What Does Winter Look Like in Brisbane?

Cantilever bridge in Brisbane in Winter - Story Bridge in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia. Steel truss design.

Seasons in Australia are at opposite times on the calendar compared to the seasons in countries from the northern hemisphere. That means that when countries like North America and Europe experience summer between the months of June and August, Brisbane experiences winter! What’s more is that most of Australia, including Brisbane, sees sunny skies and dry, cool weather during their winter months. That’s a lot different from what the rest of the world associates with the season, huh? Keep reading to see what winter in Brisbane is all about. 

Coldest Days in Brisbane

During the winter months of June, July and August, Brisbane experiences warm, dry days and cool nights, with temperatures that range between 11°C to 23°C. The coldest day of 2020 was July 5th, when the temperature dropped to 8°C. In 2019, the coldest recorded temperature was 7°C, which most would agree is still rather mild, as far as winter goes. 

Can you swim in the ocean in winter in Brisbane? 

Most Queenslanders will agree that swimming outdoors during the winter months is a no go, but that’s not to say it’s impossible. It really depends on the tolerance of the person at hand. 

If chilly dips in the sea aren’t what you’re into, there are loads of indoor swimming pools located in and around the city to check out. Some even have heating! Here are a couple: 

Top things to do in Brisbane in Winter

Rainforest trees in Purling Brook Falls Circuit, Springbrook National Park

Rainforest trees on the Purling Brook Falls Circuit, Springbrook National Park

Apart from some frostiness in the wee hours and the occasional nip in the air, Brisbane’s winter doesn’t much get in the way of a good time. That’s good news for everyone, because there is so much fun to be had! Put on a thick pair of jeans and a jumper, and check out these things you can do with your family during winter time: 

  • Head to the Noodle Night Markets: The uber-popular Brisbane Noodle Night Market is a fun, delicious event held every July as a part of the city’s Good Food Month celebrations. For foodies in Brisbane, winter approaching means looking forward to scrumptious Asian food under the stars to warm the body and soul! From food trucks to waterfront dining options across every price point, there’s everything you’ll need and more for a wonderful time on a crisp July night. 
  • Attend the North Australian Festival of Arts (NAFA): Townsville’s Arts and Cultural Festival, held in the month of July, is a month-long celebration of North Australia’s creativity. Featuring cabaret shows, theatre, comedy, dance, exhibitions, concerts and more, it’s no wonder why the North Australian Festival of Arts is a Queensland favourite. Expect to witness The Northern Fringe Festival, Strand Ephemera, Pop-Up North Queensland (PUNQ), and the Australian Festival of Chamber Music (AFCM), bigger and better than ever before! 
  • Go sightseeing or take a hike: Winter is one of the best seasons to get outdoors and do all the touristy things Brisbane has to offer. Blue skies, a crisp atmosphere and hardly any rain creates just the ideal circumstances for fun times outdoors. Mount Coot-tha, Springbrook National Park and Natural Bridge Glow Worm Caves are some hiking destinations perfect for families with young children in tow. 
  • Go whale watching: June marks the beginning of the majestic humpback whale’s migration season. From then up until November, humpback whales make the long journey from the Antarctic’s cold waters to the warm waters of North Queensland. Book one of the many whale-watching tours that operate during this time and catch a glimpse of some whales frolicking in the waves. 
  • Attend the Brisbane Comedy Festival: The Brisbane Comedy Festival is only the country’s best comedians tour. It’s held every year around July spread out across multiple spots in Brisbane, at venues such as Brisbane Powerhouse, The Tivoli and The Fortitude Music Hall. Whether you’re into sketch comedy, improv, stand-up, witty one liners or whimsical mimicry, this festival is sure to have you in splits! 
  • Get tickets to the Ekka: The Royal Queensland Show, or Ekka, as most people fondly call it, showcases the best that Queensland has to offer when it comes to agriculture and farming. Running since 1876 in its original birthplace at the Brisbane Showgrounds, the event is defined by tradition and the nostalgia it evokes in Queenslanders. Drop by to witness or participate in giant vegetable competitions, enjoy some world-class entertainment and eat some soul food. Oh, and you won’t want to miss the strawberry ice-cream. Trust me, once you taste it, even winter won’t be able to keep you away! 
  • Catch a sunset: The dry air and clear skies of the winter months in Brisbane are the perfect conditions for the most spectacular sunsets you will ever see. Brisbane isn’t short of beautiful sunset spots either, so catching one shouldn’t be too hard. Some places that make great vantage points are  Kangaroo Point Cliffs, Wilson’s Outlook, and Lake Moogerah. 
  • Attend BLEACH* Festival: Held every year in Currumbin, BLEACH* is a festival that’s all about contemporary art, cultural heritage and having a fun time. Think music, dance, theatre, cabaret, workshops, a circus, live art, backyard cinema, light installations, outdoor exhibits and so much more! Whether you’re looking to spend the whole day there, or just pop in for a quick look around, with both free and paid entry, BLEACH* has options and events for everyone. If you want the whole experience, definitely opt to stay a day. One of the best things about winter festivals is that you don’t have to worry about scorching temperatures, even when they’re outdoor! 


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