Living in Brisbane

Brisbane South BankBrisbane is the capital of Queensland and Australia’s third largest city. It has a population of around 2.24 million and is located right in the middle on the east coast. Except it isn’t quite on the coast. It was built on the Brisbane River about 15 kms in from the Pacific Ocean.Brisbane Location

A quick glance at any map of Australia will convince you that all the major cities, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane are all on the beach. They all are, except Brisbane, which is on a mangrove; if you want to know what I mean about that, check out my post The Beaches of Brisbane: A Quick Tour. Perhaps that’s why Brisbane only came 20th in the Economist’s Intelligence Unit’s 2014 Liveability Survey. But London only made 51st, so…..

Any shoreline about 15 kms either side of the mouth of the Brisbane River is a mangrove. Mangroves are intertidal trees and shrubs growing on tropical and subtropical shores. Basically, trees growing on mud. They are highly productive ecosystems, but you can’t build a sand castle on them.

But you’ll still need to bring your bucket and spade, because Brisbane is ideally located for both the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast. This accessibility to beaches is one reason why Brisbane pulls in so many tourists. It also has the benefit of a cooler inland climate.

Surfers Paradise (Gold Coast, south of Brisbane), one of Australia’s best know beaches, is about an hour and 10 minutes drive and Caloundra (Sunshine Coast, north) about an hour and a half. The closest sandy beaches to Brisbane are at Redcliffe (north) and Southport (south).

The city itself is very modern, clean and compact. It is easy to navigate and has its own man made “beach” at South Bank Parklands.

What’s the weather like?

Brisbane Annual Weather ChartBrisbane boasts, on average, around seven hours of sunshine each day. It doesn’t really have a “proper” winter, so if shorts and T-shirt are your thing, you can wear them all year round.

The only time it gets anything like resembling “cold”, is usually around July and August at night time when you may, on occasions, need to find some jog bottoms or a jumper to see you through those winter evenings.

Possible severe weather around the Brisbane area could include cyclones and some flooding. So be especially careful where you choose to settle. Brisbane Council has produced a flood areas map which you can download by specific area from  Brisbane Council’s website.

You may also want to check out my post called Brisbane and Queensland Floods: Should We Avoid Living There? Here’s a clue though, Brisbane is where I live and I love it.

You may think this all looks pretty straight forward, but I didn’t describe them as “sprawling suburbs” for nothing. These areas break down into around 80 or more postcodes and each postcode can have 2, 3 or more places to live. All in all, there are about 250 different places around Brisbane that you can choose from to live.

What’s Brisbane Like?

  • Please note: Brisbane is no longer Australia’s fastest-growing city as stated in the commentary, it was a few years ago, but it’s not now.

Brisbane Suburbs Map:

Brisbane Map
The sprawling suburbs can be divided up into 5 areas as follows.

  • Inner Brisbane – Including City, Inner North, Inner South, Inner East and Inner West
  • Northern Suburbs – Including Moreton Bay Islands, Northern Suburbs, North Eastern Suburbs, North Western Suburbs, Outer North Eastern Suburbs and Outer Northern Suburbs
  • Southern Suburbs – Including South Eastern Suburbs, South Western Suburbs and Southern Suburbs
  • Eastern Suburbs – Including Bayside Suburbs and Eastern Suburbs
  • Western Suburbs – Including Outer Western Suburbs and Western Suburbs

Questions about Brisbane?

If you have any question about living in Brisbane, please please feel free to ask them in the comments below. Or if you know this city well, why not tell us what you think of it or maybe even help out by answering some of the questions people have about the area. I’m sure anybody thinking of moving here would be very grateful for any help you can give them.

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{ 715 comments… add one }
  • Silke October 22, 2016, 12:04 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Great website!
    We’re currently living in Sydney and came to the conclusion that we just can’t afford a large family home in an area we want to live in… So we’re looking at Brisbane as a possible alternative.
    We’re currently living in Sydney’s Manly and I was wondering what Brisbane suburbs are similar. Understand the beaches are different and it doesn’t necessarily have to be by the beach. We just love the relaxed lifestyle and the village/community feel here. It’s also very family friendly (we have a toddler). We don’t know where we would work – not too far from the CBD would be good (30 min maybe).
    Thanks so much!

  • Chris October 21, 2016, 8:38 pm | Link

    Hi bob,

    My partner works in redland city council. We are planning to move to brisbane from melbourne in december. I want to know which suburb is good to live near the redland city council? Is victoria point good? I have been reading about pythons coming into the houses? Is this true? Which suburbs are affordable to live?

    • BobinOz October 21, 2016, 9:33 pm | Link

      It’s all very nice along the east coast, from Victoria Point all the way up to Cleveland. In fact Cleveland might just be the pick of them all, it’s a more lively a suburb than the others from what I’ve seen.

      Pythons are very nice as well, but it is quite unusual for them to come into your house, although it does happen from time to time. Suburb affordability is mostly down to house prices, and you can check them out on my page called Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia.

