The Best Weekend Getaways from Brisbane

April 17, 2024 16 min read

The Best Weekend Getaways from Brisbane

Written for Auski by Pink Lemonade Social

If you're yearning for a weekend escape from the vibrant streets of Brisbane, you've arrived at the perfect destination. In this article, we’ll guide you through a captivating adventure, helping you discover the finest weekend getaways from Brisbane.

Whether you're looking for coastal adventures or hinterland hideaways, there are plenty of nearby destinations around Brisbane that can offer a quick escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. It's truly amazing how close city life feels when you're surrounded by incredible experiences. From interacting with wildlife to exploring new vistas there's always something new to discover. And let's not forget about cellar door tours, where you can stock up on delicious wine.

This compilation of the best weekend getaways from Brisbane showcases the abundance of attractions and popular destinations that Queensland has to offer.
Here are some incredible weekend getaway destinations near Brisbane. Whether you're into exploring the lush hinterland of the Gold or Sunshine Coast, embarking on a ferry ride to a tropical island, visiting popular spots like Byron Bay or Noosa, or seeking tranquilly in a national park or mountain retreat, there's something for everyone.

Here are the 14 Best Weekend Getaways from Brisbane, in alphabetical order…

14 of the Best Weekend Getaways from Brisbane

1. Bribie Island

Located off the coast of Queensland, Bribie Island is the perfect destination for a weekend getaway. Whether you're travelling with your family or enjoying a romantic escape, this island offers a relaxed and serene atmosphere. The island is a must-visit destination for those who love to explore and capture the beauty of nature. It is one of the three islands in Moreton Bay, and its relaxed atmosphere is a magnet for travellers. The island boasts breathtaking beaches, such as the serene Pumicestone Passage and the untamed Woorim Beach. Water sports enthusiasts have a wide range of activities to choose from, including swimming, paddleboarding, kayaking, and fishing. The Bribie Island National Park is a treasure trove of diverse wildlife and ecosystems, just waiting to be explored. Visitors have the opportunity to immerse themselves in the wilderness through a thrilling 4WD adventures or by strolling along scenic hiking tracks, where they can observe the island's diverse wildlife, including kangaroos, wallabies, and an array of bird species.

Experience a range of outdoor activities such as golfing, boating, and birdwatching. Visitors have the opportunity to explore the Bribie Island Seaside Museum and delve into the captivating history and extraordinary natural surroundings of the island. Bribie Island is truly a hidden gem, with its laid-back atmosphere and a perfect blend of serene beaches and thrilling waves. Whether you're a seasoned angler or new to the sport, Bribie Island provides a perfect weekend getaway with its picturesque sandy beaches, diverse wildlife, and welcoming community. Exploring the region's coastal walks unveils breathtaking views and one-of-a-kind landscapes, making it a must-visit destination for fishing enthusiasts of all levels.

Bribie Island, Best Weekend Getaways near Brisbane

Image: Instagram / nics_mindset

Bunya Mountains, Queensland

Image: Instagram / outbackosteos

2. Bunya Mountains

The Bunya Mountains, nestled in the heart of Queensland, is a serene wilderness that is simply irresistible for those in search of a peaceful weekend escape from the bustling city of Brisbane. The Bunya Mountains is a breathtaking wilderness range that stands as a secluded part of the Great Dividing Range. It is located approximately 150km from the coast, nestled between Kingaroy and Dalby. The Bunya Mountains is conveniently located just a few hours away from both Brisbane and the coast and its pristine beauty and tranquil atmosphere make it a must-visit for nature enthusiasts.

Immerse yourself in the breathtaking subtropical landscape, with its lush rainforests, eucalypt forests, and woodlands that are teeming with life. This incredible region is also known for being home to the world's largest forest of bunya pines. Exploring the ancient rainforest ecosystem here is truly a unique experience that sets it apart from any other in Australia. Embark on a journey through a variety of picturesque trails that guide you through lush forests, alongside enchanting waterfalls, and captivating viewpoints. Be sure to watch out for the diverse birdlife and wildlife, including plenty of wallabies, that inhabit the Bunya Mountains. Of course, if you can schedule it, you must take part in the iconic bunya nut festival in summer, which is a customary Indigenous occasion. Connecting with the cultural history of the area is a truly unique opportunity.

3. Byron Bay

Byron Bay, situated in New South Wales, is a renowned coastal hotspot celebrated for its thrilling bodyboarding and surfing opportunities. The town has transformed into a trendy beach destination in Australia, with a wide range of upscale dining options, shopping experiences, and luxurious resorts. In addition, Byron Bay is well-known for its immaculate beaches, which include Tallow Beach, Main Beach, and Clarkes Beach. At the Cape Byron Lighthouse, situated on the easternmost point of Australia, you can enjoy awe-inspiring panoramic views and even catch a glimpse of migrating whales during their season.

