Date nights under $50 - Visit Brisbane

Date nights under $50

So, you’ve got a pineapple burning a hole in your wallet and a hot date who’s looking for fun. What’s a guy or gal to do? Don’t work yourself into a frenzy thinking of the perfect date – give these 44 date night ideas a whirl. Keep your phone handy afterwards. They're sure to call. 

1. A date for the foodie

Arguably the best pizza this side of Italy, Beccofino’s prosciutto pizza with added rocket is perfect to share. Across the road at La Marcellaria, the seemingly never-ending list of gelato flavours may be a difficult choice, but no matter what you choose, expect greatness. Head off for a walk along the Brisbane Riverwalk towards the city where you’ll be rewarded with spectacular views of the Story Bridge. If you're doing to enjoy dinner and a show at South Bank, stop in at Julius and ask for the arancini - they're not on the menu, so your date will definitely be impressed. Get your hands on more Italian here

Cost: Arancini $10, Pizza $25 Gelato x2 $9

2. Photography date

Wilsons Outlook

Work on your photography (or selfie) skills together at 10 of Brisbane's best photography spots. If you want to make it really adorable, take some shots from Wilson's Outlook then relax and enjoy the sunset together - it's one of Brisbane's best-kept secrets.

Cost: free

3. Laugh your head off


A good giggle need not cost you an arm and a leg, so head to the Brisbane Powerhouse every Friday from 6pm for Knockoff – one hour of free comedy by a variety of local and national comedians. Stop by onsite Bar Alto or Proud Mary for drinks with unspoilt river views to wrap up (or kick start!) your Friday night.

Cost: Depending on your drop of choice, about $10 per glass of wine.

4. Get to know one another over a cheese board

Gerard's Bar

The way to anyone's heart is usually through their stomach, and you can learn a lot about a person based on their cheese preferences thanks to this well-researched Buzzfeed quiz. Once you know what you both want out of a cheese board, check out this cheese-lovers' guide to Brisbane and go from there.

Cost: Anywhere from $15+. Good cheese is worth the $$

5. Buena vistas

Sunrise at Mt Coot-tha

Walk (or drive) up to Mt Coot-tha or Mt Gravatt to enjoy a magical sunrise or sunset. What’s more cute than that? 

Cost: Free

6. Adventure sports at Riverlife

Hire a couple of bicycles, rollerblades or scooters from Riverlife to experience the meandering Brisbane River all the way from Kangaroo Point to South Bank by following along the Clem Jones Promenade. 

Cost: Bike 1.5h $20pp, Rollerblades 1.5h $25pp, Scooters & Kick Bikes 1.5h $20pp

7. Work on Brisbane's food bucket list

Gauge Cafe

These are the dishes that everyone talks about, that shape this fine city, and the dishes a venue simply can’t take off its menu without public uproar. Work on some of the more affordable options together and food is always a good talking point. Budget-friendly highlights include the baked choc-chip cookies from E'cco Bistro, the black garlic bread from Gauge and the gnocchi from Coppa Spuntino.

Cost: $6+

8. Explore New Farm

Friends enjoying a picnic in New Farm Park

The Jan Power’s Farmers Markets are on every Saturday at the Powerhouse from 6am-noon. Why not take your delicious treats to nearby New Farm Park for a riverside picnic, followed by a visit to the Brisbane Powerhouse to soak up the latest art exhibition.
Cost: A few bucks for baked goods

9. Bust out a classic move

Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Picnics will always be romantic for the guy or girl who appreciates a no-fuss date. Gather some local cheese, salads and a bottle of wine from The Stores and take it all down to Orleigh Park in West End. Don’t forget the rug! Want to create the ultimate picnic experience? Find out how here.

Cost: As little or as much as you want! 

10. Explore the Brisbane River on two wheels


Jump on one of the many CityCycle bikes that dot the city for a cruise around the river’s edge. Brisbane’s bike paths offer scenic views with plenty of Instagram-worthy stops along the way. Put your foot to the pedal – check out this list of paths to get you going. 

Cost: $2 per day (just be sure to dock your bike every 30 minutes before taking off again)

11. Strike!

Bring back childhood memories with a game of bowling at Strike Wintergarden. This classic date is as fun as the person you're with. If you’ve been there, done that, give the adrenaline-packed laser tag experience a try. Duck and weave your way around a replica airport, featuring a flight bridge, lounge and control tower. 

Cost: $18pp one game bowling, $12 one game of laser tag

12. Challenge your golfing skills (or lack thereof) at Victoria Park

Victoria Park

Work your way through the 18-hole putt putt course where you’ll be treated to spectacular views of Brisbane City as the sun goes down – how romantic. The rocky terrain throws you some curve-balls – think water and sand traps, and a swinging pole, just to keep it interesting. Stop by the 19th hole before you leave. Need more golfing options? Try one of these courses

Cost: Adults $19pp, students $16pp 

13. Leave an impression


If you want to guarantee a call back after the date, leave a lasting impression. Head to Holey Moley in Fortitude Valley for a round of mini putt putt golf and fight it out to take your place on the Iron Throne (yes, it's an iron throne made from golf clubs), or destroy each other's high scores at Netherworld Arcade on the pinball machines. If you're a gamer, then combine alcohol and arcade games for the ultimate date at B. Lucky & Sons.

