas Brisbane from lovely Largs. No wonder I feel at home here! Brisbane is way more than just the gateway to the delights of sub-tropical Queensland. It’s now a city well worth visiting in its own right and has well and truly come of age. No longer the poor relation to Sydney and Melbourne, it’s a lively metropolis of two million. When I was there recently and asked countless locals just why they were so blooming happy with their city, one resounding phrase came out time after time: “It’s just such a liveable city.” And you know what? They’re right. With a vibrant arts mix, great shopping, a superb food scene and award-winning architecture, it’s a cosmopolitan if laid-back metropolis. It has changed beyond recognition since I visited it first in the ’80s. Of course, it always helps when the sun shines 300 days a year and the locals make you feel way more than welcome. A huge civic asset is the Brisbane River, the city’s playground. Joggers and cyclists use the river boardwalk daily, while canoeists take to the water morning and evening. The outdoor lifestyle the locals enjoy here is par excellence – yep, they’re all sickeningly fit and tanned! Interspersed with the downtown skyscrapers are elegant traditional buildings, Victorian monuments to a past age. It was a time when the city was declared capital of Queensland and the 1859 population was a mere 7000. Back then, they were the wrong side of ‘respectable’ immigrants. These days you’ll be lucky to get in as one of the 1500 people who immigrate to Brisbane each week. If one place sums up Brisbane, it’s the South Bank. The area underwent Australiawith atruetartantwist Scottish visitors are sure to feel right at home in beautiful, buzzing Brisbane Brisbane spots you must visit Alchemy Restaurant Deserving of a Michelin star, this will be a highlight. Superlative, fresh Aussie food, wonderful staff, and a great setting with views of the Story Bridge. Eat inside or out, it won’t disappoint. Mains from £20. STREET BEACH Soak up the sun in the heart of the city. Brisbane’s man-made beach – the only one in Australia – is the perfect spot to enjoy an ice cream. Regatta Hotel A historic landmark in Brisbane, its restaurant has to be on any itinerary. Check into The Boatshed and enjoy an aged steak and good Aussie wine for a lot less than you’d pay at home, and the quality is five-star. LONE PINE KOALA SANCTUARY Cuddle a koala in the world’s largest sanctuary, located in the Brisbane suburb of Fig Tree Pocket. Stokehouse This is my absolute favourite place to eat in Brisbane. Apart from its beautiful South Bank setting, the oysters are to die for, the service is impeccable, and it’s one of the few places in casual Brizzy where people dress up to eat out. CITY CAT Take a City Cat tour from start to end. It’s the best way to see the city and you can hop on and off at will. Best fiver you’ll spend! The Balfour Kitchen at Spicers Even if you’re not staying here, come and eat in this beautiful wrap-around verandah, all shaded by Frangipani trees. A modern Australian menu with a European flair, the food and service is fantastic. See spicersretreats.com QUEENSLAND ART GALLERY Head to the South Bank where Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art house more than 16,000 works of historical, modern and contemporary art. You’ll also find the Children’s Art Centre, which features interactive art from around the world. E’CCO BISTRO For more than 20 years, E’cco Bistro has been one of the city’s best-loved restaurants with fresh, imaginative Aussie food at great prices. Visit eccobistro.com.au FISH ‘N’ CHIPS They’ve taken our own national grub and added their own twist! A massive fish supper anywhere in the city will be delicious and cost about £7. inter-connected, you’ll find the Gallery of Modern Art – a superb space with impressive exhibitions and evening events. Also check out the Queensland College of Art, Conservatorium, Museum, Performing Arts Centre and the State Library. To see a lot of Brisbane in one easy go, romp on to the Brisbane Wheel (like the London Eye), located on the South Bank. You can see all the main sights of the city – the Brisbane river, the Treasury Building, Commissariat Store Buildings, Botanical Gardens, Goodwill Bridge, The Gabba (fans of rugby, cricket and football will recognise that