How to celebrate in style along the Brisbane River this New Years.
Brisbane's calling card and jewel crown is the Brisbane River. It's flanked on all sides by swanky bars, high-end restaurants and hotels and Brisbane’s vibrant nightlife scene.
It also lights up every New Year’s Eve with a spectacular fireworks display and a range of activities and parties for young and old.
Find out where it’s at in Brisbane this year with this guide.
When and where to watch the New Year’s Eve fireworks in Brisbane
The fireworks are set off all along the Brisbane River with the best vantage point being along South Bank and the focal point being Story Bridge.
There will be two shows:
- 8.30pm: Kids’ fireworks display
- Midnight: The main event
Where are the best spots to watch the New Year's Eve fireworks?
- South Bank Parklands. This is one of the closest spots to the fireworks on New Year's Eve. It fills up quickly, so turn up early. Glass, metal cutlery, bikes, pets and alcohol are not allowed.
- Highgate Hills. The grassy knolls of Highgate Hills are more chill but still offer excellent views of the show.
- Mount Coot-tha. The iconic Mount Coot-tha is an unbeatable vantage point due to its height. You'll feel like you’re eye-to-eye with the display and enjoy a panoramic view of the whole city from here.
- Eagle Street Pier. The cosmopolitan restaurant and bar precinct is a stylish spot to take in the fireworks over a meal or a glass of bubbly. It will be packed, so book your table or get in early for the best views.
- LaTrobe Terrace. The street will be pumping on New Year's Eve. While it's not waterfront, there are lots of great vantage points to take in the fireworks during the evening.
What are the best New Year’s Eve options for kids?
- The Brisbane Wheel. Hire a private gondola on the Brisbane Wheel and watch the fireworks from one of the city’s icons.
- South Bank Parklands. If you can stand the crowds, South Bank Parklands offers a famously family-friendly, alcohol-free atmosphere.
New Year’s Eve Brisbane river cruises
When it comes to fireworks viewing spots, it doesn't get much more front row than on a boat on the Brisbane River. Ring in the new year under stars with these New Year’s Eve river cruises.
- Kookaburra Showboat New Year’s Eve Cruise. Celebrate in extravagant style with a three-course meal, welcome drink, live entertainment and prime viewing spots on one of the four outdoor decks.
- New Year's Eve cruises on the Brisbane River with Sail Australia. Enjoy the perfect positioning for the fireworks at either 9am on a family-friendly cruise or at midnight with hot and cold finger food and DJ to get the party started.
- Brisbane Cruises New Year's Eve cruise. Avoid the crowds on shore by boarding the MV Lady Brisbane for a stylish night on the river capped off with the midnight fireworks. Cruise includes finger food and fork dish, drinks, desert and entertainment.
New Year's Eve Brisbane restaurants with packages and views
While 2017 packages are yet to be announced, here's some of the top events from 2016 so you know what to look forward to.
- Aria: On the menu at Matt Moran's restaurant was a three-course wonder that was best paired with the venue's extensive wine list. Prices started from $145pp. Multiple seatings available.
- Jade Buddha: With three tiers of celebratory packages from a standard sliders, skewers and champagne option to a VIP package with spirits and a evening feast, Jade Buddha had all the options. Prices started from $69pp.
- Riverside Bar and Kitchen: Tropicana was the theme of the NYE celebration at Riverside Bar and Kitchen. The cheap-as-chips party featured live music, a pop-up bar cocktails and that all-important fireworks vantage point. Food wasn't included in the $30 cover charge.
What's on? The New Year's Eve Brisbane events you'll want in on
The party didn't stop at these venues. Everything from burlesque to opera was buzzing at the stroke of midnight.
- Come What May @ GPO Hotel: Featuring burlesque shows and Victorian era entertainment and private booths, the party ran into the early hours of the morning. Just like you'd expect at the real Moulin Rouge. Prices started from $79pp.
- QLD Pops: New Year's Eve Gala with Mirusia: If you booked a ticket to see the illustrious Mirusia sing alongside baritone Jason-Barry Smith in the QPAC Concert Hall, the show was perfectly timed to end just before the 9pm and midnight fireworks so you didn't miss a thing. Prices started from $98pp.