Brisbane was only about an hour away on public transportation, making our journey easy. We went up to the reception desk at our Brisbane hostel and were greeted by a toothless middle-aged man telling us a story of American and French girls being murdered in Brisbane. Perhaps this is how they greet all of their guests…
He continued to give us a tour of the hostel, pointing out all the cameras and locks that would prevent any altercations, which, previous to speaking with this man, I hadn’t worried about. It was dingy, but had AC at night, a useable kitchen, and wifi, all for $16 a night.
The heat was sapping all our energy, but Byron gave me a pep talk and we went out to see the city by using a self guided walking tour. Town Hall, check. Anzac Square, check. Wharf, old church, Botanical Gardens, check check check. The coolest part was the Streets Beach, which was a set of manmade pools with sand, palm trees, and vibrant purple flowers. Kids, teenagers, adults and camps were all enjoying the pools–for free! It looked like a pool from an amusement park that you’d have to pay an arm and a leg to enter, but this was all just for the public to use. My opinion of Brisbane jumped quite a bit.
After accomplishing the landmark checklist, we cooked butter chicken at the hostel for dinner and lounged around until the AC turned on.
The next day I enjoyed cream cheese and toast for breakfast, since I figured cream cheese might be hard to find in the countries we’d be visiting in a few days.
With staying cool as our only goal for the day, we took advantage of Brisbane’s public pools and lounged around reading and swimming and feasting on all you can eat Sushi for lunch.
Instead of taking the overpriced shuttle to the airport the next day, we (in typical backpacker fashion) figured out how to hack the system and pay a mere $3.70. Granted, we had to take four different public buses to get there, but that’s aside the point.