Day 97: Hilltop ‘hood

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Teneriffe Park

THERE are a few good reasons for taking a hike from Fortitude Valley to Teneriffe Park.

From busy Brunswick St Mall, it only takes 1.6km to enter a surprisingly different world – from shops and traffic into parkland swarming with bush turkeys.

And although Teneriffe Hill is only 44m high, it opens up a wholly unexpected but brilliant new vista of Story Bridge and the city beyond.

Teneriffe Park
Bush turkeys are everywhere

Along the way are some fine examples of typical Queensland housing, from 19th century worker’s cottages to grand old Queenslanders cloaked in iron lace.

James and then Chester streets run parallel to Brunswick so choose any street on the grid heading towards Teneriffe while keeping New Farm peninsula on your right, and enjoy the walk.

Bear in mind that both James and Chester have some very cool coffee shops.

By now it’s possible to see the rise of Teneriffe Hill so swing right and start heading up to discover a picnic and playground and a most unexpected patch of bushland.

Teneriffe Park
Bushwalking in the city

A couple of paths then head back down the hill towards the river and end in a big green field.

Teneriffe Park
The big green field on the other side of the hill.

It’s a bushwalk within minutes of the city.

The park was originally part of the orchard of Teneriffe House, built around 1865, until being acquired by Brisbane City Council in 1925. The house is still there over on the Teneriffe Drive side of the hill.

One part of the walk passes under a grand, old concrete structure with elaborate balustrading around the top which presumably is the old billiard room built which was added to Teneriffe House in the 1880s.

Teneriffe Hill on Brismania
The old concrete building with the elaborate balustrading

It has an air of mystery and nostalgia about it that’s evocative of a set for an Agatha Christie novel or an Alfred Hitchcock film, so make up your own story as you go.

The suburb, by the way, appears to have been named in the 1850s after Tenerife (one f) in Spain’s Canary Islands west of Morocco.

It’s all so utterly different, it really is hard to imagine it’s so close to the Valley.

Teneriffe Hill
Unexpected new angle of Story bridge and the city from Teneriffe Hill