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Things to do on Australia Day with Kids

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This article will give you a detailed list of things to do on Australia Day with kids in Brisbane and beyond.

Things to do on Australia Day with kids 2023

There are so many things to do on Australia Day with kids this year in Brisbane and surrounding areas. We’ve broken them down by region (Brisbane, Ipswich, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Toowoomba)  so you can visit somewhere locally or decide to go a little ‘further afield’.

In 2023 Australia Day falls on a Thursday. Want to make the MOST of all your public holidays this year? Check out our guide to getting more bang for your buck – you can turn 20 days of annual leave into EIGHT family holidays!

Australia Day 2023 Brisbane events for families

Are you looking for the best events to take the kids to for Australia Day 2023? Well look no further than our bonza list of the best you beaut spots to make the most of the public holiday.

1. 50 Metre Australia Day Slip n Slide | Sandstone Point Hotel

Australia Day Sandstone Point
From 12 midday take a spin on the 50 metre MEGA slip n slide, enjoy live music, lamington eating games, thong throwing comps, dunk-a-roo and an Aussie lamb BBQ. Find out more here.

2. Australia Day Fireworks 2023 | Bribie Island

Head to Bribie Island and celebrate Australia Day by the water. From 5pm – 7:30pm enjoy an evening of festivities and free family fun, followed by fireworks from two different locations to finish an absolute ripper of a day. Find out more here.

3. Langlands Australia Day Pool Party | Langlands Park Pool

Celebrate Australia Day at Langlands Park Pool from 10am-2pm on Thursday 26th January 2023 with FREE entry, sausage sizzle, giant inflatable obstacle course, pool games, raffle prizes and more to help support the local swimming club, Brisbane Jets. Get the event details here.

4. Dinkum Food, Fair & Fun Day | Wellers Hill Bowls Club

This Australia Day, head along to Wellers Hill Bowls Club for their Dinkum Food, Fair & Fun Day from 10am-4pm on Thursday 26th January 2023. Wellers Hill Bowls Club have heaps of family fun planned including bouncy castles, food trucks, sno-cones, fairy floss, market stalls selling Australian made products and live music. More details here.

5. Australia Day 2023 Crab Races | Brighton Roosters

The Brighton Roosters are hosting a family fun day to celebrate Australia Day from 11am on Thursday 26th January 2023 at Jim Lawrie Oval, Brighton. Families will love the rides, crab races, live music, food trucks and 7:30pm fireworks! Find out more here.

6. Great Australian Bites | South Bank Parklands

Make the most of your Australia Day celebrations and head to South Bank for this year’s fun and food-filled edition of Great Australian Bites. Riverside Green at South Bank Parklands will come alive with pop-up stalls serving up delicious food from popular vendors, while home-grown performers hit the stage for a dynamic program of music and family-friendly fun to keep everyone entertained! Get the details here.

7. Oxley Community Festival | Oxley Bowls Club

The Oxley Community Festival is back on 26th January 2023, from 1pm-8pm to commemorate Australia Day. This year will be bigger and better than ever before! Head along to this family friendly event for FREE rides, splash pool, face painting, family games, plus food trucks and fireworks! Find out more here.

Things to do on Australia Day, 26 January 2023 in the Brisbane area

There are plenty of excellent choices for things to do in Brisbane for Australia Day with kids. For a comprehensive list of swimming pools, beaches, and other awesome school holiday ideas for things to do with kids and places to take them in and around Brisbane

In the list below we have listed specific events that are open and on Australia Day.

1. Museum of Brisbane | Brisbane 2023

The Storytellers

You may be surprised to learn that the Museum of Brisbane (MoB) is tucked away in Brisbane City Hall. MoB brings our city’s vibrant art, culture and history to life through exhibitions, workshops, tours, and MoB Kids children’s activities. If you haven’t visited you simply must add MoB to your Australia Day plans if heading into the Brisbane CBD. 

