9 big reasons to visit Brisbane ASAP

Did someone say great weather, endless events, buzzing nightlife AND gourmet dining options? Well, you must be talking about Brisbane, because there’s so much happening in the River City right now that it’s about time you planned your trip. Here’s what’s going on!

1. Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art

The Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art has been visiting Brisbane since 1993 and has attracted more than three million visitors in that time. Take a wander through the Gallery of Modern Art and you’ll see why. There are film programs, kids’ activities, inspiring talks and hands-on workshops. But the fun doesn’t last forever. It all wraps up on 28 April 2019, which means there’s a limited amount of time left to catch the likes of performance artist Latai Taumoepeau, who addresses issues of race and climate change through confronting photography, or to check out the kaleidoscopic paintings, drawings and embroidery of Iman Raad, who makes traditional and fantasy worlds collide. Don’t miss your chance!

Image credit: Zico Albaiquni & Yavuz Gallery

2. Book of Mormon

Can we get an AMEN? The Broadway gods have spoken and this March, the controversial musical The Book of Mormon is coming to Brisbane. This hit show was written by South Park creators Matt Stone and Trey Parker, while the score was written by Frozen composer Bobby Lopez. The acclaimed performance follows two young Mormon missionaries who visit Uganda in the hopes of converting the locals… and it’s everything you’d expect from the South Park guys. Having won Tony Awards, a Grammy, four Olivier Awards and a Helpmann Award, this is one show that’s not to be missed.

3. Brisbane Cycling Festival

Zip up your lycra bodysuit and grab your bike out of the garage because the Brisbane Cycling Festival is rolling into town from March to April 2019. Open to amateurs and serious cycling pros alike, the festival includes everything from the Tour de Brisbane to a six-day velodrome event and even the National Road Series – Australia’s premier domestic road-racing series. Whether you’re riding yourself or watching as a spectator, the Brisbane Cycling Festival will fill the city with colour and activity. So, get on your bike (figuratively or literally) and come along!

4. World Science Festival Brisbane

The World Science Festival has become an institution of discovery since its annual roll-out in New York City 10 years ago. But in March 2019 this thought-provoking, inspiring and engaging event comes to Brisbane and the city has secured the festival’s exclusive Asia-Pacific rights until 2021 (yep, that means you can’t see it anywhere else in Oz). One of this year’s highlights includes a discussion between a NASA astronaut, professors and geologists about the exploration of Mars – wow! If science, technology and how our planet and our lives can evolve in the future are of interest to you, get to Brisbane ASAP.

5. BAD

Trust us, BAD is actually GOOD! Brisbane Art Design (aka BAD) is a celebration of visual arts and design, but instead of all the works being exhibited in galleries and museums, many are displayed outside in parks, laneways and artists’ spaces across the city. The main event is an exhibition that runs from 10 May to 11 August 2019 and features emerging artists who create works across a variety of mediums, including robotics, performance art, video, installation, ceramics, jewellery, and painting.

Image credit: R Greenwood

6. Westfield Matildas

The first ever Cup of Nations sees Australia’s own Westfield Matildas up against Korea at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday, 3 March 2019. Four leading soccer (erm… football) nations will come together for the Cup, including Australia, Argentina, South Korea and New Zealand. Get out the yellow and green face paint for this one and get ready to see champions Sam Kerr and Lisa De Vanna up-close.

7. NASA – A Human Adventure

If space is your thing, then this exhibition is going to excite the spacesuit off you. NASA – A Human Adventure is the most comprehensive and extensive touring space-flight exhibition in the WORLD, with more than 250 historical artefacts from the US and Soviet Union space programs. The displays include original space objects, replicas and scale models. It’s at the Queensland Museum from 15 March to 9 October 2019 and it’s literally out of this world.

8. Curiocity

The city is set to come (even more) alive with Curiocity Brisbane, a fully immersive sensory experience where you can touch, see, smell, taste, play and interact with all of the experiences. There are augmented reality spaces, pop-up playgrounds, musical events and more. It runs for 20 exciting days (15 March to 3 April 2019), from South Bank to the Powerhouse in New Farm. Get excited… and curious!

9. NRL Telstra Premiership Magic Round

Abracadabra! A whole lot of magic is coming to Brisbane this year, with Magic Round Brisbane being held at Suncorp Stadium in round nine of the NRL Telstra Premiership. For the first time in the history of the game, each round will be held at one ground. The Titans and the Sharks will kick off the Brisbane festivities on 9 May 2019, so snap up your tickets!

Image credit: A Milford

Bonus foodie tips!

A trip to Brisbane would be incomplete without sampling some of the foodie gems around town. If your belly is the boss on holiday, then a trip to Three Blue Ducks in the new W Brisbane is a must. Already a Sydney fave, the same team are now making their mark north of the border with their refined flavours and homely edge. And did we mention the amazing views? The restaurant looks out over the Brisbane River and South Bank.

If Greek is your go-to cuisine, then head to James Street because Hellenika at The Calile Hotel is your new go-to. There are even poolside cabanas at the ready for those post-meal food comas. Get comfy, because the long lunch vibes are strong here.

For buzzing nightlife and epic views to match, then you can’t go past Brissy’s newest dining precinct – the Howard Smith Wharves For something a little laid-back, head over to Felons Brewing Co. They have amazing pizzas and the beers brewed on site.

Image credit: R Greenwood

But if Japanese cuisine is more your thing, then head straight on over to Honto in Fortitude Valley. You have the team behind LONgTIME to thank for this amazing 90-seat Japanese restaurant. Keep an eye out for the lobster katsu sando with salted cabbage – it’s a treat.

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