Brisbane is a lively, vibrant and youthful city. It has a great food scene, excellent art galleries and museums, a rich history and a fun nightlife.

But, Brisbane is a large city and not all of its neighbourhoods will appeal to visitors. Which is exactly why we put together this list of the best areas to stay in Brisbane.

This guide was written by travellers for travellers. It breaks down the best places in Brisbane to stay into easy to read categories so you can quickly find the neighbourhood that’s right for you. So whether you’re looking to delve deep into history, explore the arts scene, or party from dusk until dawn, this guide will give you all the information you need so you can book your accommodation with confidence and ease.

Let’s get right to it. Here are our top picks for where to stay in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

Where to Stay in Brisbane

Looking for a specific place to stay? These are our highest recommendations for places to stay in Brisbane.

If you’re a budget-conscious traveller and you want to keep a bit of money in your bank account, we’d recommend staying at one of Brisbane’s epic hostels. Each of them offers a comfy bed, a safe place to rest your head and the chance to meet like-minded travellers.

Best Airbnb in Brisbane: CBD Apartment overlooking the river

The Alderley Studio is one of the nicest you could have – it’s more than just a private room. There’s a private decking overlooking the garden, your very own bathroom, and a queen bed.

There are many great places in Brisbane, but this is definitely one of the best Airbnbs in Brisbane. If you want to make your trip extra special, this should be your go-to!

Best Hostel in Brisbane: Nomads Brisbane

With a rooftop terrace complete with dozens of comfy sunloungers, Summer House is one of the coolest hostels in Brisbane. Summer House is a haven for backpackers travelling the land down under offering free, super-fast and totally unlimited WiFi access. Their sunny rooftop terrace is the perfect spot to relax before joining the Summer House crew for their evening activities; everything from movie nights to free Italian dinners

Best Hotel in Brisbane: Sage Hotel James Street

This hotel is ideally located in Fortitude Valley, the best neighbourhood in Brisbane to stay in for nightlife and partying. This boutique hotel is within walking distance to the best bars and clubs in Brisbane as well as shops and restaurants. Rooms at this hotel in Brisbane are modern, luxurious and well-equipped with a variety of great amenities.

Brisbane Neighbourhood Guide

FIRST TIME IN BRISBANE
The CBD, Brisbane
FIRST TIME IN BRISBANE

The CBD

The CBD is the best neighbourhood in Brisbane to stay in for first-time visitors and travellers keen on sightseeing. Referred to by locals as The City, Brisbane’s CBD is a lively and vibrant district set at the heart of the city.

ON A BUDGET
Petrie Terrace, Brisbane
ON A BUDGET

Petrie Terrace

Located just east of the city centre, Petrie Terrace is a compact neighbourhood that packs a big punch. One of the oldest party and entertainment districts in the city, Petrie Terrace is home to great bars, lively clubs and delicious restaurants as well as the Suncorp Stadium, which hosts incredible live music, sporting and entertainment events.

NIGHTLIFE
Fortitude Valley, Brisbane
NIGHTLIFE

Fortitude Valley

Fortitude Valley is a vivacious and boisterous neighbourhood. It is located northeast of the city centre and is famous for its combination of eclectic bars with alternative shopping.

COOLEST PLACE TO STAY
New Farm, Brisbane
COOLEST PLACE TO STAY

New Farm

Nestled next to Fortitude Valley is the New Farm neighbourhood. This central district is one of Brisbane’s best neighbourhoods thanks to its upmarket shopping, hip dining and trendy bars.

FOR FAMILIES
South Bank, Brisbane
FOR FAMILIES

South Bank

South Bank is a vivid and vivacious neighbourhood located south of Brisbane’s CBD. It is a district characterized by its lengthy riverside boardwalk, waterside cafes and its inner city beach.

Brisbane is a large city located on the eastern coast of Australia. It is known for its positive attitude and creativity as well as its excellent culinary, arts and nightlife scenes.

One of the oldest cities in Australia, Brisbane boasts a rich and varied history and is home to a great selection of tourist attractions and historical landmarks.

