It’s winter in the southern hemisphere, but in Brisbane, Queensland’s capital, the weather is mild, with days in the low 70s and cool, crisp nights. Humidity is low in August, typically the driest month of the year, making its myriad of outdoor activities even more attractive for visitors. In South Bank Parkland, residents and tourists enjoy swimming, walking, picnicking, and being outdoors along the Brisbane River. Another favorite outdoor spot is Mt. Coot-Tha for city views, biking, hiking, or wandering through the Brisbane Botanical Gardens. From Aug. 9-18, the annual Royal Queensland Show, known as “Ekka,” comes to the Brisbane Showgrounds highlighting agriculture, skills competitions, food, wine, entertainment, and family activities. A trip to Australia is not complete without seeing koalas, and the Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary houses more than 100 of the furry creatures plus other indigenous animals. Off Queensland’s coast, the Great Barrier Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and world’s largest coral reef, attracts visitors who come to snorkel, dive, and view marine life from boats. The “Reef to Reef” mountain bike race takes competitors through farms, rainforest, and coastline over four days from August 8-11. It’s no surprise that Queensland is growing in popularity with fans of the outdoors. The new Westin Brisbane offers a convenient urban location, with spa, fitness center, and signature restaurant Eden’s Table and its special Eat Well menu.