History of Brisbane Festival and Riverfire

riverfire vantage points

Riverfire marks the end of the Brisbane Festival with a banging fireworks display. It is the end to a three-week long celebration of culture, art, science, and community. The Brisbane Festival has only been annual since 2009, but over the years it has brought crowds from all over and helped bolster the local economy. The festival has made a name for itself around the world and is Brisbane’s biggest cultural event.

Prior to 2009, in the late 1990’s, the Brisbane Festival was a biennial arts festival that was established to “foster the arts”.  Around the same time another festival was emerging, RiverFestival. RiverFestival was a “river-based celebration combined with community engagement”. The message of the festival was sustainability, but also had a broad focus on culture, environmental science, and sport. These two festivals were combined to create the current Brisbane Festival.


riverfire at riverlife

Throughout the three weeks of the Brisbane Festival, you can enjoy everything from cabarets to film to magic. The celebrations then end on 29th September with Riverfire.

Brisbane Riverfire Events

The day of Riverfire is packed with theater, music, closing Brisbane Festival parties, and fireworks. There are a number of venues hosting Riverfire events- Riverlife, Sunsuper, Micat, and many more. But if you’re looking to escape the crowds during Riverfire and just enjoy the celebrations, then Riverfire at Riverlife is the event to attend.


riverfire parties

Spend the early part of the day exploring the CBD and taking in the last bits of the Brisbane Festival. Then make your way down the riverfront path to the Naval Stores along Kangaroo Point Cliffs. The riverfront marquees let you relax along the Brisbane River and take in the setting sun. Entry to Riverfire at Riverlife gives you a meal, dessert, drink tokens, and live entertainment. You’ll also have great seats to the Riverfire military display. And when the fireworks start, you’ll have one of the best vantage points in Brisbane for Riverfire’s full display.

Must Do Events in Brisbane at Riverlife

things to do in brisbane


Brisbane is a hustling and bustling city, full of life and culture. With a lively arts culture, musical entertainment that crushes every concert, and holiday events that get you to let your hair down and live a little, Brisbane is the city to travel to for a holiday. This is a rundown on fun events in Brisbane that are hosted by Riverlife. Our prime location, nestled against the Kangaroo Point Cliffs and Brisbane River is easily accessible and makes for a fantastic venue to attend an event.

Must Do Events in Brisbane

Riverfire at Riverlife

Did someone say fireworks? If you thought New Years Eve was all about the Fireworks, then you’ve obviously never attended the Brisbane Festival, Riverfire. The skyline is lit up from the east to the west, the north to the south. The Brisbane Festival displays the military’s most impressive hardware and skill. The airshow in the middle of Brisbane’s CBD is one sight you must see. Riverlife is one of the best vantage points to view Riverfire and is a must do event in Brisbane. Located along the City Riverwalk and nestled against the Kangaroo Point Cliffs with views of the river and city landscape you’ll not only have one of the best viewings of Riverfire, but you’ll be at Brisbane’s best Riverfire event! General admission to Riverlife’s Riverfire event gets you a delicious plate of food, drink tickets, and live entertainment.

best vantage points to view Riverfire

Five Flavours Beer Festival

Ekka Wednesday, a public holiday in the middle of the week- a lot of pros and cons of that scheduling. You don’t want to wander far out of town since you have work in the morning and it doesn’t really give you enough time to go on an overnight trip. But it’s a day off! You want to get out and enjoy it. Let off some steam. Clear your head. Maybe have a sesh with your mates and kick back for a while. While there are lots of fantastic things to do in Brisbane during Ekka, Five Flavours Beer Festival is hands-down one of the best events in Brisbane. Five Flavours Festival is a low-key competition between beer and cider. This is where you settle the argument over which is better- beer or cider. Five Flavours Festival is put on by Riverlife, giving you the perfect location to kick back with the mates near the river and enjoy the holiday.

things to do in brisbane

New Years Eve at Riverlife

Welcome in the New Year with a bang and breathtaking views of the city and Brisbane River! Riverlife’s New Years Eve party is one of the ‘biggest parties of the year’– we’ll leave it to you to figure out which year. This Brisbane New Years Eve party includes delicious food, unique cocktails, and live entertainment. There will fireworks, lots and lots of fireworks. And if you’re looking for an even more special way to ring in the New Year, schedule an evening kayak on the river and take in the fireworks up close. Kayaking Brisbane at night, especially on a night when the sky is lit up with fireworks is a unique Brisbane experience everyone should take a crack at once.

new years eve party in brisbane

Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo in Brisbane is one celebration you don’t want to skip out on. The celebration brings us sombreros, a banging night of salsa dancing, and the miscellaneous donkey. This Riverlife event lets you immerse yourself in Mexican culture, cuisine, and cocktails! This is one of the best family-friendly events in Brisbane. Join us all day or for a few hours, celebrate and enjoy one of the best things to do in Brisbane.

things to do in brisbane