There are live music venues, art galleries, and unique markets in the town's thriving arts and cultural district. The vibrant core of Jonson Street is home to speciality stores, health-conscious restaurants and cafes that serve food that is locally produced. Hikers and nature lovers alike can discover breathtaking waterfalls in the hinterland or trek through the neighbouring jungles of Nightcap National Park. Byron Bay is a perfect destination for a weekend escape from Brisbane, offering a delightful mix of relaxation, culture, and stunning natural beauty. Featuring breathtaking beaches and its convenient location near Brisbane, this destination is a paradise for surf enthusiasts and those in search of a memorable 3-day escape.

Cape Byron Lighthouse, Byron Bay, Best Getaways near Brisbane

Glass House Mountains, Best Getaways near Brisbane Queensland

Image: Instagram / spurwaya

4. Glass House Mountains

Just a short drive away from Brisbane, you'll find the stunning Glass House Mountains on the Sunshine Coast's hinterland. If you only have a weekend to escape from Brisbane, this place is an excellent choice.. Discover the wonders of the nearby hiking trails that will lead you through the enchanting national park. There is a visitor centre, hiking trails suitable for all skill levels, and numerous locations with amazing views. The five renowned Glass House Mountains are all magnificent, but where can you find the best view of them? Definitely go for a climb on one of them! There are multiple entrances to every mountain summit, so be prepared. Mount Ngungun is an absolute must-visit when it comes to hiking in Queensland. It offers incredible benefits that make it a top destination. While any time is a terrific time to climb, you simply must watch a sunrise from the summit. During your stay at Ngungun, you will have unobstructed views of the surrounding mountains. These ancient volcanic peaks, which are only an hour's drive away, rise majestically and provide the ideal getaway for city people looking for the embrace of nature. Experience a touch of history and local insight at the Glass House Mountains Visitor and Interpretive Centre, enhancing your adventure.

Spending a weekend in this place is an opportunity to discover the marvels of the Glass House Mountains National Park. Immerse yourself in the beauty of nature as you explore the well-marked trails and take in breathtaking views from lookout points. Don't forget to bring plenty of water, insect repellent, sunscreen, and strong hiking shoes. The trails can be quite challenging, and the sun quite intense. Ensuring your comfort and staying hydrated is key to enhancing the overall experience.

Don't miss the opportunity to explore the delightful towns of Maleny and Montville, nestled in the beautiful hinterland. If you're fascinated by wildlife, Australia Zoo, founded by the legendary Steve Irwin, is a must-visit destination that guarantees a weekend filled with unforgettable memories.

5. K’gari Island (formerly Fraser Island)

Found off the coast of Queensland, K'gari Island is the largest sand island in the world and is a beautiful, fascinating place to visit. The rusting remnants of the SS Maheno shipwreck on the beach, the gorgeous Champagne Pools where you can cool down, and the picturesque Lake McKenzie with its glistening two-toned waters are just a few of the island's most famous features. The rainforests of K’gari Island are teeming with a rich array of native wildlife, from dingoes and an assortment of birds to adorable echidnas. One of the island's standout features are its sandy tracks, ideal for thrilling 4WD expeditions. Drive at your leisure along the island's beautiful beaches or into its tropical rainforest to discover everything it has to offer. If you love gazing at the stars, Fraser Island is the perfect destination to witness the beauty of the Milky Way. There is something for every kind of tourist on the island, including eco-friendly accommodations and affordable camping beneath the stars for Aussies on a budget or those who just like to sleep under the stars. It promises to be a fantastic weekend escape from Brisbane, whether you're camping by the beach, touring the island's distinctive landscapes, or just relaxing in the natural beauty of Fraser Island.

K’Gari Island, Fraser Island, Queensland

Lamington National Park, Best Getaways near Brisbane, Queensland

6. Lamington National Park

Queensland's national parks offer a great option for weekend escapes from Brisbane, and Lamington National Park is a fantastic place to spend a weekend away. Imagine breathtaking vistas of the scenic rim, lush subtropical rainforests, exquisite wineries, and a plethora of delectable dining options. The journey to Lamington National Park from Brisbane can be completed in just about 90 minutes. Discover hidden waterfalls, embark on scenic hikes, indulge in delectable dishes, and explore vineyards, all while immersing yourself in the local wildlife. Explore this ancient landscape that has been around for over 225 million years. It's no wonder that Lamington National Park made it onto the UNESCO World Heritage List for its ancient rainforests, stunning beauty, and diverse plant and animal life. However, this national park is truly exceptional, not just because of its ancient trees. Immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscapes, encounter rare and fascinating wildlife, and embark on thrilling adventures through dense forests, cascading waterfalls, and interconnected hiking trails. If you have a passion for exploration, you'll be thrilled to know that there are over 160km of trails up here, offering a wide range of difficulty levels from class 1 to 5. These trails are ideal for hikers of all levels. Lamington National Park is the perfect retreat for anyone looking to recharge in the great outdoors.