While you’re visiting you can take in a bird’s-eye view of Brisbane city for Australia Day with kids with a City Hall Clock Tower Tour. You can walk out onto an observation platform to absorb the unique view of Brisbane. Go and explore a small but integral part of Brisbane’s history. They are conveniently located in King George Square, right in the city centre. Bookings are required. 

2. QUT The Cube | Brisbane 2023

QUT The Cube

The Cube is one of the world’s largest digital interactive learning and display spaces. There are 48 multi-touch screens that span across two storeys. It’s a place offering a wide range of educational and fun activities for kids aged 5 and up! Get your kids engaged in STEM activities in this interactive digital learning experience. 

We love QUT and you can find more information here about what’s going on that your kids might like. We’re talking robots, art and coding!

3. GOMA and the Queensland Art Gallery | Brisbane 2023

APT10 Kids

There’s ALWAYS something fun to see and do at this mecca for parents with kids looking for fun. It’s a great place to spend Australia Day as it’s accessible, air-conditioned and will entertain your little ones as they enjoy getting creative. Even better, you can enjoy the Children’s Art Centre activities for FREE!

You will find QAGOMA in Brisbane’s cultural precinct so it’s easy to combine your visit with some of the other fun things to do in Brisbane on Australia Day such as Queensland Museum!

Find out why we love GOMA here! 

4. Queensland Museum & Sparklab Sciencentre | Brisbane 2023


The Queensland Museum and Sparklab Sciencentre is located in the city on the South Bank of the Brisbane River. It is open for Australia Day and is a great place to teach the children about Queensland’s history and marvel at the interactive displays in both the museum and Sparklab Sciencentre.

Most of the Museum is free but the visiting exhibits usually have an entrance fee. The Sparklab Sciencentre has an admission, but the exhibits inside are free. There is a family-friendly café on the premises which is great for a quick coffee or lunch. It is pram friendly and a place where you can set your own pace. You can receive concessions if you pay a membership fee.

5. Talk a stroll on a public art or heritage trail | various places 2023

There are a number of public art trails within the CBD of Brisbane and heritage trails to be found in a variety of suburbs. This is a great idea for those wanting a quieter day filled with contemplation and appreciation.

There are 19 heritage walks which celebrate the stories of the local suburbs, or you might like to take one of the Aboriginal Culture Trails or the Natural History Trail. It’s a great opportunity to get outdoors in the fresh air, to explore with your kids and to appreciate the history and culture of your region. 

Find out more about walking trails and heritage trails here. 

6. Music in the Park | Scarborough 2023

Get your family and friends together and enjoy a sunny day by the bay at Scarborough Beach Park for Australia Day on Thursday 26 January 2022. From 1pm – 6pm enjoy an arvo of live music and free family fun for a cracker of a day down by the water.

Bring a picnic rug and fold-up chairs, find the perfect position, and chill out while listening to some great Moreton Bay entertainment.

Find out more here

7 . Celebrate Australia Day at Victoria Park Bistro | Herston 2023 

Spend your Australia Day at Victoria Park surrounded by relaxing views of Brisbane’s city skyline and the rolling green hills of the golf course while you enjoy time with family and friends. The Bistro is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner serving their fresh summer menu! Free parking is available on-site for all guests and Victoria Park’s fun 18-hole Putt Putt course and Driving Range will also be open.

Australia Day activities include:

  • Live Music
  • Giant Games
  • Jumping Castle

8. Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary | Fig Tree Pocket 2023

Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary is the perfect place to spend Australia Day with your family. It’s great for all ages and is the ideal place to spend an educational, fun afternoon or morning. Go along and see platypus, koalas, Australian birds, dingoes, wombats and much more.

There is plenty of shade and you can take a picnic or enjoy lunch in their cafe. 

Read our Lone Pine Koala review here. 

9. Australia Day Celebrations at North Lakes Sports Club | North Lakes 2023 

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie! They’ve got everything you need to celebrate Australia Day 2023. Here what’s going on:
Pop up local brewers and a food truck 11am – 3pm
Deck games 11am – 3pm

Live soloist 12pm – 3pm

Fun for all the family and lots of prizes to be won. 

