The City of Brisbane is Australia's third largest city, and it offers a wide variety of things to see and do. Visitors will find museums and galleries, markets, wildlife parks, beaches, forests, and mountains. The Port of Brisbane is a progressive, sophisticated, and diverse city that offers the best of food, wine, entertainment, and sports in a relaxed sub-tropical environment where visitors can enjoy shopping, nightlife, and outdoor adventures. With a vibrant creative community, the Port of Brisbane is home to many writers, musicians, artists, and fashion and jewelry designers that are bringing worldwide attention to the city.
The Port of Brisbane enjoys a sub-tropical climate with humid hot summers and mild dry winters. Thunderstorms are common from late Spring to early autumn which can sometimes bring hail, strong winds, and heavy rain. Temperatures range from an average high of 29 °C (84 °F) in January and February to an average low of 8.8 °C (48 °F) in July.
Just 20 minutes from the Port of Brisbane's central business district, visitors will find Manly Boat Harbour, the largest recreational boating harbor on Australia's eastern seaboard with moorings for 1450 vessels, boat ramps, jetties, and marina facilities. The Manly Boat Harbour is the nearest access point from the city to Moreton Bay. Manly Harbour Village is the gateway to the Moreton Bay Marine Park and the home of many great shopping and dining establishments with wonderful views of the Bay. The harbor was the first in Australia to receive national environmental accreditation from Clean Marinas Australia, and it has several yachting and boat clubs and marinas.
The Port of Brisbane's Moreton Bay Islands offer a wide range of recreational and vacation opportunities. Visitors to the islands can enjoy sand tobogganing, diving, or watching dolphins, turtles, and whales in the Bay. Coochie Mudlo Island boasts beautiful red cliffs and wonderful sandy beaches. A great place for families, it is home to the Matthew Flinders Cafe offering bay views from each table. Flinders first landed on Coochie Mudlo Island over 200 years ago, and each July, a re-enactment festival delights visitors. Coochie Island has ample accommodations for visitors who want to stay a while.
Moreton Bay Marine Park was created in 1993 to protect marine species. Moreton Bay stretches some 125 kilometers from the Gold Coast to Caloundra, and it offers a host of cultural, natural, and recreational opportunities. One of the highlights of the park is its huge community of shorebirds that live on the beaches, sandbanks, and mudflats of the Bay. With over 50 thousand wading birds visiting the Bay each summer, Moreton Bay has an international reputation for its rare and abundant bird life. The Bay's seagrass meadows provide food for important turtle and dugong populations, and the Bay contains five designated "turtle and dugong areas" to protect these endangered species. Moreton Bay is also well known for its abundant fishing grounds.
Visitors will not want to miss visiting Saint Helena Island National Park, the site of the State's first penal colony. Ruins remain from the settlement's 65-year life as a prison. They include old and untended gardens and olive groves, the stone ruins of the prison, and restored Chief Warder's quarters. At the south end of the island, visitors will find old cemeteries, an old quarry, and the first tramway in Queensland. The island is also surrounded by the abundant shorebirds of Moreton Bay as well as dugong and turtles.
In the city center of the Port of Brisbane are the Roma Street Parklands, the world's biggest sub-tropical garden containing 1800 species of plants and the creatures like birds, lizards, and fish that have found a home in the park. The park's flora includes native Australian plants as well as plants from around the world. Theme gardens in the park include a topiary maze, a lake, a rainforest walk, and an amphitheater that contains a collection of public art commissioned specifically for the park.
Travelers who want to visit the Port of Brisbane and Queensland can find a list of scheduled cruises on the Cruise Compete website.