The city covers 15,842 square kilometres and is home to a number of neighbourhoods, each offering something unique to travellers. In this Brisbane neighbourhood guide, we’ll look at the best things to see, do and eat in the five best areas.

Starting with the city centre. Brisbane’s Central Business District (CBD) is a big and buzzing neighbourhood at the heart of the city. It is the best neighbourhood in Brisbane to stay in if you’re visiting for the first time or are keen on sightseeing because it has so many excellent landmarks and attractions like the Queen Street Mall, City Botanic Gardens and Story Bridge, it’s also just a stone’s throw to Central Station too.

Travel northwest to Petrie Terrace. This small neighbourhood packs a big punch. Here you’ll find great bars, restaurants and shops and it is our best recommendation for where to stay in Brisbane on a budget.

Head east from here to Fortitude Valley. A bustling and buzzing area, Fortitude Valley is our pick for where to stay in Brisbane for nightlife thanks to its many bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants.

New Farm is one of the coolest places to stay in Brisbane. It is a trendy and hip district set east of Fortitude Valley and is packed with great shops, eateries, cafes and bars.

Finally, South Bank is situated south of the city centre. It wins our vote for where to stay in Brisbane with kids because it has a central location and is home to amazing museums, galleries and attractions.

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Brisbane’s 5 Best Neighbourhoods to Stay in

Still not sure which is the best neighbourhood to stay in Brisbane based on your needs? Well, don’t worry! In this next section, we’ll breakdown Brisbane’s best neighbourhoods in detail.

#1 The CBD – Where to Stay in Brisbane for Your First Time

The CBD is the best neighbourhood in Brisbane to stay in for first-time visitors and travellers keen on sightseeing.

Referred to by locals as The City, Brisbane’s CBD is a lively and vibrant district set at the heart of the city. It’s where you’ll find Brisbane’s major businesses as well as a great selection of shops, malls, cinemas, museums, restaurants and galleries.

Brisbane Central Business District is also home to many of Brisbane city’s most famous tourist attractions and landmarks. From the iconic City Hall and the Museum of Brisbane to the Roma Street Parkland and the beautiful City Botanic Gardens, there’s plenty to see, do and experience in this central neighbourhood.

The CBD, Brisbane

Things to See and Do in The Central Business District

– Climb to the top of the Brisbane City Hall clock tower and enjoy the view.

– Delve deep into the history of the city at the Museum of Brisbane.

– Eat fresh and delicious fare at the Brisbane Riverbar & Kitchen.

– Enjoy delicious cocktails at Super Whatnot.

– Feast on incredible Australian fare at Urbane.

– Pack a picnic and enjoy a peaceful afternoon in Roma Street Parkland.

– Shop until you drop on Edward Street and Queen Street Mall.

– Sip high tea at the Shingle Inn.

– Stop and smell the roses at the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens.

– Support up-and-coming local designers by browsing the BrisStyle Indie Markets.

Best Airbnb in The CBD: CBD Apartment overlooking the river

This contemporary and recently refitted apartment in one of the city’s iconic Residential buildings is in the ideal location to help you make the most of your time in Brissy. It’s an elegant space that comes with high ceilings and a lot of light that add a sense of space. It’s slap bang in the heart of the CBD, providing easy access to everything the city has to offer.

Best Hostel in The CBD: Brisbane City YHA

This cool and contemporary hostel is one of the best places to stay in Brisbane. It has a great central location near Queen Street Mall and boasts a pool table, swimming pool and game room. They also host weekly activities like BBQs, pub crawls, yoga and more. Each room is outfitted with comfortable beds and modern amenities.

Best Hotel in The CBD: Royal On The Park

Royal On The Park is a stylish and modern 4.5-star hotel in central Brisbane. It offers amazing views of the city and boasts great features, like free wifi and a stunning pool. Rooms are well-outfitted with A/C and comfy beds. This is one of our favourite options for Brisbane accommodation.

