Activities & Itineraries

20 Brisbane Date Ideas That Aren’t Dinner And A Movie

By Ranyhyn Laine – who always has time to go to breakfast, no matter how busy she is.

Raise your hand if you can remember the worst date you’ve ever been on. Now, we bet that date idea from hell also happened to feature some variant of the traditional dinner and a show that left you feeling like Netflix and takeaway would have been a much better option than whatever the heck just happened.

Don’t worry, we’ve all been there. If you really want to win over your beau, it’s time to step up your date game. Luckily, we’re here with the best alternative date ideas in Brisbane/Meanjin that’ll blow your dinner plans straight out of the water. Just think of Urban List like your fairy godmother, but one that knows where they keep the good wine. Date night coming up? Here are the best date ideas Brisbane wide that aren’t dinner and a show.

Sail The River In A Picnic Boat

Want to live out that scene from The Notebook? You know, the one where Ryan Gosling is paddling a canoe while gazing romantically into Rachel McAdams’ eyes. Except instead of a canoe, it’s an electric GoBoat puttering down the Brisbane River. Without the hard work of paddling, you and your SO can cruise along with a picnic and some drinks. No boating licence required as these eco-friendly babies go slow and are easy to drive. 

Try Your Hand At Darts 

If you've got a competitive streak, and aren't afraid to let your date see it, Oche is the place to test your dart throwing skills over G&Ts and delicious bar food. The classic game has had a high tech makeover here, with electronic dartboards that keep score for you to put a stop to any arguements—because we don't want that on date night. Not only is it a heap of fun, but Oche also boasts a menu where everything is designed to be eaten with one hand, so you won't go hungry trying to hit that high score.

Blend Your Own Bottle Of Wine 

How do you make science experiments fun? Simple, add booze. This Wine Blending Workshop at City Winery Brisbane is the perfect place for you both to enhance your palate and create your own signature drop. Spend 1.5 hours learning the art of wine blending (and tasting) then bottle, seal and label your own blended bespoke wine. So come on all you wine lovers! Find out all the details here.

Get Loved Up At A Candlelight Concert

violinists playing surrounded by candles at a brisbane date idea
Image credit: Fever Up Candlelight | Facebook

Add candles to anything and it instantly feels romantic. So it should come as no surprise at all that when you pair hundreds of flickering candles and a live orchestra, something pretty damn magical happens: suddenly the urge to blurt out your first 'i love you' goes waaaayyyy up. Fever is known for throwing the dreamiest Candlelight Concerts in Brisbane, with a string of different musical-themed nights. From Queen to Coldplay, Amy Winehouse to Fleetwood Mac—you're bound to find something that'll make your partner feel super special.

Eat Your Way Through A 7-Course Dego 

Ok, this one is a dinner date—but it’s a dinner date with a difference. Instead of just sitting down to your typical entree, main, dessert, you’ll sip and sup your way through seven delectable courses from Milton’s Deer Duck Bistro. The restaurant itself is as unique as the experience, full of cosy corners and antique armchairs, so if you need talking points, the quirky lamps and odd paintings surrounding you are a good place to start. Or just ask for matched wines with each course and really loosen those tongues—you’ll be deep in conversation by dish three at the latest. Book here.

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Book In A Boujee Hotel Staycay 

Nothing says romance quite like breaking out of your day-to-day routine. Why not a complete location switch-up with a night away at a hotel with your squeeze? Say hello to a night of luxury, mini bar treats and fluffy oversized robes. For the full boujee influencer experience we’d suggest The Calile on James Street or Crystalbrook Vincent at Howard Smith Wharves, but you can fund a full list of the most luxurious hotels in Brisbane here.

Soak And Steam An Afternoon Away

3 outside baths surrounded by greenery on rooftop, a brisbane date idea
Image credit: Soak Bathhouse | Facebook

For a date that requires minimal movement, and definitely zero stress, Soak Bathhouse is the place to go. This stunning outdoor bathhouse will have you stripping down and soaking in the warm massaging bubbles of a hydrotherapy spa, taking a refreshing dip in a cold plunge pool, sweating it up in a private infrared sauna and blissing out with a private massage. In between, you can relax in the multiple inviting lounge areas, sipping on herbal tea in the shade or basking in the sunshine. 

Paint And Sip A Masterpiece 

If you're looking for ultimate paint and sip set up, look no further than Pinot & Picasso. Not only can these guys teach even the most novice of painters a thing or two about painting with acrylic on canvas, but they will also equip you with a glass of BYO wine to make the process all the more enjoyable. So whether you consider yourself creative or not, you're bound to have a good time and you'll even leave with your very own masterpiece to take home.

Learn To Shake Up Gin Cocktails

If you want a novel date idea in Brisbane, look no further, because the gin-loving mixologists as Dutch Courage are your ultimate wingmen. They host cocktail-making masterclasses where, under the helpful guidance of one of their talented bartenders, you and your squeeze can craft two creative cocktails—which you'll get to sample of course, along with a drink on arrrival. After the class, stick around and drink your way through the cocktail menu, which boasts a gin bathtub to share. Book yourself in here

Get Competitive Over Cocktails

pink hotel interior with tables and bar at hijinx hotel, a brisbane date idea
Image credit: Hijinx Hotel | Supplied 

Prepare to be puzzled with this multi-level challenge room utopia. The Hijinx Hotel is an immersive experience with 10 different quick play rooms that will test your skills in four minute rounds. Once you're done racing the clock, there'll be loads of Instagrammable moments and immersive experiences to explore in the quirky setting—think Wes Anderson and Willy Wonka combined. You can also head to the bar between games to sip on cocktails like the Bubble & Pop or the Penthouse Party, and order up a range of snacks to refuel once you're done. 

