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10 Free Things to do in Brisbane This Weekend

Start planning your weekend because we've rounded up the best free things to do in Brisbane that are fun, yet budget-friendly.

Brisbane City, Tourism and Events Queensland
Brisbane City, Tourism and Events Queensland

You don’t have to be living on a shoestring budget to appreciate all the free things in life. A vibrant city with a seriously impressive line-up of events and activities that will keep your bank balance in check, Brisbane is brimming with free things to do. Summit walks, farmers markets, ferry rides, indigenous performances, live music and even an inner-city beach that has summer vibes kicking year-round. There is so much to see and do in sunny Brisbane. 
For a jam-packed weekend of free things to do in Brisbane, these are our top 10 picks!

Streets Beach, Tourism and Events Queensland
Streets Beach, Tourism and Events Queensland

Streets Beach, South Bank
Claiming the title (and rightfully so) as Brisbane’s cultural hub, South Bank is a must-visit. Located in the 17 hectares of Parkland is Street Beach, a man-made blue lagoon surrounded by sandy beaches and sub-tropical plants. Year-round, it’s patrolled by lifeguards, plus, there is Aquativity, a water playground for kids. This is why Streets Beach is one of the best free things to do in Brisbane. 
Stanley Street Plaza, Brisbane City

CityHopper Ferry, Brisbane River
Dust off your sailor’s hat and jump aboard the CityHopper for a scenic ride up and down Brisbane River. Every day, Brisbane City Council operates a free inner-city ferry service between North Quay in Brisbane City and Sydney Street, New Farm. Running every 36 minutes between 6 am and midnight, you can jump on and off at any of the eight stops along the way.

Mt Coot-tha, Matthew Taylor/Tourism and Events Queensland
Mt Coot-tha, Matthew Taylor/Tourism and Events Queensland

Summit Track, Mt Coot-tha
There are plenty of walking trails to choose from at Mt Coot-tha, but our pick is the 1.9km Summit Track. Part of the 1,500-hectare parkland which features eucalypt forest, Brisbane Botanic Gardens and Planetarium, the Summit Track is an easy walk that takes you up to the top with guaranteed views that will impress - especially at sunset. A definite must when it comes to free things to do in Brisbane.

Gathering, Queen Street Mall
One of the only places where you will find free weekly performances by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in Australia, Gathering is a Brisbane City Council initiative, showcasing Indigenous culture through music and dance. Every Wednesday, from Noon to 1 pm on the main stage in Queen Street Mall.

Powerhouse Farmers Market
One of Brisbane’s favourite Saturday morning hangouts, the open-air Powerhouse Farmers Market champions local farm-fresh produce. Wander among the stores and take in the aromas of over 300 stalls selling fruit, veggies, meat, fish, bread, flowers, plants, street food, and so much more. Afterwards, laze in the shade of overarching trees at New Farm Park.
The Brisbane Powerhouse, 119 Lamington Street, New Farm

Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art (QAGOMA), South Bank
Yet another awesome free thing to do in Brisbane, QAGOMA showcases contemporary art from across Australia, Asia and Pacific. Spend hours roaming through the galleries, or if you have little ones with you check out the Children’s Art Centre (it’s always free). As for the galleries themselves, General Admission is free, and now and then they host ticketed exhibitions and special events.
Stanley Place, South Brisbane

City Sounds, Brisbane City
Giving up-and-coming artists a platform, City Sounds is Australia’s largest free live music program that turns urban spaces into music venues every week. In places like Queen Street Mall, Post Office Square and Reddacliff Place, you can hear everything from indie to jazz to electro to chorus music. Places and time vary, so keep an eye on the gig guide.

Brisbane Powerhouse, New Farm
When looking for free things to do in Brisbane, check out Brisbane Powerhouse. A hub for all things artsy. In amongst their line-up of incredible events – comedy, film, art, dance, theatre, music, markets and festival – they have a few freebies thrown in that are a real hit. Keep an eye on their ‘What’s On’ page to keep up to date with the latest acts, and be sure to get in quick.
119 Lamington Street, New Farm

Queensland Museum, South Brisbane
Another South Brisbane gem, the Queensland Museum is a haven for science, culture and natural history. Through a series of exhibitions and displays, you can learn about Queensland’s past, present and future. Get hands-on in the interactive science bar and check out the storytelling exhibition. Of course, it is all free, with a calendar of ticketed events and exhibits throughout the year.
Corner of Grey and Melbourne Streets, South Brisbane

River Walk, Tourism and Events Queensland
River Walk, Tourism and Events Queensland

Riverwalk, Brisbane City
Between New Farm and the historic Howard Street Wharves, an 870-metre long pedestrian and cyclist walkway juts out over Brisbane River, connecting Brisbane City to New Farm. Combine this with the CityHopper and one the art and cultural museums on the South Bank, and you have yourself one fun-filled, budget-friendly day. 

From the great outdoors to cultural centres that shine a spotlight on local talent, Brisbane is a haven for budget-friendly travel. If you loved our round-up of free things to do in Brisbane, make sure you check out Where to Eat, Drink, Stay and Play in Brisbane for more inspo for when you’re next in town.