Find out more here

10. 2023 Australia Day and Chinese New Year Celebration | Sunnybank 2023

Supported by the National Australia Day Council, this Australia Day community event at SunPAC (Sunnybank Performing Arts and Cultural Centre) aims to respect and reflect Australia’s history and people, and celebrate our National Australia Day with the celebration of the Chinese New Year among the linguistically diverse cultural communities, particularly the Chinese community. Everyone is welcome!

Find out the full programme here.

Find out what else is open in Brisbane this public holiday by clicking here

Things to do on the Gold Coast for Australia Day

The gorgeous Gold Coast offers families a range of great, FUN Australia Day activities. Choose any of the below and you’re guaranteed to have an excellent day out making the most of great weather and greater company.

1. Take the kids on an adventure | 2023

australia day with kids tally creek

Our Things to Do on the Gold Coast with kids is CHOCK FULL of heaps of cost-free (or low cost) options for Aussie Day. Whether it’s snorkelling at Tallebudgera Creek, exploring the Glow Worm caves or making the most of the gorgeous bushwalks and swimming holes – the Gold Coast is pumped full with everything that makes Australia the most beautiful place on earth.

Read all about it right here! 

2. Hit the theme parks! | 2023

australia day with kids dreamworld

We love the Gold Coast theme parks and Australia Day can be an awesome opportunity to explore all they have to offer as a family.

We’ve put together a rundown of which of the theme parks are best if you’ve got small children. It’s a great way to have a hell of a day out that’s got something for everyone – even mum and dad!

Whether you enjoy roller coasters and thrill rides, movie characters, wildlife, giant water slides or shows, there is a theme park on the Gold Coast that you will love! 

3. Australia Day 2023 Celebrations | Surfers Paradise 2023

Australia Day is a time for all Australians to reflect, respect and celebrate and the best way to do this is to do something Australian – get together with family and friends or go to a local Australia Day event.

This year, the Gold Coast Australia Day Celebrations will be held on Thursday 26 January at the HOTA Outdoor Stage. Following the invite-only citizenship ceremony, this alcohol-free, family friendly free event kicks off at 4pm and concludes at 8pm.

Find out more here

4. The Big Wedgie | Southport 2023

The Big Wedgie is back for Summer at Broadwater Parklands on the Gold Coast from 17 Dec 2022 – 29 Jan 2023 if you fancy some slippery and slidey fun. This year, there will be four epic waterslides to experience, perfect for families looking to get out and enjoy some fun in the sun this Australia Day! Find out more here.

5. Australia Day: Reflect. Respect. Celebrate | Oxenford 2023

Come along to this EPIC Australia Day, family fun day style event!

Kick of your Australia day at the Centre with:

  • Free BBQ feed
  • Music
  • Jumping castle
  • Face painter
  • Ice cream van
  • Thong throwing comp
  • Lamington/pie eating comp

And so much more.

Find out the details here.

6. Australia Day Cruise | Southport 2023

Step aboard modern and spacious vessels, the Spirit of Elston or Kaiala, for a 3-hour night cruise featuring all things Australiana.

Feast on a traditional Aussie barbecue, including the much-loved sausage sizzle (with onions, of course!).

Sip on ice-cold beverages from our fully-stocked, onboard bar featuring local craft breweries as you tap your toes to live entertainment performing covers of classic Australian bands such as INXS and Powderfinger.

Enjoy the comfortable, air-conditioned bottom deck or make your way upstairs to the spacious, open-air viewing deck, offering stunning 360-degree views of the city.

Top the night off with a dazzling display of fireworks from Broadwater Parklands Southport.

Find out more here.

Things to do on the Sunshine Coast for Australia Day

The Sunshine Coast is a mecca for seekers of sun, sand, and fun times. It’s got a laidback vibe that’s really appealing to the Australia Day fun seeker – it’s family friendly and big on fun. Here are some great ideas about how you can celebrate in this sun-soaked paradise!

1. Cool down at a Sunshine Coast water park | 2023

australia day with kids water park

Jump on in! Nothing says Australia Day like having a swim at the pool with your mates.