Cook Your Way To Their Heart

If you ask us, there’s no better skill in life than that of cooking, which is why Vanilla Zulu is one of our top picks for the perfect date idea in Brisbane. Run by award-winning Ched Mel Alafaci, this place is a one-stop-shop for learning everything there is to know about cooking. Choose from team-building cooking classes, traditional classes, or a six-week chef skills course to really get you in check. With a focus on fresh, fast, and delicious meals, you’ll be raring to get home and test out your newly acquired skills. Book yourself a class here.

Don A Blindfold For Dinner 

Calling all culinary daredevils, this new experience at a Brissie favourite will test your limits of trust. Dining in the Dark, hosted by C’est Bon in Woolloongabba is a blindfolded dining experience, with a top secret three course menu crafted by the team. The concept behind this experience is that by eliminating your sense of sight, you will be able to enjoy your meal on a more intense level. The entire night is an interactive experience and with a seafood, vegetarian and meat option, there is a menu available to suit everyone. 

Go On A Mystery Picnic Hunt

picnic platter with hands reaching for cheese
Image credit: AmazingCo | Facebook

While a park picnic with your partner always hits the spot, why not add a little adventure into the equation? Mystery picnics reimagine a classic date activity. If you both love a bit of puzzle-solving and some healthy teamwork, this experience is for you. You’ll be sent a series of riddles and clues to solve, each of which will send you to a different location around New Farm to pick up a stunning picnic spread of artisanal products. Romantic AND entertaining. Just tailor your picnic to your dietary requirements, and you’re all done. Read more about this prime date idea right here. There's also a Mt Tamborine version if you want to turn it into a full day affair. 

Cuddle Koalas And Feed Kangaroos

Skip dinner and dessert and start your cuddle sessions at the beginning of this date—cuddle a koala, we mean. At Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, you and your partner can cuddle Australia’s favourite furry friends, feed kangaroos and come face-to-face with dingoes. And there’s a new café that’s opened on the premises so once you’ve finished gushing over the cuddly cuties, you can have a bite to eat. Find out more here.

Hit The Trails On A Hike

We love to be wined and dined just as much as the next person, but it's all about balance and living in the sunshine state means we do have to try and enjoy said sunshine as much as possible. The best way to do that? Heading for some of the best hiking spots around Brisbane for your next wholesome weekend date. Whether you’re more a beginner in the hiking department or you’re getting ready to climb to Base Camp, there’s something for every skill level. Check out our full list of hiking spots here

Day Trip To A Dreamy Island Shore

arial view of Tangalooma Island coast
Image credit: Tangalooma Island Resort | Facebook

This Day Cruise to Tangalooma Island Resort on the famous Moreton Island is perfect for those who are desperate for a romantic getaway but struggling to find the time. This all inclusive package will take you from Brisbane City to Tangalooma Island Resort, with a full access passes to all of the resort’s facilities, including pools, restaurants and bars. Enjoy your day swimming in the ocean, lounging by the pool or getting involved in one of the complimentary experiences included in the ticket, with snorkel tours, ATV quad bike tours and marine discovery cruises to choose from. Did we mention you’ll also receive a $20 lunch voucher to enjoy at the resort? 

See Brisbane From New Heights

Explore Brisbane with a completely different perspective when you book this Scenic Helicopter Ride. Glide above the glorious Brisbane River, fly past the Story Bridge and admire the city in all its glory before tracing your way to the Mount Coot-tha area. Your pilot will guide you through the entire flight, pointing out memorable sights and well known areas, making this special experience one to treasure, perfect for a birthday gift or an anniversary experience. 

Tackle An Escape Room

Calling all wannabe Sherlock Holmes’, it's time to grab your Watson because we’ve got the activity for you. Brisbane is home to some of the best escape rooms in the country, if you’re brave enough to test your skills. If you’re chasing a horror experience (interesting date night vibes, but we got you), Escape Manor might be for you, but if prefer an end of the world action theme, Fox In The Box has your back. We’ve got a full list of the best escape rooms in town right here

Tee Off At Putt Putt

people playing holey moley and having fun
Image credit: Holey Moley | Facebook

There's so many great places to play mini golf in Brisbane, but we can’t go past Holey Moley for its crazy putt putt challenges and great vibes, especially for groups. Not only is the course full of quirks and tricky shots (and fully licensed, might we add), but there’s also multiple locations, including one in the heart of the Valley, just a short walk to some great bars and restaurants, so you can keep the good vibes going long after the nine holes are done. Though we have to warn you now, the competition can get pretty intense and cheating is almost always involved. 

Get Spooked On A Ghost Tour

Prepare to be scared (and hopefully running into each other's arms) on this Ghost Tour of Queensland’s largest burial site, Toowong Cemetery. Listen to real ghost stories from around Brisbane and explore the haunted grounds, learning about the history that makes this place so spooky—we hear there's been murders, and sightings of moving statues among lots of other creepy encounters. We should add that it only takes place on Friday and Saturday nights, so we hope you’re not afraid of the dark.

Looking for more romantic date night inspiration? Check here: 

Image credit: GoBoat | Facebook 

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