Brisbane, the capital city of Queensland, Australia, is a city built for walking. Blessed with beautiful weather and a casual vibe, the walking trails and cycling paths of this river city are always bustling with activity.
There are many fabulous walking paths and hiking trails in Brisbane. These are some of our favourite inner-city Brisbane walking trails. We’ve also included some Brisbane walks maps, as recorded by us whilst walking them. They are useful to give an indication of route, direction and time. this article is a comprehensive guide to the Brisbane walks in the city area, with images, directions, and other important logistical information.
As the sun rises on Brisbane, and usually well before, the inner city comes alive. Locals head out to their favourite Brisbane walking tracks, often with a pet in tow, to set themselves up for the day ahead.
In the evening, city workers trade their corporate attire for something a little more comfortable and blow their stress away on one of the many walking paths that run in and around the Brisbane CBD.
In the suburbs, the mood is no different, although the early mornings are usually favoured more by those who get their exercise by walking.
Love hiking in national parks? Read our guide on the walking trails in Springbrook National Park – Gold Coast hinterland.
Kangaroo Point Walks
Kangaroo Point Cliffs – South Bank – Brisbane City (City River Loop)
The Kangaroo Point Cliffs offer a variety of walking tracks in several directions. Several bridges cross the Brisbane River in the inner city area, meaning you can shorten or extend your walk whenever you like.
Starting at the Kangaroo Point Cliffs base, follow the path along the river until you reach South Bank. The South Bank Promenade joins the path and goes right through to the Victoria Bridge.
Tip: If you’ve got some time, take a few moments to watch the rock climbers scramble up the magnificent sandstone cliff face.
Continue walking through to the pedestrian/cycle-only Kurilpa Bridge and weave your way through the city streets until you reach the Alice Street entry of the Botanic Gardens. Stroll through the gardens before arriving at the path that follows the river once more.
The path ends at the Queensland University of Technology Gardens Point campus. A little further on is the northern entry to the pedestrian/cycle-only Goodwill Bridge. Cross the bridge to return to the Kangaroo Point starting location.
There is also a great new walkway on the northern side of the river, running in front of the new Queen’s Wharf development. Aptly named the Mangrove Walk, the dedicated pedestrian walkway built over the river runs alongside the mangroves, an important part of the river’s ecosystem.
Starting near the Goodwill Bridge, it runs through to the new precinct, showcasing local artwork, bird sounds and indigenous artwork along the way.
At the end of the walk, there is a rest area, children’s playground and some really cool artwork on the pylons of the Riverside Expressway that loom large overhead.
Looking for a high-intensity boost? Try running up the famous Kangaroo Point steps to get your heart pumping. There are several staircases located along the cliffs that take you to the top.
This route is made for mixing it up. Walk through South Bank instead of along the river, head across the Goodwill Bridge first and go in the reverse direction, or take different paths to experience more of the Botanic Gardens.
Local tip: Need a morning coffee? Stop at the coffee shop on the Goodwill Bridge. It’s a well-known coffee institution, the only one on a bridge in the city, and it has a great view along the river.
South Bank is no stranger to food and drinks venues, especially along Little Stanley Street and Grey St. But, if you’re on a mission to reach your exercise target and only have time to pick up a coffee, Lost Bean is also one of the go-to locations in the area.
Located on the promenade in front of the Epicurious Garden, the Lost Bean is a blue VW Kombi and is usually surrounded, once again, by a bunch of cyclists.
- 7 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offers a range of bus and train connections
- see the detailed brief for Kangaroo Point parking
- many of the paths are co-share with cycles and scooters. The Mangrove Walk is pedestrian-only
- all paths are dog friendly (on leash).
Kangaroo Point Cliffs to Howard Smith Wharves
With a similar distance to the Brisbane City Loop, this walk takes in another part of the Brisbane River. Starting at the Kangaroo Cliffs Boardwalk, the walk takes you over the Goodwill Bridge, through the Botanic Gardens, along the Eagle Street Pier and Riverside. The tall buildings of the Brisbane CBD will follow your every move.
Cross under the Story Bridge and walk through one of Brisbane’s most popular precincts, the Howard Smith Wharves.
There is a small cafe at the eastern end of the Howard Smith Wharves (at the start of the New Farm Riverwalk) that does a roaring trade in the morning for coffee and bacon and egg rolls. It’s very hard not to stop and enjoy a roll once the smell of bacon permeates the air.
The Goodtimes Gelateria is also a worthwhile place to stop if you’re after a sweet treat.
The walking paths from the Goodwill Bridge right through to Howard Smith Wharves are co-share with cycles and scooters. Some of the pathways can get quite narrow, and there are some blind corners as well. Add speeding bikes and scooters to the mix, and there can be some interesting moments. It’s also a commuter zone in the morning, so expect traffic to be heavy.