name), and all the other landmarks of this buzzing city. It’s a tenner well spent. The CityCat is the best way to get around. It’s a real joy to take to the water and catch the breeze as you whizz around the city. There’s also a free service called City Hopper – what other city can boast that? Also free is the service called Brisbane Greeters, who volunteer to take you round the city free of charge and show you the delights of this wonderful city. In terms of shopping, don’t miss Queen St Mall, a pedestrianised main artery in the city centre with 700-plus retailers. The Queens Plaza has everything from Tiffany to David Jones – Australia’s largest outlet. Off the mall is the Brisbane Arcade – think Burlington Arcade and look for top Aussie designers. My personal favourite is James Street Market. This is a fabulous indoor market selling quality food from around the world. The eating out scene in Brisbane is every bit as high-end as in Sydney or Cape Town – the absolute best of the Southern Hemisphere. I stayed at a place that I can’t recommend enough. It’s called Spicer’s Balfour Hotel, located in the trendy central New Farm district. Set in a beautiful, historic Queenslander building, this intimate hotel has everything on its doorstep yet you feel as if you’re still staying with a friend. It’s won countless deserved awards and is relaxed with excellent facilities and service and worth every penny. Rooms start from £150 – the breakfast sets you up for the day! (See www.spicersretreats.com/ spicers-balfour-hotel) ▼▼ Bonny beaches and some of the best food joints in the Southern Hemisphere – Brisbane will blow you away. For more info on Brisbane, see visitbrisbane.com.au. Etihad fly from Edinburgh to Brisbane via Abu Dhabi for £770. See Etihad.com VARIOUS DATES JANUARY - MARCH 2017 FLY-STAY-CRUISE FROM GLASGOW ON BOARD VISION OF THE SEAS® Organised by Cruise Connections Ltd part of the Omega Holidays Group PLC. Prices shown are based upon the 9 & 16 January 2017 sailing dates, prices may varyonotherdepartures.Pricefeaturedis basedon2peoplesharingthelowestavailablestateroomandisinclusiveoftaxesbutdoesnotincludetheService Charge(pre-paidgratuities).Itinerary,dateandpricingwerecorrectatthetimeofgoingtoprintbutaresubjecttochangeandavailability. Wereservetheright tochangethehotelfeaturedtoasimilarstandardhotel.†Specialityrestaurantshaveacovercharge.Chargesapplytoroomservice. Astateroomforsingle occupancyisoffered,subjecttoavailability,atasupplement.Theholidaypricesquotedwerecorrectatthetimeofprinting,butmayincreaseordecrease.You willbeadvisedoftheup-to-datepricewhenmakingyourbooking.TourismDirhamFeecanonlybepaiddirectlytothehotel,20AED(£3.30approx.perroomper night).Forfullterms&conditions,pleasecontactCruiseConnectionsLtdon01524771701.Pleasenotethesepricesareaguideonly,howevertheywerecorrectat thetimeofpublishingon05/08/16.Allpricesaresubjecttoavailabilityandmaychangeatanytime.Thefinalpricewillbeconfirmedatthetimeofbooking.For ourlatestpricesandavailabilitypleasecalluson01524771701. ARABIAN GULF CRUISE Whatever thrills you, a Royal Caribbean cruise holiday has it. Exhilarating activities to get your adrenaline pumping. Dazzling entertainment to keep you on the edge of your seat. Sumptuous spa treatments that rejuvenate and revitalise. Endless culinary possibilities. And so much more. This isn’t just a holiday - it’s an adventure you’ll never forget. ITINERARY Dubai - transfer to hotel for 3 night stay | Dubai | Khasab, Oman | Muscat, Oman (overnight) | At Sea | Abu Dhabi, U.A.E. | Dubai (overnight) 11 DAYS, FLY-STAY- CRUISE FROM GLASGOW FOR BROCHURE, CALL 01224 338004 & QUOTE SP096 oremailbrochures@sundayposttravel.com TO BOOK, CALL 01224 660386 quotingSUP OR VISIT www.sundayposttravel.com PRICE INCLUDES • Return flight from Glasgow airport to Dubai • Airport and port transfers in Dubai • 3-nights accommodation at the 4 star Wyndham Marina, Dubai with breakfast • 7-nights on board accommodation in a double stateroom◊ • Full board on board ship† • Selected soft drinks, tea & filter coffee. All-you-can-eat ice cream • A new destination nearly every day • All government fees and port taxes BALCONY FROM £1799pp OCEAN VIEW FROM £1399ppINSIDE FROM £1299pp AVAILABLE WITH ABERDEEN~ FLIGHTS FROM £1419pp PLEASE CALL FOR DETAILS 25

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