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Brisbane is the capital city of Queensland. It is the most populated city in the state and the third most populous city in Australia. Brisbane has a total land area of 15,842 km2, and it is home to 2,514,184 residents, according to the 2019 estimates of the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Brisbane has eight local government areas, which are the City of Brisbane, City of Ipswich, Logan City, Moreton Bay Region, Redland City, and parts of the Lockyer Valley Region, Scenic Rim Region and Somerset Region.
Before the arrival of the European settlers, the region was inhabited by the Jagera people who named the area “Meanjin”, which means “place shaped as a spike”.
In 1823, Surveyor-General John Oxley discovered the river in the area and named it after Sir Thomas Brisbane, the Governor of New South Wales at that time. The city takes its name after Brisbane River, which is believed to be a frequent habitation site of the area’s early inhabitants.
Brisbane, one of the oldest cities in the country, was originally a convict settlement until its population grew strongly from 1838 with the free settlers outnumbering the convict population. It was in 1842 when Brisbane was officially declared as a free settlement. Around this time, surveyor Robert Dixon began to work on the first plan for the future development of the area.
In 1925, 20 small municipalities and shires amalgamated to form the City of Brisbane. By 1930, the Brisbane City hall was established along with the Shrine of Remembrance in ANZAC Square.
Brisbane is categorised as a global city and is one of Australia’s major business hubs. It remains as one of the country’s most important seaport cities and is one of the fastest-growing regions in Australia.
The capital city’s major industries are mining, banking, insurance, IT, real estate, transportation and food. The city’s central business district (CBD) is situated in a curve of the Brisbane River. The main retail area in the CBD is along Queen Street where Queen Street Mall, the city’s most extensive pedestrian mall, is located.
Other retail hubs around the City of Brisbane are the Brisbane Arcade, Tattersalls Arcade and in the suburbs of Fortitude Valley, South Brisbane, and West End. There are also other indoor shopping centres in the inner-city suburbs.
Five major universities with multiple campuses in the metropolitan area are located in Brisbane. These universities are The University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Griffith University, The University of Southern Queensland and the University of the Sunshine Coast. There are also three major TAFE colleges, several other tertiary education facilities and pre-school to secondary schools in the capital city.
Being located in the Sunshine State, Brisbane has 300 days of sunshine and offers lots of outdoor activities. Some of the parklands in the city are the City Botanic Gardens, Roma Street Parkland and New Farm Park. There are also several national parks in the metropolitan area of Brisbane, such as the D’Aguilar National Park, The Glass House Mountains National Park and the Tambourine National Park.
The arts scene is also thriving in Brisbane. Locals and tourists alike could visit numerous galleries in the city like the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art at South Bank, The Henderson Gallery, as well as The Institute for Modern Art.
For transportation, Brisbane boasts of a world-class international airport, a bustling port and a comprehensive road and rail network. The city also has its integrated public transport and ticketing system called TransLink.
South Bank Parklands
While there are plenty of areas to visit in Brisbane, one of the top destinations in the South Bank Parklands, this 17-hectare riverfront has swimming facilities, walking trails, picnic areas and more. There are also plenty of eateries nearby. The Channel Seven Wheel of Brisbane is located around this area, providing visitors with a 360-degree panoramic view of the city.
Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary
For an ultimate Aussie experience, visitors head to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, which is also home to other Australian animals like kangaroos, wombats, wallabies and dingoes. This facility offers up-close encounters and experiences to guests.