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About Brisbane

Classic Australian pastimes such as surfing and swimming from sensational beaches – that is what you will find on the coastline surrounding Queensland’s capital and cruise port Brisbane. Cruises here bring to your holiday a balance of both nature and elegant grounds.

To the south are the high-rise hotels which make up the exciting Surfers’ Paradise and Gold Coast resorts, while to the north there is the beautiful and more sedate Sunshine Coast.

Cultural attractions in downtown Brisbane are located in and around the South Bank Parklands by the Brisbane River – site of the 1988 World Expo. In close proximity you will discover the Queensland Museum and the State Art Gallery, which features many Aboriginal works. Shore excursions from our cruises to Brisbane also include the Butterfly House and Maritime Museum.

The best shopping can be found at the Myer Centre complex on the city’s central commercial artery, Queen Street. While enjoying your Brisbane cruise walk south to admire the fine architecture around the former Treasury building and then discover the imaginatively landscaped Botanic Gardens. 


Shore excursions in Brisbane

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

Australia Zoo and Wildlife Hospital

Activity lowShoppingFamily

Duration: 6 hours

Visit Steve Irwin’s famous Australia Zoo to view an amazing live crocodile show and to see an unusual variety of wildlife.

Your experience will begin with a visit to Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital. A brief tour of the facilities will provide a behind the scenes insight into the work of a dedicated rescue team who collect sick, injured and orphaned koalas and other native wildlife.

Nearby to the hospital is Australia Zoo which was established by the late ‘Crocodile Hunter’, Steve Irwin and is still run by his enthusiastic family. It is one of Australia’s leading environmental organisations, committed to the preservation of Australian wildlife and their habitat.

You will have around 3 hours to explore the many enclosures at your own leisure. Discover the large numbers of native animals including freshwater and saltwater crocodiles, kangaroos, tigers and wombats. You will have the chance to meet the cuddly koalas, view majestic birds of prey and feed kangaroos (food at your own expense).

The Zoo’s latest addition is their totally wild Africa exhibit. The open-plains are home to giraffe, zebra and rhinos. You’ll have the opportunity to watch these fascinating animals from onboard the special Africa Safari Shuttle.

There will be daily animal presentations. The highlight is the live crocodile show, where the crocodiles launch a strike from the water’s edge in the purpose built ‘Crocoseum’. A truly unforgettable day out.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach. Please check on arrival at the zoo for details of the crocodile show, animal talks, feeding times and presentation schedules. The tour is unguided therefore walking is at passengers’ own discretion. The terrain is mostly flat pavement and there is a trolley train which runs continuously around the zoo. Passengers with limited mobility can rent a motorized scooter for approximately AUD$25 (pay on arrival). The zoo is fully wheelchair accessible.

Brisbane Sights and Koala Sanctuary

Activity low

Duration: 5 hours

Enjoy a city drive around Brisbane and then meet some of Australia’s native animals at the world’s largest Koala Sanctuary.

Take a leisurely drive through the city, where you will pass the Botanical Gardens, the historic Parliament House, the Treasury Building, City Hall and Old Customs House. See the South Bank Parklands and Cultural Centre, which combine the State’s Art Gallery, Performing Arts Complex, Museum and Library in a splendid riverside setting. Before arriving at the koala sanctuary, stop at Mt Coot-tha Lookout to enjoy panoramic views of the city.

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, founded in 1927, is the world's oldest and largest Koala Sanctuary and contains over 130 koalas. Set in beautiful, natural surroundings, the sanctuary is also home to many other species of native Australian wildlife including Kangaroos, Tasmanian Devils, Wombats, Echidnas, Kookaburras, Emus, Cassowarys, various species of Reptiles and a Platypus.

You may wish to hold and have your photo taken cuddling a Koala (additional expense payable locally), or hand feed the kangaroos and wallabies that roam freely around the grounds. There are daily talks, shows and presentations given throughout the visit to teach you more about these unusual animals.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach. The visit to the sanctuary is unguided therefore walking is at passengers’ own discretion. The terrain consists of pavements, a slated wooden boardwalk and compacted gravel/turf. Passengers with colds or flu are advised not to handle the koalas. Please check on arrival at the sanctuary for the times of the daily shows. The itinerary may operate in reverse.

