Where is it: 40 Hayward St, Paddington
Why we love it: What could be better than a real haunted house on Halloween!
Tell me more: Explore a real haunted house for Halloween! And it's not just the house, the neighbours join in on the action too! The house is just a little bit spooky - so it's great for kids of all ages, and we're sure that some of the parents might enjoy it as well! And once you're finished you can head out trick or treating around the street - participating houses are decorated with balloons so you know that you will score some treats! So much spooky fun!
Where is it: At shopping centres and large stores everywhere!
Why we love it: Trick or treat in a simple and safe environment and guaranteed treats!
Tell me more: We love taking the kids out trick or treating at Halloween - it's always lots of fun dressing up and it's great to meet up with the other families out doing the same thing! But going out for the first time might seem a little daunting for the little guys, which is why we think that trick or treating in stores and shopping centres is a great way to introduce the little guys to Halloween fun! There are plenty of stores that have events on for Halloween and they all generally follow a similar format - a set path to follow through the store, often with a guide in costume as well, to participating shops where you are guaranteed to score some treats! And there are always lots of other kids to have fun with! So much fun!
Riverlink Shopping Centre 2019
Brookside Shopping Centre 2019
Stafford City Shopping Centre 2018
Stafford City Shopping Centre 2017
Aspley Hypermarket 2016
Brookside Shopping Centre 2014
Where is it: 4/153 Oxford St, Bulimba, open everyday from 10am, 9am on Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Why we love it: Every little kid’s dream shop - packed to the brim full of amazingly beautiful, fun and creative toys! And it stocks some very special dolls!
Tell me more: We love visiting toy shops, and we’ve visited quite a few. So I think that we can judge a good one when we see it - and Crackerjack Toys in Bulimba is definitely one of the good ones!
Our visit to Crackerjack was inspired for a particular reason - to check out the beautiful Miniland dolls. Miniland dolls are lovely dolls that are of fabulous quality, anatomically correct, oh so cute and they come in different races as well, and our little girl is a big fan. They are stocked at quality toy stores, so we knew that we would find them at Crackerjack! The range of Miniland Dolls includes Asian, Caucasian, African, and Latin American, and different sizes/ages as well, so if they like your little guys can play with a doll that looks like them, or perhaps does not look like them. And they look great too. Realistic enough to educate (fantastic if your little one might be getting a little brother or sister in the future), but not so realistic that the kids forget that they are toys, Miniland Dolls are the perfect balance! They are the perfect little friend or sibling and definitely help in developing social skills as well as allowing your little one to care and nurture for their new best friend!
But back to Crackerjack - this store is like a kids’ wonderland! There are toys stacked into every little nook and cranny, it reminded me of Disney’s original ‘Santa’s Workshop’! It goes without saying that our little girl was suitably impressed, as would every little kid that visits. Fabulous toys, games, puzzles, clothes, books, arts and crafts and their aim is to stock environmentally friendly products designed to be passed on through siblings or even generations. There is also a focus to support local businesses where possible, be it manufacturers or distributors of this wonderful range of toys.
We came to choose a Miniland Doll but upon entering and seeing the marvelous range of toys here, I was a little concerned that I might not be able to leave without taking half of the store with me! In the end my little girl did make her choice of doll and we also grabbed a wonderful bespoke outfit from the range Love by Abi Rose. These lovely clothes are made for the Miniland range and also come in matching designs for the kids - wonderful! We also picked up a beautiful little basket for our doll to sleep in - the whole combination looks so cute and our little girl was so happy!
Crackerjack Toys Shop
Where is it: Various venues around Australia.
What’s it all about: With fantastic music and engagement, this is a super fun way to introduce kids to music and bands
Tell me more: Lah Lah and her Big Live Band have been entertaining kids with live performances and TV shows for 10 years now and they are still as popular as ever. Their fun music is infectious with both the little guys and adults alike and provides the perfect platform to introduce music and musical instruments. We caught a fantastic performance at Lah Lah’s Stripy Sock Club Live Tour 2019 and we had a wonderful time - they are such an entertaining band and we couldn’t help but love the whole show!
Stripy Sock Club Live Tour 2019
Where is it: 70 James Street, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane
Why we love it: A fantastic hotel that totally matches its fashionable location!
Tell me more: James Street in the inner suburb of Fortitude Valley is the premiere boutique shopping and dining location in Brisbane, and has established itself as one of the city’s most lively precincts. So you would expect that the accommodation options here would live up to the high standard that James St sets. And Sage Hotel James St does just that!
Sage Hotel is a modern and wonderfully comfortable motel perfectly located for exploring and enjoying James St as well as the rest of Brisbane. We stayed in their Superior Double Double room with 2x double beds and a sofa bed which had more than enough room for the 5 of us, and even a special little treat for our little girl - her very own tee-pee tent to sleep in! Such a lovely little touch that excited the kids no end. The beds were super comfy and we were provided with a lovely continental breakfast in our room (there is no restaurant in the hotel, but plenty close by) so we could ease into the morning after a fantastic night’s sleep.
Like all 93 rooms at Sage, ours came with free wi-fi, a fantastic range of in-house movies, air conditioning and pod coffee machines (yay!). It also had a balcony with views across to the city, and while there is no on-site pool or gym, as a guest at Sage you will receive complimentary access to Function Well 24-hour Fitness and the Valley Pool - both just a short walk from the hotel. All this is topped off with a selection of exquisite and locally sourced selections in the mini bar. All of these little details made for a very relaxing stay!
