Living in Brisbane

Brisbane South BankBrisbane LocationA 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 WeatherBrisbane 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 MapThe 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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{ 1091 comments… add one }
  • kitty December 18, 2017, 3:43 am | Link

    well, looks like this is an old post but what the heck –
    potentially relocating to brisbane, not a clue about the city and where to live. any areas i should look up . if i could make a profile of where i’d like to live it would be :
    – doesn’t have to be cbd, wouldn’t mind if it was or wasn’t as long as living close to public transport (walking distance) or not needing to have a car would be neat
    – prefer a neighborhood with ‘activity’ like cafes, restaurants, a bit vibey and people out and about? will be moving solo, would be nice to be in an area where it’s easy to have your local cafe and hangouts
    – would LOVE if it’s close to yoga and fitness studios… i guess this sounds like i want to be close to the action ::)
    – views are nice of water or nature preferable. would prefer vibe and views rather than new build and luxury.

    any ideas where i want to be living??
    thanks in advance!


    • BobinOz December 18, 2017, 5:30 pm | Link

      Yes, this page is old, but still active.

      I’d be looking at Teneriffe and New Farm and maybe Bulimba and Hawthorne. They are all quite trendy places, close to the Brisbane River for those views you want and they all have the kind of activities you are looking for. They are all close to the city and public transport, in fact you can get a CityCat (ferry) if you’re near a terminal.

      We have an abundance of gyms and yoga classes, so I don’t think you will ever be too far away from that.

      These are generally expensive suburbs to live in, but they do also have an abundance of apartments so you may be able to get somewhere at a good price. Hope that helps, Bob

      • kit December 18, 2017, 6:13 pm | Link

        thanks bob!
        i suppose i should have mentioned where i might work – in bowen hills.
        would those still be the same neighbourhoods (easy to get to work???) to look at?
        thanks again!

  • kobi December 13, 2017, 3:10 am | Link

    Hi bob,
    My husband and i are after to buy a 3 bedroom townhouse or apartment/unit. we want to be 30 minutes from woolloongabba and 30 minutes from clontarf. we are after a good suburb with good schools and nice parks and restaurants. can you recommend any suburbs?

  • Kris November 30, 2017, 6:36 pm | Link

    Hello Bob,
    I sent a message few months ago while still thinking about moving, thanks for your response and once again, thanks for a great website.
    I have just received a job offer at Ipswich Hospital and would also be working occasionally at The Prince Charles Hospital in Chermside.
    I’m hoping you can advise of a good suburb for young family, someone with easy access to Brisbane CBD, we don’t frequent cities but like to have easy access on occasional date nights.
    Our interest are somewhere with reasonable cost, clean, park, safe and easy access to beach and possibly a place we can buy our own home after renting for a year.
    The Mrs is still looking for job but mostly she might work in city.
    I’m looking at some house in Forest Lakes; I also have Springfield Lakes in mind, but would like to hear from locals about these suburbs or some other suggestions please.
    Thanks again

    • BobinOz December 1, 2017, 4:37 pm | Link

      Moggill and the surrounding suburbs are all very nice, great places for families, with lots of parks and open spaces. It’s pretty much right in the middle of the two hospitals you mention, being about 40 minutes drive from Chermside and 30 minutes or less from Ipswich. Those times allow for a little bit of traffic, but probably not peak which might take a little longer.

      Buses run from Moggill to the city quite regularly, but that would be my top choice. Not easy access to the beach, but nowhere in Brisbane is really, because the best beaches are on Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast. Both are about an hour and a half drive from Moggill.

      Springfield Lakes is a newish development that is massively expanding, and technically speaking it is not Brisbane, it is part of Ipswich Council. Better access to the beaches of Gold Coast from there, and again, probably well-placed to drive to both those hospitals. I know very little about Forest Lake, so hopefully a local will read this and be able to tell you more about that area. Looking at a map, a few of the surrounding suburbs around Forest Lake are not Brisbane’s finest, so it may not be a great choice. I don’t know for sure though.