Always remember where you are and pay attention to which side of the path you should be walking on, as it does swap around a bit (especially on the new part of the walkway that starts at the end of the Botanic Gardens and finishes just before the Stamford Hotel)
- Cafe on the Goodwill Bridge
- Riverbar – Eagle St Pier Brisbane City
- Howard Smith Wharves Cafe
- 7.5 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offer a range of bus and train connections in and around the inner-city suburbs. The Brisbane City Cat ferry service has terminals at South Bank, Kangaroo Point and New Farm.
- see detailed brief for parking at Kangaroo Point. There are many paid parking car parks in Brisbane City, including at Riverside. Street (metered) parking is also available along Bowen Terrace and surrounding streets above Howard Smith Wharves. An undercover carpark is also attached to Howard Smith Wharves (5 Boundary St)
- walking paths are co-share with cycles and scooters. The New Farm Riverwalk has dedicated cycle pathways.
- the Kangaroo Point Cliffs through to New Farm is all dog-friendly, provided they are on a leash.
Kangaroo Point Cliffs to Toowong
So many of the walking paths in the Brisbane city area allow you to walk along the river most of the way.
This walk is approximately 13.25 kilometres, starts at the lower ground of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, and has a turning point at Toowong in the western suburbs.
From the cliffs, there are a variety of ways to walk. This time instead of walking along South Bank, get onto Grey Street and over the Go Between Bridge. From here, go down onto the Bicentennial Bikeway adjacent to Coronation Drive and follow them all the way through to Toowong.
Tip: Getting down from the Go Between Bridge onto Coronation Drive can be dangerous if you don’t use the correct access point. If you are coming from South Bank, walking across the bridge on the left-hand side is usual. If you stay here once you reach the other side, getting down onto Coronation Drive and the Bicentennial Bikeway is very difficult and dangerous. The best access directly onto the path is on the other side of the bridge with a dedicated ramp and stairs.
Stop for a rest at Kayes Rocks (found just off Brisbane Rd at Toowong) and take in the view across the river to Orleigh Park West End.
For now, we had to retrace our steps along the river, but instead of returning via the Go Between Bridge, we continued through the city and across the Goodwill Bridge.
- 13.25 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offers a range of bus and train connections. Buses and trains also run from Toowong. The Brisbane City Cat also operates from the Regatta Ferry Terminal.
- parking is available at Kangaroo Point, South Bank and in the city. Parking is also available at metered parks in Toowong and in the underground carpark of Toowong Shopping Centre.
- along the Bicentennial Pathway, there are some dedicated cycle and walking areas. Other paths in South Bank and the city are shared.
- South Bank and the paths are dog friendly (on leash)
Kangaroo Point Cliffs and Kangaroo Point peninsula
Starting and ending at the base of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, this walk takes in Captain Burke Park, the large green space underneath the Story Bridge.
On the way past Dockside make a mental note to return for a fresh seafood meal at The Prawnster, a floating restaurant on an old fishing trawler.
If you are in the area around the famous Story Bridge Hotel early in the morning, you’ll also find it hard to avoid the delicious smells coming from the ovens of French artisan Boulanger, Christian Jacques. Pop in and buy a croissant or two and some wonderful French bread.
You can read more about Christian’s French specialities here.
- Gustave Citroen Cafe (Riverlife) Kangaroo Point Cliffs in front of the Riverlife Adventure Centre
- Story Bridge Deli and Cafe – Baildon St Kangaroo Point
- Moonshine Coffee – Main Street Kangaroo Point
- Medley KP – for breakfast with a great view – Wharf Street Kangaroo Point
- Joeys – 29 River Terrace Kangaroo Point
- 7 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offers a range of bus and train connections. Buses also run to Kangaroo Point along Main Street.
- wee detailed brief at the end of the article
- these pathways are co-share with cycles and scooters
- the paths and Captain Burke Park are dog friendly (on leash)
Parking at Kangaroo Point Cliffs
If you are arriving here by car, parking is at a premium in this location. There are a handful of free, unlimited carparks along the Kangaroo Point Boardwalk. Access to this area is via Lower River Terrace. There are carparks at the start of the boardwalk on the right-hand side.
Keep driving along a little further for more car parks immediately in front of the main rock climbing area.
Tip: To be sure of getting a carpark here, early mornings are best. Note this is a very narrow, dead-end road so getting in and out can be tricky especially if another car is heading towards you.
There are also some car parks along Lower River Terrace (above the boardwalk). There are also many metered car parks along Lower River Terrace on the western side of the Captain Cook Bridge (closer to South Bank).
Further into South Bank there is more street parking to be found along Grey Street and Little Stanley Street. There is also an underground carpark in the centre of South Bank. Access is via Little Stanley Street. Further towards the Victoria Bridge, the Qld Performing Arts Centre, the Qld Museum and the Gallery of Modern Art all have underground paid parking.
