Australia is as fun as it is beautiful. Known for idyllic beaches, bustling cities, surfing spots, and exciting wildlife, the country is a hugely popular tourist destination. But it also has one of the highest migration levels in the world, with millions claiming the country as their new home for its excellent quality of life. This happy mix of tourists, newcomers, and friendly locals has made Australia a hub of incredible nightlife. From upscale rooftop bars to backpacker hotspots, Australia really has it all. Here’s where to find the best nightlife in Australia.
Best Nightlife in Australia
Sydney is Australia’s most popular city, it’s a hit amongst travellers and those who decide to pack up and move to Australia. Of course, this has naturally led to the nightlife expanding into a mecca of clubs, bars, and pubs. It might not be as varied as other cities (*cough* Melbourne), but sipping cocktails and dancing in a bar on the harbour is always a good time. There’s a great string of bars along the harbour that promise sunset-to-late-night fun, but you can also head to Bondi for more laidback, beach bar vibes. From day until night, you’ll find a collection of partygoers enjoying the beach bars of Sydney.
Melbourne is like Sydney’s older, cooler sister. It might not look as ‘pretty’ as Sydney or have its 300 days of sunshine, but it’s worked on itself to offer some of the best nightlife in Australia. It might actually be the coolest in the country, with an abundance of street art, live music venues, and dive bars in Fitzroy. For glitzy nightclubs, rooftop bars, and packed dance floors, head to downtown Melbourne. Whatever your flavour, whether you prefer backpacker bars or a taste of luxury, you’ll find it in Melbourne.
3. Byron Bay
Known for its ultra-cool, hippy vibe, Bryon Bay is a partygoer’s paradise. The surf town is the ultimate beach bar location, with some of the most incredible scenery in Australia. Start your days on the sand, sipping cocktails until the night descends into one big beach party. It’s a particularly popular spot for backpackers, with a multitude of bar crawls. Further inland, you’ll find an array of fantastic live music venues, playing everything from reggae to soft rock.
If you’re visiting Darwin, you better believe you’ll be getting stuck into some of the best nightlife in Australia. It’s as hot as it is raucous, with the heat of Darwin elevating the parties. Darwin is loved by backpackers, so the hostel bars are always a good place to hit up, whether you’re backpacking or not. Once you’ve sufficiently warmed up your social battery, head to one of the city’s booming clubs for a night of nonstop dancing.
5. Airlie Beach
The Whitsunday Islands are considered to be one of the most beautiful places in the world. Crystal-clear waters, colourful marine life, and sugary white sand come together to create a tropical paradise. How to make paradise that bit better? Throw in an incredible nightlife scene. Airlie Beach is known for being the party capital of the Whitsundays, with a whole strip of bars, pubs, and clubs. There are countless boat parties, bars actually on boats, beachfront bars, and more.
6. Gold Coast
If you want to dance all night on a booming dancefloor, head to the Gold Coast. The surfer city is home to countless clubs and bars, blaring out dance hit after dance hit. There are so many bars in the Gold Coast, that the best way to see it is by taking an organised pub crawl, or by planning one yourself for your friends. The clientele ranges from locals and tourists who like to splash the cash to cash-strapped backpackers, so there’s something to cater to everyone here.
The beautiful bay city of Cairns is yet another paradisical place to enjoy some of the best nightlife in Australia. It’s a massive backpacker hub, so naturally, the hostel bars are a good place to start the night. But aside from that, there are huge parties going on in this city with everything from karaoke nights to free champagne nights. With bars along the waterfront and a smattering of clubs inland, you won’t be stuck on ways to spend the night in Cairns.