      Hope that helps, Bob

      • Kris December 2, 2017, 4:49 pm | Link

        Thanks so much Bob, this is really helpful. I will look up Springfield Lakes and Moggill

      • Kris December 12, 2017, 5:50 pm | Link

        Hello Bob, thanks again for your help and apologies for being a pain.
        I’ve been looking at Moggill area but it seems there is no much going on for rental out there.
        Just wondering what are your thoughts about Chapel Hill area? The Mrs is being offered a job around Brisbane inner city, while I will be working at Ipswich. This means we would be looking for somewhere to live in-between both suburb. I generally don’t want either of us to drive more than 30mins from our home to place of work.
        Do you think about either Moggill, Chapel Hill or Springfield Lakes would be good choice?
        Looking for family friendly area, safe, clean and has good access to the city as well Ipswich hospital. Somewhere with some good dinning out area would be a plus, perhaps close to shops and public transport.
        My main job would be in Ipswich hospital, I will sometime work at Logan and Prince Charles, while the Mrs will predominantly work around the Brisbane city area.
        Please advise

        Thanks again for a great website and massive help.

        • BobinOz December 12, 2017, 9:21 pm | Link

          No worries, you are not being a pain at all. Chapel Hill and surrounds are all very nice areas, and there is a pub in Kenmore and also several restaurants. Chapel Hill is a bit quieter in that respect, as is Fig Tree Pocket, but both are good safe areas to live in, Kenmore too. Plots are smaller than you would get in Moggill and houses are generally older, but access to the city is better.

  • Agi November 24, 2017, 1:44 am | Link

    Hi Bob.
    My partner and I will be moving over to Brisbane round March next year. He has a job offer in Brisbane CBD. Can you recommend suburb to live in? We would like to be within 5-10k from CBD. We have two black Labradors and absolutely love outdoor living. We will be looking for a property with big garden. We would like to be somewhere near parks and river.
    I never been in Australia so find it quiet hard to decide where to move to?

    Cheers, Agi

    • BobinOz November 24, 2017, 7:51 pm | Link

      Like most cities, any house close to the centre is going to be on a smaller plot, so it will probably have a small garden. So I think you’re going to be looking at least 10 kilometres away, maybe a bit more.

      I would look west of the city if I were you, if you look at the map of Brisbane you will see it gets quite green if you look left. By the time you get to Samford, you are in acreage and horse country, similar if you go south-west to Pullenvale. But both of these suburbs are very expensive and about 20 kilometres away from the CBD.

      If you look in those directions though, that’s where the ‘low density dwellings’ hangout, as in places with bigger gardens. Of course, no river out that way, but I wouldn’t advise living too close to the river anyway. You would have to live too far away from the city to get a big plot, unless you’re millionaires 🙂 and sometimes we have floods.

  • Sam November 23, 2017, 7:46 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Myself and my girlfriend are looking to move to Brisbane in 2019.
    I’m 32 and she is 28. We both love the sea but are looking to live in a suburb a small distance away from built up city areas. Close to a beach would be ideal but also close enough to commute to the centre for work.

    We enjoy going out, socialising and fitness too. Our budget is by no means unlimited but we’d be on the higher end. Can you offer any advice on areas to look at? Thanks for your time, it’s much appreciated.

    • BobinOz November 24, 2017, 7:38 pm | Link

      Well, firstly Sam, you need to know that Brisbane doesn’t do beaches very well. In the first paragraph above on this page, you’ll find a link to a post that I did about that, it might be a good idea if you have a look at it.

      If you decide you still want to live close to the coast of Brisbane, my favourite area is Sandgate and the surrounding suburbs. If after looking at the page I have mentioned you have any more questions, do feel free to come back and ask.

  • Rik November 22, 2017, 10:02 am | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Thanks for putting up such useful information, really helps to make decisions when you cant travel and live somewhere first.

    Could you help with a question I have regarding affordability and liveability.
    I am a brit living in NZ, citizen and considering a move over the Aus., my areas of interest are Adelaide or perhaps up Brisbane way. The two key things I am interested:

    1. The possibility to afford to buy small place but in a decent area, it would just be for me so doesn’t need to be a big family home. Budget perhaps $300K

    2. Mountain biking, I am really spoilt her in S.I. New Zealand, and that is perhaps my biggest factor, I want to be able to get out to and ride most days on some good varied terrain.

