Since the first stint in 1949, the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers has bloomed and has now become a well-known event amongst Queenslanders.
Created to promote economic activity and tourism, this not so little 10-day festival has provided so much more for the “Garden City”.
After smashing attendance records last year, this year’s event is back bigger and better than ever! Here is a breakdown of the events on offer, from wine and cheese appreciated, to garden light shows, there is something for everyone!
FOR THE KIDS
- The Cubby House – With a mega sandpit, DIY workshops, free face painting, cooking activities and gardening tips, the little ones are guaranteed to have a blast while you are enjoying the live music and food of the Heritage Bank Festival of Food& Wine. Admission to the Cubby House is included in your ticket to the festival. These activities will run Saturday 21st Sept and Sunday 22nd Sept from 10 am – 5 pm.
- Grand Central Floral Parade – Kicking off on Saturday 21st September at 3 pm, you will want to get in early to grab a good viewing spot of all the beautiful floral floats. The parade starts on the corner of Herries and Hume St, turning right onto Ruthven St, right into Margaret St, left onto Hume St and finishing on the Godsall St oval. Be aware of road closures and plan your trip into town around it!
- Night Garden – Between Thursday 26th Sept and Saturday 28th Sept, make sure you head down to Queens Park at 6 pm to catch a glimpse of the amazing interactive lighting displays put on by Ergon Energy. Entry starts at $2 for the little ones, $5 for students/concession and $10 for adults.
- Parkland Entertainment – Pack a picnic, soak up those spring rays and bask in the beautiful musical entertainment in Laurel Bank Park. Free live entertainment will be on offer from Friday 20th Sept until Sunday 29th Sept.
- Sideshow Alley – If you have an adrenaline junkie on your hands, make sure you head down to Sideshow Alley in Frogs Hollow. Here you will find fireworks, rides, live entertainment, and circus tricks. This event has free entry and ride coupons start at $2 per ticket.
FOR THE WINE & BEER LOVER
- Wine and Cheese Appreciation – Learn how to taste and describe wine like a true sommelier at the Wine Bar of the Heritage Bank Food and Wine Festival. This free session includes tasting from nearby boutiques wineries ad cellar doors, plus accompanying cheeses.
- Beer Appreciation – If you are heading to the Heritage Bank Food and Wine Festival, be sure to head to Beer & BBQ for a lowdown on pale ales and pilsners.
- Talking Pubs Tour – Get your friend together and join a four-hour progressive tour of Toowoomba’s best pubs and bars. Included in your $99 ticket is appetizers at Bar Wunder, Entrées at Junk, Main meal at The Cube Hotel and dessert at George Banks, all including a glass of wine, a schooner of beer or a soft drink.
FOR THE FOODIE
- Qantas Gala Dinner – put on your best cocktail attire and get ready to dine in style in the heart of Toowoomba. Your $199 ticket will get you an amazing 6-course meal made from locally-sourced handcrafted food, with accompanying wine and beer. For more information, visit: www.tcof.com.au/qantas-gala-dinnerBBQ Tasting – Learn about low and slow BBQ wood-fired meats at the Heritage Bank Food and Wine Festival. Head to Beer and BBQ at 11 am, 1 pm or 3 pm between Friday 20th Sept to Sunday 22nd Sept.
- Foodie Progressive Tour – Discover more of Toowoomba’s food scene on this progressive tour. The tour includes meals and drinks at all venues. Tickets start at $139 and you can attend on Friday 27th Sept or Saturday 28th Sept. (Each tour showcases different restaurants).
FOR THE GREEN THUMB
- Toowoomba Exhibition Gardens – If flowers and horticulture are more your things, why not check out the Toowoomba Exhibition Gardens. You might even learn a gardening tip or two. The gardens are open from Friday 20th Sept until Sunday 29th Sept and entry starts at $5 (with all ticket proceeds going to charity). For all garden locations, visit: www.tcof.com.au/toowoomba-exhibition-gardens
- Succulent Fest – Don’t miss this one day market! Market entry is $2 and it will give you access to various succulent stalls.
- Gardens Tour (Morning or Afternoon session) – Spend the morning or afternoon on a guided tour of 4 of Toowoomba’s prize-winning gardens, hosted by Stonestreet Coaches. Tickets are $45pp and pick up is from Picnic Point Bus Zone.
- Cultivate Country Garden Tour – Want to see some of the region’s award-winning large gardens and the country surrounding Toowoomba, then this is the tour for you. Guided by renowned local horticulturalists, Brian Sams and tour specialist, Wendy Allen, these day tours will visit some of the region’s hidden gems. Tickets are $135 and include the all-day tour, morning tea afterward and transport. Tours run from Saturday 21st Sept till Thursday 26th Sept and start at Toowoomba Visitor Information Centre.
If you are after any further information on the Toowoomba Carnival of Flowers or you would like to check out the full 10-day schedule, head to www.tcof.com.au.
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