Where is it: Corner Upper Kedron Road and Samford Road, Ferny Grove
Why we love it: The perfect way for the kids to keep cool!
Tell me more: We are very lucky here in Brisbane to have some fantastic, free water play areas within our public parks! There are a few scattered through the suburbs and we’ve just checked out the newest addition, in the north-west suburb of Ferny Grove!
This water play area opened just in time for the Christmas holidays in 2018 – perfect timing for the kids to keep cool in the summer heat. Typical of most of the public water parks, this is zero-depth play area (a little less stressful for parents) and relies on 24 ground water-sprayers, a giant dumping bucket, water cannons and misting tunnels to make sure that everyone gets nice and wet! Shade sails cover the area and a new playground, barbeque tables and turfed seating areas round out this little park that’s fun for the whole family! Open from 8am to 5pm daily!
Amenities: A limited number of facilities but typical of most parks – barbeques and shaded tables, toilets and drinking water are all available! 👍👍👍
Cost: Completely free! 👍👍👍👍👍
Parking: A small carpark on site and roadside parking available! 👍👍👍
Best for: Anyone who need to keep cool, but really well suited for primary school age and younger kids! 👍👍👍👍
Summary: Although this is a small water park and playground, it’s perfectly suited for the smaller kids and fantastic for the summer months – lots of shade and seating areas! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: On Friday afternoons you can usually find a wood-fired pizza van on site!
Where is it: Cnr Tamborine Mtn Rd & Cedar Creek Falls Rd, North Tamborine
Why we love it: A fantastic and fun challenge for the whole family!
Tell me more: The idea of climbing and zip-lining through the treetops was always going to be a winner for our kids (they love climbing), but we didn’t have any idea how fun that it would be for us too! Mount Tamborine’s Treetop Challenge is a fantastic activity for kids and adults alike from 3 years old!
Just one of the fantastic activities to take part in at Thunderbird Park – an adventure park in the Gold Coast hinterland – Treetop Challenge consists of a number of different courses strung through the trees of this lovely part of forest. The courses are made of high-wire rope, wooden ladders and platforms and various suspension bridges. The little guys (from 3 – 8) get their very own challenges that are perfectly suited to kids of this age, while the bigger guys (from 8 years if they meet the height requirements) get to enjoy the adult course! Both courses involve the same fun challenges – climbing and zip-lining through magnificent forest and trees. A short safety session and explanation of how to complete the challenges prior to undertaking the climbs will ensure that you can have fun safely and the courses step up in difficulty so that you can tackle the challenges that are best suited for you.
Different courses are available and a graded so that you can challenge yourself based on your ability and confidence. The basic courses can be completed without too much exertion but they still offer lots of fun and the zip lines are bound to get your adrenaline flowing!
This is a wonderful family activity! Our little guys (aged 3 and 6 when we visited) went along to their special Junior course, while we went along with our oldest boy (8yo) to the adult course, and we're sure that they we all had equally as much fun! Both of our little guys completed all of their challenges on the Junior Course and they absolutely loved it! Our 8 year old met the height requirements to take on the adult course and completed all the activities without too much trouble, there was one challenge that used every bit of his height! After a few of the challenges he was overtaking us parents! We had a fantastic day out here at the Treetop Challenge – it offered us fun and excitement outdoors, a satisfying challenge and an opportunity to get amongst nature all at the same time!Website: https://www.treetopchallenge.com.au/
Amenities: Shared facilities with Thunderbird Park, a café is available for meals, drinks or an iceblock! 👍👍👍
Cost: Fees apply and family packages are available - you get a good couple of hours of adventure for your money! 👍👍
Parking: Plenty of on-site parking available! 👍👍👍
Best for: Active and adventurous kids and adults! 👍👍👍👍👍
Summary: Such a fun activity and it provides a fantastic opportunity to have fun, get active and enjoy the outdoors in a beautiful natural environment! 👍👍👍👍
Hints: Check out the packages available through Thunderbird Park and make the most of your visit and don't forget to check out their other location - Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary!
Treetop Challenge Juniors (3-7yrs)
Treetop Adventure Park (8yrs +)
Where is it: Queen Street Mall and parading through to King George Square
What's it all about: A wonderful Christmas-themed parade of dancing, music and even reindeers!
How can I join in: Get in to the mall and save your spot along the route early as this parade is very popular - then wait and enjoy the show!
Tell me more: A fun family tradition here in Brisbane, this parade will get you right into the Christmas spirit with lots of performers dancing and singing their way through the Queen Street Mall! It runs nightly from 7pm in the lead up to Christmas. Spectators line the path of the parade - if you plan ahead you may be able to book a prime seat at one of the many restaurants along the route and take in this amazing show! The highlight (of course) is Santa! Join on to the end of the march as it passes and weave on through the mall and through to King George Square, just in time for the amazing City Hall Light Spectacular! :
Where is it: King George Square, Brisbane City What's it all about: It's a short movie projected onto the outside City Hall!
How can I join in: Every 15 minutes they show the same little story - so just roll on up to King George Square any time after 7:30pm in the lead-up to Christmas to join in the fun of Christmas in the City!
Tell me more: The City Hall Lights Spectacular is a real spectacle! It’s such a nice way to end your night after watching the wonderful Christmas Parade through Queen Street Mall - you can join in behind the parade for a fun march down to King George Square, or just roll on up at your own leisure to see this fun little animated movie! The movie is told specifically for Brisbane - composed to be projected directly onto our own City Hall and is always really engaging and great for all ages! It's only a short film - only 7 or 8 minutes long and starts every 15 minutes so there's no need to worry if you turn up half way through! Definitely one of the must see Christmas events in the city!