    Also concerned about the amount of biting insects/ flies, maybe the culture/ people and vibe of the place. But mainly affording a small place and biking.

    Don’t think you would have liked Cornwall, I lived there a while many years ago and wet wet wet in winter, and unless your actually Cornish you’d always be an outsider. Good pasties in Padstow though.


    • BobinOz November 23, 2017, 6:10 pm | Link

      Actually, I did like Cornwall, but I couldn’t have lived there. I think the winters are way too harsh and I think everybody struggles for work when the tourists aren’t around.

      Anyway, I think you’ll be all right for mountain bike riding whether you go to Adelaide or Brisbane, but I think it might just be more fun in Adelaide. They have the Adelaide Hills and of course, a big bike race each year, is it called Santos?

      I think housing is cheaper in Adelaide as well, although you can still buy a house here in Brisbane for $300K in some areas, but I suspect you’d get a better house in a better area for that money in Adelaide.

      Best to do some research on my page Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia to compare.

      If you need to find work though, Adelaide can be difficult, Brisbane not much better, but if you are going to be looking for a job, I’d research that first as well and go where the most opportunities are. My page Getting a Job or a Sponsorship will help with that.

      Both are friendly and laid-back cities, but when I visited Adelaide I found the people there super friendly and helpful. Good luck which ever you decide.

  • Ajay November 13, 2017, 10:08 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,
    Hope your are doing well. I have recently been granted a PR Visa Subclass 190 for Queensland. I have a wife and 3 years old dependent child. Originally from India, I am currently working in United Arab Emirates in HR – Learning & Development function. I have over 13 years of experience in Insurance (underwriting/brokerage) and Banking (Operations/HR). My wife has work experience in Insurance (Brokerage/Policy documentations) and we both plan to work once we move to Queensland.
    Considering above, I would like to know which city/suburb is best for us to settle, keeping in mind that my son will have to be in a day care / pre school. What is the initial budgeted amount that we should target for bringing to Australia since we both will have to look for the job when we land there.
    Accordingly we will continue to work here in United Arab Emirates and once we have enough savings to move there we shall make a final move to australia. Any advice will be more than welcome.

    • BobinOz November 14, 2017, 8:19 pm | Link

      I think the simple answer to your question is this; go where the work is. Here’s why.

      I think anybody looking to move to Australia in the current climate from abroad needs to do thorough research on how likely it is they will secure a job when they get here. It sounds like you have your heart set on Queensland, but if I’m not mistaken, with the kind of visa you have you could go anywhere in Australia.

      I don’t work in recruitment, so I don’t know where the best place to go would be for you and your wife given your skills, but I do suggest you research it thoroughly using the links on my page Getting a Job or a Sponsorship.

      It may turn out the Queensland isn’t the ideal place for you in terms of finding work, but if it is, all well and good. From what I know, Brisbane would be the place to go in Queensland for work, unemployment gets higher and higher the further north you go from Brisbane in this state.

      You also want to have a good read of the following post as well as the comments made on it…

      Yes, it is from 2015, but not much has changed since. There are many new migrants talking about how difficult it is to find work in those comments. As for how much money to bring, as much is possible is my second simple answer. The reason is no one knows how long it might take you to get a job, your safest bet would be to try and secure one before you move out here. If you come here and can’t find work, money runs out pretty quick.

      I suspect this isn’t the sort of answer you were hoping to get, but I do think it’s information you need to be aware of. Good luck, Bob

      • Ajay November 14, 2017, 10:07 pm | Link

        Thank you Bob for your detailed response and I really appreciate your suggestions however the visa that I have been granted is for state nomination that is from Queensland so this is a PR for indefinite stay but however nominated by State of Queensland and I will have to spend initial 2 years in Queensland and that is the reason why I have chosen Queensland. i am not sure , if i get a better job and directly go to another state … will it impact my citizenship application since i did not fullfill minimum stay requitement at queensland? Please advice.