7. Montville

Montville is a hidden treasure nestled in the Sunshine Coast hinterlands, boasting a delightful and idyllic village that provides a serene escape from the fast-paced city life. Immerse yourself in the beauty of this charming village, where you'll find breathtaking landscapes of lush green hills, vibrant rainforests, and sweeping vistas that extend all the way to the coastline. Boutique stores, comfortable cafes, and art galleries along Montville's main thoroughfare make for a pleasant exploration. Take a leisurely walk down the main street and discover a wide array of one-of-a-kind items, from beautifully crafted goods to delectable locally made fudge.  Outdoor enthusiasts will find plenty of opportunities to immerse themselves in the surrounding natural beauty. Discover the wonders of Kondalilla National Park, with its extensive network of trails for walking that lead to the breathtaking Kondalilla Falls. Take a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear rock pool and immerse yourself in nature's beauty. Montville's opulent cottages and bed & breakfasts offer a peaceful haven for couples seeking a romantic getaway. Montville and the surrounding region are famous for their boutique wineries, offering delightful wine-tasting experiences. Indulge in the exquisite taste of award-winning wines and immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of the Sunshine Coast's vineyard settings.

Kondalilla National Park, Queensland

Image: Instagram / visitsunshinecoast

Moreton Island, Shipwreck, Tangalooma Island Resort, Best Getaway near Brisbane, Queensland

8. Moreton Island

Moreton Island is a fantastic destination for weekend getaways from Brisbane, with a wide range of activities to enjoy. From glamping and 4WD trips to wildlife encounters and stunning beaches, there's something for everyone. Situated just 40 kilometres away from Brisbane, this island is predominantly a national park, covering a staggering 98% of its total area. The Tangalooma Island Resort is an excellent choice for accommodation, providing visitors with the chance to feed wild dolphins and fish during the magical twilight hours. Visitors can also enjoy the opportunity to swim out to shipwrecks, where they can snorkel and have amazing encounters with fish and turtles. Moreton Island is easily reached by taking the Tangalooma passenger ferry, which is perfect for travellers looking for an exciting experience without breaking the bank. Engage in thrilling 4WD sand adventures, exciting ocean activities, and enjoy enchanting evenings by campfires beneath the mesmerising starlit skies. Swimming, fishing, kayaking, paddleboarding, and even camping are among the activities available. Even if you don't have a 4WD, you can still enjoy camping on beautiful beaches or choose to stay in the luxurious glamping tents.

If you want to maximise your time, it's essential to plan your activities ahead of time and do some research on the must-visit spots. Consider checking out the Moreton Islands Wrecks for some incredible snorkelling opportunities, or explore the best trails for thrilling 4WD adventures. Remember to practise responsible tourism on your visit to Moreton Island. Stay on designated tracks, refrain from feeding wildlife and always remember to take your rubbish with you. By doing so, we can help preserve the pristine beauty of this island paradise.

9. Tamborine Mountain

Mount Tamborine, nestled in the picturesque Gold Coast hinterland, is the perfect destination for a weekend escape from Brisbane. Just an hour's drive away, you'll find serene surroundings and fantastic opportunities for exploring nature on foot. The region boasts a plethora of charming cafés, exquisite dining establishments, picturesque vineyards, and the renowned Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk, offering visitors a serene opportunity to meander through the lush subtropical rainforest. Explore the scenic backdrop offered by the rock pools, picnic areas, botanic gardens, and glow worm caves. Mount Tamborine is a cherished weekend getaway that locals hold dear. Immerse yourself in the tranquil surroundings, where the beauty of nature takes centre stage. A delightful stretch of cafes, boutique stores, and art galleries called Gallery Walk is open to visitors, as are the Glow Worm Caves and the ever-popular Tamborine Rainforest Skywalk. Tamborine Mountain  is also known for its numerous distilleries and boutique wineries, so taking part in a tasting session is a must-do activity in the region. Indulging in the beauty of the rainforest, savouring the flavours of local wines, and basking in the refreshing mountain air, Mount Tamborine offers a delightful retreat from the busy city life of Brisbane. Whether you're looking to plan a romantic getaway or a fun-filled family trip, Mount Tamborine has something for everyone. It's the perfect destination for a weekend of pure relaxation and reconnecting with nature.