Gold Coast Cruise and Sights

Activity lowRefreshments includedShoppingFamily

Duration: 7 hours

Enjoy morning tea on a relaxing canal cruise along the Gold Coast Waterway to the famous resort of Surfers Paradise.

Board your River Cruiser for a relaxing cruise along the sunny shores and canals of the Gold Coast.

Enjoy refreshments of a delicious Devonshire tea as you pass the beautiful sites of the Gold Coast Waterway canal system and broadwater. You will see Marina Mirage, Seaworld and Palazzo Versace, Australia’s only 6 star hotel. View some of the world's most beautiful high-rise apartments and the ever-changing Surfers Paradise skyline from the comfort of an air-conditioned canal cruiser.

On arrival at Surfers Paradise there will be approximately 1½ hours of free time to enable you to discover the famous resort your own leisure. There is plenty to see and do, you may wish to browse through the many shops and designer arcades, take a dip in the refreshing sea or relax and soak up the sun at this premier beach location.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach and motor-cruiser. There are a few steps to negotiate to board the canal boat and 10 steps to access the upper deck. The cruise lasts approximately 1½ hours and is not exclusive to P&O Cruises. The coach journey to the Gold Coast takes approximately 1½ hours each way. Lunch is not included to allow maximum flexibility – there are many cafés and restaurants at Surfers Paradise. Passengers are reminded to swim between the flags on the beach, to take swimwear, a towel and sunscreen. There are limited changing facilities available.

Gold Coast Transfer

Activity lowShoppingFamily

Duration: 7 hours

Enjoy time at leisure to enjoy the balmy sea breezes, sandy beaches and lively resort lifestyle of the famous Sunshine State.

The Gold Coast is a major tourist destination with its sunny subtropical climate, surfing beaches, canal and waterway systems, its high-rise dominated skyline and rainforest hinterland.

You will have approximately 4 hours at your leisure to discover the Gold Coast district of Surfers Paradise. Browse through the many shops and designer arcades, enjoy a lunch of Aussie fish and chips or sit in one of the many chic beachside restaurants. Soak up the sun’s rays as you relax on the famous dazzling beach and enjoy a refreshing swim in the sea.

After a day of discovering the magic of the Gold Coast the coach will be waiting to bring you back to the ship.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach. The journey to the Gold Coast takes approximately 1½ hours. The drop off and pick up point is currently Surfers Paradise Transfer Station (bus station). Walking is at passengers’ own discretion. The transfer service to and from the ship is included but any other costs will be at passengers’ own expense. Please remember to bring swimwear, towel, sunscreen and local currency. Passengers who wish to swim must stay within the flagged area. Independent suppliers on the beach may offer watersports, these are provided by parties unconnected to P&O Cruises and are payable direct.

Leisurely Brisbane

Activity low

Duration: 4½ hours

Enjoy magnificent views and stylish buildings on this leisurely tour around Brisbane and its surrounding area.

Brisbane has the look of a city that has recently grown-up. Much of the old and unsightly has been bulldozed and replaced with glittering glass and concrete towers, hotels and paved shopping malls.

On this leisurely drive around the cosmopolitan and lively City of Brisbane, you will have the opportunity to see many sights including the historical buildings of Parliament House, the Treasury Building, Customs House and the City Hall.

Continuing on to Mount Coot-tha look-out, you will be able to enjoy an unequalled panoramic view over the city’s modern, sleek skyscrapers and picturesque suburb. On a clear day you can see as far as the Glass House Mountains to the North, the Gold Coast Hinterland to the South and Moreton and Stradbroke Islands to the East.

Your journey will take you past South Bank Parklands, a 42-acre sub-tropical park built on the site of the 1988 World Expo, to Kangaroo Point Cliffs. A brief stop here will provide a vista of the city skyline with the meandering Brisbane River below.

The unusual blend of historic buildings, modern architecture and lush inner city parks make this a city not to be missed.

Essential information

This excursion will operate by coach. All sightseeing is conducted from the comfort of your coach with photo stops along the way.


A selection of cruises to Brisbane


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