Best Hotel in The CBD: Royal Albert Hotel

This hotel has a great location in the CBD, the best area in Brisbane to stay in for sightseeing. It is close to popular tourist attractions and historic landmarks, including the Parklands, Botanic Gardens, Queen Street Mall and dining. This hotel has large rooms with A/C, luxury toiletries and modern amenities.

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#2 Petrie Terrace – Where to Stay in Brisbane on a Budget

Located just east of the city centre, Petrie Terrace is a compact neighbourhood that packs a big punch. One of the oldest party and entertainment districts in the city, Petrie Terrace is home to great bars, lively clubs and delicious restaurants as well as the Suncorp Stadium, which hosts incredible live music, sporting and entertainment events.

Petrie Terrace is also where you’ll find a high concentration of good value accommodation options, which is why it’s our pick for the best are in Brisbane to stay in if you’re ballin’ on a budget. All throughout the neighbourhood, there are comfortable, spacious and secure options, all at an excellent price!

Petrie Terrace, Brisbane

Things to See and Do in Petrie Terrace

– Catch a flick at the Palace Barracks Cinemas.

– Enjoy wholesome and hearty homemade snacks from Pamela’s Pantry.

– Feast on amazing dishes and delicacies at The Caxton Hotel.

– Grab a quick and tasty snack at Fritzenberger.

– Indulge in great burgers, fries and American fare at Fat Belly Jacks.

– Listen to great live music at Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall.

– Root for the home team at Suncorp Stadium.

– Satisfy your appetite at delicious Brewski.

– Sip wine and cocktails at the StreetSide Bar.

– Start your day with an amazing break from the Scout Café.

Best Airbnb in Petrie Terrace: Contemporary studio with bus views

This beautiful studio apartment is a steal at the price. The private terrace looks awesome enclosed by local fauna, and you can just about make out views of the city peaking through between the leaves. Great for those looking to save some money, or find some privacy while staying central.

Best Hostel in Petrie Terrace: Nomads Lodge

With a rooftop terrace complete with dozens of comfy sunloungers, Nomads is one of the coolest hostels in Brisbane. The Nomads group of hostels have venues across Australia and New Zealand, they offer some sweet discounts if you book all your touristy adventures through them. Their Down Under Bar is the best place to hook up with travel buddies or even meet new nomads to explore with. This place gets pretty pumping so you’ll be glad to hear they have a late check-out option for all who need it!

Best Hostel in Petrie Terrace: Banana Bender Backpackers

Banana Bender Backpackers is another great option for budget Brisbane accommodation. It is ideally located in Petrie Terrace and is close to great tourist attractions, restaurants, bars and shops. This property has 20 comfortable and spacious rooms and boasts an outdoor terrace, on-site bar and free wifi. It’s also just a stone’s throw from the Brisbane CBD.

Best Hotel in Petrie Terrace: Gambaro Hotel Brisbane

The Gambaro Hotel is one of the best places in Brisbane to stay because of its excellent location. Set in Petrie Terrace but close to the Brisbane CBD, this five-star hotel is close to eateries, bistros, bars and shops. It has a coffee bar, laundry services and modern rooms. There’s also a delicious on-site restaurant.

Klook.com

#3 Fortitude Valley – Where to Stay in Brisbane for Nightlife

Fortitude Valley is a vivacious and boisterous neighbourhood. It is located northeast of the city centre and is famous for its combination of eclectic bars with alternative shopping.

This neighbourhood is the best area in Brisbane to stay in for nightlife because it offers such a great mix of places to go and fun things to do. It is home to everything from dive bars and cosy pubs to innovative DJs and world-class super clubs. You can usually find something going on here 7 nights a week but it gets especially lively if you are visiting Brisbane on the weekend.

So, no matter your taste, style, budget or age, Fortitude Valley is a neighbourhood that will have you feeling like there’s not enough to time see and experience it all!

Fortitude Valley, Brisbane
Photo: JAM Project (Flickr)

Things to See and Do in Fortitude Valley

– Dance the night away at The Beat Megaclub.

– Don’t miss the chance to spend a night at raucous Cloudland.