      • Chris October 22, 2016, 10:54 am | Link

        Thanks Bob

    • Cathy October 22, 2016, 10:49 am | Link

      Hi Chris
      I moved to Redland City from Sydney more than 15 years ago. It is a great place to live – I absolutely love it. Close to beautiful Moreton Bay, great restaurants & cafes, lots of nature reserves and parklands and most of the city is an easy commute to Brisbane which gives you lots of extra employment. Victoria Point is lovely and has some very pretty beaches along with some good shopping facilities. However if you plan to travel to Brisbane regularly, it’s 36km and probably an hour or so each way on the bus. The northern suburbs of Redland city are an easier commute to Brisbane as they are closer and there is also a train line (as well as buses) servicing this area. Cleveland, Ormiston and Wellington Point would be worth looking at but to be honest, it is all lovely. It just comes down to the type of home you are looking for. Compared to Sydney and Melbourne, homes here are well priced and you get value for money. If have concerns about pythons, I would suggest that you don’t buy close to a nature reserve and keep your yard clean and you should not have any problems.

      • Chris October 22, 2016, 10:53 am | Link

        Thanks Cathy

  • amber schnierer October 21, 2016, 4:37 pm | Link


    I will be relocating to Brisbane for work, working in the CBD. My husband and three dogs will be joining me soon after. We are looking at renting to begin with and would love somewhere near the ocean that has good public transport to get me to the CBD.



    • BobinOz October 21, 2016, 9:26 pm | Link

      Hi Amber

      If you Google ‘Brisbane train map’ you will easily see the best options, because you won’t want to be driving into the CBD (parking is expensive) and trains are faster than buses. I think you need to choose between Sandgate or Shorncliffe if you want to shorter journey into the city.

      If you don’t mind spending more time on the train, they’ve just opened a new train line last month that goes from Kippa Ring, which is near Redcliffe north-east of the city on the coast.

      That’s where I would be looking, but you will be restricted on rental properties with those three dogs, most landlords stipulate no pets. Good luck, Bob

  • James October 21, 2016, 1:07 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,

    I’ve been offered a job with sponsorship at $75,000 AUD annually. Is that a strong enough offer to make by as a family of 5 on a single income in Brisbane?

    • Moof October 21, 2016, 6:20 pm | Link

      You would need to very frugal in all aspects of your life, it depends on your long term goals and the level of creature comforts you like. You will have to pay some tax and maybe be prepared to take a second job on weekends for the first couple of years.
      I have provided a website which you can look at to see the cost

      • BobinOz October 21, 2016, 9:11 pm | Link

        Moof is right James, you will need to budget very carefully. If you can do that, you will get by, but probably only just.

        How much money people need is a strange thing. In comments around my website I have had a couple with no children living in Canberra complain that they couldn’t survive on $100,000 a year, and I’ve also had a family of five living in Sydney on $50,000 a year saying they still managed to get away for one holiday each year.

        My page called The Cost of Living in Australia of Everything will also help you work out your budget. Good luck, Bob

  • Tessa October 20, 2016, 10:02 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,

    I’m a Dutch student and I will be on exchange at the University of Queensland in January 2017. I am still looking for a place to stay. My boyfriend will join me and we are searching for a rental appartment for about 5/6 months. What neighborhoods would you reccomend when studying in Brisbane (St Lucia campus)? And what would be a reasonal price for a small appartment in this area?

    Many thanks,

    • BobinOz October 21, 2016, 8:42 pm | Link

      I think the best place to start looking would be around St Lucia, I think quite a few properties around there have been converted into shared student accommodation. It’s a nice area as well, by the river and close to the city.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Jessica October 19, 2016, 8:25 pm | Link

    Hi, Thanks for the great website!

    I would love your recommendations…..

    Relocating due to my partners new job, located in Deagon.
    Looking for a 6month rental before buying, suitable for myself, partner and our toddler.
    We would live up to 45mins max driving distance from partners work in Deagon.
    We like living close to the coast, near beach or water (currently living in Lennox Head).
    Young family friendly neighbourhood.

    Thank you, Jess

    • BobinOz October 19, 2016, 11:19 pm | Link

      Well, I’m afraid we don’t have any golden sandy beaches like you currently enjoy in Lennox Head. You will find beautiful beaches a little further north, starting in Caloundra then up to Mooloolaba and Noosa. We have them south on the Gold Coast as well, as you know.

      Neither will be within 45 minutes drive, so I’d suggest you live exactly where your partner’s new job is located. Not necessarily Deagan, it’s all nice around there. My favourite is Sandgate, but Shorncliffe is nice and so is Brighton.

      If you can get a six-month let in any of those places or anywhere near them, that’s what I’d do and then have a good look around before deciding where you really want to live.

      Good luck, Bob

      • Jessica October 20, 2016, 1:24 pm | Link

        Thanks Bob for the recommendations. I’m so glad to hear that was your answer as that is what my partner and i are thinking – good to know we’re on the right track. He starts on Tuesday in Deagon so we need to find somewhere asap – your feedback is truly appreciated!

        Yes we were going to originally do the commute from either the gold coast or sunshine coast however that would leave us with very little work life balance. We will just have to enjoy our beautiful Lennox beach before we both make the move.

        Thanks again,

        • BobinOz October 20, 2016, 7:10 pm | Link

          Glad to have helped Jessica, I hope it all works out well for you.

  • Caitlin October 18, 2016, 7:40 pm | Link


    My partner has received a job offer from a clinic in Wishart. So we are moving down as a result. I’m studying at university, at either UQ or QUT. I work in telecommunications so my job will likely place me in a central Brisbane location, like Indooroopilly, Queen St Mall, Mount Gravatt etc. I rely upon public transport, as my visual impairment prevents me from driving.