There are some incredible waterparks on the Sunshine Coast perfect for celebrating Australia Day. We’ve got a list here of the best water parks that the Sunshine Coast has to offer! 

2. Make the most of the coast with kids! | 2023

australia day with kids kangaroo

There are so many incredible things to do on the Sunshine Coast with kids. Visit beaches, take a trip to Australia Zoo (to enjoy their Adventure Trail and 6-metre, inflatable water slide!) or the Ginger Factory, visit national parks and go swimming in natural swimming holes – and that’s just the start!

For some unique ideas as to what you can get up to on Australia Day with the kids, check out our overview of all things kid friendly on the Sunny Coast. 

Pssst… after cheap Australia Zoo tickets? We know where to find them! 

Things to do in Ipswich for Australia Day

As one of the fastest growing cities in Australia, Ipswich is a thriving mecca for families and the list of ‘things to do’ in Ipswich keeps getting longer and longer. We’ve picked our favourites and made sure that they are open for Australia Day. 

1. Robelle Domain Parklands | 2023

The Robelle Domain parklands, in Springfield Central - Australia Day with kids

The Robelle Domain parklands, in Springfield Central, offer visitors a rainforest walk, waterfalls, water play areas, bike tracks, the country’s first Icon on Galaxy interactive play equipment in an all-abilities playground, and more. The largest park precinct built in Queensland since Brisbane’s Roma Street Parklands, Robelle Domain has an 11 kilometre pathway network for family fun during the day and also at night when the 9-metre high light tower installations give off a spectacular light and sound show (at the time of updating this article, the light and sound shows were down for maintenance).

Across a footbridge is Orion Lagoon – an amazing oasis of interconnected pools of varying depth. There is an amphitheatre with public events held at Robelle Domain, so, this Australia Day bring your own picnic or barbecue treats to cook, or take advantage of the delicious offerings in Robelle Café which is fully licensed and open 7 days.

Things to do in Toowoomba for Australia Day

1. Australia Day fun at Highfields Pioneer Village | Highfields 2023

Highfields Pioneer Village has traditionally hosted many thousands of people from near and far celebrating Australia Day in a unique heritage location. From 9am the day kicks off with the Milking of the Cow, then Beekeeping, Blacksmithing, Working Draught Horse and Whip Cracking School. There will be plenty of good Aussie tucker, meat pies, vegemite sandwiches and Billy Tea and Damper plus guest artists will perform. Take in the Aboriginal art display, cut loose in the family games and children will love the baby animals in the nursery. Entry is $10 per person to support the heritage village, and kids under 12 years are free. Find out more here. 

2. Cobb + Co Museum | Toowoomba 2023

Come face to face with more than 50 epic exhibits showcasing the incredible innovations, machines and technology that shaped the mighty Roman empire in the new Ancient Rome exhibition. It’s a lovely calm and quiet way to spend Australia Day.

Past events for Australia Day 2022

Australia’s biggest inflatable obstacle course | Coomera 2022 

Tuff Nutterz Australia's Biggest Inflatable Obstacle Course

Tuff Nutterz, Australia’s biggest inflatable obstacle course has arrived at Westfield Coomera this Australia Day! Tuff Nutterz, is fun for the whole family! A place to relax while the kids have a blast or rediscover your inner child and join in the fun.

Australia Day 2023

Got something fun planned for Australia Day that we’ve missed? Please let us know in the comments! Be sure to check back for updates as more events are announced. 

Photo of author

Janine Mergler

Janine Mergler is a veteran Queensland teacher, graduating from QUT with a BEd majoring in Social Sciences. After many years in the classroom, Janine moved on to academia. She has proudly trained new generations of teachers in her role as a lecturer at Queensland University of Technology Faculty of Education. She has also worked in the Queensland Government as an education specialist, developing education resources and delivering community awareness programs to help families conserve water. Currently she is the owner and editor of Families Magazine, a publication specifically targeted at parents who value a quality education for children.  Janine leads a team of professionals who write about family lifestyle, early childhood, schools and education information and family-friendly events.

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