Tip: We use and recommend the Cellopark app available on the App Store. It allows you to pay for parking via a smartphone. We have an account with our vehicles linked to it. Use the app to scan the QR code and commence the parking time. Cellopark issue a monthly invoice showing all parking used during the month and directly charges our credit card.
Walks from New Farm and Newstead
New Farm to Teneriffe
Continuing the walks along the river, the western reach of the Brisbane River from New Farm to Teneriffe is easy to access and easy to walk.
Start by walking through New Farm Park and make your way to the Powerhouse, from here you can join the paths that run up to Teneriffe.
This stretch of the river gives a good opportunity to watch the Brisbane City Cat ferries in full flight.
Don’t miss the Jan Powers Farmers Markets that are held every Saturday from 6 am until 12 noon. Although you have been warned. There are so many beautiful things to eat and drink here along with farm-fresh produce. If you are walking for exercise, I recommend putting your head down and scooting through as fast as possible for fear of never taking another step.
- Mary Mae’s Bar & Kitchen at the Brisbane Powerhouse right next to New Farm Park (dog friendly)
- Barko & Co – river promenade Teneriffe (dog friendly)
- Wilde Kitchen Macquarie St Teneriffe
- Kin + Co Macquarie St Teneriffe (dog friendly)
- 6.2 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offers a range of bus and train connections. A cross-river ferry operates from Bulimba to Teneriffe. The City Glider bus service terminates at this ferry terminal also and buses run along Macquarie St.
- parking is available in New Farm Park, behind the Powerhouse and in metered parking along Macquarie St Teneriffe.
- paths are co-share with cycles
- all paths are dog friendly (on leash). There is a dedicated dog park (off-leash) near the Powerhouse.
New Farm Park -New Farm -Teneriffe
This walk starts in New Farm Park and follows the river up to Teneriffe and then takes a turn in through all of the cafes and restaurants of this beautiful suburb and heads towards the Story Bridge. From here you can go from the heights of Bowen Terrace down to the water level at Howard Smith Wharves.
Do take the time though to walk through and around the park. It’s such a delightful part of Brisbane. When the roses are blooming you won’t be able to walk by without wanting to smell them.
Don’t miss the opportunity to stop at Wilson Outlook Reserve for a spectacular closeup view of the Brisbane City and the Story Bridge.
Tip: If walking down the stairs isn’t something you are keen on doing, there is a lift at the city end of Bowen Terrace, right above the Howard Smith Wharves. There is also one further along Bowen Terrace.
To continue the loop, walk along the New Farm Riverwalk that is built over the river. The Riverwalk officially ends at the bottom of Merthyr Road. Whilst it is possible to return to New Farm Park via the streets, it’s much nicer to follow the river as much as possible.
For street access, the most direct is to follow Merthyr Rd at the end of the Riverwalk until you reach Brunswick St. Turn right towards the river and New Farm Park will appear on your left.
Alternatively, turn into Merthyr Rd and almost immediately turn right into Griffith St. After a few hundred metres, turn right into Sydney Street and a walking path will come into view on the river. Walk through Merthyr Park, alongside the river until the Merthyr Bowls Club where the path ends. A small driveway leads up to Oxlade Drive. Follow this to arrive once again at New Farm Park.
- 7 km
- Buses are accessible throughout the entire New Farm and Teneriffe area including the free City Glider that terminates at the Teneriffe Ferry Wharf. The cross-river ferry can be found here. The Brisbane City Cats have a ferry terminal at the end of Sydney St in New Farm.
- There is some free parking in New Farm Park. Note the gates do not open until 8.30 am each day and close at 11 pm. The streets around New Farm Park also have car parking. Always watch for signs noting metered or permit parking.
- The New Farm Riverwalk has dedicated cycle and pedestrian paths but all others are co-share.
- New Farm Park is dog friendly, as are the paths along the river. There is also a dedicated off-leash dog park near the Powerhouse.
Newstead to Hamilton
This walking path takes in yet another part of the Brisbane River, starting at Newstead and running through to Hamilton at Portside.
There is pathway all the way through to Newstead Park. Once here you can meander through the park itself, admiring beautiful Newstead House along the way.
The pathway gets a bit tricky from Newstead Park until you reach the new walkway along Kingsford-Smith Drive. Be especially careful as you walk across the bridge as there is little clearance for pedestrians and bicycles.
Once on the new Lores Bonney Riverwalk, pedestrians and cycles are kept separate and it becomes a hassle free walk along the river.
There are drinking fountains and a number of covered seating areas along this route.
