On South Bank, just over Victoria Bridge from the CBD, the Queensland Cultural Centre is the epicentre of Brisbane’s cultural confluence. Surrounded by subtropical gardens, the sprawling complex of architecturally notable buildings includes the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, the Queensland Museum & Sciencentre, the Queensland Art Gallery, the State Library of Queensland, and the particularly outstanding Gallery of Modern Art (GOMA).

If you have kids in tow, a good place to start is the Queensland Museum & Sciencentre. Offering an engaging journey through the state's history, its permanent booty includes a skeleton of the state’s own dinosaur, Muttaburrasaurus, and the Avian Cirrus, the tiny plane in which Queensland’s Bert Hinkler made the first England-to-Australia solo flight in 1928. The museum also houses the excellent Sciencentre, whose interactive exhibits delve into life science and technology in fun, thought-provoking ways.

The Queensland Art Gallery houses a fine permanent collection, mostly of domestic and European artists, among them Sir Sydney Nolan, Arthur Boyd, William Dobell, George Lambert and Picasso.

Occupying an award-winning contemporary building by Sydney firm Architectus, the imposing Gallery of Modern Art delivers world-class exhibitions of both Australian and international art in a variety of media, from painting, sculpture and photography, to video, installation and film.