What to Do in Ipswich, Queensland for Families and Fun


What to Do in Ipswich, Queensland for Families and Fun

When you step into a city full of history, everything feels different. You can sense the age of the homes and buildings, each carefully preserved and full of authenticity and charm. What if you could live in a place full of historical appeal and heritage and still have easy access to the modern rail system and national road network? 

You can! Welcome to Ipswich, Queensland, one of the oldest and loveliest provincial cities in Northeastern Australia.

If you're seeking a place to settle down, you can't go wrong with this progressive and diverse leader in sport, education, technology, and—yes, residential development. When you come for a visit to see for yourself, will you know what to do in Ipswich? 

We've created this guide to help visitors and prospective homeowners understand the depth and breadth of activities in this stunning city. You'll find attractions for families, places to eat, and the can't-miss local festivals that set incredible Ipswich apart. 

Read on to plan your visit and see why families are flocking to Ipswich. 

What to Do in Ipswich With Kids

Ipswich is undeniably an excellent place to move if you've got a gaggle of kids in tow. Education is a priority in the city, which features your choice of private and state government schools, plus two universities. The kids will also keep busy after school, as Ipswich houses over 500 parks where children can let off their after-school steam. 

The fun doesn't have to stop at the weekend, however. Below, we've listed a few of our top family-friendly attractions. There will be no shortage of sights to see near your Queensland home. 

Queens Park & Ipswich Nature Centre

Queens Park is arguably home to one of the best playgrounds in Ipswich. There are areas for waterplay, perfect for cooling off on a hot day. Children are fond of the flying foxes, which will undoubtedly tire them out! 

The park is home to stunning Japanese Gardens, ripe for relaxing or exploring. There is no shortage of shade beneath the trees. Best of all, parents appreciate easy access to toilets, food, and drink on the premises.

The Ipswich Nature Centre is right in the park, too. There are native animals, farm animals, and a full aviary of birds. Admission is free all year-round.

The Workshops Rail Museum

Ipswich is the birthplace of rail in Queensland, and the Workshops Rail Museum tells the story of the first train to run in the state. It is far from a stale history museum, however! This kid-friendly museum is colourful and hands-on, with plenty to touch, see, and do, so active kids will have a ball.

The Workshops is an excellent destination during school holidays as they run free educational programming.

Robelle Domain & Orion Lagoon

Sometimes you need a place to beat the heat. Ipswich families favour Robelle Domain Parklands and the nearby Orion Lagoon. It has one of the city's most robust and engaging water play areas. Bask on the beach, enjoy the sculpture pool, or let loose among the waterfalls. 

Parents looking to stay dry will have plenty of shade beneath the breathtaking ghost gums throughout the park. 

Our Favourite Restaurants in Ipswich 

Ipswich may have residents from 163 unique countries, but they all share something in common: they need to eat! The diversity of this stunning city ensures that there is no shortage of flavourful, delicious ethnic fare. Ipswich's vicinity to local farms ensures that produce, meat, and dairy are always fresh and local, and you can certainly taste the difference. 

We've highlighted a few unique and exemplary Queensland restaurants below. We hope you'll give one a try when you stop into town to see the sights.

Bakehouse Steakhouse

After decades of sitting dormant, the Bakehouse Steakhouse is back. Enter the pink door nestled within the historic 1800’s brick façade and you will find a fresh, vibrant and contemporary reimagination of a traditional steakhouse. Serving up great food, your favourite beverages and endless fun times, the Bakehouse Steakhouse will be a truly memorable dining experience.


Char'd, located at the Prince Alfred Hotel, is an excellent destination for fresh and flavorful farm-to-table dining. It hosts international chefs who know how to utilise local ingredients to show off the best Queensland has to offer. The food is as stunning as it is delicious, making for an Instagrammable evening of incredible eats. 

Indian Mehfil

Whatever your tastes, we know you'll find something you'll love on Indian Mehfil's menu. This Indian eatery has been a staple in Ipswich for a decade for a reason. Their extensive and expansive menu shows off the finest South Asian flavours for dine-in or takeaway. 

Heisenberg Haus 

The ambience alone justifies a visit to Heisenberg Haus, Ipswich's premier German-inspired eatery. They're open for dinner and drinks at lunch and dinner, with a unique menu packed with Bavarian favourites and bespoke comfort food. End the night with an authentic apple strudel, and you'll want to book your next reservation before you've paid the bill!

Fourthchild Cafe & Restaurant

Locals hail Fourthchild as the first "hip" local cafe in the Ipswich area. It has an artsy, bohemian vibe and a life-changing breakfast menu. Order the Crème Brulee French Toast, and you may never be the same. 

Outdoor Activities in Ipswich

Ipswich has a subtropical climate. Once you're here year-round, you can expect hot summers and mild winters. Our fantastic weather means you'll have plenty of time to explore the many parks and outdoor spaces pastoral Queensland has to offer.

Below, you'll find a few of the most popular outdoor attractions. Be sure to time your visit to ensure you'll see the best of our beautiful city! 

Fishing in Ipswich

You can enjoy a day of fishing without leaving town. All our favourite fishing spots are local and accessible and show off the beauty of stunning Northeastern Australia. 