    What suburb would you recommend based on our circumstances? We are looking at renting a two bedroom apartment/unit/townhouse. I am very concerned about safety, coming from Townsville. Also, I would need to be close to public transport and trains. I don’t mind a commute around half an hour. My partner would be somewhat close to nature, and I would really like to be apart of a welcoming community with shops well located. Perhaps even organic markets, and Asian grocers.

    Any recommendations would be great as neither my partner and I have lived in Brisbane.

    • BobinOz October 18, 2016, 8:47 pm | Link

      Well, living in a unit/apartment/townhouse is a little at odds with being close to nature, so something has to give. Indooroopilly would be a good choice for you to live, it’s on a transport hub so easy access to buses and trains. It’s also close enough to the city so does have apartments and units.

      There is also a bridge across the river at Indooroopilly so your husband would probably just about be able to do his commute in half an hour, although it may take a tiny bit longer with traffic. You won’t be within walking distance of much nature from there, but nature is never very far away in Brisbane. Indooroopilly also has a major shopping centre, but I’m not sure it could be described as a ‘welcoming community’; nothing wrong with the community there, but you are more likely to find people more willing to say hi in a more rural location. But then you won’t get anything that you want on your tick list.

  • Tim October 18, 2016, 4:55 pm | Link

    Hi Bob
    Greatly appreciated your efforts to help others
    I am planning for a Move to Brisbane area for couple of reasons
    1] job in heath sector
    2]universities for children
    3]buy a home

    Bit troubled with house prices in Brisbane…
    Have u got any suggestions about IPSWICH and LOGAN
    Ipswich would be better??? or logan would be better for family life?-
    Do u think from these spots kids can access universities in Brisbane on daily basis ..
    I am not looking for gold coast/sunshine… plans to access brisbane in less than an hour
    please help me..

    • BobinOz October 18, 2016, 8:00 pm | Link

      No, I don’t think it would be a good idea to choose either Ipswich or Logan if you want your children to attend a university in Brisbane on a daily basis. It’s too far. Property in both of these places is cheaper for a reason as well, so if you can stretch to it, you’d be better off buying somewhere in Brisbane.

      Springfield Lakes is a massively expanding area, with better access into the city. Not sure what property prices are like there, but may be worth a look.

  • Vlada October 18, 2016, 3:03 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Very interesting website. Thank you for doing such a great job.
    What is your opinion on Wights Mountain suburb? They have a Steiner school there which we are interested in. But I could not find any information about that side of Brisbane. Are there any good, safe and family friendly suburbs close by? Thank you

    • BobinOz October 18, 2016, 7:45 pm | Link

      Yes, funny you should ask. If you look at the comment below I’ve just recommended Jennefer look at Samford, full name Samford Village, and that’s right where you are looking.

      It’s a nice part of Brisbane, quite rural but very family friendly, so I think it would be a good choice for you and your family.

      • Vlada October 19, 2016, 6:17 am | Link

        Thank you Bob for such a prompt reply. By far, your forum can receive “Fastest response” award!

  • Jennefer October 18, 2016, 9:35 am | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Thanks for your website, it’s been so useful and informative!
    We’re in the process of moving over to Brisbane and arrive in January. We’re looking at possible areas to rent in, and wondered if you had any recommendations for us.
    We’re a family of four (myself, my husband, a 4 year old and a 1 year old) so somewhere family friendly (playgrounds, library, toddler groups etc.) would be ideal. We’d also rather be somewhere leafy and near parkland or a nature reserve, than prioritising urban living or proximity to shops. We’d also choose being near woodland or nature over being near the beach. We’re not tied to a specific location as my husband will work from home, but are thinking of somewhere within about a 30 minute drive from the city.
    Thanks very much,

    • BobinOz October 18, 2016, 7:25 pm | Link

      Look at Bellbowrie, Moggill, Anstead, Brookfield, Pinjarra Hills, Pullenvale, Karana Downs, Kholo and Mt Crosby which are all in western suburbs. It is exactly what you are looking for. Alternatively, north-western suburbs might be worth a look, around Ferny Grove and Samford.

      If your husband needs a good internet connection for his work though, do check the internet speeds at any house you are considering, because some of the more rural locations may be slow.

      Hope that helps, good luck, Bob

      • Jennefer October 19, 2016, 5:37 pm | Link

        Thanks so much Bob, that’s massively helpful. I really appreciate your speedy reply 🙂
        Thanks also for the tip about checking internet access. We will need that, so I’ll be sure to ask.
        Thanks again.

  • Joey October 11, 2016, 4:07 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    My family is immigrating to Brisbane in several months, so we are looking for a house or townhouse to start off with. My wife and I may wish to attend TAFE courses and we have a 2-year old daughter so safety is our top concern, and also good schools near by are pretty important. Our budget is 600k to 800k. Would you please recommend some suburbs that suit us? Thank you!

    • BobinOz October 11, 2016, 11:40 pm | Link

      Safety isn’t an issue in Brisbane, it’s a very safe city. We have lots of schools as well, good schools too, you can check them out on my page called Which school?

      Your budget is quite good as well, you can afford to live in quite a few good suburbs, so really it boils down to where you might be attending TAFE. If you can decide on that, somebody might be able to help you out with some decent suburbs, but it would be useful if you could also be more specific about what you want.

      Close to the coast, close to the city, in the countryside, or near a train line for example?

