What's it all about: A series of FREE awesome kid’s activities on every week!
Tell me more: Although South Bank is an amazingly fun place to visit with kids on any given day, Thursdays are even better! Kids Collective is a fantastic program which sees a weekly and unique event put on just for the kids! Do a bit of dancing, play some rugby or soccer, enjoy some storytime or do some craft – all fantastic activities for the little guys and there’s no need to book in! And it’s always a great environment at South Bank!
Where is it: All over Brisbane but concentrated in South Bank and the City!
What's it all about: A three-week, annual event showcasing art, music, theatre and more – including the most spectacular fireworks display and the biggest party in the city!
Tell me more: In the space of nearly 10 years Brisbane Festival has grown to be one of the countries premiere arts festivals, with over a million people joining in! There’s definitely a different feel in the city when Brisbane Festival comes around – not just because of seeing the back of [our very mild] winter and the springtime vibes, but it seems that there is an air of excitement and anticipation at this time!
There are too many events to list, but you can take your pick from theatre, differing genres of music, comedy, horror, circus, and all kinds of interactive artwork and installations! And there are shows for all ages and budgets too. There are even a few restaurants who get in on the action. It really is a case of choosing an event being the most difficult aspect of the festival!
The whole festival is tremendously topped off by what has become probably Brisbane’s favourite event – Riverfire, which is a fantastic fireworks display which it would seem, the whole city comes out to enjoy!
Where is it: Ipswich Art Gallery, Darcy Doyle Place, Ipswich
What's it all about: Two brothers go on a wonderful journey through the galaxy in this fantastic puppet and shadow spectacular! It’s on from 22 September through to 7 October 2018.
Tell me more: Engaging from the first minute, ‘Slapdash Galaxy’ from Bunk Puppets tells of a younger brother who exceeds all expectations as two brothers travel across the galaxy! And as wonderful and as entertaining as this show is, it is almost overshadowed by the amazing way that this performance has been created! Shadow puppets created with hands, feet and props, plastic bottle spaceships, space monsters made from balloons and amazing worlds using just the tops of people’s heads are just some of the fantastic props that contribute to this fantastic tale! Best for kids 5 and over, this show will keep the little guys entertained for all 55 minutes before they head straight to the craft table to make their own shadow puppets!
Where is it: Various venues throughout Moreton Bay Region
Why we love it: So many different options of fun and active things to do for everyone (and a special focus on the little guys)!
Tell me more: This is such a fantastic program from Moreton Bay Regional Council! Every month you can choose from a huge variety of active programs which are either free or at very attractive prices, and all of them with the same goal - to get us out and about, keeping active and socialising as well as learning new skills! There are so many activities to get involved in - from cooking to skateboarding, scuba diving to rockclimbing, from 2 years to the over 60s! There really is something for everybody!
They also have a special school holidays program called 'Active Holidays' and it's an awesome initiative to get the kids moving during the school holidays and again there are a huge range of sport and recreation activities specifically for kids 3 - 17 years! Book in for your favourite activities, or even something that you haven’t tried yet and get prepared for having fun!
All activities are provided by qualified instructors and are held across a number of locations throughout the region - with the range of activities that you can choose from and the fun that we've had trying new activities, this program is fast becoming one of our favourite things in the region!
Amenities: Most activities take place in the local parks which provide access to toilets, barbeques and picnic tables, although it really depends on the activity! 👍👍👍
Parking: With so many different activities across so many different locations parking shouldn’t be a problem!👍👍👍
Access: All activities have varying degrees of access – confirm with your preferred event! 👍👍
Best for: There really is an activity for everyone, no mater what you ability! Great for having fun and keeping active! 👍👍👍👍
Summary: We absolutely love this program! It's such a great idea not only to keep active and occupied, but also great to keep socially active as well, and fantastic being free or at great prices! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: Get in early to book your event – some are very popular and may be booked out early!
Kinetic kids Multi-sports
Mums and Bubs Soccer
Indoor Climbing and Low Ropes
Food is fun
Where is it: In the centre of Ipswich
What's it all about: One of the most visited regional art galleries in Australia, the Ipswich Art Gallery will have something for everyone!
How can I join in: Check out their website to see what exhibits or events are on, or just turn up and explore!
