Climb Brisbane’s Story Bridge! Here’s Why It’s A Must Do

Ever wanted to climb a bridge (legally)?

Here’s your opportunity to scale one of three bridge climbs in the world.

Remember that episode of The Simpsons where Homer buys Marge a bowling ball for her birthday under the guise she will love it, but it’s really for him?

Well I bought this experience for Chris for his birthday for us to do together, as I had done it before and loved it, but I knew he would love it too!

The Story Bridge is located in beautiful Brisbane, Australia and spans the “brown snake” Brisbane River. The Story Bridge was opened in 1940 and is an iconic image of Brisbane.

Story Bridge over the Brisbane River, Queensland, Australia
Story Bridge over the Brisbane River, Queensland, Australia

It’s One of Only 3 in the World!

The Story Bridge Climb is one of only three bridge climbs in the world, the others being the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Auckland Harbour Bridge. That means by doing this climb you really are doing something that a lot of people don’t have the opportunity to do.

It’s an Icon

The Story Bridge is pictured in almost all Brisbane literature and postcards. Many people use it to get from one side of the city to the other, the popular City Cats go under it, it is used to launch fireworks for River Fire and the historic Story Bridge Hotel is built in under the bridge!

Kayaking groups enjoy a different view of the Story Bridge, Brisbane, Australia!
Kayaking groups enjoy a different view of the Story Bridge!

The Views

At its highest point the Story Bridge is 80 metres above sea level, which can be beaten by most buildings, but the views can’t be beaten. From the top there are amazing views as far as the eye can see to Lamington National Park, the Glasshouse Mountains and Moreton Bay. During the day you will see the green landscapes and the snaking of the Brisbane River. At night you will see the beautiful lights of Brisbane and the black void of the river. If you go at the right time you may even catch the sun setting.

Night Falls Over the Story Bridge Brisbane, Australia
Night Falls Over the Story Bridge Brisbane, Australia

The Family can do it!

My kids didn’t do it but it really is a suitable activity for kids over the age of 10. It’s a great opportunity for them to experience history for themselves and get involved in some exciting adventures. And my grandfather did it when he was in his 70s and suffering from Parkinsons!

If my grandfather can do it so can you!

You don’t have to be ultra fit

There are a lot of stairs. Over 1100 actually, so I’m not exaggerating (for once). And at the beginning they pretty much go straight up, I was totally puffed after not very long.

The first time I did the climb I was having major regret, the second time… I still had some regret at that stage but knew it would be over soon.

Okay, I’m not selling it here for you right?

After the first little bit the rest isn’t too bad. And while you are attached to a dozen other people, your guide will stop at various points up the bridge so you can catch your breath. If you have any concerns just tell them before you get started.

The Guides

The guides that take you up are amazing at their job. They know the history of the bridge, they know where all the points of interest are and they know their group. You can feel safe knowing they are in control.

Many fine eating places line the Brisbane River with some beautiful views
Many fine eating places line the Brisbane River with some beautiful views

The Story Bridge Hotel

The famous Story Bridge Hotel is actually part of the bridge foundations so should be a must visit after you’ve done the climb for a celebratory beer or meal. Make sure you go beforehand because you get breath tested before you climb!

No alcohol allowed!

The Story Bridge Hotel has a couple of great bars where you can relive the experience with your friends after your climb. We went to Deerys Restaurant, which is a bit posh, where the food and service was incredible. If you do the Story Bridge Climb on Australia Day and then head to the Story Bridge Hotel you can enjoy the cockroach races!

It’s An Experience!

You know sometimes there are just no words to describe an experience, and this is one of those times. Amazing just doesn’t seem expressive enough, epic doesn’t seem descriptive enough. It wasn’t as adrenaline inducing as skydiving, but it really was an incredible experience.

We had perfect weather and got to watch the sun go down from a vantage point of Brisbane we’d never seen before.

If you happen to be in Brisbane in September, then look out for River Fire, where the city and the bridge light up with fireworks in multiple city locations along the Brisbane river.

 

River Fire, Brisbane - a popular annual event in September
River Fire, Brisbane – a popular annual event in September
River Fire, Brisbane - a popular annual event in September
River Fire Lights Up Story Bridge

It was surprisingly calm up the top, and then surprisingly loud and vibrant half way down while looking at the cars whizzing by below us.

If you are in Brisbane, or passing through, we highly recommend you give the Story Bridge Climb a go. You definitely will not regret it.

And in even more exciting news, you can now climb the Story Bridge and then abseil down! There’s an experience for the not so faint-hearted!

Paddle Steamer - a less energetic, yet peaceful way to cruise the Brisbane River
Paddle Steamer – a less energetic, yet peaceful way to cruise the Brisbane River

For more information, go to storybridgeadventureclimb.com.au

One comment

  1. Reblogged this on The Bridgehunter's Chronicles and commented:
    Bridge climbing is like rock climbing in a way. People engaging in this hobby must have nerves of steel to scale the geometrical structures that shape the city skyline. They are mostly straight or circular (or both) and not uneven. Bridge climbing can be an individual or a family affair, pending on the bridge and the possibilities available. Training is possible on the spot whereas with rock climbing, training is needed before embarking on the dangerous journey. Bridges where climbing is possible include the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, Harbour Bridge in Sydney and this bridge in Brisbane. In this blog, Travel Everywhere- Earn Anywhere, this British couple embarked on this journey and lived to tell it. Here’s an excerpt which will lead to the link which you can open for details on the dos, don’ts and hows to doing this and ways to become a successful adventurer in this aspect. Perhaps you can try one with a bridge. But before you do, read the article. Enjoy! 🙂

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