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The Ekka 2018

Friday 10th of August to Sunday 19th of August
by Sally Foster (follow)
Make the most of this most amazing of QLD events

I have loved The Ekka since I was a little girl. The sights, sounds and smells just always take me back to being bright eyed in pigtails chowing down on a strawberry ice cream and begging my Dad for another ride on the dodgems.

I know that The Ekka has changed a lot of the years, especially the show bag pavilion which has completely transformed, but it is still a really fun day out for your family if you want to brave the crowds and bust out your wallets.

Credit: The Ekka Facebook Page

Hot Tip: If you are a member of RACQ, you can buy your Ekka tickets online and save 15%

So what makes the Ekka so special to Queenslanders? What can you expect in 2018. I will break it down for you:

The Animals

We love our farmers in Queensland, and the Ekka is a great way to teach your kids more about what goes into farming. Farmers from all over the state will showcase their animals and produce. There will be cows, goats, horses, sheep and poultry and some farmers will be there to meet you so that you can ask questions.

Credit: The Ekka Facebook Page

For the kids, there is the iconic animal nursery where they can get up close to more than 550 of their favourite farmyard animals. Kids can feed and pat calves, lambs, ducklings, chooks and goats. There is also a chance to cradle a baby chick and pat a baby piglet (oh my god!).

If you have a dog or cat lover, there are so many owners showing off their favourite furry friend in the hopes of bringing home a ribbon. I was lucky enough one year to go on the day that had both English Bulldogs and Ragdoll Cats. Pretty much heaven for me.

The Displays

I am yet to meet someone who wasn't blown away by the amazing cake creations that show up year after year at the Ekka. They are truly AMAZING and put my attempt at a Women's Weekly special cake into shame.

There are also a huge range of arts and crafts, flowers, photography, fashion and so much more in pavilions across the grounds.

The Entertainment

Your entry into the Ekka gives you access to a huge range of entertainment. Some of the most family friendly includes woodchoppers, children's stage shows, live music, acrobatics and costume parades.

For more information on the Entertainment on each day, see here.

Credit: The Ekka Facebook Page


Finish your day with the spectacular fireworks show. Each night from 6-8pm there is a huge fireworks display and live music that your kids will remember forever. I surely do!


The rides at the Ekka are SO MUCH FUN. Old fashioned ferris wheel, dodgem cars and haunted houses are right next to new terrifying looking spinny rides that makes me nauseous just looking at them.

The sounds of squeeling, screaming and laughter will be sure to put a smile on your face the moment you step into sideshow alley. After a ride you can also try your hand at the games and win a stuffed toy or some form of inflatable something. It's all in good fun and not to be taken too seriously.

Credit: The Ekka Facebook Page

The Food

My favourite part of the Ekka. The most iconic foods include dagwood dogs, strawberry ice cream, butter board ham sandwiches and fairy floss. But the Ekka is now known for it's amazing gourmet and fresh food options. You can visit a cooking demonstration, visit a steakhouse or have a drink at one of the many bars. So it is not all deep fried and sugar laden food! (But that is my favourite I must admit).

Credit: The Ekka Facebook Page

The Showbags

Love them or hate them, your kids are sure to con you into buying them at least ONE show bag. The show bag pavillion is the place of many a kid wheeling and dealing with their parents to get not just the Cadbury bag but also the PJ Mask bag which they simply cannot live without. Money a bit tight? The iconic and legendary bertie beetle bag is still cheap as (although not as cheap as it once was!) and is the only place you can get these chocolate treats outside of the Ekka.

So have I convinced you yet? Here is some more information to help you plan your day:

The Ekka is on from Friday 10th August to Sunday 19th August 2018. It is open 9am to 8pm. See here for individual attraction and pavilion opening times.

Getting there: Secure parking is available. See here for locations and prices. If you book now you will save.

Public transport is undoubtedly the easiest way to get there. You can catch the train to Exhibition Station which opens up specially for the Ekka. Or take a bus to the dedicated bus stops right outside. Visit Translink to plan your day.

Helpful Facilities: ATMs, EFTPOS available at the gate, toilets, lockers, drinking taps, free wifi, secure mobile phone charging, six parents rooms with a microwaves, sink, breastfeeding and nappy change facilities, lost and found and first aid.

Kid Safe Program: The Ekka gets really crowded and kids can wander off, that is what they do. So there is a kid safe program where you can get wrist bands and the Police will write down your contact details on the band so if you and your child become separated we will be able to reunite you ASAP. Read more about this here

Accessibility: Scooter, stroller and wheelchair hire available. Restrooms with disabled access. Ramps providing easy access between roads and footpaths. Dedicated drop off / pick up zones with disability access. To find out more see here.

Ticketing: An adults pass is $35 and a children's pass for over 5 years old is $20. Under 5 is free. There is a range of family passes available. To book and find out prices see here.

Download your Ekka map here

Have more questions? There is a frequently asked questions page here.

I hope you enjoy the Ekka in 2018! What else are you excited about coming up in Brisbane? Please let us know in the comments below, we would love to hear from you!

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