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Brisbane’s best location for families

Southbank Parklands

It’s a big call but when I think about the one place I recommend to visitors the most, the location I visit regularly, and the spot I think has the most on offer for families (for free), I always come up with the same answer – Southbank Parklands.

Brisbane’s Southbank is an urban oasis covering a massive 17 hectares, that’s more than 20 football fields, of gardens, cafes and restaurants, pathways meandering along the river, beaches, water parks, playgrounds, pagoda’s and even a giant Ferris Wheel.

The great thing about Southbank is it doesn’t rest on its laurels either, there is always a new event, party, function show or market to check out and currently Thursdays are all about kids with the Little Days Out Program!

southbank parklands brisbane

There are a variety of different themes and each week sees a new free event for littlies covering everything from craft to dance, music to soccer. Lucinda and I ventured down to experience Dance-a-Story put on by Dance Pointe

A comfy setting of shady umbrellas, mats chairs and cushions welcomed visitors to gather on the River Green which was also strategically located next to the brand spanking new, and awesome, playground.

Lucy was a bit tentative at first as the bigger kids pulled up prime position to listen to the story but she is only 2, so we just sat back and observed most of the time while the others really got into it.

The teacher Mila took the children on an adventure through story and movement and it was great to see most of them getting up and getting active, dancing around and doing actions along with the tale of Peter Pan and his Neverland friends. Luce did get a little involved but even just sitting there taking it all in was enough and boy did she jump up quick smart at the promise of a stamp at the end.

southbank parklands brisbane

After story time I could hold Lucinda back from exploring the playground and I must say they really have outdone themselves with its design. There’s a section particularly targeted at toddlers and then a larger section for bigger kids, it really is a dream playground catering to all ages and one that we’ve visited quite a few times.

Working up an appetite on the playground there was one more stop on our itinerary before nap time, lunch! Southbank itself is home to an abundance of cafes and restaurants and then just across the road is the dining precinct of Little Stanley Street where you are spoilt for choice and can pretty much choose any cuisine your heart desires.

Italian was on the menu for us, after hearing rave reviews of Mister Paganini we were not disappointed and I honestly think the pizza was better than some of the pizzas we devoured in Italy. I was also impressed with the kids’ menu and placemats that also doubled as a colouring in page, genius! It’s those little details that really make a difference - kids tested and well and truly approved! Lucy not only demolished an entire slice but proceeded to steal the toppings of my pizza and even ate up the artichokes out of our salad. Mister Paganini - we’ll be back!

In a former life Amy Peel was a footloose and fancy free TV Producer travelling Australia and abroad. Now with the addition of toddler Lucinda Louise into the mix the adventures continues but life has well and truly changed. Follow the fun on Instagram @mumapeel or start Chasing Amy.

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