Cost: From $2

14. Overlook the city

Every Friday night, the Museum of Brisbane keeps its doors open until 7pm for intimate exhibition viewings and after-dark Clock Tour towers so you can look out over Brisbane from what was once its highest point. Perfect spot for a cute little smooch.

Cost: Free

15. Scale to new heights

Experience a whole new level of trust with your partner as you clamber your way up a wall at Urban ClimbRocksports or Crank Indoor Climbing. And best of all, no experience is necessary.
Cost: From $17

16. Cheap city eats


Brisbane City has some affordable restaurants that don’t skimp on big flavour. Try Miss Kay’s for your burger fix, Kotobuki for top-notch Japanese (order the Lion King roll), or Fat Noodle for a warming bowl of beef pho. Head off on foot to explore the CBD – a stroll through the City Botanic Gardens is a must. Looking for more ideas? We’ve got 47 up our sleeve

Cost: From $10pp

17. Sink it like it’s hot at Fat Louie’s 

This blink-and-you’ll-miss-it bar in the CBD is suitably dark while allowing you to show your competitive side with a game of pool. If you’ve got a decent set of pipes on you, or are just feeling ultra-brave, give karaoke a blast. 

Cost: $5.50 basics. A game of pool is $14 after 5pm.

18. Serious brunching in Paddington

Locals of Paddo know a good brunch spot when they see it. Simply walk up and down Given and Latrobe Terraces for a plethora of options. Our picks? Middle Eastern-inspired Naim for the roast pumpkin and haloumi with poached eggs, Chapter IV for the signature softshell crab eggs benedict, or Kettle & Tin for waffles and bloody marys. 

Cost: $20-25pp

19. Serious brunching in general

Smashed avocado on corn bread at Little Loco

If you just really love brunch and want to venture out of Paddington, these best brunch spots in Brisbane will keep your date calendar filled for weeks to come. To jazz up the brunch theme a bit, check out the Avo Toast Index and judge for yourself whether you're getting the best value for money.

Cost: From $5

20. Dating a film buff? 

Ain’t nobody got time for $20 movie tickets. Lucky for us, the awesome folks at Cineplex have kept prices low so you can continue to do the standard dinner and movies date on the cheap #classic. Catch the latest blockbuster flick at Bulimba before heading to Sugo Mi, Burger Time 69 or Sushi Mura

Cost: $8.50pp for a movie ticket, various amounts for food

21. See a live show

The Triffid

Brisbane has a prominent and constantly evolving live music scene and is not only a destination on many touring artists’ schedules, but is also home to a fantastic variety of local bands and musicians who play on a regular basis. Check out the best live music venues in The City.

Cost: a drink, and maybe a plate of hot chips

22. How much pizza and pasta can you eat?

The Boomtown Rats sang that they don’t like Mondays, but that’s probably because they didn’t have all-you-can-eat pizza and pasta at Gianni’s Kitchen. With any drink purchased from 5.30-9.30pm, you can demonstrate that your eyes are too big for your belly for just $20pp. Mondays are your new favourite date night. Salt Meats Cheese also does an all-you-can-eat pizza deal on Mondays for only $20.

Cost: $20pp 

23. Live music and drinks galore at Lefty's Old Time Music Hall

Lefty's Old Time Music Hall

Step out onto Caxton St and wander next door to Lefty’s, where whiskey apples are the signature drink and live music will keep you dancing till the wee hours. Let the good times roll.

Cost: A whiskey apple will set you back $8.50. 

24. Ain’t no mountain high enough

Mt Barney National Park

A 16km hike over nine hours at 1351m above sea level? Challenge accepted. Lace up your most comfortable runners for a day spent climbing some of the most challenging mountains around Brisbane (don’t worry, there’s easy ones around for us mere mortals). 

Cost: Free

25. Keep it cool


The notoriously hot and humid Queensland weather sometimes calls for extreme cooling-off measures. Keep your power bill down and resist pestering your neighbours for a dip in their pool with these heat-busting ideas to keep you feeling cool, calm and cheerful.

26. Hit the trails

Couple walk through D'Aguilar National Park

If the sound of climbing mountains has you weak at the knees (and not in a good way) then try some of these walks and hikes near Brisbane. You’ll be rewarded with some outstanding views and not just of the scenery. 

Cost: Free

27. All you can eat in one street

Yes, you read that right. All of the food, in one handy location. Eat Street Northshore have been going from strength to strength since opening at Northshore Hamilton in November 2013. It’s the perfect place to grab a few bites to share and you’ll no doubt be back to sample all the stalls you missed. Check out our guide so you don’t miss the good stuff. 

Cost: $2.50pp entry + $10-20pp for food

28. Don't (do) go chasing waterfalls

Perfect for when the weather heats up, Brisbane’s nearby waterfalls, lakes and water holes are waiting to be explored. A lakeside picnic is the order of the day, or hike through lush rainforests to discover cascading waterfalls. 

