Brisbane has a bit of a rep as being a really big country town. Yeah, you’re so wrong, guys. As soon as the lights go out the artsy, party, foodie, cultural scenes come all the way alive. Allow me to share with you just a few of the nightlife hotspots that made me fall in love with the city.

Eat Street Northshore

You know what’s great? Dinner. Do you know what’s even better? The choice of what you eat for dinner, from American diner eats to Vietnamese cuisine, all in the same well-decorated laneways. But then add live music and entertainment. A dream right? Eat Street Northshore is open every Friday and Saturday night.

GOMA Up Late

Hands down, this is my favourite thing to do after dark in Brisbane. The Gallery Of Modern Art (GOMA) is cool at the best of times, but on special Friday nights they leave the doors open after the usual 5.30pm for their adults-only Up Late sessions. Think live music, world class art and plenty of bevvies.

Night Kayak

The Brisbane River is a very central part of this city, literally and figuratively. Instead of looking at it, wait until the sun starts going down and jump on board a kayak to look out from it. Riverlife have three 90-minute night tours over weekends

Welcome to Bowen Hills

Not sure if you worked it out yet, but I think food is pretty great. I also think it’s great that the Welcome to Bowen Hills food festival has new themes every time. One could be dedicated entirely to chicken nuggets, the next could be all vegan.

Story Bridge Night Climb

Like a normal bridge climb, but make it night. Head up a casual 74 metres to the top of Brissy’s iconic Story Bridge for panoramic views of the city at night, plus the guides will give you a bit of a history lesson while you’re up there.

Drinks & A Live Music Show

Brisbane is actually great for live gigs, often at small bars and intimate venues. But there are a few spots that are really worth checking out in particular. The former WWII aircraft hangar turned entertainment venue in Newstead, The Triffid, for example.

Honky-tonk saloon bar Lefty’s Old Time Music Hall is a great option, along with the underground Brooklyn Standard and grungy but chic Heya Bar.

Rooftop Bar Hopping

My personal favourite thing about Brisbane rooftop bars is that they so often seem to come with pools. Like the fancy rooftop bar aptly named The Terrace at Emporium Hotel., or W Hotel’s rooftop pool/bar, or NEXT Hotel and its extensive cocktail list.

Other rad places to go include Eleven Rooftop Bar in the popular Fortitude Valley area, which may not have a pool but is in the perfect spot to kick on afterwards.

Image: iStock Images / [lovro77]