Christmas is the time of year when you get together with your family and friends and relax for the holiday break. It’s also a time for finding a world of mystery and excitement in local events and unique displays. The Enchanted Garden in Brisbane is one of those events.
The Gardens are open all year round, but for the month of December, it undergoes a magical transformation. This includes twinkling fairy lights, shimmering gardens, and beautifully lit weeping figs simulating a fairy tale wonderland.
The Enchanted Gardens in Brisbane has been running for several years and has grown in popularity each year. The first time I went was in 2018, and it was still very busy for a relatively new event. I’ve also gone to two more since then.
Special events like this make visiting Brisbane well worth it,and it's always a big hit for families with younger children. It's a mesmerizing experience while walking through a rainforest decorated with lights, strobes, and a massive colour fusion.
I would definitely recommend any first-timer or tourist to visit the Enchanted Garden display in the Roma Street Parklands. And, of course, for those who have been before to share it with someone new.
Initially, it was a free event, however, that’s changed in the last couple of years. While the displays and excitement still live up to the hype, I was happier to visit when it was free.
Since there is now an entrance fee and a fixed time schedule, I find it a little less flexible to go there on a whim. Does that mean I wouldn't go again? Of course not – and, like I said, as a Brisbane local, I’ve visited twice more.
In summary, I think the Enchanted Garden Event is an experience anyone should try to make time for on their next visit. For any Brisbane locals or visitors out there, don't miss out on this fantastic opportunity, and go and explore it while you can!
Tip: I recommend attending during the week as Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays can be crowded.
The Enchanted Rainforest takes patrons through a series of shimmering garden beds, cactus displays, and delicately lit weeping figs to the treetops of a twinkling rainforest. Additionally, it is set amid winding pathways bordered by towering trees and lush foliage.
It treats visitors to a magnificent evening walk, lit with the warm glow of mesmerizing lights. Along with one entry point, visitors are guided on a one-way path, which helps keep the flow of traffic consistent.
Lights will twinkle, and decorations will sparkle! But this isn't a tacky DIY display, and the glittering lights are always very well received by the guests.
Although, remember that the beautiful plants are delicate at Roma Street Parkland, so visitors are asked to please keep to the paths and refrain from touching the display while enjoying the event.
For the rest of the year, Roma Street Parklands covers 16 hectares of sprawling lawns, designer gardens, and a playground that’s open 24 hours a day. It’s a favourite among the locals whether you're looking for a picnic spot, a place to take the kids, exercise or simply a scenic walk.
Note that dogs are NOT allowed in the Brisbane Enchanted Garden Event. The garden has many delicate plants and displays, and dogs could potentially harm them.
The Enchanted Garden event is a fun and festive experience, but it's also a relatively quick one. Most people spend roughly 30 minutes to an hour enjoying the one-way path and moving among the crowds through the different displays.
With that said, if you're looking to make a night of it, they have food trucks and drinks available on the celebration lawns in front of the parklands. They are paired together with a light show in the man-made waterfall.
Apart from that, you have plenty of entertainment options within walking distance of Roma Street Parklands (the CBD is 10 minutes away), making this a great place to start your evening.
The Enchanted Garden tickets are $7 per person, and those under two years old are Free. This cost gives you access to the display gardens, but it's free to hang around the Celebration lawns and access the Food Trucks.
More importantly, bookings are essential, and tickets sell out fast. I recommend booking when the tickets come on sale in November to avoid disappointment.
Session dates are announced a few weeks before the event starts each year. It generally runs for an entire month, every night from the end of November until the end of December. The first entry starts around 630 p.m. (around sunset), and the last entry is around 9 p.m.
To see the full effects of the show, I don't recommend going too early, even though this is the best time for kids.
Sunset is around 6:30pm to 7:00pm around Christmas each year, especially when you count "blue hour" or "last light." Therefore, the lights will be more prominent after 7 p.m. or even 730 p.m.
On the other hand, if you have a family member who needs a special low-sensory environment, the early session will be a perfect time.
The Enchanted Garden are held at the Roma Street Parklands right in the heart of Brisbane City. This is conveniently located behind the Roma Street Train Station (Great for Transport) and only ten minutes walk from most areas in the central business district.
Since the event is in the centre of Brisbane, you can get there easily enough from anywhere in Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, or the Gold Coast. This transport includes:
Bus to Roma Street Station and a 5-minute walk.
Train to Roma Street Station and a 5-minute walk
Driving your own car
Taxi / Uber.
Ferry to North Quay Terminal and walk 10 minutes from there
As Roma Street Station is the hub of public transport in Brisbane, you can get from anywhere in Brisbane. Afterwards, you simply walk five minutes behind the station to where the Enchanted Garden start.
Trains and buses are the most convenient modes of transport and what I recommend in this situation.
Taxis and Ubers would be my next best option with limited walking, but this depends on where you're coming from. Consequently, starting from the CBD or the surrounding suburbs will be easy and relatively cheap.
Driving your own car would be my last option, but still possible if you have a large group travelling with you. You might be lucky for on-street parking, but public car parking facilities in the city can be expensive and busy around this area. If you drive, give yourself plenty of time to find a spot and arrive at the gardens on time.
There are options to enjoy the Enchanted Garden event in Brisbane without breaking the bank in accommodation. Staying in this vibrant city on a budget is relatively straightforward since it offers options for every style and price point.
Whether you prefer the comfy cosiness of a backpacker dorm or the high-rise luxury of a fancy hotel, there's plenty to choose from.
Simply pick your favourite style and facilities in the CBD, and you'll be good to go. The best part is you can easily walk to the Enchanted Garden event from there without extra transportation.
Re-fuel with premium food truck eats from local vendors on the sprawling green lawns of the Celebration and Lakeside Precincts. Some of these include:
Gelato a Go-Go
Yummi Fruit Ice-Creamery
Dinky D's Donuts
Sate House Fusion
SAMBA CATERING CO
BBQ Roadshow Low'n'Slow
Flavours of Eataly
Apart from that, you can indulge in Roma Street Parkland’s culinary offerings in the Garden Room Café, which serves specialty bites into the evening.
Otherwise, you can always pack a picnic, arrive early, and enjoy dinner beforehand. Plus, you can bring your own drinks to one of the few public places in Brisbane that allow them. Although, note that the Roma Street Parklands are only licensed until 8 p.m.
Last Updated 8 November 2023