Best Short Walks For Kids In Brisbane
Getting kids moving can be a challenge, but if you want to give your child the gift of a life-long love of walking, you’ve got to start small, attainable, and interesting. Here are our favourite short walks around Brisbane your kids are sure to love.
City Loop – Southbank/Kangaroo Point/City
Okay, bare with me. This is a big loop but you don’t have to do all of it – there are smaller walks within this large 10-ish kilometre route that your little ones will love. The easiest goes from Southbank, across Victoria Bridge to the city, along to QUT, and then across the Goodwill Bridge back to Southbank. Bonuses along the way: a great view of the river the whole way, fairy lights in the fig trees at QUT, and stop for a coffee or hot chocolate at Brendan’s Café on the Goodwill Bridge (his wife Kelly also makes incredible yummy baked goods they have for sale).
Or head from Southbank along the base of the Kangaroo Point Cliffs, walk over the iconic Storey Bridge, along the riverside in the CBD (lots of great cafes and restaurants to rest and recharge at, then walk through the Botanic Gardens and cross the Goodwill Bridge back to Southbank.
Whichever route you choose, Southbank has playgrounds, restaurants, cafes and huge grassy areas for picnics when you’re done. And for those that can’t manage much of a walk at all, just take an easy stroll through Southbank’s gorgeous arbour, a meandering stroll under the magenta flowers of the massive bougainvillea.
Mt Coot-tha Climb
Of course you can drive to the top, but why not park the car at the base and take an easy walk up the mountain? It’s not too steep and the tracks are well maintained. Even young children can manage the walk up, with a few stairs here and there, but mostly just a gentle graded walk. At the top you’ll find not only spectacular views of Brisbane (see if you can spot your house), but also a great café and ice creamery. If that won’t get the kids moving, I don’t know what will! Just beware the easy walk down the mountain can be tempting for children who want to belt down the hill. Many a skinned knee was had by over-confident children running downhill on a dirt track.
Image credit: Brisbane City Council
Daisy Hill Koala Trails
If you need a sweetener to get your little ones moving, how about the promise of koala sightings? You’re guaranteed to spot a koala as you walk through Daisy Hill Koala Centre. There are some koala shows and educational displays, or you can just hit one of the bush trails for a leisurely stroll while looking up to see how many furry critters you can spot. Most trails are less than 2km in length, so perfect for little legs.
More info: Daisy Hill Koala Centre
Image credit: Daisy Hill Koala Centre
North Gorge Walk
You need to catch a ferry over to North Stradbroke Island for this walk but it is well worth the effort. At only 1.2km for the entire loop along the seaside clifftops it is an easy stroll for even the most reluctant walker, and the rewards are immense. If seeing whales, dolphins, manta rays, turtles and kangaroos isn’t enticing enough, the loop starts and finishes right near the Straddie gelato shop, so you can use that as an enticement to keep walking just a little bit longer. Be aware there are some high cliffs that aren’t fenced on this walk, so you’ll need to keep close to your little tear-aways here.
More info: Visit Redlands Coast website
West End to the Cultural Precinct
Park the car in West End (or even better, catch the 199 or City Glider bus), and visit Davies Park markets nice and early to start your day. Then you can take an easy stroll along the river which will lead you directly to the Cultural Precinct – we’re talking Queensland Gallery of Modern Art, Sciencentre, Queensland Museum, and the Queensland Art Gallery. There’s loads for the whole family to do here – and plenty of great lunch options in the café. But if that isn’t enough, Southbank is another short stroll along the riverside boardwalk. There’s your day super full!
More info: Arts Queensland Cultural Precinct
Brighton to Shorncliffe
Choose one end to start and then take a delightful stroll along the foreshore. Views stretch out over Bramble Bay, and don’t miss a walk along Shorncliffe Pier – where you can spot jellyfish and fish swimming along in the water. The walk is a long one – about an hour each way – so break it up by stopping at Sandgate Fishmonger for lunch, or cut the walk in half and just start in Sandgate and head along to Shorncliffe Pier and back.
Looking for outdoor adventure? Here's some ideas:
- The Best Rockpool for Kids Around Brisbane
- The Best Bike Prks and Trails for Kids in Brisbane
- The Best Secret Spots to Take Your Kids in Brisbane
Have you signed up to our newsletter? Join ellaslist to get the best family and kid-friendly events, venues, classes and things to do NEAR YOU!