But back to its location - James St. This short little stretch of road is home to a huge range of fashion labels, gourmet food and cafes, markets and lifestyle shops, this leafy street offers a relaxed and resort-style vibe different to all other shopping districts here in Brisbane - and everything is within walking distance. At night the relaxed vibe starts to give way a little with a number of classy bars, cinema and entertaining restaurants setting the mood, and if that’s not enough, it’s walking distance to the entertainment and nightclub precinct of ‘the Valley’. No wonder it’s such a popular spot.
We can’t rate Sage Hotel highly enough - a fantastic location, lovely facilities and friendly and professional staff all combine beautifully here at Sage Hotel James St., and if you have the chance to stay we’re sure that you’ll love it too! It’s the perfect place to base yourself for a relaxing staycation, a weekend of shopping or to experience Brisbane’s nightlife.
Superior Double Double Room
James St Precinct and Valley Pool
Where is it: Pine Rivers Park, 125 Gympie Road, Strathpine
Why we love it: A festival just for kids – how could we not love that!
Tell me more: This brand new event celebrates kids with a program full of family-friendly entertainment. With special guests live on stage and heaps of awesome activities, rides, games and crafts. Whatever your child’s passion, the Moreton Kids Festival guarantees to have them bursting with excitement with their five amazing worlds – Active Kids with its focus on getting kids to enjoy an energetic and active childhood, Creative Kids to let the kid’s creative streak loose, Green Kids in which kids are encouraged to engage in sustainable activities and lifestyle, Curious Kids is all about science, experimenting and learning and Fun Kids which probably doesn’t need any further explanation! All of these worlds will combine as one fun and fantastic event and its one not to be missed!
Where is it: At Westfield Chermside, 395 Hamilton Rd, Chermside QLD 4032
Why we love it: The thrill of a free-fall without the heights!
Tell me more: iFly is an indoor skydiving centre and it’s one of those things that you just have to do! And it’s so easy to get into - it’s situated in the city at one of Brisbane’s most popular shopping complexes and all you have to do is book your time slot, turn up an hour earlier for your briefing and to get kitted up and then start flying - no experience is needed! It’s basically a big glass tube that forces huge amounts of air through it so that you can fly. The speed of the air is controlled and adjusted so that you get just the right amount of lift and keep you airborn and you always have an expert skydiver with you guiding and assisting as you require.
We went along on a family pass (which is great value) and we all had a go - even our little 4 year old tried it and we all had a fantastic time! And as fun as the basic flying was, the High Flight was even more amazing as your instructor will carry you up (and bring you down) right to the top of the tube! Once you get a taste of it you will want more, and iFLY also offers training programs so that you can build up your skills and have even more fun. It’s also the perfect spot for parties or group functions. iFLY Chermside is open Open 7 days a week from 9am - 10pm.
Where is it: Centred around Brisbane’s cultural heartland of the Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art, but also in other venues across Brisbane!
Why we love it: Such a varied range of films as well as a peek behind the scenes, live entertainment and showbiz excitement!
Tell me more: The Brisbane International Film Festival is the largest film festival in Queensland and it features over one hundred short and feature films packed into nearly two entertaining weeks. While there is a focus on locally produced or influenced cinema, there are movies from all over the world and covering all genres. It’s an exciting time for lovers of cinema, and it’s fantastic to be able to take part in some of the excitement! We were very fortunate to be able to share in the experience of the world premiere of ‘The Wishmas Tree’, a fantastic animated movie made right here in Brisbane!
Where is it: Abbey Museum, 1/63 The Abbey Place, Caboolture
What’s it all about: It’s a fantastic and fun way to introduce you little guys to history!
Tell me more: The Abbey Medieval Tournament is a very well-known event here in Brisbane (check out our review here), and it’s clear that the guys at the Abbey Museum know how to put on a spectacle! So you just know that if they put on an event for kids, you just know that it’s going to be fun! Kids Dig It! is a week of family fun with history in mind – lots of fun old-time games, dress-ups, archaeological digs and heaps more, all entertaining and engaging and even if your little guys are not into history, chances are they will be after visiting! It’s a fantastic school holiday event that will keep the whole family engaged!
Archaeology Family Fun (Sept - Oct 2019)
Medieval Family Fun Week (June - July 2019)
Where is it: Parkyn Parade, Mooloolaba, Sunshine Coast
Why we love it: An attraction within an attraction – what could be better!
Tell me more: You might not think that one of the Sunshine Coast’s most loved attractions (check out our SEALIFE blog here) needs to do much more to get people to visit, but that’s exactly what they do on the school holidays! They always play host to lots of school holiday programs that will keep everyone (not just the little guys) engaged with lots of immersive and interactive exhibits. As an example, our little guys loved exploring the aquarium with a pirate-themed treasure hunt and there was much excitement searching the aquarium for mermaids and pirate artefacts, and the daily pirate and mermaid performances were really fun! Other exhibits we've enjoyed include Lego, Peppa Pig, Paw Patrol, and SLIMED!, where we got feel and learn about some of the slimy creatures in the sea!
These school holidays (and right through to the end of October 2019), SEALIFE is hosting some very special and cranky but lovable avians – the Angry Birds! Coinciding with the release of the new Angry Birds 2 movie, SEALIFE invites everyone to take part in the Brid Island Academy, undertaking some fun little challenges and even meeting some of our favourite Angry Birds! Check out the website for more info!
Bird Island Academy - Angry Birds (Sept - Oct 2019)
Media launch: The Lego Sea Explorers (June - July 2019)
Peppa Pig's Aquarium Adventure (April-2019)
The Sea Creature's Secret (Dec 2018- Jan 2019)
Slimed (Sept - Oct 2018)
Paw Patrol - Sea Patrol (March - April 2019)
Brisbane Family Explorers