– Drink bespoke cocktails at Laruche.

– Eat innovative and exciting food at Harvey’s Bar & Bistro.

– Enjoy tasty dishes and refreshing beers at Alfred & Constance.

– Feast on flavourful Italian dishes at Bucci.

– Grab drinks at the quirky and cool Bloodhound Corner Bar and Kitchen.

– Party late into the night at The Met, an insane club with five thriving dance floors.

– See incredible works of modern art at the Jan Murphy Gallery.

– Sip sophisticated wines at the CRU Bar & Cellar.

Best Airbnb in Fortitude Valley: Party pad with it’s own infinity pool

If you in town to make the most of Brissy’s nightlife, why not do it in style! Get a few friends together and snatch this place up at a bargain price. With its city views and private infinity pool, no doubt you’ll be bringing the oaty back with you.

Best Hostel in Fortitude Valley: Bunk Brisbane

Bunk Brisbane is a friendly and fun hostel in lively Fortitude Valley near Brisbane River. This is our top pick for where to stay in Brisbane for one night because it’s close to great bars, shops and restaurants. This property has modern and spacious dorm rooms, a swimming pool and an outdoor terrace. They also regularly host excellent events.

Best Hotel in Fortitude Valley: Sage Hotel James Street

This walking distance is ideally located in Fortitude Valley, the best neighbourhood in Brisbane to stay in for nightlife and partying. It is close to the best bars and clubs in Brisbane as well as shops and restaurants and Brisbane CBD. Rooms are modern, luxurious and well-equipped with a variety of great amenities.

Best Hotel in Fortitude Valley: Ovolo The Valley Brisbane

This is one of the best places to stay in Brisbane thanks to its swimming pool, spacious rooms and wonderful staff. Set in vibrant Fortitude Valley, this boutique hotel is within walking distance of the city’s best bars, clubs and restaurants and the Brisbane River. Rooms come complete with A/C, minibars, coffee machines and iPod docking stations.

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#4 New Farm – Coolest Place to Stay in Brisbane

Nestled next to Fortitude Valley is the New Farm neighbourhood. This central district is one of Brisbane’s best neighbourhoods thanks to its upmarket shopping, hip dining and trendy bars. It is the place to see and be seen in, which is why New Farm is our top pick for the coolest neighbourhood in Brisbane.

Delicious restaurants, cosy cafes, sweet bakeries, eclectic event spaces, kicking coffee, and interesting independent boutiques are just a few of the amazing things that New Farm offers to its visitors.

New Farm, Brisbane

Things to See and Do in New Farm

– Eat fresh and delicious dishes at Botanica Real food.

– Excite your sense with delicious food at Pablo.

– Go for a stroll through New Farm Park.

– Grab pints at Newstead Brewing Co.

– Kickstart your day with an incredible breakfast from Double Shot Espresso.

– Pop into the lively Bitter Suite for a tasty and refreshing beer.

– Satisfy your sweet tooth at Nodo.

– Shop and eat your way along vibrant James Street.

– Sip coffees and enjoy a great breakfast at The Primal Pantry.

– Visit the Brisbane Powerhouse for excellent events and one-of-a-kind gatherings.

Best Airbnb in New Farm: Relax by the waterfront

If you’re looking for a place to unwind, you could do a lot worse than this. With serene bay views and a private deck, this is a great place to kick back with a good book and a glass of Queensland pinot. There’s even a communal swimming pool too.

Best Guest House in New Farm: Ellie’s Guest House

Ellie’s Guest House is one of the coolest places to stay in Brisbane if you’re on a budget. It is located at the heart of New Farm, the trendiest neighbourhood in Brisbane and is within walking distance of restaurants, shops, bars and the famous Story Bridge. Rooms are private, well-equipped, comfortable and secure.

Best Hotel in New Farm: Spicers Balfour Hotel

This five-star boutique hotel is conveniently located in New Farm close to Story Bridge, the best neighbourhood to stay in Brisbane for trendsetters and hipsters. It boasts a variety of amenities, including a library, rooftop terrace and free wifi. Rooms are luxurious and the on-site restaurant serves delicious food and snacks.