        • BobinOz November 15, 2017, 6:11 pm | Link

          Sorry, you did say, and yes on that basis the visa has been issued on condition that you come to Queensland. So the answer is almost the same, except limited to Queensland, and my suspicion is that the most job opportunities will be in Brisbane, but I don’t know that for sure.

          The only way to find out is to use the links on the page I’ve mentioned above to search for jobs in Queensland to see what opportunities there might be for you.

          If you are not sure how the specific terms and conditions of your visa works, then you should speak to the immigration department or a MARA registered migration agent.

      • Bella November 14, 2017, 11:37 pm | Link

        Hi Bob.
        We are getting ready to move to Queensland from Sydney. We have not decieded exactly where to move to but should be anywhere a bit close to Brisbane cbd. We want some places that not too hard to find a job ( I’m working at aged care, home care, assistant in nursing. And my husband is a security)
        Could you please tell us: which suburbs near Brisbane (not more than 45-50 mins to drive), not too hard to find a job or not too hard to run a cafe/take away shop and the house price is around 300k?
        I’m looking forward to hearing back from you
        Thank you Bob

        • BobinOz November 15, 2017, 6:26 pm | Link

          Well, there is nowhere close to Brisbane CBD where a house can be purchased for around 300k. Have a look at the prices via the link on my page Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia to see what I mean.

          There are also isn’t a specific region where it is not too hard to find a job, but Brisbane itself is quite sprawling, unlike Sydney, so if you have a car you can get to the CBD quite easily from many places.

          I suggest you look at my page Getting a Job or a Sponsorship and do some research on where the best jobs are for you, and maybe even try and land a job first, before you decide whereabouts you want to live.

          Pretty sure you will need to up your price though, I don’t think you can buy any house for 300k here anymore.

  • Charlotte November 12, 2017, 7:20 pm | Link

    Hi there,
    Looking for some advice. Thinking of relocating to Brisbane or along the coast Husband works from home so don’t need to worry about commute. We have 2 small children so a family friendly area would be great.

    • BobinOz November 13, 2017, 5:55 pm | Link

      Well, if you’re not tied by work, you can go anywhere really, so maybe it would be good to hear a little bit more about what you want from where you live.

      We have plenty of family friendly areas, but what else do you want? If you just want the beach and family friendly, Sunshine Coast would possibly suit you much better. If you only want the beach occasionally and prefer to be close to a city, then perhaps you want a quiet and family friendly suburb in Brisbane.

      If you want the countryside and acreage, we have that as well. If you can give us more info, we will try and help.

  • Mike November 9, 2017, 12:45 pm | Link

    Hi Bob, great website!!!!!! We are coming over tomorrow for a few days to make sure we like it before we move from NZ. I am from UK and partner from China and just waiting for missus to get citizenship here, so we can just move to aus and don’t have to worry about visas etc. Hoping to relocate in roughly 8 months. Spiders ae a bit of a concern for us, but I’ve looked into all possible ways to keep them out the house. We will be looking to buy a house pretty quick once we get there around 500k mark and not too far from the city. Any areas you would recommend? If you are around this weekend and want a pint hit me up lol! Take care mate!

    • BobinOz November 10, 2017, 7:22 pm | Link

      Hi Mike, glad you like.

      I wouldn’t worry too much about the spiders, just get an annual pest spray done, you will hardly ever see any. As for where to buy your house, the closer you are to the city, the more expensive they get.

      I don’t know for sure, but I’d be surprised if you could get closer than, say, 20 kilometres for 500k. Best thing to do is go to, there is a link on my page called Cost of Buying or Renting a House in Australia, and search the greater Brisbane area with a maximum price and how many bedrooms you want.

      Then look at map view, that way you can easily see which houses are closest to the city. Once you’ve narrowed it down a bit, come back if you want and mention the suburbs you are looking at, maybe I or somebody else can let you know what it’s like.

