Brisbane a hot spot for visitors due to mega summer of sport

From the Battle of Brisbane to the Bledisloe Cup, the only thing hotter than Brisbane’s summer temperatures was its calendar of sport, with six major events attracting more than 355,000 people.

Residents and visitors flocked to Brisbane’s world-class venues to see drawcard events including the third Bledisloe Cup rugby union Test, The Ashes cricket, the Rugby League World Cup finals, the Battle of Brisbane 2 boxing event, the Brisbane International tennis tournament and the Brisbane Global Rugby Tens.

Brisbane City skyline

Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said major events had a significant impact on Brisbane, injecting more than $100 million into the city’s economy every year.

“Events shine a spotlight on our city, attract intrastate, interstate and international visitors, fill hotel rooms and boost our hospitality, retail and service industries,” Cr Quirk said.

“Brisbane welcomed a record 7.9 million international and domestic visitors in the year to September 2017, while Brisbane Airport recorded its strongest growth in international passenger numbers in a decade, welcoming 5.8 million travellers last year.”

Cr Quirk said major events also raised the profile of Brisbane to audiences across the globe.

“The Rugby League World Cup broadcast reached almost 150 countries, the Battle of Brisbane 2 boxing match was viewed by nearly 700,000 viewers in the US, while 70 hours of the Brisbane International tennis tournament reached more than 220 countries,” he said.

The city’s economic development board Brisbane Marketing works to secure events for the city and runs promotional, marketing and community engagement initiatives to attract visitors and create an exciting and memorable experience for residents, visitors and players alike.

Brisbane Marketing General Manager of Tourism & Major Events, Anne-Maree Moon, said the impact of major events extended long after the final whistle had blown.

“Whether it’s the stunning 80-metre mural at Milton Road which pays tribute to the first Wallabies Indigenous jersey or engagement with local junior rugby clubs during the Brisbane Global Rugby Tens, major events deliver many legacy outcomes for the city,” Ms Moon said.

“Major events are a key growth sector for Brisbane and we’re committed to attracting and growing our calendar of events in line with the recommendations from the Brisbane 2022 New World City Action Plan.”

After a mega summer of sport, Brisbane is heading into a strong season of cultural events.

Now showing at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre, Disney’s Aladdin musical is attracting visitors from across Queensland and interstate, the biggest ever Brisbane Comedy Festival is underway, and the World Science Festival Brisbane will once again inspire a love of science across five days from 21 March.

Cultural events will continue into winter with the Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives exhibition at the Queensland Museum from 16 March - 26 August and Patricia Piccinini’s Curious Affection exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art from 24 March – 5 August.

For more information on events in Brisbane, go to