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Getting back into a routine after the summer break is lifesaving (let’s all say it together – hallelujah!), but with another 10 week term on the calendar it will probably do us all some good if we make a little time each week to enjoy the great outdoors – even if for just an hour or two after school. Plus no doubt, some of you are reading this, thinking that you really miss your kids, now they’re back to school.

Go on, clear your mind after being in the office, reconnect with the kids after a long day apart, re-energise (and wear out) the kids and give the entire family an excuse to feel healthy (yes there are health benefits too) and just hang out together.

We’ve got the warmth of summer days to hang on to well after 4pm, so let’s run through some child-friendly, fun things to do before dinner that won’t break the bank.

After School Fun

  • Walking: Beach walks, strolling along the esplanade or river banks, hit your local park, lake or even just stroll around the block.
  • Bike rides: There are many designated bike paths in Brisbane and on the Gold Coast, or you could create your own route around your neighbourhood?
  • Playgrounds: Let that energy out on the slippery dip or do time trials how fast you can move through your favorite playground. Looking for inspo and some fresh grounds check out playgrounds on the Gold Coast and Brisbane.
  • Swimming/surfing: Hit the beach, your local public pool or have some after school playdates at a home pool.
  • Bush Walk: Get amongst nature, stay close to home with Burleigh Headlands or the Roma Street Parklands.
  • Treasure Hunt: Major parenting points if you organised with a treasure map, clues and a buried treasure for the kids at school pick up!
  • Old School Games: There is a reason these games have been around for decades! Tiggy, Hide & Seek, Bullrush, Hopscotch, Duck Duck Goose, Skipping, Hand Ball (if you can think of any others let us know!)
  • Skate Park: Grab the scooter or skateboard (and pads if you ride like me!) and ride the local skate park to work on your tricks.

Fun on a budget
If you want to mix things up a bit there are many community activities that suit the tightest budget.

The Gold Coast and Brisbane City Council’s Active and Healthy programs have regular activities with some costing as little as $5.

Some of these events are ideal for after school fun, while others are perfect for those with toddlers who are at home for the day.

  • Kids Zumba
  • Kids running groups
  • Pilates
  • Walking
  • Surfing
  • Surf fitness
  • Cheerleading
  • Ballet
  • Tai chi
  • Cycling

For more free healthy and active fun and to check times and locations, check out Gold Coast City Council and Brisbane City Council websites.

Katy Ferguson

Katy Ferguson  

Katy began her career as a journalist in Coffs Harbour in 2006. Her work has since taken her to Canberra, Melbourne and the Gold Coast where she now lives with her husband, two daughters and crazy American Staffy. Since having kids, Katy now enjoys life as a freelance journalist for Seven News on the Gold Coast and River 949 in Ipswich. She also writes for haven and scout magazines. In her spare time you'll find her learning to surf at Currumbin Alley, walking her dog around Emerald Lakes and being a part-time taxi driver to her kids!