Cost: Free

29. Find your way to their heart via their stomach

Gelato Messina

Summer, winter, whatever – Brisbane has the perfect temperature any time of year to tuck into a bit of the cold stuff. Head to one of our best ice-cream or gelato vendors – any excuse for a tub of mango and macadamia ice-cream will do.

Cost: One scoop averages between $5-7

30. Be spontaneous! 

Not sure where to go next? Why not give these day trip ideas a try. You could be beach bums one day and museum nerds the next – the choice is yours. 

Cost: Varies depending on the activity

31. Get cultured

Couple view Aboriginal art collection at GOMA

Art galleries may not be to all tastes, but if you don’t take it too seriously, they can be a great date idea. Catch world-class art exhibitions at QAGOMA followed by lunch at the Queensland Art Gallery Cafe, GOMA Restaurant or cafe bistro. Find more galleries to get lost in here

Cost: Free entry to the galleries + $20pp for lunch

32. Have car, will travel

Couple view Redlands from a headland

Escape to the country where the air is clearer and the grass is greener. We’ve got 23 scenic drives for you to take. Nothing tests the strength of a relationship more than a road trip. You’ve been warned. 

Cost: Fuel

33. Hop between the laneways

Bakery Lane

Venture off the beaten track and wander through Brisbane's hidden laneways to discover a wealth of glistening gems. These venues are perfect for a quick bite, drink with friends or a gastronomic delight surrounded by some of Brisbane’s best architecture and street art.

Cost: Varies, but a Gresham Big Time will set you back $18, a cheeseburger at Brooklyn Standard is $12 and a coffee at Felix For Goodness will be less than $5

34. Head back to basics

Camping trips are the ultimate way to get to know your other half. Roll up the swag, pack the billy and pitch a tent at one of these camping spots for a weekend away to get in touch with nature. 

Cost: Free

35. Extra cute and cuddly

Daisy Hill Koala Centre

Get up close with the adorable koalas at the Daisy Hill Koala Centre, then head around the corner to the Chung Tian Temple for a walk around the gardens, temple, art gallery and tearoom. If you've seen one too many koalas, try these wildlife parks, zoos and farms instead. 

Cost: Free

36. The Swedes have it

Get lost in IKEA on either the North or Southside. This will test even the strongest relationships – it’ll either make or break you. Swing by the restaurant for the iconic Swedish meatballs, then make your way through the maze that is the showroom and see how you both perform under pressure in your-future-life-together scenarios. Just don’t blow the budget on candles or pick 'n' mix lollies at the exit. 

Cost: Meatballs $8 + whatever must-have items you can find ($2 mugs for sure)

37. Get fishy 

Feel the salty air in your hair as you stroll hand in hand along the Manly foreshore. Pick up some fresh-wrapped fish and chips (and a few cheeky scallops) from Corner House Fish 'n' Chips  in Manly West or dine in at Sea Vibes

Cost: $22 for a fisherman basket for two (including cod, potato scallops, calamari, seafood bites, chips and tartare sauce)

38. Jump, for my love 


Bounce – it’s your backyard trampoline on steroids with over 100 interconnected tramps with circus-grade padding, giant air bags and springs. Have a laugh while doing a great cardio workout. We know exercise releases endorphins, and endorphins make you happy, so get jumping.

Cost: $16.90pp for first-time jumpers, $11.90 per hour thereafter

39. Tourist Brisbane

When was the last time you cruised down the river on a CityCat? Alight at South Bank and go for a dip at Streets Beach – it’s quieter in the evenings. Swing by Cowch afterwards for a dessert pizza.

Cost: About $3 with a go card, $5.80 for a two-hour, two-zone paper ticket. Dessert pizza from $17.95.

40. You spin me right round, baby

Wheel of Brisbane, South Bank

Ride the Wheel of Brisbane. Do it. Just once. 

Cost: $21pp

41. Bookworms

Be the cute couple you know you are and buy each other a book from Avid Reader in West End and settle down somewhere sunny, maybe Orleigh Park or beside QAGOMA, for a read.

Cost: About $25pp for a book

42. Rock out to live tunes

The Foundry

Brisbane’s live music scene is constantly evolving with bars and dedicated music venues regularly hosting local and international artists. No matter what you and your date’s genre, there’s an intimate bar or pumping venue for you. 

Cost: Cover charges vary depending on the venue and artist playing

43. BYO - bottle at the ready

If payday is a little bit too far off but you're still keen to impress your date, try one of Brisbane's best BYO restaurants. This way you can take a whole bottle of wine along for the price of roughly 1.5 glasses without sacrificing the quality of your meal (or drink).

44. You heard it on the grapevine

Wine therapy at Grape Therapy is everything you need in life. Offering nothing but the best wine, fine cheeses and artisan cold cut meats, discover your new favourite drop in the city on your next date. Bonus – takeaway options are available. 

Cost: $20-25 for a takeaway bottle, or the same for two glasses each at the bar.

More impressive date ideas