Australia is renowned for its coastline and its beaches. We have some of the best (best looking) beaches around. Brisbane, situated on a major river, however is not really thought of for nice beaches. An hour to the south and an hour to the north you will find some of the premier tourist beaches in Australia, however closer to the city, we are not so lucky. Is that altogether correct? We set out to explore and find out. We are already big fans of the beaches at Redcliffe, and I think all those parents of little kids might understand us when we say that what we look for in a beach changes somewhat with little kids. It's not always about the beautiful sandy beaches with consistent rolling waves.
Nudgee Beach is just to the north of Brisbane Airport, about half an hour from the CBD. Quite easy to get there by car and it is reasonably well serviced by public transport, however for us the car was the best choice. It's worth checking the tide times as at a high tide you may not see any beach. Nudgee Beach certainly has a different feel to it - you feel like you are in a small beachside village, so don't expect the touristy atmosphere that you get from the Gold or Sunshine Coast (or even Wynnum or Redcliffe, for that matter!). There is a small convenience store in Nudgee Beach but not much else in the way of shops, but at least you know that you can pick up an ice block!
The carpark at Nudgee Beach is right by the water. There is also a boat ramp there but I would image that it is only suitable for small tinnies and you would have to be very well timed around the tides - the tide goes out a long way so I would expect a long wait if you missed your timing! We made sure that we brought along enough towels and a change of clothes and plenty of water bottles for cleaning off - we came prepared to get muddy! There is a toilet block and water tap for cleaning off as well, however we find a plastic water bottle with a sports-cap drinking nozzle to be great for washing the kids off quickly!
The beach is so easy to access! Straight off the carpark and you're there! Not the best for sand castles, but you can get strait into the mud and get dirty! There are a few mangroves around which a great for exploring, however you will need to be careful of the mangrove seeds and barnacle-covered mud whelks (those are the long, cone shaped snails you will find everywhere). A pair of water shoes might be an idea! We had so much fun! We arrived just as the tide was receding and just followed it out over the morning! The beach is very flat, so there was lots of mud and the shallow water was great for even the littlest ones to splash in! There were a few little organisms around - crabs and snails and a few fish in the water so the inquisitive kids had some things to search for. The beach is also covered in heaps of little pot-holes which capture the water as is recedes, so again it was great fun for the kids! The Peppa Pig fans can jump up and down in muddy puddles to their hearts content!!
Our visit to Nudgee Beach was one of our most fun outings! We're not sure if it was because of our limited expectations, or maybe it was that we could have a relative stress-free visit to the beach (the shallow water and open spaces meant that we could give the kids a bit of a longer leash) but we really enjoyed it! The kids loved being able to get dirty and muddy and then clean it all off with a splash in the water! There was heaps of flat area for them to run around in, a few sand-bars were exposed creating islands which was a real treat for the kids, and there were a few creatures to investigate! Thanks Nudgee Beach, we will definitely be coming back again!
Amenities: Typical of a Brisbane park / playground, so no problems here! Toilets and drinking water available! 👍👍👍
Cost: Free beach and playground - just the cost to get out there! 👍👍👍👍
Parking: Plenty of parking available! 👍👍👍👍
Access: So easy to get down to the beach from the carpark! 👍👍👍👍
Entertainment: If you are after waves then probably not the best. If you want mud, then this is great! 👍👍👍
Best for: Really good fun for toddlers! Pet friendly too! 👍👍👍
Wildlife: Birds, snails, crabs and fish kept the kids intrigued! 👍👍👍👍
Summary: If you are looking for a pretty beach with golden sand and rolling waves well this is not your beach. But for little kids wanting a bit of freedom to run around and if they like to get dirty, this may be the place for you! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: Take some water on long walks out at low tide, it can take a while to get back!
Brisbane Family Explorers