As much as Francesco and I loved to explore the country’s scenic roads and its beaches, sometimes we felt the urge to get lost in the city.

In Brisbane, Australia’s third-largest city, we found plenty of great places to explore but we were never too far from incredible natural beauty and wildlife. For a first-time visitor to Brisbane, one of the best places to start is the Wheel of Brisbane, a gigantic Ferris wheel that gives passengers spectacular views over the city. It’s located at the South Bank Parklands, along the Brisbane River, a great place to spend an afternoon taking in views of the city. For an even more spectacular bird’s eye view, just a short drive outside the city is Mount Coot-tha, the area’s highest point. After a full day of sightseeing along the river and from our vantage points high above the street, Francesco and I decided to unwind by doing some shopping at the Queen Street Mall, a busy pedestrian mall smack in the heart of the city.