      Enjoy your weekend here, I won’t be able to join you for that pint though, I’m flat out like a lizard drinking, as we say here. Looks like our have to buy my own beer 🙂

  • Eva November 3, 2017, 6:31 pm | Link

    Hi Bob, thank you for such a lovely website. I will be in Brisbane for a holiday for a few weeks, not exactly moving there…yet!. Where would be the best area for me to stay in terms of easy public transport access as well as access to the touristy things, cafes and restaurants, nature trails, beaches etc? I’m more inclined to Teneriffe but could do with a local’s perspective. Love from London

    • BobinOz November 3, 2017, 8:45 pm | Link

      Teneriffe would be perfect, I was actually surprised to read in the paper the other day that it is Brisbane’s most expensive suburb now for housing. Historically I thought it was Hamilton, but now it’s Teneriffe. If you can find somewhere to stay a decent price, it would be a good choice.

      The area is certainly good for cafes and restaurants, and just so you know, Fortitude Valley nearby is where all the nightlife is, until 5 o’clock in the morning if you wish. So it’s quite a lively area.

      Roma Street is where the main train station hub is, so it wouldn’t do any harm to be close to that. Obviously you will need to travel a bit to find your nature trails and beaches, that do check out South Bank Parklands while you are here.

      • Eva November 9, 2017, 3:05 am | Link

        Thanks Bob, that’s very informative! I can’t wait to be there!!

    • Stu November 4, 2017, 2:37 am | Link

      We stayed at the Hotel Urban Brisbane last year and loved it. It’s right near Roma Station and has a nice outside bar/ dining area for the evenings, and is 20 min walk from the city centre.

      • Eva November 9, 2017, 3:06 am | Link

        Thanks Stu, I’ll have a look!

      • Mark November 9, 2017, 10:56 am | Link

        Having also just stayed at the Hotel Urban, yes decent hotel nicely placed I can recommend it, but and there is an incredible ‘but’…parking a car in the car park under the hotel is a feat worthy of a prize.. A percentage of the bays are easy to get to but in the main its incredible, negotiating a car through the pillars that hold the floor above. Not two, not four but around ten on each level aaaahhhhhh Its like playing skittles with a car, only trying not to hit them…as testament to the multicolored paint marks on each pillar many before have hit them…A serious challenge for Ross Swift even but still a great hotel..

        • BobinOz November 10, 2017, 7:03 pm | Link

          It is a serious challenge, it has to be seen to be believed. So much so, it should be a tourist attraction.

  • Anika November 2, 2017, 1:05 am | Link

    First of all let me say how much my family and I have enjoyed your websites and commentries on everything about Australia! We have our PR visas and hoping to come Dec this year! Christmas on the beach! We have a family with four kids ages 16 down to 4 and we would like to live outside of town where it may be commutable to Brisbane for work for hubby. I will be nursing which is more flexible regards to location. We were thinking about Kanara Downs, Karalee and similar places – would it be a reasonable commute to Brisbane CBD? We also like the looks of Jimboomba and Pine mountain but is it realistic to live so far would it be a nightmare commute? I wonder what your take on this might be? We would like to find something with space above everything else. I will research some of the suburbs mentioned in previous comments, I just wondered what your opinion was? Thanks so much!

    • BobinOz November 3, 2017, 8:12 pm | Link

      Hi Anika,

      Thanks, glad to hear you have enjoyed my website.

      I know Karana Downs and Karalee quite well, they are not far from where I live. Good areas they are as well, house prices are very reasonable too. The commute to Brisbane CBD is very doable, but only by car. I think public transport would be a nightmare, there are certainly no trains and I’ve never seen a bus on the Mount Crosby Road, not a public bus anyway.

      Bellbowrie though, which is close by, does have a bus service running into the city. Without traffic, you could do Karalee to Brisbane CBD in about 50 minutes by car, with traffic probably an additional 20 minutes. Perfectly commutable really.

      Jimboomba and Pine Mountain, I don’t know those so well, but I don’t think they would be a better option and the commute would certainly be a bit longer.

      Mount Crosby and Anstead are worth a look if you like rural, and nothing wrong with Bellbowrie or Moggill either if you want to be on that bus route to the city. All the areas I mention are good for plenty of space.

      Hope that helps, Bob

      • Anika November 5, 2017, 5:13 am | Link

        Thanks so much for your answer! Its great to have some confirmation of our choices before we come over… getting excited! Maybe we will meet you in Bellbowrie some time you never know!

