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Saturday, October 31, 2015

Cruisin' on the River...


A week after we got home from our recent trip overseas, DH and I went on another cruise. This one was a lot more modest but very enjoyable nonetheless!
My brother had given me a Red Balloon gift card and when it was in danger of 'expiring', (the card had been put away safely and forgotten for a bit) I had used it to purchase a Lunch Cruise on the Kookaburra Queen.

The 'Kookas' started business in 1988 when Brisbane hosted Expo 88 and these paddlewheeler replicas still operate cruises on the Brisbane River. There are, for example,various lunch time cruises, dinner cruises, special occasion (RiverFire) and charter cruises and showboat cruises and I chose a Lunchtime Jazz Cruise.
I don't know why, but I didn't expect the meal to be anything but average...but I was soooo wrong! When we arrived, we were served the appetizer/entree which was a delicious plate of antipasto and dips with toasted Italian breads...I didn't take photos of this though...too busy eating! lol. DH did get a photo of yours truly with a glass of wine...

The boat then started cruising upstream...
On the southern bank of the river, we cruised past the Maritime Museum and travelled under the pedestrian Goodwill Bridge.
From the boat we caught a glimpse of a  lovely old building in South Brisbane; it was the old South Brisbane Town Hall, from the era when Brisbane was a series of townships and shires before the amalgamation into a city council.

Then we approached Southbank Parklands...this was where Expo 88 was held. The area had been wharves and associated warehouses and pubs before most was cleared ready to build the infrastructure needed for Expo.
Southbank also has a man made beach which is very popular with locals and tourists...

On the 'edge' of the Southbank Parklands is the Brisbane Eye Ferris Wheel and just beyond that is the Performing Arts centre with theatres, which then segues into the state library, art galleries and the Museum.

The Kookaburra Queen continued cruising upstream to the Victoria Bridge...and then turned around.


Looking towards the northside of the river and the central Business District of the city...


We don't have many historical buildings left in Brisbane and unfortunately from the river it's hard to see through the freeway. In this next photo, the old building on the left is the Treasury casino but the beautiful building was once the actual Treasury building for the state. The building which appears to be in front of the Treasury is one of two convict-built buildings in Brisbane; the Commissariat Store. I've written about this building before, here, here, here and here!
The building on the left of the stores building is not nearly as old;it is part of a precinct of old state government buildings.
Taking in all these views was a very pleasant way to spend a Saturday afternoon. And then the main course was served. DH and I had both chosen the beef...it was delicious! As were the sweet potato crisps that were served with it.

There's a good view from the river of a new government building; a rather ugly government building was demolished to make way for this one.
 There's still a way to go before it's completed.
The boat then came to the Gardens' Reach of the river. These City Botanical Gardens were originally planted by convicts in 1825 but a lot has changed in those years! lol
Part of the City Reach...
The iconic Story Bridge...

As we cruised on downstream we passed the Riverwalk...

As we got closer to the suburb of New Farm, we kept an eye out for the little house that DH had rented in the 1970s when he first left home...there it is, nestled between apartment blocks, but still there!
The cruise continued on downstream.

The old Sugar Refinery (CSR) site at New Farm has been redeveloped for housing...


New Farm Park...and the old Powerhouse which is an Arts' Precinct now...

At this point we could see the lights at the 'Gabba' (cricket and AFL football) on the southside of the river...

The bridge over Norman Creek...(southside)

Apartments and more apartments!!

And all the while as we cruised we were entertained by a duo who not only sang jazz numbers, but lots of 50s and 60s hits...

It was a great afternoon!

Highly recommended!
 And I'll finish with a photo of 2 of the 'City Cats'; not painted in the normal BCC colours...
Quite artistic! 

6 comments:

margaret said...

what a lovely present, even I could have gone on this as it is on a river so no waves! Good to see photos of Brisbane as I have never been there

Tanya Murray said...

Lovely Maria, I might have to pencil a tour in when I next come up

Cynthia said...

Neat agreaggift! I enjoyed seeing Brisbane from the river.
Thanks so much for your answer to my question about embroidery patterns. I was able to find a tracing pencil that you can then iron on the design yesterday and I'm excited to try it. It seems there will be so many possibilities to turn into embroidery patterns with this tool.

Australian Gardening Granny said...

Looks like a great way to spend a day Maria.
I'll have to give it a go. It's been ages sent I went on the Kookaburra Queen.

susie said...

I enjoyed this little cruise with you. Your story telling is wonderful! I love the Story Bridge!
What a wonderful Saturday Afternoon!

kiwikid said...

What a wonderful way to spend the afternoon Maria...thanks for the tour!!