14 must-do summer events in Queensland
Things are getting hot hot hot in Queensland, and I’m not just referring to the heat (or Arrow’s ’80s hit).
As well as looong days of sunshine (bless you, summer), this season brings with it a stellar line-up of events, from world-class sporting tournaments and food festivals to our own version of Burning Man.
Pencil in these must-do summer events and end 2017/start 2018 like you mean it.
Queensland Ballet – The Nutcracker: 8-16 December 2017
The much-loved Christmas production of The Nutcracker will be performed at Brisbane’s Queensland Performing Arts Centre (QPAC). We may not have the traditional white-snow Christmas in Queensland, but you can into the Christmas spirit at this seasonal favourite. You won’t want to wait any longer to book your tickets because seats are selling out faster than a T-Swift concert.
Woodford Folk Festival: 27 December 2017 – 1 January 2018
Round up the kids and ring in the new year at one of the most magical events in the country. We’re talking fairies, fire ceremonies, prayers for world peace led by Tibetan monks, and some big-name international and local acts in music and entertainment, including Kate Miller-Heidke, Husky, Baker Boy, and Australia’s favourite science guru, Dr Karl Kruszelnicki.
Brisbane International: 31 December 2017 – 7 January 2018
Start 2018 with a bang (or should I say a grand slam) at the Brisbane International. This year is set to be another nail-biting event, with Andy Murray returning to Brisbane for the first time since 2013. Tennis god Rafael Nadal is also set to make an appearance and reigning champs Karolina Pliskova and Grigor Dimitrov will also be back to defend their titles.
Psst! If you’re planning your annual ladies trip to the Brisbane International, here’s how to make the most of your visit.
Magic Millions Carnival: 5-16 January 2018
Girls, sort out your fascinators stat, because The Magic Millions January Carnival on the Gold Coast is just around the corner. Starting with the flagship Yearling Inspections from the 5th, the celebrations continue with the 2018 Pacific Fair Magic Millions Polo on the 7th. Then to top it all off is the 2018 Magic Millions Raceday on the 13th.
Clipper Round the World Yacht Race – Whitsunday Stopover: 13-30 January 2018
Join the two-week-long summer celebrations in the pristine Whitsundays when the Clipper Round the World Race stops over. Airlie beach will be the home of the event, housing twelve identical 70-foot ocean racing yachts, their crew and passionate supporters. One of the events to look forward to is the White on Whitehaven Long Lunch. Yes – that’s a long lunch on Australia’s iconic beach. You can just imagine how beautiful that will be.
2018 MTBA Cross-Country National Series Rounds 3 & 4: 13-14 January 2018
The MTBA Cross-Country National Series Rounds 3 & 4 will be an adrenaline junkies dream come true. Over two days of extreme downhill action, mountain bikers will compete in a range of categories from U15 to Masters.
Second Gillette One Day International Australia vs England: 19 January 2018
There are few events on the Australian sporting calendar that evoke as much passion (and patience) as One Day Internationals, and this year sees Australia go head to head with England. It’s one that will go down in Queensland history with the likes of Steve Smith, David Warner and Mitch Starc gracing the Gabba Stadium.
2018 Burleigh Pro: 25-28 January 2018
Burleigh Heads over the Australia Day long weekend? Hell yeah. But combine your stay with the four-day Burleigh Pro, where some of the best surfers in the world will be battling it out for the valuable World Surf League (WSL) Qualifying Series, and you’ve got a long weekend of heart-pumping beach entertainment to boot.
E & E Waste Hell of the West Triathlon: 4 February 2018
Now I’m no athlete, but I’m pretty sure triathlons are hard work. Throw in temperatures of up to 38 degrees Celsius, and you’ve got hell. Hell of the West that is, one of the toughest long-course tri’s in the state.
Held out in the country town of Goondiwindi, the event is a must for any triathlete’s bucket list, and if you’ve got your eye on the Ironman title, it serves as the perfect training ground.
The Brisbane Global Rugby Tens: 9-10 February 2018
Rugby fans, prepare for your nirvana, as more than 300 of the world’s top players representing 14 clubs from six countries descend upon Suncorp Stadium in the fast-paced, two-day knockout tournament, The Brisbane Global Tens.
Agnes Blues, Roots and Rock Festival: 16-18 February 2018
Get your toosh to the Southern Great Barrier Reef and rock out at the Agnes Blues, Roots and Rock Festival. Over three glorious days, you’ll hear local talent, big-name artists and fans belt their favourite tunes. And, unlike other festivals, the performers venture beyond the stage and VIP lounge to mingle with the crowd. So, you might even meet a few of them in person.
Australian Performing Arts Market (APAM): 19-23 February 2018
Incredible artists, performers and contemporary dancers will showcase their talents in Brisbane at the Australian Performing Arts Market. So, if you want to be wowed, entertained and inspired by the work of local and international producers, this is where you need to be this summer. And, if you’re an artist wanting to network and learn more about the industry, this is where you can do that.
Gold Coast Triathlon – Luke Harrop Memorial: 25 February 2018
Watch as athletes test their limits in the Gold Coast Triathlon – Luke Harrop Memorial. This national championship is a qualifying event if athletes wish to compete for Australia at the Age Group ITU World Championships on the Gold Coast. So, you can just imagine the intensity and focus that the athletes will show on the day.
Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival: 23 February – 4 March 2018
Attention wine lovers! The biennial Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival is back and we’re thirsty. Hosted in the heart of the Granite Belt Wine Region, this event attracts over 60,000 wine enthusiasts and celebrates the regions produce and booming wine industry.