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Guide To Brisbane Cruise Port

Updated on December 14, 2016

Let's Go Brisbane

Brisbane, situated on the east coast of Australia about 600 miles north from Sydney, is the continent’s 3rd largest city with a population of 1.5 million.

The city started out as a penal colony. In 1825 a convict settlement was relocated from Redcliffe to a location on a curve of the Brisbane river (an area today used as the central business district). The colony guards picked the spot because the bend in the river was a good obstacle to escape. When the area was opened in 1838 to free settlers, the population increased quickly, leading to conflict with the local aborigines. The new arrivals had guns so had the upper-hand. In 1859 following the Queensland Proclamation, which confirmed Queensland as a separate colony to New South Wales, Brisbane was chosen as the colony’s capital. This led to a boom, and by the late 1880's Brisbane was the foremost center of business in the region. In World War 2 Brisbane acted as a major support point to the Pacific war and the staging post for thousands of American and Australian military personnel.

Today, Brisbane is a 21st century city basking in an ideal climate boasting a spectacular skyline and a beautiful river. Attractions include the lush City Botanical Gardens, the expansive Queensland art gallery and the excellent Queensland museum. Nearby lie some fabulous beaches on Moreton Bay.

South Bank Parklands
South Bank Parklands
Old Windmill
Old Windmill
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Queensland Museum
Queensland Museum
Mt Coot-tha Lookout
Mt Coot-tha Lookout

Sightseeing In Brisbane

South Bank Parklands
The South Bank Parklands are situated on the south side of the Brisbane river, directly across from the central business district. Relax by the Nepal Peace Pagoda, a beautiful copy of a Kathmandu Temple, one of only a handful of Peace Pagodas outside Nepal. Or sunbathe at Streets Beach, a wide stretch of artificial sand beside a clear blue lake.

Brisbane Walking Tour
You can collect a walking tour map at the central Visitor Information centre situated on Edward Street in Queen Street Mall. Interesting sights to visit include the General Post Office Building, built in 1872 in a neo-classical style, the Old Windmill, built by convicts in 1828, Government House, built in 1862 to accommodate the first Governor of Queensland, the Anzac Square Memorial, constructed to commemorate all Queenslanders who fought and died in WWI and George Street Mansions, an elegant set of terraces dating from 1890.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
Started in 1927 on a small area by the shore of the Brisbane River, the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is the Australia's pioneer koala sanctuary with more than 100 koalas. Remember to have your picture taken as you stroke an endearing koala, lift a long snake, or offer your hand as a perch to a huge bird of prey.

South Bank Cultural Centre
Within an easy walk of the city's riverside business district, the well-planned South Bank Cultural Centre features two renowned art galleries, and a well presented museum. The Queensland Museum was inaugurated in 1862, and it has flourished to become a detailed record of the natural and cultural history unique to Queensland. The Queensland Art Gallery features an outstanding collection of paintings both representational and abstract, decorative art elements, sculptures and collages. The Gallery of Modern Art offers the biggest collection of contemporary art in Australia, presenting the output of a diverse range of prestigious artists.

Mt Coot-tha Lookout
A short half hour trip by coach (or the number 471 public bus from Adelaide Street) brings you to the Mt Coot-tha Lookout, set high up on a hill. An easy walk starting from the Lookout through the leafy eucalyptus forest is an option for the energetic. A popular trail is the Summit Track this takes you down to the Aboriginal Art Trail, which is marked by etchings and tree carvings.

Cruise Routes From Brisbane

Brisbane is between the Sunshine and Gold Coasts, and the area's temperate climate allows the cruise calendar to last all through the year.

The most popular cruise vacation is the voyage north west to the far-flung islands of New Caledonia and Vanuatu. Things to do include: in Lifou looking for whales from the Jokin Cliffs, in Noumea taking a tour of the surreal Jean-Marie Tjibaou Cultural Centre and in Vila snorkeling around magnificent Hideaway Island. Other available cruise vacations include the sail north to Yorky's, Airlie Beach and Port Douglas, and longer trips like the circumnavigation of New Zealand.

For a calendar of cruises leaving Brisbane, see cruises from Brisbane.

Portside Wharf
Portside Wharf
Multi User Terminal
Multi User Terminal

Brisbane Cruise Ports

Brisbane has two cruise ports, Portside Wharf on the Brisbane River, 5km east of the city center, and the Multi-User Terminal, on the mouth of the Brisbane River, further away at 25km east of the city.

Portside Wharf

The main Brisbane cruise terminal is part of an ambitious residential, business and retail site, known as 'Portside Wharf'. Facilities available at the cruise terminal include quarantine, ATM, customs, taxi rank, security and immigration.

Port Of Brisbane Multi-User Terminal

The Multi-Use Terminal at the Port Of Brisbane on Fisherman Islands only handles day calls, not turnaround ships. There is no public transport from the terminal into Brisbane, so cruise passengers have to use taxis and buses laid on by the shipping agent.

Directions to the Cruise Port

By Car

From the north

Enter Brisbane on the Gateway motorway. Exit 110 at Nudgee onto the Southern Cross Way. After 8 km exit following the large sign to Kingsford Smith Drive. Continue into Kingsford Smith Drive. After 1.5 km turn left at the sign to the cruise terminal.

From the south
Drive towards Brisbane on the Gateway motorway. Continue over the Gateway brige. Take exit 106 onto the Southern Cross Way. After 1.5 km exit at the sign to Kingsford Smith Drive. Turn left into Kingsford Smith Drive. After 1.5 km make a left following Brisbane cruise terminal sign.

Portside Wharf does not offer long term parking. The closest commercial lot is Portside Parking on Curtin Avenue.

From The Airport

Portside Wharf's excellent position in downtown Brisbane is very convenient for a taxi journey from the airport. Set aside about half an hour for the transfer to the cruise terminal from the airport.


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    • capitula profile image


      2 years ago

      Queensland's Cabinet has now started mulling over a market-led proposal put together by RCI, Carnival and the Port of Brisbane for a new terminal at Luggage Point. Let's hope they don't take too long over reaching a decision.

    • capitula profile image


      2 years ago

      Ann Sherry (the CEO of Carnival Australia) may be all over building a new terminal at Luggage Point, but hasn't anyone told her that's the site of Brisbane's sewage works ;)

    • Taranwanderer profile image


      3 years ago

      Carnival Cruise Line isn't the most customer-responsive cruise - just look at their employee issues. It's a nightmare. Owner Mickey Arison just sold hundreds of millions of dollars worth of personal stock off....nice hub, btw.

    • capitula profile image


      3 years ago

      Carnival apparently are readying a consortium to build a new cruise terminal near the Port of Brisbane. If Carnival think such a new terminal is needed, why can the Port of Brisbane not get their act together and provide a decent cruise facility, instead of the (great sounding) 'Multi User Terminal'?


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