Tamborine Mountain, Best Getaways in Queensland

Images: Instagram / our_happy_daze

Noosa, Noosa Everglades

Images: Instagram / noosaferry

10. Noosa

Noosa, located on the Sunshine Coast, is a truly enchanting and laid-back destination that is just a short 2-hour drive away from Brisbane. It's perfect for weekend getaways near Brisbane, offering a mix of shopping, sunbathing, and opportunities to explore nature and wildlife. There are plenty of activities to enjoy, or you can simply unwind and soak up the beach vibes. Experience the breathtaking Noosa Everglades by canoe, home to more than 44% of Australia's bird species. The 60 km long watercourse, also known as the River of Mirrors, is a must-see due to its perfect reflections of trees, plants, clouds, and the sky. Boat trips depart from Elanda Point, conveniently located nearby, while guided kayak tours can be found at Boreen Point, just a short 30-minute drive from Noosa Heads. Exploring Noosa National Park through kayaking offers a wonderful opportunity to discover hidden beaches and claim a tranquil spot for yourself.

Alternatively you can browse the quaint stores and cafes or take the seaside route to Tea Tree Bay to spot adorable koalas. Noosa offers a breathtaking Main Beach, ideal for swimming and surfing, as well as the renowned Noosa National Park, where visitors can discover picturesque coastal trails and potentially encounter dolphins or koalas. The vibrant Hastings Street is teeming with life, featuring charming boutique shops, captivating art galleries, and top-notch restaurants, creating the perfect atmosphere to relax and rejuvenate after a long day.

Noosa is more than just the coast; for an alternative viewpoint, visit Lake MacDonald and the Noosa Botanic Gardens. This incredible destination has something to suit every taste, whether you're looking for a peaceful beach getaway or an adventurous experience. Noosa is a fantastic destination for a weekend escape from Brisbane, thanks to its relaxed yet refined ambiance, stunning natural surroundings, and exciting outdoor activities.

11. North Stradbroke Island

North Stradbroke Island is a popular choice for a weekend getaway from Brisbane, located just a two-hour drive away. North Stradbroke Island is a perfect destination for families, romantic weekends away, and individuals or friends in need of a peaceful getaway. You can enjoy beaches, swimming, sports, wildlife, and marine life by boarding the boat from Cleveland's Toondah Harbour. Whether you choose to embark on a leisurely barge journey with your vehicle or opt for the quicker passenger ferry, this island escape guarantees an abundance of delightful experiences. Minjerribah, also known as North Stradbroke Island, is the second largest sand island in the world and it nearly touches Moreton Island. Here, you can also catch a glimpse of whales passing by each winter. You are free to relish in an active or leisurely lifestyle on the island; you can swim in the three great lakes (Brown, Blue Lake, or Bummiera) as well as the crystal-clear ocean. Among the many things to do in the area include golfing, bowling, surfing, kayaking, snorkelling, fishing, sandboarding, climbing the North Gorge Walk or the Goompi Trail, seeing Aboriginal art, and learning about the history of the area. North Stradbroke Island, also known as "Straddie" to locals, is truly a fantastic destination for a weekend getaway from Brisbane.

North Stradbroke Island, Beach

Discover the breathtaking beauty of Main Beach's pristine white sands and the rugged allure of Cylinder Beach, where you'll be captivated by the stunning stretches of coastline. If you're a fan of swimming, surfing, or just soaking up the sun, this is the perfect destination for you. However, there's more to explore beyond the beaches. North Stradbroke Island is home to a wide variety of wildlife, such as dolphins, kangaroos, and humpback whales that can be spotted during migration season. If you're planning a visit between May and November, make sure you don't miss the incredible opportunity to spot whales from Point Lookout. It's an absolutely stunning view that will stay with you forever. Make sure to pack your binoculars and camera for the trip.

Explore the Gorge Walk at Point Lookout and immerse yourself in a vibrant ecosystem filled with native wildlife such as koalas, kangaroos, and a diverse marine life including dolphins, pelicans, and magnificent whales. Additionally, the North Stradbroke Island Historical Museum offers an exploration of the island's rich Aboriginal heritage. One of the popular destinations is Amity Point, known for its camping opportunities. However, North Stradbroke Island offers a wide range of accommodation options to suit various preferences.

