South Bank: Brisbane's Fine Arts center
We spent Saturday exploring some museums and art galleries. South Bank Parkland is just across the Brisbane River from "CBD" (the local lingo for City Business District). Museums, art galleries, restaurants, outdoor cafes, performing arts theaters, even a small beach -- all connected by a meandering, picturesque "Arbor Walk" promenade. You can easily spend a day here ... and we did.
The Gallery of Modern Art had some intriguing sculpture.
There were a small assortment of street artists gathering small crowds -- musicians, sketch artists, even a comedian. It was a beautiful, sunny weekend day, and everyone was out enjoying themselves.
At the north end is the public library -- a clean, modern building which, by the way, provides free wireless internet access to anyone who walks in with a laptop. (There's also a bank of free, public desktop terminals, though you may have to wait in line to use one of them.) Not real speedy, mind you, but at least it's free. Most of the hotels seem to charge extra for internet access.
The parkland is wonderfully designed for bicycles and pedestrians. Getting to/from South Bank, or around town in general, is easy via a well-integrated transit system of electric trains and small catamaran ferries. Even bicycle pathways along the river, and even a pedestrian/bicycle-only bridge across the river to South Bank.
The Arbor Walk meanders through Brisbane's South Bank Parkland.
The Goodwill Bridge, for pedestrians and bicyclists only, crosses the Brisbane River to South Bank Parkland.
Edit Sunday: Woah! Strolled back to South Bank on Sunday, and stumbled into this ... hundreds
of booths in an arts & crafts fair. They host a YDM ("Young Designers Market") on the first Sunday of every month. The usual fare of trinkets, bracelets, t-shirts, paintings, carvings, knick-knacks, etc., though some with an Australian feel. Also lots of street musicians along the Arbor Walk, plus "official" music and native/cultural performances in the Piazza and here and there in various open-air clearings along the Walk. This month also happens to be Brisbane's 150th anniversary, so don't know if that's enhanced the festivities, but it was huge. And fun!
Posted by Dan 09/05/2009, revised 09/23/2009 by Dan