Brisbane Events and Festivals 2014 / 2015

(Brisbane, Queensland - QLD, Australia)

Brisbane Events, Festivals and Things to DoThe city of Brisbane has much to shout about when it comes to the world of festivals and culture, with an ever-expanding live music scene and regular concerts staged at the South Bank. This is where you will find the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, as well as the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Many of the city's principal events are held at the South Bank Parklands, including the major Australia Day festivities and the Riverfestival, the latter of which began its life in 1998 and lasts for an entire week in September, being merged with the activities of the Brisbane Festival in 2009. A significant part of the Riverfestival is the beautifully choreographed fireworks display named the Riverfire, drawing some 500,000 spectators. A further fireworks extravaganza takes place at the South Bank Parklands each year, as part of the city's huge New Year's Eve celebrations.

Many exciting sporting events are staged at the Brisbane Exhibition Ground within the Bowen Hills suburb, which also goes by the name of the RNA Showgrounds and regularly hosts Australian Baseball League games. The annual agricultural show named Ekka is also based here each August, being first held in 1876 and now lasting for some ten days, when over 600,000 visitors come to enjoy the animal processions, the equestrian displays, the agricultural events and exhibitions, and the family fairground rides.

National Public Holidays

  • 1st January - New Year's Day
  • 26th January - Australia Day
  • Good Friday / Easter Monday March / April - Easter
  • 25th April - Anzac Day
  • 2nd Monday in June - Queen's birthday
  • 1st Monday in October - Labour Day (ACT, NSW, QLD, SA)
  • 25th December - Christmas Day
  • 26th December - Boxing Day

Brisbane Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015


  • Cockroach Races - 26th January, The Story Bridge Hotel hosts this festivity on Australia Day


  • Brisbane International Motor Show - early February, an exciting motor show featuring everything from the world of motoring
  • Chinese New Year - celebrations taking place in the city's Chinatown district
  • International Cricket - one-day event played at the Brisbane Cricket Ground


  • St. Patrick's Day - 17th March, a celebration of Australia's Irish ancestry


  • Musica Viva Australia - April to November, a series of international concerts
  • Brisbane to Gladstone Yacht Race - yacht race starting from the Shorncliffe Pier and going to the Queensland coast of Gladstone
  • Queensland Winter Racing Carnival - mid-April to end June


  • Commemoration of the Battle of the Coral Sea - 5th to 8th May
  • Paniyiri Greek Festival - late May, a multicultural event showcasing Greek culture in a one-day ethnic celebration, with over 20,000 people in attendance from the local Greek community
  • Brisbane River Run and Walk - late May


  • Whale Watching - 1st June to 1st November
  • Caxton Street Seafood and Wine Festival - held teh Sunday of the Queen's Birthday Long Weekend, running since 1994, this event donates money raised from ticket sales to local charities
  • Queensland Day Celebrations - 6th June, staged by members of the Queensland Performing Arts
  • History Alive: a Journey through Time - held at Fort Lytton National Park in early June, this two day event features a variety of cultures and time periods, with battle re-enactments and a wide range of family entertainment
  • Brisbane Wine Festival - mid-June, a popular wine event, with wine and food matching workshops, 'Meet the Winemaker' sessions and numerous tasting opportunities


  • Brisbane Festival of Music - held on odd-numbered years
  • International Film Festival - a ten-day film bonanza
  • Valley Fiesta - mid-July, a food and music party held in Chinatown and Brunswick


  • Royal National Agricultural Show 'Ekka' (Royal Easter Show) - early August, held at the RNA Showgrounds
  • Brisbane International Film Festival - with a host of films from Australia and Asia-Pacific


  • Brisbane Riverside Festival - an early September arts-themed fest, with food, entertainment and fireworks, held over 12 days
  • Brisbane Festival / Riverfestival - local cultural event featuring music, drama, dance, art and many large-scale free activities
  • Gay Pride - held throughout September, this extravaganza attracts around 25,000 people each year. Featuring a host of gay and lesbian fun and games, the city's Pride Fest includes art exhibitions, a street march, sports events and the popular Queens Birthday Ball


  • Gold Coast Indy 300 - four-day celebration centred around the IndyCar Grand Prix
  • Brisbane International Animation Festival - mid-October, this event features works at the forefront of animation
  • Livid Festival - the city's premier music fest
  • Oktoberfest - a popular German-themed event staged at the RNA Showgrounds (entrance via the Gregory Terrace), with numerous beer-drinking festivities, live Bavarian-style music, yodelling, cowbell ringing, a puppet theatre, freshly baked pretzels and dodgems. Visitors can expect to see lots of people dressed in traditional Lederhosen, dancing to 'Oompah' music


  • Pinnacles Music Festival - a 15-day celebration featuring jazz and improvised music


  • Woodford Folk Festival - 31st December, based some 78 km / 48 miles north of Brisbane, in Woodford