Brisbane is the capital of Queensland, Australia and is also the biggest city in that state. Brisbane is located on a flood plain between the Great Diving Range and Moreton Bay on the Brisbane River. It covers an area of two thousand square miles and has a population of almost two million residents. Brisbane’s economy is based on industries such as information technology, government administration, paper milling, metal work, oil refinement and tourism. The city also has the third most important port in Australia, Port Brisbane. Its major exports include coal, container freight, sugar and grain. The city also has a thriving retail trade and shopping centers that are located in this city include Queen Street Mall, Broadway on the Mall, Indooroopilly Shopping Center, The Myer Center and Queens Plaza.Brisbane can trace its history back to 1799, when it was explored by Matthew Flinders during his trip from Port Jackson to Hervey Bay. He landed at Woody Point and also landed at Coochiemudlo Island. Twenty-four years later, arrived at Port Curtis looking for a suitable location to place a convict settlement. He found that location to be unsatisfactory, so he headed up the Brisbane River to about ten miles upstream of what is now Brisbane’s business district. The area which would become Brisbane was occuppied by the Turrbal and Jagera Aboriginal clans. In 1838, the area was opened up to settlers and the original Aboriginal tribes were either killed or driven out of the area. In 1924, the City of Brisbane Act was passed and merged the cities of Brisbane and South Brisbane. In 1930, Brisbane City Hall was constructed.
A popular attraction in the city of Brisbane is the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. This sanctuary was founded in 1927 and its name was taken from a hoop pine that the original owners of the four hectacre site planted. The sanctuary started off with two koalas named Jack and Jill. Today, the park is known for its native Australian animals which include Wombats, Echidnas, Koalas, Kangaroos and Tasmanian Devils. The sanctuary also contains many different varieties of cockatoos and Australian parrots, as well as other native birds such as emus and Kookaburras. Visitors can feed the free roaming kangaroos and even get the opportunity to hold a koala for a small fee. This park also has bird shows and sheep dog shows. Another popular attraction in Brisbane is the South Bank Parklands. This parkland is located on the original site of Brisbane’s 1988 World Expo and was founded in 1992. Its connected to the Queensland University of Technology and Brisbane City Botanic Gardens via the Goodwill Bridge at its southern edge and to the Brisbane CBD via the Victoria Bridge at its northern edge. South Bank Parklands contain many interesting and fun features which include swimming pools, walking trails, picnic areas and a riverfront promenade. Oher key features of the parkland include the Wheel of Brisbane, coffee shops and restaurants. Over nine million people pass through its gates every year.
If games of chance are your cup of tea, then you might want to visit the Conrad Treasury Casino. This casino, also known as The Treasury, is operated by Tabcorp Holdings and contains a hotel, a nightclub, four restaurants and seven bars. Its located in a nineteenth century Baroque building that has sandstone walls, a six story atrium and beautiful colonnades. It has three levels of gaming that has over eight game tables and over thirteen hundred game machines. Games offered here include Treasury 21, Blackjack, Caribbean Stud Poker, Mini Baccarat, Roulette, Texas Hold’em Poker and Sic Bo. The Queensland Art Gallery is another attraction worth mentioning in the city of Brisbane. This art gallery is located next to Queensland Museum and is the major art gallery of the country. It was founded in 1895 and was originally known as the Queensland National Art Gallery. It spent the first few years of its life being shuffled from one temporary building to the next, until it found its home in 1982 at its current location. This art gallery contains over fourteen thousand square feet of exhibition space that is broken down into smaller sections by barriers and walls. Current exhibits at this gallery include The 6th Asia Pacific Triennial of ontemporary Art, Barkcloth across the Pacific, Creative Generation Excellence Awards in Visual Art and Design, Unnerved: the New Zealand project and James Fardoulys : a Queensland naive artist. New exhibits are rotated in on a regular basis, so visitors always have something fresh to experience at this gallery.
Other attractions in Brisbane include Riverlife Adventure Center, Brisbane Botanic Gardens, City Cat Ferry, Old St. Stephen’s Church, Roma Street Parkland, St. Helena Prisoner Island, Museum of Brisbane, Queensland Cultural Center, Queen Street Mall, Brisbane Powerhouse, XXXX Brewery, Ashgrove Baptist Church, Fortitude Valley, Shorncliffe Beach, MacArthur Museum, Spiritual Church of Brisbane, St. Andrews Lutheran Church, Sciencentre, Boondall Wetlands Reserve, Queensland Maritime Museum, St. Stephen’s Cathedral, Sir Thomas Brisbane Planetarium, La Boite Theater, City Tabernacle Baptist Church, South Brisbane Memorial Park, Anglican All Saints Church, Ashgrove Golf Club, Wynumm Golf Club, Zoology Museum, Sherwood Arboretum, Toowong Cemetery, Anglican Pilgrim Congregational Church, St. Brigid’s Catholic Church, Tingalpa Creek Reserve, Windsor Road Baptist Church, Victoria Barracks Museum, Toohey Forest, Victoria Park Golf Course, Tinchi Tamba Wetlands, Superbee Honeyworld, Sacred Heart Church, Fort Lytton National Park, Coca Cola Amatil factory, South Stradbroke Island Resort, The Wax Museum and Fly Me To The Moon. Of course, these are only a small handfull of the many attractions that are located in the city. Brisbane is also home to a number of fabulous restaurants and hotels. Restaurants in the city include Bretts Wharf Seafood Restaurant, Deery’s Restaurant, Two A Restaurant & Wine Bar, Customs House Restaurant, Summit Restaurant Brisbane Lookout and Vino’s Restaurant & Bar. Prominent hotels in the city include Sofitel Brisbane Hotel, Hotel George Williams, Rydges South Bank, Rendezvous Hotel, Hilton Brisbane, Conrad Treasury Brisbane Hotel, Story Bridge Hotel, Royal on the Park and The Sebel & Citigate King George Square.