Tell me more: One of our favourite spots in Ipswich (along with the Workshops Rail Museum) is the Ipswich Art Gallery! It always has really interesting exhibitions and events on! And the best thing is more often than not there are some really great kids programs - from genuine artistic events, through to some that are more like a playtime - like building the fastest Lego cars! It's a great facility with really helpful and friendly staff, so we think that it is definitely one to visit! Some of the awesome exhibits for kids that we have been to have included 'Wind Tubes for Toddlers' - a really fun event where the kids got to suck and push things around with wind tubes, a Lego car construction event where the aim was to build your fastest car and then race it down a track and we've also seen some amazing Lego towers! We've also seen tunnels made from sticky tape, giant marble runs, foam block constructions and a giant model city made from recycled items from the kitchen! There's something for everyone at the Ipswich Art Gallery and it's certainly worth your while visiting!
Amenities: Well-appointed and some nice little cafes nearby! 👍👍👍
Cost: Some exhibits have a cost, but generally quite reasonable! 👍👍👍👍
Parking: Plenty of options available, and well priced too! 👍👍👍
Access: Quite easy to access - only one lift though! 👍👍👍
Entertainment: Pick your exhibit and you will have so much fun! 👍👍👍👍
Best for: Depending on the exhibits on at the time, but there's generally something for everyone! 👍👍👍👍
Wildlife: Only painted wildlife! 👍
Summary: We always enjoy our visits to Ipswich Art Gallery! It is really well presented and the exhibits are very well considered! We think that the gallery deserves more recognition! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: There are some great attractions in Ipswich - make a day of it and visit the Workshops, Queens Park or River Heart Parklands!
Built for speed
Towers of Tomorrow
Where is it: Fullertons Road, Glasshouse Mountains, Sunshine Coast, around 60 minutes’ drive north of Brisbane.
Why we love it: A slightly challenging but super rewarding trek up one of the region’s natural wonders!
Tell me more: This is a walk that we’ve been wanting to tackle for some time now! This walk/climb is an easy one to attempt as it is relatively short (about 1.4km each way) and although it did get a little steep in places it wasn’t too hard – our 3 year old made it most of the way up and down! The track is well marked out and very well used (especially on weekends), however it does have a lot of rocks so you will need to watch your footing. Although we didn’t notice it, we have also read that the rocks can get quite slippery in the wet so a bit of extra caution may be required during or after a bit of rain.
The walk takes you through some nice bushland and I imagine that there’s a good chance of spotting some wildlife on the quieter days – we went up on the weekend and it was quite busy so we didn’t actually spot anything apart from a couple of kookaburras! There is a very intriguing cave formation about half way up which is worth checking out if you have the time!
The view from the top is simply amazing! Along with the sense of relief and achievement upon reaching the summit, you are greeted by bare rocks so you get to have uninterrupted 360 deg views! We were a little nervous up top with the kids – it is quiet steep up there – but there was enough room for everyone and the kids did seem to be quite comfortable up there! Sunrises and sunsets must be stunning, but make sure that you take along adequate lighting if you plan to do this – as attractive as the sunset view was from up there I wouldn’t like to be trekking down in the dark with kids, even if I did pack a good torch!
This walk is highly recommended and it’s probably a ‘must-do’ for visitors and locals alike! We can’t wait to get back there again!
Amenities: Just a water tap at the start of the walk – pack some water and snacks! No toilet! 👍
Cost: Completely free – we love our National Parks! 👍👍👍👍👍
Parking: Limited parking available, however note that this is a very popular spot on the weekends! 👍👍
Best for: Active kids who love to explore and love a challenge! 👍👍👍👍
Summary: This is a fantastic walk when the weather is nice – a bit of a challenge, wonderful to get out in the fresh air and great views! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: Weekends are busy so for a more personal experience try going up through the week!
Where is it: Pelican Park, Hornibrook Esplanade, Clontarf
What's it all about: A fantastic way to see out the end of winter! Redcliffe KiteFest gets you close to the water with a wonderful carnival of flying colour and fun! It's one of Moreton Bay Region's biggest annual celebrations!
How can I join in: On annually around the end of winter / start of spring, keep an eye out on Moreton Bay Regional Council's website for more details!
Tell me more: KiteFest is a truly amazing and colourful event with an amazing carnival atmosphere! Not only are there so many awesome kites from the international and professional kite artists, but there is also an incredible entertainment line-up - like aerobatics, jet ski and flyboard shows, carnival rides, kids zone, and main stage entertainment shows always have some great shows planned. Little kids and big are equally well catered for in the entertainment area! It's also right by the beach which just adds to the atmosphere, and lots of food and market stalls make this a complete event for the whole family!