Consider visiting one of the following fishing spots:

  • Barellan Point
  • Ipswich Canoe Trail
  • Kholo Bridge

Most of the best fishing spots are ideal for kayak fishing, though you may be able to secure a coveted land-based spot. Nearly all of them have playgrounds and parks nearby. Put a prawn on your hook, and you're sure to go home with some fresh bass, bream, or flathead. 

Picnicking in Ipswich

Many of Ipswich's over 500 parks are perfect for a picnic! Pack your own hamper, or grab some take-away from one of the local eateries. Our favourite picnicking sites feature lovely views that show off the natural beauty of our Queensland home.

Consider packing a basket and heading to one of the following parks:

  • Bob Gamble Park
  • Colleges Crossing Recreational Reserve
  • White Rock Conservation Park
  • Johnston Park
  • Kholo Gardens

Any of these destinations is ideal for an outdoor day with family, a romantic date, or a solo lunch under the sun. Most of these locations have public loos, so you can spend the day without worrying.

Hiking in Ipswich

Ipswich is full of scenic walking and hiking trails, many of which even locals don't know about! They run the gamut between easy, casual hikes and more challenging terrain.

If you're keen to tour Ipswich on foot, consider visiting one of the following trails for a beautiful and memorable walk:

  • Galmen Circuit
  • Mount Blaine Trail
  • Goolman Circuit
  • Flinders Peak Summit Trail
  • Little White Rock Lookout Circuit
  • White Rock Ridge Trail
  • White Rock Multi-user trail

Even at a slow walking pace, you can complete most of the above hikes within five hours. We recommend packing a lunch to enjoy at the summit, especially in White Rock. Many of the above trails are great for cycling, too!

Group and Solo Sightseeing in Ipswich 

Did you know that Ipswich is home to over 7000 heritage home sites? If you're fond of history, you won't run out of original landmarks to take in and explore. Plus, Ipswich has been home to Aboriginal Australians since before European settlers reached the city, so the area's rich history spans centuries. 

We've described some of our favourite, must-see sites in Ipswich below. 

Historic Homes in Ipswich

Ipswich has a nickname: the heritage city. The gorgeous historic homes throughout the city are one reason why. Many date back to the 1800s, offering a tour of social and architectural history for any onlooker. 

Some of the most remarkable houses have become businesses in the intervening centuries, while others remain residential homes. Locals love these darling domiciles, as they add unmistakable character to their beloved city.

Take a drive around some of the old inner suburbs such as Woodend, Coalfalls, Sadliers Crossing, Eastern Heights and Newtown – and get out and walk to take in the majestic architecture gems lining the streets.

Ipswich Arts

While Ipswich is full of historic charm, contemporary local artists add to the ambience by the day! The bustling areas of town are full of murals and street art. You can tour the gorgeous work on foot throughout Ipswich Central. 

We think the following murals are worth a look:

  • "The Unveiling" in Icon Alley
  • The birds at Central Mission Church
  • The owl on Brisbane Street
  • "Breath" at the Dancing Bean Cafe
  • "Finding Light in the Shadow" at Studio 188
  • "Distant Country" at Ipswich Health Plaza

We recommend visiting these larger-than-life works on foot. As you walk, stop into the fantastic local cafes in Ipswich Central. 

If it's too hot to roam the colourful streets, you can have an equally illuminating experience at the Ipswich Art Gallery, housed in one of our city's restored heritage buildings. It features a kid's gallery space where little ones can enjoy hands-on artsy activities.

Adult and youth programmes are constantly changing, and many local families visit throughout the year so that they won't miss an exhibit!

Other Can't-Miss Attractions

Are you looking for something outside the box for your Ipswich outing? Between heritage sites, culture, and shopping, it's impossible to fit every worthwhile attraction on one list!

Here are a few other notable destinations that might pique your interest:

  • Antiquing at The Black Museum
  • Catch a Concert at Studio 188
  • See a Show at Ipswich Little Theatre
  • Tour St. Mary's Church
  • Browse Cooneana Heritage Centre
  • Golf a round at Brookwater Golf and Country Club
  • Wander the farm at Watercress Creek Olives and Limes

That's merely a taste of all Ipswich has to offer to tourists and residents alike. Needless to say, this quirky, multicultural city has no shortage of things to see.

Ipswich Festivals and Celebrations

Are you unsure when to come and visit us in Ipswich? You may consider timing your trip during one of our popular local festivals or celebrations. A few of our most popular local events include:

  • Queensland Open Golf Championships - March
  • The Ipswich Cup - June
  • Festival of Horsepower - June
  • The Ipswich Show - May 
  • Christmas in Ipswich - December
  • Spark Ipswich Cultural Festival - July
  • Galvanised History Festival - August
  • Venture Outdoor Events - January
  • Planes, Trains, and Autos Festival - April

No matter when you're in town, there's nearly always something exciting on in Ipswich! Most of the above events are family-friendly, perfect for a visit with kids. Be sure to visit each event website before your trip to confirm dates and locations, which are subject to change annually.

Are You Ready to Move to Ipswich?  

If you're looking to relocate to beautiful Queensland, we can help you find real estate in Ipswich near all the stunning sights and unique attractions we've discussed above. We'll help you sell your former home by instructing you on what adds value to a house in Australia. Then, we'll guide you as you navigate the house appraisal process. 

Are you ready to become our neighbour? Browse our featured properties to discover your new dream home in Northeastern Australia. Once you've moved in, the fun can begin, and you'll enjoy everything on our list of what to do in Ipswich!