  • PAAM CHENG October 11, 2016, 5:42 am | Link

    Hi Bob,

    Been reading your website and found it very useful

    My husband and I have been thinking to live in Brisbane. My husband works as an airline pilot and myself – full time mother. we have 5 girls so looking for houses to rent – cheap and can accommodate for such big family. mostly importantly looking for places that safe for our girls, nearby schools and near to airport. We would be grateful for your assistance and advises to us on this.

    Thank you

    • BobinOz October 11, 2016, 11:25 pm | Link

      Thanks, glad to hear you have found my website useful.

      I’m not sure what your definition of cheap is, but I would look in western suburbs if I were you, somewhere around Moggill. Your husband would be able to drive to Brisbane airport in around 40 minutes or so from there, and house prices are quite reasonable compared to many other areas in Brisbane.

      It’s not the cheapest area, but it does offer what you want with some bigger homes on larger plots, safety, good schools and plenty of parks. Hope that helps, Bob

    • Cathy October 14, 2016, 10:17 am | Link

      Hi Paam
      A main arterial road leading to the airport is the Gateway Motorway and living near this will give your husband quick access to the airport. Good suburbs near this would be Cannon Hill and Carina (about 15 minutes from airport and about the same distance from the city). Sunnybank is a little further away (about 30 minutes from the airport and 20 minutes from the city) and there is a well-established Chinese community in this suburb. There are good schools in all these areas and great universities not far away – my children attended these universities. There are a lot of lovely suburbs to choose from and it will come down to what sort of house and land you want to live in as well as how much you want to pay.

  • David October 10, 2016, 7:39 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    I was wondering whether there is any nice/big hospital that is near a university? I have a hospital related job and got a family member who wants to study at a university in Brisbane. Thanks!

    Also, just for personal reference, what are some of the biggest hospitals in Brisbane?

    • BobinOz October 11, 2016, 9:35 pm | Link

      Griffith University, South Bank Campus is a very short walk from several hospitals in South Brisbane, including the Mater and the Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital.

      I’m not sure, but I would imagine the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital is probably the biggest in Brisbane, but you might like to check that.

  • Ray October 6, 2016, 9:26 pm | Link

    Hi everyone,

    I was wondering how long would it take to organise a rental home in North Brisbane? If we have an excellent history, own our own property abroad etc, could it take a few days? A week? A month?

    Thanks for your time! 🙂

    • BobinOz October 7, 2016, 7:09 pm | Link

      It’s really difficult to say Ray, I suspect if you’re not too fussy about your first rental you could probably get one quite quickly. You would possibly be restricted to already vacant properties or one where the current tenants are moving out very soon.

      Also bear in mind that rental agents do insist that you personally inspect the property before they will rent it to you, it’s very unlikely anyone will allow you to rent site unseen.

      All that said, I still think you should allow a month, but hopefully you will be able to find something quicker.

  • Kat October 6, 2016, 11:25 am | Link

    Hi Bob
    My family is planning to relocate to Brisbane, we are a young family so we want to be near schools, hospitals and family friendly places.
    I will work in the CBD so prefer to be near bus/train etc or not too far away to drive.
    We will travel regularly to the Gold Coast.
    We hope to get a nice family house with 4 bedrooms and some backyard for around $600-700k.
    Can you please recommend some suitable suburbs for us to look into?

    • BobinOz October 6, 2016, 9:14 pm | Link

      This isn’t an easy one Kat, because if you are going to be working in the CBD, then ideally you want north of the river. For easy access to the Gold Coast, south of the river would be better. For your price bracket, you probably will need to be looking 15 to 20 kilometres from the CBD. Most of our hospitals are also close to the CBD.

      I’m really not sure what to suggest to you, so I’m going to pass this over hoping someone else can help. Anybody got any ideas on this?

    • Cathy October 6, 2016, 10:45 pm | Link

      Hi Kat
      It would probably make sense for you to live on the southside or bayside. There are lots of suburbs that would suit, depending on the sort of house you want to buy. I would suggest you look at Cannon Hill, Mt Gravatt or Morningside. Good public transport and shopping nearby and reasonably close to the city. Other options would include Wellington Point, Capalaba or Cleveland where your dollar may possibly stretch a little further when buying a home. There is a public hospital at Cleveland and lots of family friendly attractions in these suburbs as this area is right on Moreton Bay. All the suburbs I have mentioned are an easy drive to the Gold Coast. I have lived bayside for many years and travel to the city to work full time – it’s quite easy once you become familiar with the transport options. Takes me about 45 minutes from Cleveland. Good luck with your search, it is a great place to live.

      • Kat October 7, 2016, 4:22 pm | Link

        Thanks Bob and Cathy!
        I have also been advised to consider Salisbury and the nearby suburbs. Do you know much about these suburbs?

        • BobinOz October 7, 2016, 7:35 pm | Link

          I personally don’t know anything about Salisbury, but I think nearby Corinda, Graceville, Sherwood and Chelmer might be worth a look.

      • Cathy October 10, 2016, 9:44 pm | Link

        Hi Kat,
        I don’t know Salisbury very well but I do know that Holland Park is a popular area (this is about 7km away). Greenslopes may also be worth looking at – there is a large world-class private hospital this suburb. Transport options to Brisbane CBD are good from all the suburbs in this area and there are many quite charming houses. Shopping is great at nearby Mt Gravatt.

        • Kat October 11, 2016, 4:11 pm | Link

          Thanks Cathy! I will look into those suburbs too!