A great cafe here is Malt Cafe – 1 Newstead Tce Newstead
- 8.3 km
- Buses are available in Newstead and along Kingsford Smith Drive. There is also a Brisbane City Cats ferry terminal at Bretts Whard.
- Metered parking is available along Skyring Terrace and Macquarie St at Teneriffe. It is free before 7 am.
- Once on the Lores Bonney Riverwalk, the path has dedicated lanes for walking and cycling.
- All paths are dog friendly (on leash)
Walks from Yeronga to St Lucia
Start this walk anywhere along the Brisbane Corso in the suburb of Yeronga and walk towards the Eleanor Schonell Bridge (known as the Green Bridge). It is a bus, cycle and pedestrian bridge only.
Once you cross the bridge you enter the grounds of the University of Queensland. It’s a beautiful area to walk through and around.
Tip: The Eleanor Schonell Bridge has dedicated lanes for pedestrians and cycles. It is very easy to miss the signs on the approach to the bridge and end up on the cycleway.
The walk on the St Lucia side starts on Sir William McGregor Drive. Known as the John Oxley Walk, you can walk in either direction. There is a dirt track that follows the road around, but you will usually share this with hordes of runners.
Along the way, you’ll pass many of the sporting fields, usually busy in the mornings and evenings in particular. Many of the student residential colleges are here; while some might not be the most spectacular from an architectural point of view, they are quite historical. Imagine the stories they could tell.
Once you clear the college and arrive at Upland Rd, turn right. From here, you can meander through the university grounds some more as you make your way back to the river.
Alternatively, turn left into Carmody Rd at the main bus drop off area at the front of the university, and into Coldridge St. This will bring you to the formal edge of the University of Queensland at Sir Fred Schonell Drive. Follow it as it winds back towards the River.
However you do it, don’t miss getting up into the cloisters and area of the Great Court and pop into the back of the residential colleges for some peace and quiet around the lake (on College Rd)
There’s also a fabulous community garden at the end of Blair Drive where you can visit, harvest the fresh produce and even have a BBQ.
- Baladi – a cute popup at 237 Brisbane Corso
- Lakeside Cafe – Advanced Engineering Building University of Qld
- Saint Lucy Caffe e Cucina – Blair Drive – University of Qld
- 10 km
- Buses run regularly across the Eleanor Schonell Bridge from the city and surrounding suburbs. The UQ Ferry Terminal is also located close by the Eleanor Schonell Bridge.
- Parking is available along the Corso on the Yeronga side. It is metered from 7 am. Note this area is also in the Dutton Park Parking Precinct, where strict parking rules apply. There are also several areas where visitors to UQ can park. Metered parking can be found along Sir William McGregor Drive from 7 am to 9 pm Monday to Friday.
Walks from West End to Brisbane City
This walking route takes in the river, a beautiful riverside parkland, the cityscape and the fun, eclectic, historical streets of inner city West End.
It’s a route that can be done in any order, and deviations can be made through the suburb itself. The walk highlighted below starts in Orleigh Park and follows the pathway along the river.
The official path disappears once you reach the rowing sheds and Davies Park. If you come early in the morning, you can often sneak through the back of the rowing club. Alternatively, follow the road up and around to reconnect with the path once more.
Once you reach the city, head over the Kurilpa Bridge and then back across the Victoria Bridge (now pedestrian, cycle and bus only), and through the streets of South Brisbane and West End.
For the easiest route, stay on Melbourne Street, which runs into Boundary St and head towards the river. Take any streets or turns along here to explore the neighbourhood in more depth.
Tip: For an extra burst of exercise, look out for the gym equipment that pops up in different locations along the river pathways.
Don’t miss the coffee pop up operating out of a ute in the grassy area near the boatshed.
- 8 km
- South Bank and the Brisbane CBD offers a range of bus and train connections. The Brisbane City Cat ferries operate from Orleigh Park and buses go from Orleigh St near the ferry terminal also.
- Metered parking is available along Orleigh Rd (free until 7 am), Boundary, Montague and Hill End Tce and in various spots along the Riverside Drive.
- There are pedestrian-only parts of the pathways here but also areas where cycles and pedestrian paths are shared.
- Dog-friendly tracks (on leash) plus there is a dedicated dog park at the end of Hockings St
General walking tips in Brisbane
Unless you walk at night, the sun will always be out and always hot. Remember to take a hat and sunglasses and if you aren’t covered up, some good sunscreen. Taking water is always a good idea, especially in the summer months.
If you are an early morning riser, many of the locations mentioned here have metered parking, but the meters don’t start until 7 am in many locations. However, most of them will run through to at least 7 pm. On weekends, many of them are not in operation.
Remember to take your smartphone if you are using Cellopark for parking. It’s a good idea for safety too.
Looking for a walking track in nature but not too far out of Brisbane? Read our guide on the Boondall Wetlands walking track.
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