I think that Brisbane is a totally underrated city for photography.
There are so many places to seek out good photo spots in Brisbane. The city has pretty modern bridges, leafy green spaces, old and new architecture, and an active river all within easy reach of the city centre.
I visited Brisbane a few years ago and was pleasantly surprised by the number of opportunities I had to get my camera out. I lapped up the scenery for a few days, and by the time I left Brisbane I had a neat collection of shots that captured both the urban and natural sides of the city.
If you’re looking to find some stunning Brisbane photo locations, here’s my suggestions for all the best photography spots in Brisbane!
Brisbane Photography Tips:
- Brisbane is fairly large, so public transport may be useful for travelling between these photography locations. Acquire a TransLink Go Card and pre-load it with fares to access most of the trains, ferries, and buses in the city.
- It’s best to avoid summer when planning a Brisbane photography trip. Days can get hot and humid, and thunderstorms causing flash floods are fairly common. Visit between April and November for the most pleasant weather conditions.
- Many Brisbane photography locations look their best at night as the buildings are lit up after sunset. For this reason, you should take your time on a photography trip to Brisbane. Planning multiple nights in the city will allow plenty of opportunities to visit each location in the evenings.
Photography Spots in Brisbane:
- Wilson Outlook Reserve
- Story Bridge
- South Bank
- City Hall
- Kurilpa Bridge
- Victoria Bridge
- Kangaroo Point
- Eat Street
- Mount Coot-Tha
- Brisbane Botanic Gardens
Wilson Outlook Reserve
Wilson Outlook Reserve has, in my opinion, the best views of the city. This small park lining the Brisbane River offers a gorgeous vista west towards the Story Bridge, and also a neat view south towards New Farm Riverwalk where the boardwalk juts out into the river.
Visiting Wilson Outlook Reserve is best done at sunset. At this time you can capture the sun flare behind the city skyline, or see the colours of the sky change as they darken during blue hour. It’s likely that you’ll find a few other photographers here with their tripods at this time, so arrive a little early to ensure you get a good spot.
Story Bridge could be considered Brisbane’s equivalent of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Located near the city centre, this steel cantilever bridge was opened in 1940 and it continues to carry cars, cyclists, and pedestrians across the Brisbane River.
Photographers will enjoy walking over Story Bridge to capture the steel beams above or the city views through the wire fence on the west side. This is another location that looks most visually stunning at sunset.
South Bank is one of the most touristy areas in Brisbane, but it’s also got some fabulous photo opportunities. The Wheel of Brisbane, the Rainforest Walk, the Nepalese Peace Pagoda, and the Brisbane Riverpool all make great photography subjects.
My favourite photo spot in South Bank was The Arbour–an open air walkway lined with flower covered arches that worked perfectly as a background for outdoor portraits.
Built in the 1930s, Brisbane’s City Hall is one of the prettiest buildings in the city centre. It features an impressive clock tower which is 90 metres in height–nearly as tall as London’s Big Ben!
I enjoyed taking photos of City Hall from the base of the building, looking upwards to capture the huge columns that stand at the front entrance. You could also choose to go up the tower and get photos from the viewing platform that sits at the top.
Brisbane has multiple pedestrian bridges for people to cross the river from the city centre. Kurilpa Bridge is one that I rate highly for photography, especially in the evening, as it’s lit up brightly with coloured lights.
I’d suggest taking an extreme wide angle lens to capture a perspective shot of the curved access ramp on the west end of the bridge. It’s also nice to walk along a bit further up and shoot the beams and cables with the city in the background.
Victoria Bridge is another pedestrian bridge in Brisbane that is worth checking out. If you stand on the east end, you can get a neat perspective of the road below by positioning yourself directly above the Pacific Motorway.
Victoria Bridge is a good spot for long exposures at night time as you can capture the headlights of cars as they draw lines commuting in and out of the city and disappearing underneath your feet.
One of the best places to get photos of the downtown skyscrapers is Kangaroo Point. This cliff-lined park south of the city centre has a lookout and riverside boardwalk that both offer fabulous views.
Eat Street is colourful enough to be spotted from a distance. This collection of shipping containers, which have been converted into a modern street food market, is a popular Brisbane Instagram spot. The space is decorated with fairy lights, flood lights, and neon signage which are best seen in the evenings.
You’ll be shooting in low light conditions when photographing the food and decor at Eat Street. A tabletop tripod might help you to stay out of the way of the crowds while also allowing you to capture the patrons moving about within the space.
Mount Coot-Tha is further out of the city than some other Brisbane photography spots, but the 25-minute drive is certainly rewarding. On arrival you’ll find an expansive vista which covers nearly the entirety of Brisbane.
Head to the summit lookout to see the amazing view. On a clear day you’ll get some fabulous long-distance shots over the city towards downtown. Be sure to take a neutral density filter to enhance the saturation of the sky in your photos.
Brisbane Botanic Gardens
At the base of Mount Coot-Tha, you’ll find the Brisbane Botanic Gardens (not to be confused with the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens which are located downtown!).
The most photogenic feature of these gardens is the geometric patterned Tropical Display Dome. It contains lush green plants inside, which make it a suitable location for photographing models. Try to visit on a cloudy day for the best soft light conditions.