Mount Coot-tha Lookout, Brisbane

Mt Coot-tha is an iconic landmark that sits 287 metres above sea level, overlooking the city of Brisbane. It is the perfect place for a day trip away from the hustle and bustle of the busy city.

Mount Coot-tha Lookout

Brisbane is best known for its towering sky-scrapers set against a stunning backdrop of lush rainforests and ocean views. But instead of packing a day bag and lugging it out to see the natural wonders surrounding the city, why not see one that is located close to the heart of Brisbane, Mount Coot-tha.

History of Mount Coot-tha Lookout

Before the European settlers came to Brisbane, Mount Coot-tha was home to the Yugarapul indigenous community. It was also a popular spot from which to gather honey from the native stingless bees. After the Europeans settled in the land, the mountain was named ‘One Tree Hill,’ due to the top being clear of bushland except for one large eucalyptus tree. The name was changed to Mount Coot-tha in the 1880s and is derived from the term ‘Honey Mountain’ given by the Yugarpul people.

What to do at Mount Coot-tha Lookout?

  • Hike up the mountain

    By far the most popular activity at Mount Coot-tha is a hiking. With an array of bushwalking tracks available, you can spend a whole day immersed in the forestland. If you’re bringing kids along, walk along the Aboriginal Art Trail, jam-packed with examples of rocking paintings and stick sculptures. Summit Circuit is one of the most popular walks claiming marvellous views, easy walking paths and a central starting point for visitors. A popular track is the Kokoda trail, named after the Kokoda Track in Papua New Guinea. Hikers train on Mount Coot-tha’s Kokoda trail as practice for walking the Kokoda as the terrain and climate are said to be similar.

  • Get your heart racing

    Bike fanatics will love Mount Coot-tha’s many bike paths, winding up and down the mountain’s landscape with over 20km of trails on offer. Suitable for all experience and skill levels, there are paths from the beginner ranging to an advanced level. So make sure you check the grading before you head out on a trail! Mountain bike enthusiasts will love the western side of the mountain where there are multi-use tracks to explore. These tracks are usually recommended for those bikers who have experience as the tracks are rather steep.

  • Picnic at the perfect spot

    If you’re looking for a relaxing break amongst the stunning scenery, pack yourself a picnic for a day and venture out into the lush landscape of Mount Coot-tha. Hike up to JC Slaughter Falls, a perfect spot for a lazy afternoon sprawled out on the grass. The open space is the perfect place for a large group event as well, with plenty of space for a game of footy.

  • Marvel at the views

    Of course, no trip to Mount Coot-tha is complete without a visit to the very top of the mountain. Hike up to see the jaw-dropping, panoramic views of Brisbane city. You’ll even get a peek of the surrounding region of Moreton Bay. For an unforgettable sight, visit during sunrise or sunset to catch the picturesque golden glow that the sun casts over the area.

  • Visit the Brisbane Botanical Gardens and beyond

    Sitting at the bottom of the mountain, the botanical gardens are bursting with sub-tropical plants. The gardens span an area of 52 hectares with themed sections including a Japanese garden with cherry blossoms and traditional sculptures. After wandering the large expanse, head to the café for a delicious lunch or snack to revitalise you. If you’re a nature lover and you’re wanting to do some exploring of your own, the Mount Coot-tha forest is covered with a whopping 1600 hectares of eucalypts trees, over 350 species of wildlife and even more beautiful native plants.

  • Unique Dining Experiences

    The Summit Restaurant & Bar at the peak of Mount Coot-tha is an award-winning eatery where you can grab a light snack or, if you’re looking for something more filling, they do offer a full lunch and dinner menu. With stunning views of Brisbane in the distance, this is an experience like no other and perfect for those celebrating birthdays, anniversaries or special events. For a light bite, try the Kuta Cafe, the more informal dining option. With floor to ceiling glass doors, and an outdoor terrace, there are plenty of places for you to sit and enjoy spectacular views while you eat. This casual eatery serves up the works so you’re sure to find a thing or two on the menu which takes your fancy. Choose from burgers, nachos or a steak sandwich, one of the many main meals on offer.

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