  • Ido October 6, 2016, 8:47 am | Link

    Hey There!
    Thanks for the great comments, questions & answers. I’ll probably relocate to Brisbane on January and my new Job will be at Cordelia Street at South Brisbane. What I’m searching for is a place in the center where I can find public transportation. I would also want to find out about apartments which are furnished. My budget will be something between 450-600 AU per week. is it sounds reasonable? Also I would ask if you can recommend on some CrossFit gyms, basketball, running/walking parks.
    Thanks again!!

    • BobinOz October 6, 2016, 8:56 pm | Link

      You can research apartments from my page called Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia. I keep reading that Brisbane currently has an oversupply of apartments so there are plenty of good deals around at the moment, so I think your budget is just fine.

      Australia is also very big on gyms, running and walking parks, they are literally everywhere, and although I don’t know for sure I reckon you’ll be good for cross fit and basketball as well.

      Good luck with your move, Bob

  • Ashley October 5, 2016, 6:09 pm | Link

    Hi Bob!
    Me and my partner are thinking of relocating from NZ to Brisbane.
    I’m 20 and h’s 23, is it easy to get a job there? We would get work where ever we could to begin with. And what areas are the best to live in? We would prefer a suburban area to the city.

    Thanks in advance,

    • BobinOz October 5, 2016, 11:52 pm | Link

      I wouldn’t say it would be easy to get a job, but Brisbane is probably currently better off than say Adelaide, Hobart and Perth when it comes to finding work. It very much depends what you do for a living, but you can research it on my page called Getting a Job or a Sponsorship.

      You should be aware though that right now, Australia isn’t flush with job vacancies, please read the following post and comments on it…

      As for which suburb, we have plenty to choose from that are away from the city, what else do you want from it? Countryside? Close to the coast? Good transport links? If you have a read of the comments here, there’s lots of chat about the suburbs and what they have to offer. Good luck, Bob

  • Hosp October 4, 2016, 1:51 pm | Link

    Hey all,

    Looking for a place for 2 recent college grads for about 6 months from around Jan-Aug. Trying to decide between GC & Brisbane.

    Ideally we are looking for a easy to get a part time job, affordable rent (apartment or house rental), and with a good scene for 20-somethings. Close to a beach is definitely a plus. Any suggestions on areas or surrounding areas of either that we should look at?


    • BobinOz October 4, 2016, 7:34 pm | Link

      If you want good beaches, then you really need to go to Gold Coast, I’m afraid Brisbane’s beaches just aren’t up to it. See…

      Gold Coast is very commercial and attracts lots of tourists, so you’d probably have a good chance of getting some kind of part-time job in hospitality. You can still visit Brisbane, I think there’s a pretty good train service. Good luck, Bob

  • Tamara October 2, 2016, 2:47 pm | Link

    Hi ☺

    My husband and I are discussing the possibility of relocating to brisbane from Armadale in Perth next year. We have a nearly 5yr old and a bubs on the way. What would be a nice suburb or suburbs that would be good for schooling. My husband’s trade is recognized in brisbane so there is more opportunity for him to work there, so not anymore that 45min drive from cbd. Also looking for something that is family friendly with places to relax and not too far from shops. Any information provided would be amazing – ive never been to brisbane n google not helping that much.

    • BobinOz October 3, 2016, 6:16 pm | Link

      Charlene’s answer, below, is just perfect for you Tamara. Good luck, Bob

  • Sarah October 2, 2016, 12:00 pm | Link

    Hi I am thinking of Locating my family of 5 we have 3 girls still in Primary.
    We are looking into Brisbane, but would like to have any recommendations to where we can look at. We are moving from the US.
    Looking for a place that has good schools safe and friendly and have hospitals and medical clinics close by also.


    • Charlene October 3, 2016, 8:18 am | Link

      Hi Sarah, the main children’s hospital is in the suburb of south Brisbane. I work near here, but live in the north. There is a children’s accident and emergency at the prince Charles hospital in Chermside. They have adults a and e there and a private hospital too. There is a huge shopping centre at chermside. Some good state schools in area that I know of are mcdowall and there’s a good little school called Patrick’s Rd in Ferny hills. If you can spend more on a house then there are brilliant primary schools in Ashgrove, Bardon, Indooroopilly, Toowong, Taringa. A good middle ground that I would recommend is The Gap. Excellent primary schools and a state high school that’s results are as good if not better than private schools in the area. Beautiful little community. I wish you all the best in your search. I’ve also got to mention Samford. It’s a bit removed from main Brisbane and not as close to medical care, but a lovely community and a great primary school. My kids went there. Charlene:)

      • Sarah October 5, 2016, 4:39 pm | Link

        Thank You So Much Charlene, for taking time out to answer my questions and reply back.

        I really appreciate that referal of places in Brisbane we will be looking into.


  • Kelly October 2, 2016, 1:03 am | Link

    Hello, I have been approached by a company about managing their Australian division. The office is located in Murruumba. Could you recommend an area, or areas to begin my housing search? I would be renting an apartment for the foreseeable future(I intend to retain my primary residence in Canada). I would be seeking a quiet area, with good walking or biking access, and decent rent value.
    Thank you.

    • BobinOz October 3, 2016, 6:05 pm | Link

      Have a look at what Cheryl has said a bit further down below, she has some good information about suburbs in the area of Murrumba Downs.