Best BnB in New Farm: Edward Lodge

Edward Lodge is one of our favourite places to stay in New Farm because it is close to popular tourist attractions as well as eateries, bars and shops. This stylish BnB has comfortable rooms with air-con and wireless internet. There’s also a BBQ/picnic area, laundry facilities and on-site luggage storage.

#5 South Bank – Where to Stay in Brisbane for Families

South Bank is a vivid and vivacious neighbourhood located south of Brisbane’s CBD. It is a district characterised by its lengthy riverside boardwalk, waterside cafes and its inner-city beach. The South Bank Parklands are an excellent place to while away an afternoon, which is why it’s one of the best areas to stay in Brisbane for families.

In addition to its relaxing atmosphere, South Bank is also home to a vast array of family-friendly activities. Here you’ll find world-class modern art museums and incredible art galleries as well as unique attractions, colourful markets and delicious restaurants. Check out the Queensland Performing Arts Centre once you’ve dragged yourself out of that incredible free outdoor swimming pool!

South Bank is, without a doubt, a feast for the eyes, ears, stomach and soul.

South Bank, Brisbane

Things to See and Do in South Bank

– Browse a brilliant collection of works of art at the Queensland Art Gallery.

– Delve deep into natural, cultural and scientific history at the Queensland Museum.

– Enjoy a peaceful afternoon in the South Bank Parklands.

– Excite your taste buds at the Cowch Dessert Cocktail Bar.

– Explore the incredible Queensland Performing Arts Centre.

– Ride the Wheel of Brisbane and enjoy amazing views.

– See a great collection of relics and artefacts at the State Library of Queensland.

– Shop and snack your way through the Collective Markets.

– Visit the spectacular Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA).

– Cool off in the amazing outdoor swimming pool.

Best Airbnb in South Bank: Spacious apartment overlooking the city

With incredible views, ideal location, and brand new fittings, this spacious apartment is great for a couples getaway. Southbank’s got everything you need to please the whole herd, including museums, gardens, restaurants, and good transport links to the nearby beaches and this place comes with a pool and gym too!

Best Apartments in South Bank: Parkview Apartments

Parkview Apartments are conveniently located in South Bank, our top pick for where to stay in Brisbane with kids. This property is within walking distance of popular tourist attractions, museums, parks, restaurants and shops. Each apartment is well-equipped and many are designed for families.

Best Apartments in South Bank: West End Central Apartments

This property is a great pick for your time in Brisbane because it has an excellent location in South Bank, one of the best areas to stay in Brisbane for families. This modern property offers spacious accommodation with A/C and contemporary features. There’s also laundry facilities, a sauna and a swimming pool.

Best Apartments in South Bank: Fleet Lane Apartments

Stylish and spacious – these apartments are one of our top picks for where to stay in South Brisbane for families. Set in South Bank near the Brisbane River, these apartments are ideally located for sightseeing, exploring, dining and shopping. The property has a garden, a BBQ area, a rooftop terrace and free wifi.

FAQ about Finding a Place to Stay in Brisbane

Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Brisbane and where to stay.

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Brisbane

Brisbane is a lively and vibrant city. From its rich history and diverse culture to its excellent culinary scene, great nightlife and a vast array of family-friendly activities, Brisbane is a city that will enchant and entertain travellers of all ages, styles, budgets and tastes. Make sure you come up with a rough Brisbane itinerary before you start your travel, so you won’t miss out on anything.

In this guide, we’ve looked at the best places to stay in Brisbane. If you’re still not sure which is right for you, here is a quick recap of our favourites.

Summer House Backpackers is our favourite hostel because it has comfortable rooms, a great location and is bursting with charm,

Another excellent option is the Sage Hotel James Street because it is modern and luxurious and is close to the best bars, clubs, shops and restaurants in Brisbane.

Do you own an awesome hostel, hotel or apartment? Want to be featured in our list? Email [email protected] to find out how.


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