I love visiting markets. Most markets these days have some form of entertainment, but you don't go to these markets for the entertainment, it is just something that is happening while you have your coffee and brunch.
Everyone loves a market, but which ones are the most fun?
Yet there are a number of markets that are worth visiting for the fun factor. These are the most fun markets that I have visited in Brisbane. If you know of any that are more fun, please let me know and I will put them on my list to visit.
Eagle Farm Markets: Best in Kids Fun
Eagle Farm Markets in Ascot are hosted every Sunday from early until 12:30 pm within the grounds of the historic Eagle Farm Racecourse. This is a fairly typical market, but the location means that you don't feel too crowded. Like other markets, there is a food court for meals and of course, the obligatory musical entertainment.
But for kids, this has to be the best markets in Brisbane. Because of the wonderful location there are lots of room for kids activities such as a mobile petting zoo, mini racers, clowns, jumping castles, zorbing balls, pony rides and much more. These activities will vary as different providers turn up each week.
The main downside is that the markets themselves are not free, so you have to pay just to go in and see what games and activities are currently on.
Boundary Street Markets: The start of a Night Out on the Town
I love these markets. With a far more fun feel than the Eat Street Markets in Hamilton, the Boundary Street Markets still have a wide selection of food. The main problem is that lack of seating, but that can be solved by buying food you can eat while walking around looking at various stalls or arriving as early as possible.
But the food is only the beginning. With the main food stalls area next to the Motor Room Bar, you can enjoy the live music from this bar as you eat, then head up into the bar later to drink, dance and party.
The markets also host a wide variety of events. They have had wrestling as well as a Brazilian dance festival.
Tivioli Markets and Drive in Theatre: Markets and a Movie
Another evening market experience is the Tivoli Twighlight Market at the Tivoli Drive in Theatre out at Chuwar, Ipswich. The markets run from 4 to 8 pm every Saturday and is free. Stay for the movies that start at 6:30 or 7 pm and you have to pay $10 for a car parking spot to watch a double feature.
Remember you don't have to take your kids. Oldies can relive the fun and romance of the drive-ins of their youth as well and teenagers can experience what they might have seen in movies and TV shows set in the era when drive-ins were common.
Getting up for a market that is only open on Sundays from 6 am to 10:30 am might not sound like a lot of fun. However, despite the inconvenient opening hours, the Northey Street Organic Markets has a great community feel.
Rather than rely on the usual generic bands and performers that other markets use, all entertainment at the Northey Street Markets comes from buskers. This could just be the typical hippie with a guitar but the markets attract a range of buskers and so you never know what you are going to get.
Definitely a fun market even if you are not into organic produce and a must visit market for people who are. Keep an eye out for their various events. One of the most exciting ones they host every year is the Harvest Festival. This wonderful multi-cultural festival features farm and harvest related music and dance from around the world.
Another one that is great for the kids, The Manly Creative Markets has a wonderful community vibe with many local craft makers selling their products. What I like about this market is that is not as slick or well refined as some other markets, with both the fun and the products having a real local feel.
As with any community orientated market, the entertainment is orientated to buskers, making the music far more entertaining than the generic bands. Though sometimes the entertainment value comes from the amateur feel.
For kids there is always something for them to do. At the very least there will be face painting and a jumping castle, but like other markets, it all depends on who is there on the day. It is also a great place for special events. The two that I know of are their Halloween and Christmas events.
To be honest, I wouldn't want to pack up the kids in the car and drive them across town just for this market, but if you are in the local area then it can be a great place to visit. Alternatively plan to include it in a day trip to the area if you are coming from afar. Given that the market runs every Sunday from 8 am to 3 pm it is easy to pop in here.
I read your articles regularly and wondering if you can help me with some information. I have been going to the Rocklea Markets for years and buying plants from a seller who has had an amazing range. Last weekend he was no longer there. I feel sure that with the business he has he must have gone somewhere else and am wondering if you can let me know how I can access this information. Regards Jill