  • Charles November 1, 2017, 4:07 am | Link

    My wife and I are maybe accepting a move to Brisbane – moving from the US. The location my wife will be working at is close to the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens. Looking for a place around $500-$600 USD per week. No kids, so looking for new, modern, close to cafes, restaurants, pubs, etc. Any suggestions?
    Thanks !!!

    • BobinOz November 1, 2017, 6:14 pm | Link

      Yes, I’d be inclined to look at New Farm and Teneriffe, lots of bars, restaurants and clubs within easy reach and you can also enjoy relaxing riverside walks. Your wife could get a City Cat Ferry to work.

      Newstead, and on the other side of the river, Bulimba, are also worth considering. There’s not much around that way that is new and modern though, apart from maybe apartments. They are all pretty decent places to live though.

  • Aprajita Ghai October 30, 2017, 9:46 am | Link

    Hi I am planning to move to Brisbane . Can someone suggest the best school for boys( private school) . And the near by area , To live in . Thanks

    • BobinOz October 30, 2017, 8:33 pm | Link

      Well, most agree that Brisbane Grammar School, which is a boys school in Spring Hill, is the best private school in the city, but I think also the most expensive. Hamilton is nearby and a very affluent suburb with some stunning houses overlooking the river, but again, very expensive.

  • Ali October 28, 2017, 11:24 pm | Link

    Hi Bob,

    First of all, a Big Thank You for all the information you have shared. You’re doing a wonderful job!

    My name is Ali. I am planning to come to Australia in March 2018 on a PR visa. I am a civil engineer with over 4 years exp. in water resources & tunnels. I am thinking of coming to Brisbane as it apparently has a decent no. of engineering consultancies working in the water/marine industry as well as a low cost of living. Could you please make some suggestions:

    a) firstly, on my choice of city to live and find work;
    b) and secondly, on the suburbs where I can easily find a casual job while job hunting for an engineering role.

    My only preference is to have friendly flatmates/neighbours until I find a permanent job.


    • BobinOz October 30, 2017, 8:01 pm | Link

      Thanks for the kind words, glad you like the website.

      You need to read the information on my page Getting a Job or a Sponsorship and do some research to find out which city will offer you the most job opportunities.

      That answers question a), but question b) can only be discussed when you have worked out which city you are going to go to. When you have decided where you’re going though, simply visit my page about that city and have a look at the comments about the suburbs, although if you’re only criteria for a suburb is finding work, again you can research that on the page I have given you a link to above.

      Good luck, Bob

  • Annie October 22, 2017, 4:03 pm | Link

    Hi there,

    My partner and I are moving from Melbourne. I will be working just south of Caboolture and my partner in Chermside. We’re after an energetic suburb for 20 somethings with cafes/things to do on our limited time off. I am willing to commute about 45 mins in order to have this and the lifestyle we’re after. Budget around $500/week. What northern Brisbane suburbs would you recommend?

    Thank you in advance!

    • Ozimandias October 22, 2017, 6:25 pm | Link

      I know someone who likes Sippy Downs, though that is north and really part of Sunshine Coast. At 500 bucks you can afford most options, asuming you are just talking rent. If you mean rent and utility bills, the situation is different. Locally, Woody Point maybe, or Scarborough. Redcliffe has a significant amount of public housing, with all that entails, for that matter also Deception Bay. Burpengary is suburbia, if that’s your thing. Morayfield is pretty ordinary, not much of an advance on Caboolture, though has a large mall and a lot more eating options, though is pretty spread out. Not really a village at atmosphere, quite generic. Bribie Island is simple and laid back, close enough, but with not a lot to do, other than beaches, water activities and a bit of nature, part of it is national park.

      There’s several options on your budget close to the city if you don’t mind a commute. A bonus is the train line goes all the way from Caboolture to the ciry if you don’t want to drive. Traffic can be hectic.

      • Ozimandias October 22, 2017, 6:32 pm | Link

        energetic would not describe any option I have mentioned to my knowledge…

        better to think about inner Brisbane or close enough to commute to it on the weekends. The clubs are centrally located.

