We landed with Thai Airways into Brisbane on the 21st December (2016) and had a day and a half (two nights) to explore the city. We’d heard a few horror stories about getting through Australian customs but found it quick and efficient having applied for our visas online before travelling. The customs officer was really nice, asking about our living in Thailand and even welcoming Dave back to the country of his birth!
I have to be brutally honest about this trip, I’d had a super busy term at school and hadn’t done anything like the level of research I would normally do for a trip, especially to somewhere we hadn’t ever been before but I think that was almost a good thing as we had no preconceived expectations. A friend from school is from the Brisbane area so we had a few nuggets of info but other than that we just wandered and enjoyed the city as we found it, and with Christmas in the air, it was a great start to our holiday!
We stayed at the Pullman which we had pre-booked using Agoda for £113 per night excluding breakfast. We chose this hotel as it was pretty central and had a pool. On arrival, having hailed a taxi from the airport, we were slightly underwhelmed; this was to be a running theme of our hotel experiences if I’m honest, we’ve put it down to being thoroughly spoilt by service here in Asia, I don’t expect to pay £100+ a night for a hotel and carry my own luggage – what can I say, spoilt. Anyway, the room was fine, the pool was closed for refurbishment and when we tried to go to the rooftop bar at just after 9pm we were told it was closed. But on a positive, they did send a bottle of bubbles to our room for our anniversary which was a nice touch.
Brisbane is easily walkable and as we found the temperature a little cool compared to Bangkok, we donned some comfy footwear, grabbed a map and headed off! We found some cool little spots for breakfast, lunch and dinner and thoroughly enjoyed exploring.
It was our wedding anniversary on the second night so we booked a table at Jellyfish on the riverfront and enjoyed a fabulous seafood meal complete with amazing wine – something we really took advantage of during our time in Oz!
We loved Brisbane. It’s a small city with lots going on and everyone was so friendly – as our first taste of Australia, it couldn’t have been better! For me, being an expat in Asia, I loved the fact I could go into a shop and have a conversation with someone, I don’t think I realised how much I miss that! Our time here was short but we will absolutely be back!