Sometimes, you don’t realise how good your own backyard is and Australia’s Sunny State Queensland, holds a plethora of memorable and simple experiences to treasure, so let’s start with Brighton.
Back in Australia due to COVID, travel overseas has been non-existent since 2020, so the only alternative is to experience home more, which isn’t a bad thing at all.
Australia is a vast continent and with an area of 1,727,000 square kilometres, Queensland is “nearly five times the size of Japan, seven times the size of Great Britain, and two and a half times the size of Texas”…
…and, the second largest State in Australia but only with a population of just over 5.25 million. Are these figures mind-boggling?
Starting with Brighton, I’d like to share a little about this small suburb that is still relatively unknown to many Brisbanites. Mention Shorncliffe or Sandgate – the first two suburbs before hitting Brighton and going over to the Redcliffe Peninsular – and Brisbanites understand. But, the tide is turning on Brighton as it’s fast becoming a desirable Brisbane suburb.
So, where is Brighton?
A northern coastal suburb of Brisbane, Brighton is only an easy 22-kilometre drive along the M1 highway from Brisbane.
What to see?
Picturesque parks grace Brighton, which is mostly known for its long flat walkable Esplanade…
…that continues south to Sandgate and onto Shorncliffe’s Cruising Yacht Club, some 7-plus kilometres long.
If you’re lucky enough to be in Brighton during February, then participate in the wonderful Channel 7 Brighton Jetty Classic Street Festival. With a plethora of market stalls, music, and art, this is a fabulous event for everyone.
Of course, as a lover of the sea, Brighton’s tree-lined esplanade is an absolute favourite to wander and absorb the tranquillity of Moreton Bay – although the wind can quickly whip up seas in the bay.
When the tide is out, it seems to stretch out endlessly and as far as the eye can see – maybe half a kilometre or more…
More views strolling to Sandgate and onto Shorncliffe…
Pimelea Reserve (Brighton Wetlands)
Tranquil green zones such as those found in the Pimelea Reserve are an excellent area to relax, enjoy a family picnic, and maybe do some bird spotting while surrounding yourself in nature. Or, just wait a while until the sun descends and unfolds a spectacular vista…
Did you know?
A few fun facts about Brighton:
- The Brighton Hotel (local pub), which is located along the busy main street – Beaconsfield Terrace – is believed to be built by David Rowntree Somerset. The hotel was resold a couple of times, before being used as a private home, then as an orphanage in 1893, until becoming a hotel again in 1912.
- Brighton was named after the Brighton Hotel, which is thought to be named after England’s Brighton in Sussex. Odd naming a suburb after a pub.
- The Hornibrook Bridge was built in 1935 to connect Brighton with the Redcliffe Peninsular with remnants remaining of the original bridge, which was replaced in 2010 by the Ted Smout Memorial Bridge.
- The RAAF Air Training School was situated in Brighton’s barracks during WWII between December 1940 and May 1946. Built on reclaimed land, the barracks became Eventide – a large nursing home run by the Queensland Government. To date, controversy surrounds the nursing home, which is on prime seafront land. Greedy developers are dying to get their paws on this valuable land.
Where to eat?
Brighton is a small suburb of only around 10,000 people. A few minutes down the road in the sleepy village of Sandgate, I love revisiting these favourite eating haunts…
Baan Phrai Ya Thai
The Baan Phrai Ya Thai in Brighton offers quite authentic and delicious Thai food, albeit the spiciness isn’t as strong as you can experience in Thailand, understandably. Great service and a super busy restaurant, especially for takeaway meals.
What’s in the Pot?
My absolute favourite out of the adjoining three suburbs – Brighton, Sandgate, and Shorncliffe – What’s in the Pot? in Sandgate serves consistently great food. You can taste the best wood-fired pizzas around in this restaurant and the professional staff are most accommodating.
This is the go-to restaurant to take visiting friends, for special occasions, or just to indulge in delectable authentic Tuscan food. With a second restaurant along the waterfront in the Redcliffe Peninsular, both restaurants are always packed and booking is essential, especially on a Saturday night.
Doug’s Seafood Cafe
Also in Sandgate and along the beautiful seafront, Doug’s Seafood Cafe has existed for decades and does the best fish and chips around, without needing to take out a small mortgage.
Just across from the esplanade, which is lined with parkland, picnic tables, and free council BBQs, enjoy your seafood while watching the sun recede over sparkling and serene Moreton Bay. Open 7 days per week for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, you don’t want to miss this cafe.
Viet Street Eat
The Viet Street Eat in Sandgate offers authentic Vietnamese cuisine at reasonable prices and great service.
Of course, the menu offers the traditional Pho alongside amazing fresh rice paper rolls and heavenly Banh mi (stuffed bread rolls).
Open for a couple of decades (I think), G’day Sushi was re-acquired in 2014 and revamped with bright decor.
Everything is made fresh on the premises including the scrumptious and tasty Sushi but also the yummy hot Japanese meals at inexpensive prices for generous portions. Open 7 days per week (except on public holidays), this great cosy dine-in or takeaway is an obsession and the friendly staff make it a pleasant visit.
Hope you enjoyed this read on the suburb of Brighton and think I’ll publish more on a couple of other coastal Brisbane suburbs.