Night activities around Brisbane - Visit Brisbane

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26 things to do after dark around Brisbane

Updated: 21 July 2021

Put away the wine bottle and give your liver a rest with these 26 night activities that don’t involve late night bar hopping. Kayak the Brisbane river by night, laugh yourself silly and maybe see a ghost or two as you discover Brisbane’s true beauty in a bunch of Instagram-worthy activities.

This list proves that after the sun sets there is still plenty to do around Brisbane that doesn't involve being a bar fly.

1. Twilight Kayak Adventure

Paddle & Prawns at Riverlife

Discover Brisbane from a different perspective as you glide along the river in a kayak beneath the stars. Finish the work week with a bang and hop on over to Riverlife at Kangaroo Point on a Friday night to enjoy 90 minutes of paddling under the Story Bridge before stopping to take in sensational city views over a classic Aussie barbecue in a riverside marquee.

2. Look to the stars

Grab a picnic blanket and head outside to take in all that the Brisbane night sky has to offer. BYO snacks and stargaze to your heart's content – you may even be lucky enough to spot a shooting star. If you’re after the perfect spot to park up for the evening head to Kangaroo Point Cliffs, Wilson Outlook Reserve or New Farm Park.

3. Picnic by the river

Pizza Picnic

The fun of a picnic never gets old when it includes delicious food, city views and a classic cane picnic basket (even better, you don’t have to make it yourself). Popolo offers picnic-style dining and will send you down to the grass with a basket filled with pizza, mixed salad, fries and an antipasto platter – just add good company to watch the sunset and the city light up against the night sky.

4. Drown yourself in food at Eat Street Northshore

Eat Street Markets

With more than 70 vendors ready to serve you culinary delights from around the world, Eat Street Northshore is the perfect spot for some weekend treats. Think Hungarian langos, Shanghai dumplings and Peruvian paella all washed down with Greek honey puffs and decadent doughnuts. Bring that friend who never finishes their meal – reap the rewards and don’t let that delicious food go to waste.

5. Get spooked with ghost tours

Despite its modern appearance, Brisbane is an old town haunted by the past. Hear real ghost stories about the Brisbane Arcade ghost, undead politician and Boggo Road Gaol ghosts on the haunted Brisbane Ghost Tours or head to St Helena to spend the evening in the cemetery. Speaking of cemeteries, dare yourself to attend the Toowong Cemetery night tour where it's said the silhouette of a woman is often spotted wandering the avenue around her grave.

6. It’s a kayak life for me

Kayaking in crystal clear waters

Put aside a weekend and go on the two-day Moreton Island tour with Australian Sunset Safaris to enjoy an unforgettable kayak at night. Paddling out to the Tangalooma Wrecks in a transparent kayak lit by LEDs will reveal the underwater world like never before. Drift over the top of the eerie sunken ships as fish and turtles attracted to the light come to say hi.

7. Paint and Sip

Although this one actually involves wine, we’re putting the emphasis on the art side of things. Make it a fun night out with friends or a unique date to show your creative side. Head along to Cork and Chroma in South Brisbane or West End to learn the basic skills of painting as an artist leads you through a step-by-step session.

8. Climb into the night

Two men climb the Kangaroo Point Cliffs

Abandon the fake rocks and indoor rock climbing – get out and test yourself with the real thing on the cliff face of Kangaroo Point Cliffs. It will certainly be a challenge, but scaling the weathered wall with lights behind you will be an unforgettable experience – just don’t look down.

9. Swing on down to a jazz bar

Get your groove on at some of Brisbane’s best jazz venues. Brisbane Jazz Club can offer some smooth-sounding jazz and river views. Order soda and wear your dancing shoes. Find more spots to swing your hips with our guide to blues, soul and jazz nights around Brisbane.

10. The gondolas on the wheel go round and round

Wheel of Brisbane

Take in a 360-degree view of the city as you soar into the sky on the Wheel of Brisbane. Rising almost 60m off the ground, each trip includes four rotations as well as a magical stop at the top to take in the surroundings.

