It’s so easy nowadays to get caught up in the rollercoaster ride that is parenthood and forget that, before our little treasures came along, there was actually another person that received most of our attention (and vice versa). The truth is, our time can become so in-demand and consumed by our children that we end up with very little time to share just one-on-one with our partner. And I am talking about quality time. Not just snippets grabbed in passing throughout the day, or in those few minutes between finally putting your children to bed and then hearing the gentle snoring of your tired other half from the lounge room couch.
This is why the idea of taking some planned time out with our partner for a “date night” is now so popular – and important. It not only gives us some much-needed time out together, but allows us to de-stress and reconnect with the person we share the day to day pressures of life with. It helps us rejuvenate and capture the essence of who we are (aside from mums and dads), and can sometimes be the quiet time we need to have proper conversations and laugh.
One of the biggest deterrents to giving ourselves this time out though, is the cost. Raising a family is expensive – especially if you are only on one income – and, unfortunately, many see date night as an expensive luxury that really can’t be afforded too often. This doesn’t have to be the case!!! It’s good to make date night a regular event, and a night out with your partner does not have to mean a three course meal at an al-a-carte restaurant or a champagne river cruise followed by a night in a flash hotel. In fact, there are heaps of inexpensive ways to have fun together, and they are just as romantic too!
Below are 15 great ideas for a date night (or day – sometime the better option) on a budget in Brisbane.
What to do for date night in Brisbane
1/ See the sights from Mt Cooth-tha
Drive up to Mt Coot-Tha at night and share a bottle of wine while overlooking the lights across the city.
2/ Head to the drive-in
Fill the back of your car with pillows and blankets and head to the drive-in for a movie under the stars. There is the Yatala Drive-in on the way to the Gold Coast, and the Tivoli Drive-in at Ipswich to choose from, as well as the occasional pop-up drive-up around Brisbane from time to time (check out our Event Calendar to stay up to date).
3/ Explore the night markets
Head in to the South Bank Markets, on every Friday night, and wander through the stalls taking in the music and entertainment. Find out more about exploring South Bank here. Or head to Eat Street Northshore for a huge selection of delicious food – open every Friday, Saturday and Sunday evening.
4/ Cycle along the river
Get some fresh air and grab a City Cycle bike and cycle along the river, taking in the sights. The Riverwalk is a great place to start.
5/ Go strawberry picking
Go strawberry picking and then enjoy them later with some champagne and ice-cream.
6/ Get some culture at GOMA
Take in some culture together and spend some time wandering the Gallery of Modern Art at South Brisbane. Entry is free, except for special exhibitions.
7/ Enjoy date night at home
Send the kids on a sleepover at grandma’s and have a date night IN. Prep a home-cooked, candle-lit dinner, rent a movie and settle in for an uninterrupted night at home.
8/ Have a picnic in the park
Pack a picnic and head to one of the beautiful parks in Brisbane. The Brisbane City Botanic Gardens, Sherwood Park and New Farm Park are all good options. New Farm Park often also has a Moonlight Cinema throughout summer.
9/ Devour fish and chips on the beach
Head to the beach at Redcliffe, or even up or down the coast, grab some fish and chips and eat them on the beach for the best picnic with the most scenic view. It’s so simple, but it is ALWAYS a winner.
10/ Go camping
If you have an overnighter up your sleeve, instead of a hotel, why not pack up the tent and head to a campground in a scenic spot? Even better if it happens to be in a remote area that allows you to build a fire and toast some marshmallows!
11/ Head to the bush
Pack some supplies and enjoy a BBQ and bushwalk at Brisbane Forest Park.
12/ Cruise the river
Buy a daily CityCat ticket and head up and down the Brisbane River at a leisurely pace, maybe hopping on and off at West End, New Farm, Brett’s Wharf and South Bank for a wander.
13/ BBQ below the cliffs
Have a night BBQ in the park space along the base of the cliffs at Kangaroo Point. Watch the night rock climbers (quite mesmerising), and, if you are lucky, you might see a fire-twirling class in action!
14/ Take in a comedy act
If you are after some light giggles, head to the Sit Down Comedy Club‘s open mic nights. Details are on their site, but the best part is entry is usually FREE.
15/ Finish with dessert
The ultimate date night indulgence, check out a dessert bar to finish off your date night together. Some suggestions include: Cowch at South Bank, Garden City and Chermside; Lick Ice Cream at Paddington, Graceville and Morningside; Milki Desserts at Sunnybank; and Dolci Sapori at Clayfield.
Without the budget constraints there is very little excuse not to give you both a break every now and then. So plan dates in advance, get the sitters organised and go out and have some mummy and daddy free time! Remember, it’s not so much about how you are spending your time as who you are spending it with.
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