  • Yaman October 1, 2016, 2:39 pm | Link

    I’m a college student and I’m going to graduate in November.
    I want to study in Australia but my budget is so limited.
    I’m going to study bachelor of business in accounting but my target is to be an actor,so I want to live in a city where I can find some chances here and there during holidays and like that,I know that gold coast in Australia has the new York film academy so I want to live somewhere near it.
    But at the same time I want to study and work ,so please can you recommend a good place for me where I can live,find good job opportunities and find chances for acting.

    Thank you all,

    Best regards


    • Deb Fels October 1, 2016, 4:35 pm | Link

      I have just done the house hunting exercise successfully but the real estate agents all told me that the market heats up considerably starting in Dec/Jan or so. I suggest you work on this asap. I stayed in a airbnb for a few days while finding a place – took me 5 days. People like to meet you in person. You can also try the housing service for the college or the universities in the area.

      • BobinOz October 2, 2016, 10:57 pm | Link

        Hi Yaman

        I can’t really help you with your questions, but I do just want to say that Gold Coast is probably not the top place in Australia to go to for what you want. As far as I am aware Melbourne is the best place here for the creative arts. It’s also a busy city, will offer better chances of finding work and, I would think, to study acting.

        So that might be something worth looking into. Good luck, Bob

  • Helen September 28, 2016, 6:13 pm | Link

    Hi, I’m wanting to move over to Australia with my 5 children aging from 1-12 years and wondered if you could recommend a suitable place to set up home with schools taken into account aswel as the possibility of opening a small shop over there too please?

  • Ray September 26, 2016, 6:17 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,

    My family (wife, myself, and child) are moving to Brisbane next year from abroad. In the beginning, we plan to live in a hotel but that will get expensive very fast. As we are looking to find a rental house as soon as possible, can you recommend steps we could take now to make the move into a rental house quick and simple, please? I am fearing we will be stuck in a hotel spending a big chunk of our savings. Thank you for your time! Have a great week!

    Best regards,

    • Graham September 26, 2016, 10:25 pm | Link

      Hi Ray, Relocation agents can actually organize you a long term rental property while you are still in your country of origin. Obviously there is a fee but the cost of this versus staying in a hotel is usually lower and you don’t have the stress of finding the right place yourself. These agents also help you every step of the way of your move. Some good agents in Brisbane are Opal Relocations, Elite Executive Services and Connect Relocate. Might be worth you researching a bit more into this 🙂

      • Ray September 27, 2016, 12:06 am | Link

        Thank you so much Graham! I will definitely take a look at these agents. I really appreciate your advice, thank you.

        • BobinOz October 2, 2016, 5:50 pm | Link

          Ray, hotels will get expensive very fast, so it might be worth looking at Airbnb or maybe gumtree or trading post (Google them) for temporary accommodation. You may even be able to find a suitable house share through one of those places which may actually be useful, you’d be able to get a lot of local information from the house owner.

          Hope that helps, cheers, Bob

  • Dan September 25, 2016, 11:51 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    My partner and I are looking to relocatcate to Brisbane in a couple of years with our toddler. Our priority is to live in a good and beautiful suburb, family neighbourhood close to parks, schools etc
    We don’t mind where once it is safe, quiet, friendly, clean, sourrounded by nice walks/parks etc..
    We have no clue of where/what suburbs are really nice and where to avoid.
    Please help, much appreciated.

    • Cheryl September 26, 2016, 4:55 pm | Link

      Hi Dan,
      Just a local yokel here so quite biased about Brisbane and believe there are plenty of suburbs to suit your requirements. Many of the older suburbs like Kelvin Grove, Albion, Clayfield, Bardon and Ashgrove are regenerating with young families and the older style homes usually come with larger yards and room sizes. Typically, unless renovated, they do only have one bathroom however. These suburbs are reasonably close to the city, are green with good transport, shopping and family friendly. You will pay a higher price but still relatively much better than southern capital prices.
      A little further out there are the beach-side locations both north and south, all safe with great community vibes and all the above mentioned facilities. Check out Wynnum, Manly, Cleveland in the south and Sandgate, Scarborough and Redcliffe in the north.
      A google search might reveal some of the areas you’re Not looking for, I wouldn’t like to offend.
      One last suggestion is the new development north of Brisbane, North Lakes. It has a lot to offer young families and has been well planned project.
      Good luck with your plans,

  • IK September 25, 2016, 11:14 pm | Link

    Hello Bob,
    Thank you for the great content and insightful comments on this lovely website.
    My partner and I are thinking about moving to Brisbane from Sydney next year. I heard that there is some sort of differentiation between South and North parts of the city. At least I noticed that Brisbanites sometimes mention it but without further details. What is the difference? What is the “right” part to live in and what is the reason for this competition?

    We are a childless couple in late 30th. We are creatives and really love nature. Privacy and safety are really important for us.
    We also love Brisbane CBD but we didn’t explore any suburbs yet.
    Would you recommend to look at any particular suburbs not too far from city?

    • Cheryl September 26, 2016, 10:59 am | Link

      As you know Brisbane is built straddling the very winding Brisbane river and whether you call yourself a northsider or a southsider depends on which side of the river you live. There is a friendly rivalry between the two both claiming to live on the better side. My husband and I both grew up as southsiders but saw the light and moved to the north; )
      Brisbane CBD sits on the north side so if there is a true advantage of living on the northern side of the river it is not having to drive into the city during peak hour over one of the bridges.
      Southsiders would find it more convenient to visit the Gold Coast and Sunshine coast is only an hours drive from the CBD . Both have very liveable suburbs as does western Brisbane.