11. Be serenaded by the local talent

Brisbane is a growing hub of local artists and bands all sporting a unique sound. While many venues around town offer these artists a chance to showcase their talent, the free City Sounds program curates a weekly lineup of artists in parks and Queen Street Mall. Friday night also offers up chill vibes from local talent at Green Jam. Just rock up and take advantage of bean bags and picnic blankets and sample the rotating cuisine pop-up food tent.

12. Skip dinner and see a movie

Openair Cinema

Running throughout summer evenings, the Powerhouse Moonlight Cinema and American Express open air cinema showcase new releases and classic movies to make those hot summer nights a little more bearable. Get in early to grab one of the bean bag chairs for some extra comfort. Then of course, the Yatala Drive-In is open year round.

13. Strrrrriiiikkkee – you’re out

Calling all kidults who want to introduce a bit of fun into their evenings. Strike Wintergarden in The City offers bowling, laser tag and karaoke for big groups, so no need to sit at home feeling bored on your Saturday nights.

14. Attend a sports game

Crowd at a sporting game

Almost every weekend throughout the year you’ll see multitudes of fans heading to the local sports ground to cheer on their favourite team. Head along to an AFL, rugby union, rugby league, soccer, cricket, netball or basketball game where the atmosphere promises to be wild.

15. Twilight climb with a view

Story Bridge Climb

Watch the sunset and the city light up as you climb Brisbane’s iconic Story Bridge. Feel the cars race beneath you as you ascend 80m above sea level to snap that perfect shot of the city – we wouldn’t say no to a cheeky selfie either.

16. Wander the evening markets

Find a hidden gem at the Collective Markets in South Bank every Friday and Saturday night. With an eclectic mix of original art, photography, handmade jewelry, trending fashion and vintage clothing, something special is waiting for you at market prices.

17. It’s a hole in one

It’ll start off friendly but may end in tears as everyone’s competitive side comes out. Visit Hillstone St Lucia for a mini course full of twists and turns or head to Holey Moley in Fortitude Valley or the Wintergarden to follow the traditional putt putt course through a labyrinth of unique holes over two levels that’ll keep you on your toes.

18. Bit of culture before dinner

The Queensland Museum opens its doors to visitors to view the museum after dark. Check out its website to be the first to know dates.

19. Get your shop on at the markets

Brisbane Twilight Markets

About once a month, the Brisbane Twilight markets are held in King George Square and offer this meet-the-maker event with all stallholders selling 100 per cent locally handmade products. Shop from a huge variety of unique and quality handmade items, grab a quick bite from local food vendors, listen to some live music and involve yourself in a free craft workshop.

20. Skip your bedtime at GOMA

Watch out for the signature up-late events at GOMA that bring its major exhibitions to life after hours. Wander the halls with a background of live music or steer by for an informal talk by local identities who will introduce unexpected views on exhibition artworks and themes.

21. Sausage, bread and a sunset

Kangaroo Point Cliffs

You can barbecue for free almost anywhere in Brisbane, but snagging a barbecue at the Kangaroo Point Cliffs at sunset trounces all other spots. Get there early to secure a table and grill as it fills up quickly with people who have the same great idea.

22. Dine and cruise in style

Kookaburra River Queens

Cruise the Brisbane River on a giant paddle-wheeler, while enjoying a buffet and scenic views with Kookaburra River Queens. Live performers will entertain along the way, coaxing you to the dance floor for a boogie and a shake to end the evening.

23. Eat everything at the markets

Taste food from around the world made fresh by the experts. Held every Saturday night, the Mt Gravatt Markets offers over 50 street food stalls and live music. Not to worry for our intolerant friends, as there are vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free options available.

24. Listen to live music

Check out some music at one of Brisbane's live music venues. You are bound to find a gig that suits your tastes, with Brisbane producing varied artists like The Go Betweens, Powderfinger, Regurgitator, Screamfeeder and more. The Zoo is a great place to start or you can peruse our venue guide.

25. Try to escape

Put your heads together and work to use elements of the room to solve a series of puzzles, find clues and escape the room within a 60 minute time frame… or else. Fox in the Box is Europe’s number one escape room company and with six different rooms to challenge you, you’re sure to have a blast.

26. Throw some axes

Limber up and get ready to hurl some axes. Aim for the bullseye and have some fun along the way. Maniax is the place to go and it also offers food and beverage packages to really get the night going.

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