Brisbane. Thoughts of beaches, outdoor spaces, and soaking in the sun, rise to mind. However, did you know that there’s an underground opera circuit, lurking in the background of the beautiful city?

Don’t worry, when driving through Brisbane in your hire car at night they won’t jump out and sing at you. Instead, they’re one of the quirky facts about Australia’s third largest city that shows there’s so much more to Brisbane than you might have realised.

1. The story of the twin bridge, in Montreal, Canada

In some ways more of a tale about triplets, the much loved Story Bridge in Brisbane was influenced by its Montreal counterpart, the Jacques Cartier Bridge. However, this in turn pulled on the design concepts used in another arc spanning a river in Canada, called Quebec Bridge.

Completed back in 1940, the Brisbane triplet is much loved, mostly due to how you can climb it. At the top, the views are said to be the best in the city, and if it feels a little cold up there, maybe it’s just due to the Canadian history.

2. The world’s first cultivated Macadamia tree

If you love Macadamia nuts, then jump in your car and head to Brisbane’s City Botanic Gardens. Not only is it a great place to explore, but you’ll also find the world’s first cultivated Macadamia tree still living within. Planted in 1858, every year it still produces nuts as well!

3. Every day is a sunny one (almost)

If you’re wanting some golden light, you’re certain to find it in Brisbane. One year, back in 2013, the city got 283 days of full sunlight! With such great weather, even during the winter months, it’s not surprising that Brisbane has so many outdoor activities waiting for you

4. World War II saw Brisbane become the busiest submarine port in the world

After Pearl Harbour was bombed on 7 December 1941, all ships heading there were redirected to Brisbane instead. Being close to where the American troops needed to be, while also located outside the range of Japanese bombers, caused the Australian city to become host to over 75,000 soldiers.

5. The underground opera circuit

The name may bring to mind ‘Phantom of the Opera’, but in reality the Underground Opera Company is much less daunting. Making use of the old Spring Hill water reservoir, they’ve turned the space into an area where the public can buy tickets to watch live opera. Industrial and historical elements mix with perfect acoustics, creating a great moody atmosphere. 

With so much to discover in this city, what are you waiting for? Fly in today, pick up your hire car from Brisbane airport, and soak yourself in the sun.