Want to get the kids out of the house and into the great outdoors? Bushwalking is a great pastime the whole family can enjoy, and it won't cost you a cent.
You don't need to leave Brisbane to chase waterfalls, meander winding bush tracks or surround yourself with stunning natural scenery. Here are some of our favourite family-friendly walks to get you started.
Spanning 129 hectares and encompassing three major areas, Chermside Hills Reserves is a great place to begin your family bushwalking adventure.
The Senses Trail is a 400-metre loop suitable for toddlers and prams and encourages explorers to listen, smell, see and touch. A little further along is the Creek Track walk, which takes around 30 minutes and leads to a wooden platform overlooking Downfall Creek where little ones can spy water dragons and turtles.
Make a day of it and check out the nearby Downfall Creek Bushland Centre, which hosts free Bush Kindy sessions, walks and workshops to inspire young nature lovers.
Bushwalking in Brisbane wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Brisbane’s largest and most popular bush reserve, Mt Coot-tha Reserve. The area covers 40,000 hectares and has 71 designated walking, horse riding and mountain biking trails.
J. C. Slaughter Falls is a good starting point for families, particularly after rain when the falls are at their best. Wander the Ghost Hole Track for a glimpse into the area’s gold rush days, or walk the more challenging Simpson Falls Track (40 minutes) in late winter and spring for an impressive wildflower display.
The pièce de résistance is the 1.9-kilometre Summit Track, which calls for a little more stamina but delivers stunning views across Brisbane, Moreton Bay and beyond.
Just 10 kilometres out of Brisbane CBD, Mt Gravatt Outlook Reserve has an abundance of wildlife, perfect for a game of animal eye-spy. Koalas, echidnas, lace monitors, and more than 75 different kinds of birds call this part of Brisbane home.
The Acacia and Eastern Outlook Tracks offer more relaxed going, but if you don’t mind a bit of hard yakka, the 1.2 kilometre Summit Track rewards with breathtaking views. There’s also a picnic area and restaurant to rest weary feet at the top.
For a seaside change, the Wynnum Mangrove Boardwalk in Bayside Parklands is an easy 40-minute walk through the mangroves and mudflats. It links to a bird hide, which is great for spotting the migratory shorebirds who frequent the tidal saltmarsh.
Bring the whole family (furry friends included) and stop for a play at the dog off-leash area at Elanora Park, before continuing your walk along the waterfront.
Head west to Anstead Bushland Reserve, a picturesque riverfront oasis with wide dirt tracks, a lookout with sweeping water views, and even the remnants of a historic basalt quarry.
Tackle part or all of the three-kilometre circuit track, which starts and finishes at the undercover picnic and BBQ area. The eucalypt forest is also home to koalas, echidnas, wallabies and powerful owls, so bring along your binoculars for some wildlife watching.
Brisbane is the perfect family playground, with lots to see and do across the city and suburbs. Grab the kids, embrace the great outdoors and explore your backyard – there's a world of fun just waiting to be discovered.
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