If you're looking for a place to unwind or embark on thrilling experiences, North Stradbroke Island is the perfect destination for a weekend escape from Brisbane. It exudes a relaxed and beachy atmosphere that captures the essence of a quintessential getaway. If you truly want to experience all that the island has to offer, consider embarking on a relaxed three-day adventure. While it's possible to enjoy the island's wonders in just a weekend, taking your time will allow you to fully savour its abundant beauty. It's a good idea to book your spot in ahead of time before taking the ferry, especially during busy periods.

Redcliffe Peninsula, Queensland

12. Redcliffe

Head to the Redcliffe Peninsula for a taste of timeless coastal relaxation. Wander around the Redcliffe's Bee Gees Way, which has the names of the town's most well-known sons and which played a significant role in revitalising the Redcliffe Peninsula. Explore the Redcliffe and Bayside Region with your loved ones, whether it's a family trip or a fun outing with friends. This charming beach town in the north offers a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of inner Brisbane. Redcliffe and its surrounding areas are still home to numerous historic structures. The peninsula became increasingly popular among tourists in the early 20th century. Redcliffe attracts a large number of visitors who come to relax and enjoy the beautiful beaches. This charming beach village has recently undergone a stunning transformation. Redcliffe retains its quaint allure as a charming beach village, even after undergoing a transformation. Indulge in a refreshing swim, explore the charming jetties, savour some delicious fish and chips, and unwind in this picturesque coastal area. If you’re looking for a quiet, quaint weekend away, this is it.

13. Stanthorpe

Stanthorpe, nestled in the beautiful Granite Belt region of Queensland, is a delightful town that provides a wonderful respite from daily city life. Stanthorpe offers a one-of-a-kind charm, perfect for those in search of a peaceful countryside escape; it’s a great place for wine lovers and families looking for a laid-back vacation since it combines rustic charm with kid-friendly activities. Some of Australia's best cool-climate wines are produced in the town's well-known vineyards and wineries. Exploring Stanthorpe is a must-do for anyone who loves to travel and discover new places. One of the highlights of this charming destination is the Granite Belt Wine Country. Here, you can indulge in wine tastings, immerse yourself in cellar door experiences, and savour delicious cheese platters while surrounded by picturesque vineyard landscapes. Along with other delectable fresh vegetables, the area offers artisan cheeses, apples, and olives at its many farmers' markets and boutiques. The town itself is a great starting point because it has lots of charming cafes, interesting art galleries, and pleasant lodging alternatives. Girraween National Park is a must-visit destination, offering the opportunity to explore its breathtaking granite formations and embark on exhilarating hiking trails. For those seeking a picturesque weekend getaway from Brisbane, Stanthorpe is a charming option, particularly during the refreshing winter season. Located just a few hours' drive southwest of Brisbane, near the NSW border, it is a place to add to your Queensland bucket list.

Girraween National Park, Stanthorpe, Queensland

Images: Instagram / paulstephen_

Surfers Paradise, Gold Coast, Best weekend getaways near Brisbane

14. Surfers Paradise & the Gold Coast


Experience the perfect blend of surf, sun, and endless fun in Surfers Paradise, just a short drive away from Brisbane. Although it is a popular tourist destination, this place boasts one of the most incredible surfing spots globally - hence its name! Surfers Paradise offers an abundance of activities, making it an ideal destination for a weekend getaway from Brisbane. Explore the stunning architecture and captivating art at HOTA (Home of the Arts), immerse yourself in the vibrant atmosphere of markets, or unleash your inner child at the renowned theme parks in the area. There is a wide range of shopping and dining options available, catering to various budgets. Additionally, there are numerous tourist attractions that can provide entertainment for visitors of all ages.

The Gold Coast is renowned for its stunning golden beaches and internationally acclaimed surf spots. There are endless opportunities for seaside enjoyment, whether you choose to surf at Surfers Paradise, explore the more sedate beaches of Burleigh Heads, or just drive to find a quiet spot lounge on the shore. If you're someone who loves adventure, the Gold Coast is the place to be. It's home to some of the most exciting theme parks in Australia, such as Dreamworld, Movie World, and Wet'n'Wild. These parks provide a thrilling experience for both adrenaline junkies and families looking for some fun. However, the Gold Coast has more than simply theme parks and beaches. It's a vibrant destination with a rich cultural scene and a bustling dining and nightlife scene. The Gold Coast offers a wonderful blend of tranquilly and adventure for those seeking a quick escape from Brisbane.


There are countless amazing options to consider, whether you're looking for family-friendly vacations from Brisbane or nearby romantic getaways for a weekend. Which will it be—a refined resort, an island in the tropics, a camping trip, or a hideaway in the mountains? Brisbane offers a plethora of options for enjoying the great outdoors, regardless of anyone's preferences!

See you out there! ✌🏻

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