Summer is the perfect time of year to make the most of this city – and there’s plenty to do that won’t break the bank. From smashing one-cent wings at a German beer hall and slurping $1 oysters at a Valley cocktail bar, to admiring the best Christmas light displays in the city and visiting a free Goma exhibition, here are 10 ways to spend the summer without blowing your budget.
Check out Brisbane’s newest public park with a coffee in hand
Earlier this year, former 18-hole golf course Victoria Park was transformed into a large, 45-hectare public park. It’s the start of an enormous four-year transformation, which will eventually include waterholes and wetlands, nature playgrounds, an adventure valley and more. For now, though, you can have a picnic, throw a frisbee or check out the sunflowers. You can also grab a coffee (or two) for under $10 from Precious Coffee – a coffee cart on a bike parked at the end of Gilchrist Avenue.
Indulge in a Christmas-inspired rocky road
Woolloongabba’s 31 Degrees Chocolate has released its limited-edition special, White Christmas. It’s a rocky road made with both white and milk chocolate, house-made raspberry and vanilla marshmallow, puffed rice, coconut and cranberries. It’s only available until the end of the month and is just $6 a pop. Be warned: it’s seriously addictive.
Eat a couple of nori and wonton tacos
Grab $5 tacos every Tuesday at Cheeky Poke Bar. All you have to do is choose the base (nori or wonton) and the protein with sauce (such as salmon with wasabi mayo, or tuna with shiso aioli). The rest of the filling includes coconut turmeric rice, cabbage, avocado, pickled ginger, spring onions, mayo, sesame and togarashi (a Japanese seven-spice seasoning).
Check out the Asia Pacific Triennial at Goma
Escape the heat and head into the air-conditioned Gallery of Modern Art. The gallery is currently showing the 10th edition of the Asia Pacific Triennial. The free exhibition includes 69 projects, featuring more than 150 individuals from 30 countries. Expect to see a range of materials and techniques, from large-scale installations to sculptures, paintings, photography and videos.
Smash some baked goods from a local bakery
It seems Brisbane has a thing for bakeries. This year we saw a bunch of new ones open, including Lune, Agnes, Darvella and Sprout, to complement a bunch of existing favourites like Christian Jacques, Banneton, Danny’s Bread and Flour and Chocolate (the list could go on). A tenner easily buys you a croissant, a loaf of freshly baked sourdough, a danish or a very on-trend kouign-amann.
Check out a film at Palace Cinemas
On Mondays, Palace Cinemas (The Barracks and James Street) are offering $9.50 movie tickets. Food fans will enjoy Delicious (released on Boxing Day), which is set in France in 1789 and follows a gifted chef and his protégée as they open France’s first restaurant. Also showing now: Dune, starring Timothée Chalamet, Oscar Isaac and Zendaya and the new bond film, No Time to Die.
Smash one-cent chicken wings
Every Thursday until 7pm, you can order one-cent chicken wings from Bowen Hills’ German beer hall, Beerhaus. The only catch: it’s limited to a maximum of 10 wings per drink. You can choose from seven different sauces, including teriyaki, Texas barbeque, chipotle and the fiery “afterburner”.
Drive around checking out the city’s best Christmas lights
Hop in the car and head to some of the best Christmas light displays in your area. To find them: jump onto the Christmas Light Search website and punch in your postcode (along with a few nearby) and you’ll see all of the best Christmas light decorations in your area.
Eat $1 oysters at The Parlour
Slurp down some $1 oysters at La Costa Restaurant’s sister venue and neighbor, The Parlour (previously La Costa Bar). Sip Shuck Sip is on every Thursday from 5pm. The oysters come with either a Bombay Raspberry Gimlet mignonette or a Bombay Fizz vinaigrette. For $2, you can get a Kilpatrick oyster, and if you feel like splurging, there are truffle oysters for $3 each.
Treat yourself to a gelato-filled crepe cone
Decadent gelato-filled crepe cones are now available from La Macelleria’s Coorparoo store for $10 each. The treat involves freshly made crepes filled with Nutella or dulce de leche, rolled into a cone and topped with two scoops of your favourite gelato.