Regular major Brisbane events

What will be on while you are in Brisbane? Plan your stay with our guide to regular major events.

Events calendar - regular events and seasonal attractions

Summer - December to February

Regular major Brisbane events
Christmas, New Years Eve and Australia Day in Brisbane 
A summer tradition, Brisbane lights up in December with free parades, fireworks and Christmas lights throughout the city. See the spectacular projected light show on Brisbane Town Hall and an explosion of fireworks on 31 December (New Year's Eve).  Celebrations continue on Australia Day (26 January) with a public holiday, more fireworks over the city and free activities all day.

Asia Pacific Triennial 2019
See modern art from around Asia and the Pacific in the huge Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art.  

This popular exhibition is held every three years from around December to April and has attracted 3 million visitors.  The next exhibition is in 2019.

Great art from past triennials is on display in The Gallery of Contemporary Art every day for free. 

Lunar New Year - January
Gong Xi Fa Cai! Celebrate the Lunar New Year with events around Brisbane including the BrisAsia Festival, which runs from the end of January to mid-February.  

How do people in Brisbane celebrate the Lunar New Year?

Autumn - March to May

Irish Festival - St Patrick's Day - March
Wear green and celebrate all things Irish on St Patrick's Day. A colourful parade of floats and displays representing Ireland with fun activities in local hotels.

World Science Festival - March
Celebrate the wonders of world science and scientific discovery in March.

Whale watching season - April to November
From April to November humpback whales migrate along our coast to tropical waters.  Take a cruise with our preferred provider and see whales out in the open ocean. 

Buddha Birth Day Festival - April
Celebrate the birthday of Gautama Buddha with three days of cultural displays, live performances, and vegetarian market stalls. A fireworks display on the Brisbane River is a highlight on the 30th of April.

Paninyiri Greek Festival - May
Australia's biggest Greek Festival featuring Greek food, dancing and rides into the night.

Winter - June to August

Le Festival - Brisbane French Festival - July
Viva la Vie! Celebrate Bastille Day on the Brisbane River. Enjoy French food, wine and live music.

Royal Queensland Show (The Exhibition or Ekka) - August
Ekka is when the country comes to the city. 10 days of animal shows, stunts and rodeos, fashion, art, crafts, carnival rides, parades, fireworks, live music, fresh produce and carnival food.

Ekka began in 1876 and is now one of Queensland's most celebrated events with an average attendance of 400,000 visitors annually.

Spring - September to November

Brisbane Festival - September
An international arts festival that takes over the city for three weeks in September.  Classical and contemporary music, theatre, dance, and photography, street art, comedy, opera, circus, and major public events such as Riverfire fireworks attract an audience of around one million people every year.

Brisbane International Film Festival - October
The best cinema from festivals around the world and local short films.

Asia Pacific Screen Awards - November
Discover the excellence and cultural diversity of filmmaking in the Asia Pacific.