The very popular public kite flying area lets you join in on the action, and if you can avoid getting your line crossed with the others in this area, you could stay in here for ages! It is a really popular event, so take note of the public transport and parking options - you will be very lucky to find parking around the area. Kitefest is great value too with both family passes and all-day rides passes available, and is a really fun day (or weekend) out by the beach at Redcliffe - we think that it's one of the best family events in the region!
And just when we thought that it couldn't get any better - in 2018 KiteFest added their 'KiteFest after Dark program - the rides and stall continue to operate into the night, illuminated kites fly high and a fantastic fireworks display, including pyrotechnic jetskis, provides the perfect finale!
Where is it: 39 James St, New Farm and 7/855 Stanley Street Wooloongabba, plus other stores across Australia!
What's it all about: Fantastically yummy burgers – what more needs to be said!
Tell me more: Burgers really do take some beating as a take-away option, and these days there are some awesome burger restaurants to choose from! Ribs & Burgers do amazing burgers – so fresh and filling and most importantly – yummy! Ribs & Burgers use premium ingredients for all their dishes and they are all meticulously prepared and full of flavour! And not just burgers either. As their name suggests, these guys do fantastic ribs as well and kids menu too! But as excited as we are when we get to dine on the burgers here, we sometimes look forward even more to their shakes which are simply scrumptious!
Other Menu Items
Where is it: Brisbane Powerhouse,119 Lamington St, New Farm
Why we love it: An amazing fusion of electronic art and contemporary dance - it's such an immersive experience!
Tell me more: Hakanai is a wonderful performance combining fantastic three dimensional and interactive visuals perfectly with a wonderful contemporary dance performance and a soundtrack to match! The stunning visuals and sound morph from the delicate to the startling and boldly intense throughout the performance so it was impossible to predict what was coming up next! The dance was beautifully choreographed and perfectly suited to the sound and visuals! And just to cap off a wonderful show, everyone was invited up at the end of the show to experience the interactive display for themselves! Such a fun night!
Where is it: Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills, generally starting in the second week of August (2018 dates are from 10 Aug 2018 – 19 Aug 2018).
Why we love it: One of Brisbane’s most popular events – how could we not love it!
Tell me more: The Ekka, or Royal Queensland Show as it is formally known (Ekka comes from previous name, the Brisbane Exhibition) is a 10 days of celebration and sharing of experience between the people of the city and the country! It’s a very traditional event which has run since 1876, and I’m sure that everyone attending 100 years’ ago were having just as much fun as we do today – the rides may have changed but the fun, excitement and atmosphere probably has not!
It’s a big event and possibly a bit daunting to tackle for the first time, so planning is definitely recommended. For the kids there are heaps of rides, games, shows and toys in Sideshow Alley – so some time here is a must! The rides and atmosphere here rival the theme parks and it would be easy to spend your whole visit here, although if you were to do that, you would miss out on a big part of what the Ekka is all about!
There are a huge range of agricultural and livestock displays – cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, poultry – you name it, if it’s farmed you will be able to see it here at the Ekka! It’s a fantastic way for the kids who have grown up in the city to connect with the rural industry which supports us! The animal nursery is really popular and the kids can pat and feed the animals themselves! It’s also really impressive to see the fantastic displays of produce – fruits and vegetables galore!
And if you are still searching for something else to see, there are so many shows on as well! Dancing, singing, fashion parades, animal shows and judging – wow! So much going on! And it doesn’t stop when the sun goes down either with fireworks and stunt car shows – even monster trucks! It really is a fantastic event and if you are here in Brisbane over Ekka week, you really do need to get along and experience it for yourself!
Amenities: Well planned amenities for the event – lots of food and drink options! 👍👍👍👍
Cost: There are costs involved, but a number of package options can make it a bit easier on your wallet! 👍
Parking: Private paid parking options are available, however this is a very popular event and using public transport is advised! 👍👍
Best for: Everyone! 👍👍👍👍
Summary: There is so much to see and do here at The Ekka, just come along prepared for some crowds and enjoy – it’s only here once a year so make the most of it! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: Weekends and the show-day public holiday are busy so if you don’t like the crowds try heading along on a different day!
Brisbane Family Explorers