Where is it: 168 Fernberg Road, Paddington
What's it all about: Queensland’s historic Government House and gardens opens its gates to the public to share in their Christmas lights display!
How can I join in: Roll on up between 7 and 8pm every night between 8 - 12 December to see the beautiful gardens and light display!
Tell me more: The heritage-listed Government House (or sometimes known as Fernberg) - the official residence of the Governor of Queensland - is a beautiful building with magnificent gardens with only opens its doors to the public on a few occasions each year. One of those occasions happens to be in the lead up to Christmas so that it can show off its very impressive Christmas lights display, covering the house itself and lots more lights throughout the gardens! There's plenty of room to wander (or for the kids to run) about in the gardens and take in this beautiful piece of Queensland heritage and wonderful light display!
Where is it: Spectacle Gardens, Roma Street Parklands What's it all about: Fun activities and a beautiful light display for Christmas!
How can I join in: Free to visit, so head along every night in the lead up to Christmas! The gardens open from 6:30pm and its bound to be popular!
Tell me more: Brisbane city is the perfect place to build up a little Christmas cheer! There are so many great events to get us all into the Christmas spirit, and this one is right up there with the best! Every night at 6:30pm leading up to Christmas, the switch is on for thousands of lights in the Spectacle Garden which transforms it into a magical and mystical forest. Wander through at your own pace and soak it all up - it really is beautiful and you feel like you are in another world! Due to its popularity, patrons are sent through in waves, which means that although you may have to wait to get in, you will have less crowding inside which makes even more enjoyable. There are also other activities on at Roma St Parklands for the kids - from making your own bamboo lanterns and movies in the parklands at select times - check the website for more details! This really is a very impressive lightshow and it's well worth the effort to get along to experience it for yourself!
Where is it: 3/855 Stanley Street, Woolloongabba
Why we love it: Authentic Italian meals in a cosy and family friendly setting!
Tell me more: Already a fantastic choice for a yummy Italian dinner, Ristorante La Famiglia has now opened its doors for weekday lunches! They offer a fantastic range of lighter meals, perfect for lunch and truly authentic flavours of yummy breads, fresh ingredients, perfect pastas and irresistible pastries! The restaurant has a wonderful and welcoming vibe – neatly presented and cosy, and the owners are always friendly! They even stock a few Italian staples for sale! We can’t wait to visit again!
Where is it: 8 Charles Chauvel Dr, Harrisville QLD 4307
What's it all about: It’s Queensland’s largest camel dairy and it’s open to the public for tours, rides, shopping or even just a relaxing cuppa in the country!
Tell me more: We absolutely loved our visit to Summer Land Camels – the camels are such gentle but impressive animals and the calves are so cute! This working camel farm and dairy is wonderfully presented and accessible for visitors and is a fantastic opportunity for us city-dwellers to experience rural life without venturing too far away from our creature comforts!
Australia has the world’s largest population of non-domesticated camels – mostly descended from the camel caravans that were so important to the exploration of our dry continent many years ago. These camels roam the outback in huge numbers and sometimes damage our native environment and until recently, their use as farm animals has been relatively overlooked. Summer Land Camels now farms many of these camels for their fantastic dairy products – both for consumption and for the production of a wonderful range of skincare and washing products!
Summer Land Camels focus on the ethical and sustainable farming of these wonderful animals – the camels roam quite freely in their surrounds and are friendly too, always keen to be hand-fed or patted! Camel specialists are always on hand to ensure that the camels are well taken care of and the dairy has been developed with the animals in mind so as not to put them under any undue stress. And it’s not just the animals that are looked after, the farming techniques applied at Summer Land look after the land as well, which we imagine keeps the camels happier as well!
The camels are really impressive to look at and they can be ridden too – and although they can make some funny noises they are really calm! We took a leisurely guided ride around the dairy which is a fantastic way to get to know these wonderful animals, as well as have a little look around the facilities here at Summer Land! For a more detailed look around, guided tours operate every day (except Saturday) to give you an insight into the world's largest wild camel training centre, dairy operation, cheese, gelato and skincare production facilities.
The Homestead Café and Store provides lovely light meals, snacks and drinks as well as stocking the full range of camel dairy and skincare products, as well as a few camel souvenirs! And be sure to try out the camel milk gelato – it comes in a range of flavours and it’s so yummy!
A visit to Summer Land Camels is a fantastic way not only to experience this unique farming practice, but also to experience rural life in general – a great way to maintain the connection between the city and country!
Amenities: Even though this is a working farm, it is a fantastic facility and the amenities at the Homestead Café and Store are great!Parking: Plenty of room for parking!
Access: Good access throughout, although this is a working facility!
Best for: Kids and adults would love a visit to see the camels! Their Little Humpty’s days are targeted for the little guys, although parents might find the camel calves too cute to resist!
Summary: We loved our visit to Summer Land Camels and although it may not be the typical farm experience it is definitely a must visit for camel lovers or for those wanting a taste of rural life!
Where is it: 146 Maundrell Terrace, Chermside West
What's it all about: Really impressive Christmas lights and entertainment to bring out the Christmas spirit in you!
How can I join in: Just roll on up to enjoy some great hospitality, music and amazing lights! You can grab a coffee or a snack too!
Tell me more: Every night in December leading up to Christmas, you are welcome to head along to St Gerard Majella's church to enjoy their really impressive Christmas lights and Christmas Festival! A huge Christmas tree of lights is the centrepiece of the light display and it really needs to be seen to be appreciated! It's not just the lights, every night there will be a different band or choir performing, you will be able to grab a coffee or snack or take a happy snap with Santa! Some beautiful ornaments can be purchased at the on-site Christmas store as well. Definitely worth a visit on anyone's Christmas light tour!
Brisbane Family Explorers