      If you do enjoy nature and want to live in easy reach of the city, Kenmore, Chapel Hill and surrounding areas are lovely. Likewise Ferny Grove which has a good train service and The Gap both 30 mins from the city. Both have new land developments opening up. Sandgate is worth looking at if you like the seaside.

      • IK September 26, 2016, 1:41 pm | Link

        Thank you so much for your reply, Cheryl 😊
        It is good to know that it is just a friendly rivalry. We definitely will have a look at the recommended suburbs.

      • Graham September 26, 2016, 10:38 pm | Link

        I think Cheryl is right with those suburbs around Mount Cootha reserve. As Sydney siders I am not sure what your definition is too far from the city. It is important to know that as you go slightly further west of Kenmore (10 mins drive) rental prices drop a little and land is a little easier to find. You also end up pretty close to where Bob lives :). The addition of the tunnels had made commuting from these suburbs much more attractive with journey time to the airport at about 40 mins. Fig Tree Pocket might also be worth a mention with the Koala Sanctuary right there.

        • IK September 28, 2016, 10:14 am | Link

          Thank you for your comment, Graham.
          Currently we live in Stanmore, which is close to CBD. However, it is pretty urban area without parks and far from beaches.
          I appreciate your advice 😊 We will definitely look at the Fig Tree pocket and Kenmore.

  • Lee Irvine September 24, 2016, 10:07 pm | Link

    Hi Bob, my family are thinking of moving to the Sunshine Coast in the next 18 months. We are looking at moving inland on an acre or two of land but close enough to Brisbane to travel to work. Can you recommend any small townships that we could look at purchasing a house, thanks Lee

    • BobinOz October 2, 2016, 4:46 pm | Link

      Dayboro may be worth a look, although it isn’t actually in Sunshine Coast. It’s a lovely rural village though, high on hills and would be a reasonably good 1 hour commute to Brisbane.

      Once you go further up though, say to Montville or Maleny, two of the nicest hinterland villages in the Sunshine Coast, then the drive to Brisbane would become quite tiresome. That’s what I think, but it may be worth getting a second opinion by posting a similar question to this on my page about Sunshine Coast and perhaps one of the locals can let you know what they think. Good luck, Bob

  • Kelly Josevski September 20, 2016, 9:12 pm | Link

    Hi Bob, I’m finding this site a great source of information so thank you.

    My partner and I along with our 6 and 10month old boys are looking to relocate to Brisbane from Sydney. It’s been on our minds for years but now we would like to make the move for lifestyle purposes. What do you think of Moreton bay region, specifically Newport/Scarborough? we live 48kms out of sydney cbd now so for me a commute doesn’t bother me and there is the new kippa ring station and my husband works in the kitchen industry so would look for work on the Northside. There seems to be reasonable schools and services around also.

    • BobinOz September 21, 2016, 5:38 pm | Link

      Hi Kelly

      Well, I don’t know what it would be like to live there, but I’ve certainly been up to Scarborough, Redcliffe, Margate and Woody Point before, it all seems pretty good to me. I’ve never been to Newport though, to be honest, I didn’t know it was there. For some reason it’s not even on my wall map of Brisbane.

      If you are looking that way though, I also really like the east coast a bit further down, around Shorncliffe, Sandgate and Brighton. So maybe that area is worth a look as well.

      I think it will give you a great lifestyle change, and don’t bother bringing your winter coats. Good luck, Bob

  • LS September 18, 2016, 5:32 am | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Been reading your site for a few months and have found it most informative.
    Can you please recommend us a few suburbs that will best suit us?
    We are intending to move over in late Dec 2016. Hubby will be working in Mount Gravatt. We have two teenagers with one attending Year 12 and she hopes to attend Uni the following year.
    We enjoy eating out and shopping.
    We are looking for an area which suits our lifestyle and also, safe, with good transport, excellent high schools and fast internet.
    I know that’s a long wish list for a suburb. Hopefully, you could help us narrow down with some suburbs.

    Many thanks,

    • BobinOz September 19, 2016, 2:27 pm | Link

      I don’t really know the suburbs close to Mount Gravatt too well, so hopefully somebody reading this might be able to give you some advice. I do know there are a couple of major shopping malls in the area though and places to eat out.

      Brisbane is a very safe city, you only really need to avoid suburbs where housing looks extraordinarily cheap. Not even suggesting those areas are particularly unsafe, it’s just that housing is cheap there for a reason.

      For fast internet be sure to go to a suburb that has been hooked up to the NBN, that’s the National Broadband Network, there are rollout maps online to check who has got that now. As for schools, once you know the areas you are interested in, you can check them out on my page called Which school?

      If your husband doesn’t mind a 30 to 40 minute drive to work each day, then you do have lots of options. For example, Cleveland would be quite nice if you prefer to be near the sea, or somewhere like Chapel Hill/Kenmore if you prefer easier access to the city. You would have to check to see if those places have got broadband yet though, I’m just not sure.

      Hope that helps, Bob

      • Lorraine September 19, 2016, 6:00 pm | Link

        Hi Bob,
        Thank you for your reply and very useful tips.
        We are very excited with the move.
        Hope to meet friendly and helpful people like yourself.
        Also, looking forward to any recommendations.

