One of the longest rivers in Australia, the Brisbane River offers endless scenic views along the course of its waters, making its way through the bustling East Coast city of Brisbane before meeting the sea at Moreton Bay. A Brisbane river cruise during your time in the area is a must – it’s one of the best ways to see the beautiful sights of the river. Pair this with a visit to the world’s first and largest koala sanctuary and you have a truly memorable day out.


As an optional excursion on our Discover Australia tour, you can enjoy both a boat cruise from Brisbane along the river and a visit to the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.


Boarding a boat in Brisbane’s Southbank district, your adventure starts with a gentle hour-long Brisbane river cruise, with your knowledgeable captain offering informative commentary along the way. Gliding down Brisbane’s waterfront, a skyline of skyscrapers will give way to leafy suburbs and stunning sights pointed out by your captain, before arriving at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary.


The excursion includes three hours at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, the largest of its kind anywhere in the world. Founded in 1927 to care for sick, injured and orphaned koalas, the sanctuary has played a huge role in protecting this iconic Australian species. Over 130 koalas live here, who you can get up close and personal with – there is even the opportunity to touch or have a photo with a cuddly koala.


The sanctuary is also home to several other native animals and wildlife species. Meet the elusive platypus in the Platypus House, spot kangaroos out in the lush parkland, and look out for the Eastern Water Dragons, which grow up to three feet long. A number of shows also take place throughout the day, where you’ll have the opportunity to learn even more about some of the resident animals. See the colourful lorikeets at their twice-daily feedings, admire owls, kites and eagles as they soar above you in the Birds of Prey Show, or watch a smart sheepdog at work rounding up hoards of sheep.


After a memorable few hours exploring the koala sanctuary, it’s time to embark back on the boat for the return river cruise back to Brisbane. This is another brilliant opportunity to admire the river scenery before arriving back in bustling Brisbane to enjoy the rest of the day as you wish.


Food and drink are unfortunately not included in this excursion, but tea, coffee, lunches and snacks are all available to purchase onboard the Brisbane river cruise. Another option for lunch is the cafe at the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, serving a range of drinks, snacks and light bites.

Return transfer to Brisbane not included