        • Annie October 22, 2017, 8:23 pm | Link

          Thank you for your reply 🙂

          We’re not really concerned about clubs. Mostly the vibe/cafes/etc.

          From reading the rest of this thread, maybe Bowen Hills/Newstead/Tenerife or Paddington/Rosalie would be what we’re looking for? Any idea what the realistic commute would be to Caboolture from Bowen Hills/Newstead/Tenerife versus Paddington/Rosalie, ie does east/west of the northern side of the river make a difference? Google maps says about the same but not sure of the local traffic patterns.


          • Ozimandias October 22, 2017, 9:14 pm | Link

            If you like heritage and village like ambience, the area about Paddington is nice. Try google walking it. It is hilly, so if planning on walking around, bear it in mind as Brisbane is pretty hot, though peaks around the middle of the day in my experience, whereas Melbourne in the height of summer peaks around 4pm.

            I thought the surrounding areas to Paddington are nice too, typical of the planning ideas of community at the time in the mid to late 1800s, which are most appealing and have not been beaten since in my view. Hence their popularity.

            Transportwise, try reviewing the public transport website:

            It doesn’t look favourable from Paddington.

            A dimming memory now, but looking at the train time from city to Caboolture it is 49 minutes to Central.

            Bear in mind your commutes as may become a burden over time, even in your 20s.

            If you are in a situation where work in Caboolture may lead in six months to a year to somewhere closer to the city, bear it in mind in your choice of accommodation, as you may move and then your residence becomes strategic.
            The main drag of Caboolture is imo utterly unredeeming. Shuttered in part. There is a shopping centre with a gym on it across the road from the hospital, with a few takeaway options. There is a museum for aircraft and an old showground.

            It is regarded as a bogan area, an outer ring suburb which was once a country town, though that is not easily appreciated driving through the main strip. On your way out to the Sunshine Coast, you see paddocks with horses, vestiges betraying the town’s erstwhile sleepy backwater nature. It is a bit gritty, with a lot of people covered in tattoos, maybe a struggle street scowl, but generally Qld “Aussie”. I’m ok with it, but if it was me in my 20s, no way would I live there.

            If you really must be close to 19th century stuff, maybe best to look at the older parts of Brisbane somewhere along the line from CBD to Caboolture.

            • Ozimandias October 22, 2017, 9:30 pm | Link

              another thing, I got the sense a lot of people head out of the city on the weekend to the beach as 9+ months of the year it is bright, sunny warm to hot weather.
              It is an ideal weather scenario to go the beach and given the upper and lower limits extend up and down the coast endlessly, it’s no surprise people leave the centre of Brisbane for a swim.
              If you are after a beach/cafe vibe, there are quite a lot of apartment options very much in your budget along the coast in your budget. There is an apartment glut in Brisbane which is set to continue, so it can be a buyer’s market and you may feel you can negotiate a price better to your liking.

              • BobinOz October 23, 2017, 7:05 pm | Link

                Some good advice here from Ozimandias, and I agree with him entirely, Caboolture and the surrounding suburbs are not the best. Sunshine Coast is great, but a bit quiet and the commute to Chermside would be awful. New Farm would be ideal for you I think, but the commute to Caboolture will probably be about an hour. I think though, for the most part, the bulk of the traffic will be going in the opposite direction during peak hours.

                What tends to happen is that people live in Sunshine Coast and commute to work to Brisbane, your other half will be doing it the other way round. One other option, worth looking into, would be Sandgate. No nightclubs there, but quite a nice buzz about the place, quite a few bars and a bit of cafe culture.

  • Rose October 20, 2017, 4:48 pm | Link


    Me and my partner will be moving to Brisbane soon.

    What would be a nice area to live in for a young( mid-late 20’s ), outgoing &active couple?

    Thanks !

  • Rahul Sinha October 16, 2017, 3:34 am | Link

    HI Bob,
    Thanks for this website. Very informative. Now, at least I got some idea about the suburbs.

    I am an Indian and I am moving to Brisbane for a year for my work. My office is located in George Street. I will be using the public transport for travel. I can spend 20-30 mins on travel. Can you please suggest me where I should move in. I am looking for a place nearby to bus stop, supermarket, cafes and restaurants. My budget would be $200 per week for rent.

