There are plenty of fantastic reasons why Brisbane is an ideal location to spend a summer Christmas, and in the lead-up to the special day the city turns out all the stops to put on a special show with a range of Brisbane Christmas events. From markets, to lighting displays, carols to children’s activities, it’s the most magical time of year in the River City.
Here are some of the must-see Brisbane shows and events that you should get yourself along to this Christmas.
Brisbane city always puts on a beautiful Christmas display, and heading into the city is an important tradition for many families. During the day, catch Christmas on Queen – pop-up performances, roaming entertainment, and a special parade and pantomime are on offer in the heart of Brisbane city.
Once there, it’s the perfect time to catch the Gold Lotto City Hall Lights, held until the 24th of December. An unforgettable light and sound show is projected onto the City Hall, running every 15 minutes from 7pm until midnight. For a different kind of enchanted Christmas magic, head along to the Enchanted Gardens at the Roma Street Botanic Gardens. This year, you’ll require a ticket from Ticketek but the display is worth every penny.
Stop at South Bank
South Bank is a must-see stop on any Brisbane trip, but at Christmas time there are even more things to see and do. Santa and Mrs Claus make their annual visit between the 18-23rd of December to the Flowstate Pavilion, offering socially-distanced snaps during Santa’s Stop Over for a photo to remember.
After 4pm, take your kids to the Flowstate Lawns for festive arts, crafts, and stories held by Santa’s elves, and then stay for a movie. At 6:15pm and 8pm, seasonal cinema offerings will be screened with the beautiful backdrop of Brisbane city. You can find the movie program here. Swimming at Streets Beach, exploring the Epicurious gardens, and beautiful riverside strolls are on offer at any time.
Nothing says Christmas quite like a carol singalong, and there are plenty of opportunities to join in the music and festivities throughout the city. You’ll often find twilight markets, plenty of activities for the kids, and of course some incredible performances that will have you joining in on your favourite carols.
The Brisbane Regional Youth Orchestra will take over the South Bank Piazza on the 22nd of December from 2pm – 3pm for a free performance of all your Christmas favourites. There’s still plenty of time to get singing! For a touch of class, check out the Carols in the Reservoir, as leading opera stars perform your Christmas favourites.
To Market, To Market
If you haven’t quite finished your Christmas shopping (or just enjoy the festive atmosphere) then get along to one of the many markets that are popping up this holiday season.
The Collective Markets at South Bank are holding a Christmas edition between the 17th – 23rd of December. Check out the exciting range of stalls on offer, and then make your way through South Bank for their other Christmas festivities.
If you’re after fresh produce to fuel your Christmas feast, you can’t go past the Farmers’ Markets at Rocklea on the 22nd of December. The Rocklea markets are fantastic at any time of year, but the seasonal produce and the added Christmas spirit make it an extra special time. If you’d prefer to head to the Gold Coast for your farmers produce, the Palm Beach Farmers Market will be operating on Friday the 24th from 6am – 11.30am, with rumours of a special appearance from Santa himself!
Follow the Lights
Brisbane has a fantastic tradition with Christmas lights, and driving along to take in all the Christmas cheer is an essential holiday activity. Along with the big light displays like the Roma Street Botanic Gardens and the Town Hall, check out the St Stephen’s Cathedral on Elizabeth Street, and the Government House in Paddington for some spectacular displays.
In addition to the big city displays, there is plenty of home-grown talent that is well worth the drive. Brisbane Kids have compiled driving maps that help you take in the best lighting displays in your area as well as other fabulous Brisbane Christmas events.
Travelling Around Brisbane
Your journey with Airtrain marks the start of your Christmas adventures in Brisbane. You will arrive quickly and comfortably from the airport to Brisbane City in 20 minutes. You can disembark at your chosen city station – Airtrain runs express from the airport, but stops at Fortitude Valley, Central, Roma Street, and South Brisbane stations.
While you’re in Brisbane, short term visitors should check out the go seeQ card, which allows you unlimited travel for 3 or 5 consecutive days on buses, trains, ferries, and trams. It also includes 2 Airtrain journeys to/from the Brisbane Airport.
For longer stays, travel like the locals with a go card – just touch on at your station of departure and touch off when you arrive at your destination.
Brisbane Christmas Events
It’s the most wonderful time of year, and it’s especially wonderful in Brisbane. There is so much to see and do, right on through the holiday period. If you’re wondering how to get into the Christmas spirit this holiday season, don’t miss the incredible opportunities on offer in our beautiful city.
If you’re planning to visit Brisbane and join in on the Christmas spirit, Airtrain’s secure and reliable services mean you can get to where you need to go on time and in comfort. With so many events happening, and so much to see and do – celebrate the special season with Brisbane and Airtrain.