Let us start off with a little test. We will tell you “Australia”, and you will tell us the first thing that comes to your mind. “Kangaroos”, says the lady in the front row. “Beaches”, says the man next to her. “Funny accents”, yells the joker from a few rows back. And what’s that you said, mister in the back row? Mel Gibson? Yup, people do say the craziest things.
It’s not a huge surprise that none of you have said “booming nightlife” as the first thing that comes to mind when you mention Australia. Still, with a country that large and that isolated from the rest of the world, people still need to find ways to entertain themselves. And, oh man, do they! Australians are generally laid back, fun loving people with an amazing sense of humor. A simple casual meeting could lead to a casual drink, and before you know it you’re enjoying a night out on the town. In the following lines you will find a brief overview of the nightlife in the biggest cities of Australia (since you’re probably not somewhere in the middle of nowhere exploring the outback in search of quality nightlife).
Even though Sydney is infamous for high costs of living (and, consequentially, high costs of partying), it still offers the most colorful and diverse nightlife in this part of the world. The Central Business District (CBD, or simply the City) is the ticking heart of Sydney. Cultural and commercial center by day, by night the City transforms into the epicenter of Sydney’s party life. From restaurants to lounge bars to night clubs – you’ll find it all there (sometimes all in one place!). Whether you’re looking for a pleasant surrounding for a drink and a conversation or you’re aiming to dance the soles off of your shoes before the sun comes up – Sydney has you covered. The fun zone is mostly located on and around George Street, but don’t be afraid to head on down to the Darling Harbor or the adjoining neighborhood of Woolloomoolo (ain’t that a mouthful!)
Australia’s “other” metropolis has long been considered subpar to Sydney in the nightlife department, but in recent years it has displayed a serious intention to rival the more popular party destination. The main party area lies between Melbourne’s CBD and a buzzing beach suburb called St Kilda. The venues dotted around the Yarra River offer everything from fine dining and lazy lounging to the most loose night clubs. If you’re bored in Melbourne, you’re not trying hard enough.
If you’re looking to party wild “Spring Breakers” style, we present you the Gold Coast. Surfers Paradise, the Gold Coast’s beach suburb popularly known as “Gold Coast Nightlife Precinct” is the most popular party destination in Australia, both among tourists and Aussies. Surfers Paradise offers an impressive variety of entertainment, from DJs to live bands, and the party doesn’t stop until the sun is well above the horizon. If you plan on going there, be prepared for anything and make sure you load up on some quality condoms for protection.
When you’re widely known as “the most isolated city in the world”, it only makes sense that you will develop a variety of ways to entertain yourself. If you find yourself in Perth looking for a fun time, you’re most likely to find it in the Northbridge section of the city. Glitzy night clubs and chill out bars abound in the area bordered by Fitzgerald Street and William Street, with Friday nights particularly drawing out large crowds of party loving individuals.
Previously mentioned destinations are hard acts to follow, and Brisbane comes up a bit short when it comes to the party scene. That doesn’t mean that Brisbane is devoid of fun things to do, just that you should lower the bar of expectations. You will have no problems finding pleasant venues to grab a bite and knock back a few, and if your dancing shoes are itching for a ride they are most likely to take you to Family, the best known night club in the area.
If you’re looking for a bit different entertainment, the incredibly vast Outback is sporadically filled with colorful local bars filled with quirky locals all too happy to shoot some bull with you over a cold one. So, take your pick, head on Down Under and enjoy yourself!
Writer, traveler, coffee addict, cookie monster, endorser of all things good and admonisher of all things bad (good kind of bad excluded)