        Many thanks,

        • Cathy September 20, 2016, 11:23 pm | Link

          Hi Lorraine
          I have lived on the south side of Brisbane for 15 years and there are many great suburbs I would recommend. Cleveland would probably be my top pick. It has a great village feel with lots of restaurants and cafes plus a train and bus service to the city. Good universities are located at Nathan and the city (30 to 50 minutes). There are ferries from Cleveland to the bay islands which are great fun to explore. If you would prefer to live closer to the city Carindale is another good option – it has lots of great shopping.

        • Cheryl Hartley September 22, 2016, 10:09 pm | Link

          Hello Lorraine,
          Mt. Gravatt is on the south side of Brisbane and only 15 to 20 mins by the M1 freeway from the city centre. However during peak hour, traffic the M1 can be tedious and take more than twice that time so living and working on the Southside is preferable. It also puts you an hours drive to the God Coast.
          There are 2 large Westfield shopping centres within easy distance from Mt Gravatt and very liveable suburbs like Upper Mt Gravatt, Wishart, Cooparoo, Carina and Carindale. Sunnybank is a neighbouring suburb to Mt Gravatt that has a large Chinese / Asian community which makes for great cuisine diversity. Griffith University has a large campus across the M1 from Mt Gravatt and there are linked buses that go to the University of Queensland via the city. There is also the Queensland University of Technology in the city next to the city Botanical Gardens.
          To enjoy the close proximity to local shops and conveniences that people in the UK and Europe often do, you would have to live in our inner city suburbs but be prepared for the premium real estate prices for that convenience.
          The Brisbane river is the border that divides Brisbane-ites into Southsiders or Northsiders and Brisbane City is situated on the Northern bank.
          I hope you enjoy your time in our lovely city.
          Cheers, Cheryl

  • Ron September 1, 2016, 9:54 pm | Link

    Hi Bob
    I’m looking to relocate from Sydney to Brisbane as my job allows me to do that. I am looking to buy a house and gave the following requirements for suburbs to shortlist:
    – walking distance to a train AND no longer then 30 min train to cbd as my office is on george st
    – decent retail presence in the suburb such as a mall and or weekend markets that are also walking distance
    – safe area to raise a family and good public schools
    – budget is less then a $1M but want a 4 bed place with a backyard

    From what i have researched iv shortlisted Indooroopilly, Mitchelton and Canon Hill.
    Are there any other suburbs you reccomend and are the 3 I shortlisted good?

    Appreciate your thoughts!

    • BobinOz September 2, 2016, 11:48 pm | Link

      Before I got to the end of your question and saw your shortlist, I was thinking Indooroopilly would be the place I would recommend. It has everything you want, I know it quite well, it’s my side of town. So I would say that would a good choice.

      That said, I don’t know anything much at all about Mitchelton or Canon Hill, they could be equally suitable or even better, I just don’t know. Hopefully somebody else reading this who knows these two areas can let you know what they think of them.

      Good luck with your move, Bob

      • Rohun September 4, 2016, 10:26 pm | Link

        Great! Glad I’m on the right track, thanks for the advice!

        • Cheryl Hartley September 22, 2016, 10:38 pm | Link

          Hi Rohun,
          I might be a bit late with this info but Mitchelton could be a good option as it has both a train station and shopping centre with great monthly Sunday food markets. There are both private and state schools and the commute by train to the city is about 20mins every 15 mins.
          Newmarket is another good option. Closer to the city with train and shopping centre. There is a local state school and a short bus ride to Kelvin Grove College. On neighbouring campuses to the College there is a primary school and a Queenland University of Technology. So all levels of education neatly packaged in one area.
          The homes are predominately older style Queenslanders, many restored, as Newmarket is a desirable suburb that retains plenty of character, greenery and parks. The older homes have lovely high ceilings, larger room sizes and cooling verandahs. I’m beginning sound like I have an real estate interest LOL.
          Good luck with your new home where ever you settle,
          Cheers, Cheryl

  • Katrina August 22, 2016, 5:59 am | Link

    Hi Bob. We are moving to Brissie at the end if the year and i will be working in Woolloongabba. We prefer a more natural family friendly life style as opposed to city life and thought of settling in the redland bay area and sending our kids to ormiston college. Is the communte to Woolloongabba feasible or would you recommend living in a different suburb?

    • BobinOz August 22, 2016, 4:34 pm | Link

      Well, Redland Bay is quite a way out, but it’s certainly commutable. I reckon by car it would take about an hour, although I’m not sure what the traffic would you like in peak. If you intend to do the journey by public transport, then Google ‘Brisbane Translink journey planner’, just enter your starting location and destination and it will work out the various options you have via public transport and the time it will take.

      So, definitely doable in my view, provided you are happy with those journey times.

    • Cathy September 27, 2016, 10:34 pm | Link

      Hi Katrina. Redland Bay is a nice suburb but there are a few other areas that may also be worth considering as Redland Bay is about 40km from Brisbane CBD. Cleveland has a lovely village feel with great cafes and restaurants and boutique shopping. Parts of Ormiston and Cleveland have brilliant views of Moreton Bay. These suburbs are about 25km from Brisbane. Some of the southern parts of Alexandra Hills and Capalaba offer larger blocks (small acreage and part acreage), and many of these have nice views over bushland. There are a number of nature reserves with wildlife including wallabies and some koalas in this area. Lots of walking and bicycle trails. There is a good bus service in this area – especially from the Capalaba interchange. Its about 20km to the city from here, 10 minutes to Ormiston college by car. All these suburbs are quite safe and friendly. Great place for families.

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