What's on in Melbourne
With a population of 5 million, Melbourne is the most populous city in Victoria and the second most populous city in Australia. Melbourne is Australia’s multicultural and cultural hub—a city for everyone.
Prior to the arrival of European settlers in the region, indigenous Australians had been living in the Melbourne area for more than 30,000 years. The city was founded on 30 August 1835 and was named Melbourne by Governor General Richard Bourne on 10 April 1837.
With more than a quarter of its population being born overseas, Melbourne is now home to people from more than 200 countries and more than 230 languages are spoken in the city. A visit to Melbourne is a visit to the world itself.
Melbourne is a city full of opportunities, places to go, things to see. Some all-time favourites among locals and visitors alike include:
- The Melbourne CBD: The heart of the city, home to many major attractions. Federation Square, Bourke Street Mall, the State Library, and the legendary Queen Victoria Market are all part of the major central business district.
- The Crown: A huge entertainment complex next to the beautiful Yarra River. Here you’ll find multiple restaurants, cafes, nightclubs, shops, cinemas, and even a casino.
- Docklands: A large inner suburb in Victoria Harbour, just about 2km from Melbourne’s CBD. This spectacular waterfront features prominent buildings, such as the Etihad Stadium, Seven Network broadcasting centre, and Harbour Town at the Waterfront City.
- Luna Park in ST. Kilda: A legendary amusement park that has been operating non-stop since 1912. It features the world’s oldest operating roller coaster.
- Chinatown: Located at the eastern end of Little Bourke Street, Melbourne’s Chinatown dates all the way back to the first Australian Gold Rush in 1851. Melbourne’s Chinatown is full of picturesque laneways, seasonal markets, and unique restaurants.
Other popular destinations include:
This month is jammed-packed full of events in the city, there truly is something for everyone!
- Fleetwood Mac Australia Tour - Beloved British-American band Fleetwood Mac will bring their new-look lineup to Australia for a huge headline tour, playing in Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne from 2nd - 9th, August
- MOULD: A Cheese Festival - Hard or soft, blue or white, fresh or aged – Australians love cheese. MOULD is a celebration of that love, bringing together the best artisan producers from across the country for a day of cheese, wine, masterclasses and more, taking place August 16th/17th.
- National 4x4 Outdoors Show, Fishing and Boating Expo - Over three days (16th, 17th, 18th August) the Melbourne Showgrounds is transformed into an outdoors haven for off road enthusiasts, outback nomads, fishermen and 4x4 lovers.
- Melbourne Bridal Festival - Bring your friends and family and enjoy a wonderful day as you experience the excitement and glamour of this brand new and spectacular event. With exclusive features including themed display areas, entertainment stages, master classes, demonstrations, Australia’s largest and most incredible bridal fashion parades and so much more. From 17th to 18th August.
- White Night Melbourne - As winter fades and on the eve of spring on 22nd August, join Melbourne for a ‘Reimagined’ White Night experience. Melbourne’s iconic cultural institutions will, once again, come alive with their own special programming and will open for extended hours. In 2019, enticing food and music offerings will complement the event, showcasing some of Victoria’s best local produce and talent.
- Melbourne Fashion Week takes place from 28th Aug to 5th Sept, and presents spring/summer ready-to-wear collections and creatively showcases Melbourne as an iconic destination for fashion, retail, design and hospitality.
As the weather turns from winter to spring, the city warms up into a hive of activity. Check out the activities and events on offer in and around Melbourne!
- Melbourne Fringe Festival, from 12th to 29th September, transforms our city into a platform for every kind of artform imaginable, supporting over 3,000 artists to present over 450 works in 170 venues to more than 360,000 people.
- Once Upon a Tim: The Nutcracker is one for children and adults both, but has been created especially for girls and boys. The fully staged production is set to live music and has narration, interaction and a kid-friendly running time. Held at the Arts Centre on 19th September.
- AFL Grand Final - Australian Football fans come together in the ultimate showdown on the 21st August at the MCG, as the overall winner of the league is determined in an almighty clash of sporting power.
- Royal Melbourne Show runs from 21st September to 1st October, and is Victoria’s largest showcase of agriculture and is conducted annually by The Royal Agricultural Society of Victoria. Visitors to the Royal Melbourne Show will be entertained with a huge range of all-inclusive, interactive, and fun activities and attractions.
- Australian Burlesque Festival is internationally renown for its unique flavour of theatrical, glamorous and avant-garde burlesque and outrageously talented performers. The Australian Burlesque Festival brings together the best of our homegrown artists as well as international burlesque icons! Showing Wonderland Spiegeltent, Federation Square in 26th - 28th.
Put your clocks forward and celebrate the start of long evenings in October. Check out the activities and events on offer in and around Melbourne!
- Spring Carnival Racing
Month of October.
With the first hint of spring in the air, Australians turn their attention to one of the highlights of Australia’s sporting and social calendar. Opening with Memsie Stakes Day at Caulfield and concluding with Ballarat Cup Day at the end of November, the Spring Racing Carnival features some of the world’s greatest athletes, both equine and human.
- Melbourne International Arts Festival
Featuring the best international and local artists working in dance, theatre, circus, music and visual arts today. From 2nd to 20th October
- Caulfield Guineas Day
12th October - Known as one of Australia’s most prestigious race days for the purists. Enjoy your first taste of New York City as Caulfield is transformed into the boroughs of The Big Apple, complete with a wealth of colour, style, hospitality and trackside entertainment unmatched anywhere else in the country.
- Melbourne Marathon Festival
Following record-breaking numbers in 2018, the Melbourne Marathon Festival returns to the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), Sunday, 13 October 2019.
Australia’s largest marathon is set to be bigger and better than ever, as the iconic 42-kilometre stretch celebrates 42 years.
- Australian Motorcycle Grandprix
25th - 27th October. World-class athletes race against gravity and mates unite at the track where the piston pounding, adrenaline-pumping action is set to return. This is motorcycle racing’s best address.