    Thank you 🙂

    • Tracy October 16, 2017, 9:13 pm | Link

      I don’t think you’ll get much for $200 unless you share.

      Try this site, as an example:

      You might even get something right nearby! And it might be nice to have flat mates to hang out with?

      • BobinOz October 16, 2017, 9:33 pm | Link

        Tracy is quite right, you will be need to look at house sharing on that budget. Worth googling gumtree as well, people advertise rooms to let on there. Just go for anywhere as close as possible to where you need to go to keep travel costs down.

        • Rahul Sinha October 17, 2017, 2:02 am | Link

          Bob, can you suggest me some places nearby George Street. Good transport, food and other facilities. I have to plan my accommodation in advance.

          • BobinOz October 17, 2017, 7:27 pm | Link

            George Street is in the heart of the city, any suburb close to it will be close to all the amenities and almost certainly very near to public transport. Google Translink and you will be able to see the bus and train routes. I think your first task is to look into whereabouts you can get shared accommodation for the money you want to pay.

            If you narrow that down to a few suburbs, let me know what they are and I’ll try to help you further.

  • Victoria October 12, 2017, 6:03 am | Link

    Hi Bob,
    My husband got offered a job in Brisbane in the CBD. We are considering taking it but it does mean a move from Scotland to there. We would be coming over hopefully March on a 457 visa with our 3 year old son.
    What suburbs would you recommend that are no farther than a 45 minute commute and great for families. We would be renting with a budget of around 500-600 and hopefully a pool of affordable
    Thanks in advance ☺

    • BobinOz October 13, 2017, 6:57 pm | Link

      Well, I think you would be able to get all you want with your budget, including a pool. Places that spring to mind are The Gap, Kenmore and Kenmore Hills, and somebody spoke quite well of Keperra somewhere here in these comments.

      When you say 45 minutes commute though, do you mean by car or public transport? It might be good if you could also give more information about what you want from a suburb, other than family friendly. Then maybe either I or someone else can offer more advice.

      • Victoria October 13, 2017, 10:19 pm | Link

        Hi thanks for your reply.
        That’s great about the budget 😊

        Hubby currently walks 20 mins to train station and is then on that for 20 mins. I would probably say by public transport for the commute as I will probably be the one keeping the car.

        To be honest I have no idea about suburbs and what we would like. I suppose somewhere that has easy access to shops and a few restaurants/cafes, a good school, friendly vibe, spacious, parks, safe. We aren’t big drinkers and with a 3 year old restaurants are normally a nightmare lol. I suppose an easy paced place if that makes sense 😊

        • BobinOz October 16, 2017, 7:43 pm | Link

          Thanks for the extra info. I don’t really know the suburbs north of the city well enough to advise, so hopefully somebody else will see your comment and help with that. As with most cities, the closer you get to it, the less spacious the suburb would be with fewer open green spaces. So not as kid friendly as somewhere further out.

          A good compromise could be places like Indooroopilly, Chelmer, Graceville, Sherwood and Corinda. If you Google ‘Brisbane train map’ you will see them all in a row on the same train line. All of those places have a bit going on nearby in terms of restaurants and cafes. Indooroopilly is the busiest of them all, it has a big shopping centre as well. All are good for transport into the city. Be sure to study the flood maps though before committing to buying a house in these areas. Or any area in Brisbane.

          Mount Gravatt is also worth a look, it’s on the train line and has been highly recommended elsewhere on this website somewhere in the comments. Keperra, also on the train line, has been given the thumbs up here by others. Further out is Bellbowrie and Moggill, that’s bus only to the city and will take between 40 minutes and an hour. There is a fast bus during peak which doesn’t stop everywhere which can do the journey in 35 minutes. These two are really family friendly suburbs, they are in a good school catchment area and very safe with lots of open green spaces and parks. It has a small shopping centre for the essentials, but you would need to go elsewhere for a big shopping mall.

          Hope that helps, Bob

          • Victoria October 16, 2017, 7:48 pm | Link

            Thanks for getting back to me 😊
            That’s great I will definitely have a look at these areas, thank you for your help.

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