Winter can get a bit miserable sometimes. But Melbourne is renown for its unpredictable weather, and the city has long since adapted to this. So it’s easy to look on the bright side of things when you visit such a diverse city like Melbourne. As the seasons change each year, so does the city and what it offers you.
Interested to find out more? We have discovered all the best ways and places to warm yourself and keep your mood lifted even in the dreariest of weather.
Melbourne is cold once winter hits, but fortunately, some of the city’s bars and pubs tend to agree and have decided to make nights out in our CBD more appealing by adding a certain heated beverage to their menus.
Where to get your mulled wine
You can now get your cold little hands on some complimentary mulled wine tastings from 12pm every day at the spicy Gewürzhaus stores in the Block Arcade. This delicious winter brew features their signature Glühwein Spice blend, plus you can also try their collection of over 350 single-origin spices, herbs, salts, peppers, teas and sugars.
If you’re heading back from a footy game, make a stop of Riverland Bar—one of Melbourne’s best Yarra-side watering holes. They have added a delicious mulled wine to their menu which means will warm even the coldest heart!
Over on the other side of the river, Left Bank has been busy perfecting the mulled wine recipe themselves. This beverage includes an infusion of shiraz with flavours of clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, sugar, orange, apple, pomegranate and a whisper of star anise. Fancy!
Warm and welcoming restaurants
Meatball & Wine Bar
135 Flinders Lane
What’s more warm and comforting than meatballs? Meatballs and a glass of red! Although there’s more to choose from, including charcuterie and cheese boards, Meatball & Wine Bar is really all about these two things. Choose from pork, beef, chicken, fish or veg balls. Select a sauce, and the accompanying side, like creamy polenta or mashed potatoes. That’s winter sorted. Or keep it simple with spaghetti and meatballs.
49 Rathdowne Street, Carlton
Take an 1884 two-storey terrace house, serve wholesome, almost rustic European dishes and regional wines, and turn on some good old-fashioned hospitality. That’s Epocha Restaurant, where the menu ranges from risotto with pine mushrooms to Strathdownie venison, cheese plates to apple tarte tatin. Sunday lunch is strictly a nostalgic roast with all the trimmings – what a heartwarming way to enjoy winter afternoons!
616 Elizabeth Street
When it comes to cold weather, there are few better experienced to deal with it than the Irish. It should come as no surprise then that one of the most enjoyable ways to spend a chilled winter's evening is in one of Melbourne's many Gaelic pubs. A local favourite is The Last Jar. It offers a menu of hearty meals, perfect for warming your insides. If you really want to get into the Irish spirit, head here on a Wednesday evening and enjoy the lively traditional music with your meal.
The Journal Cafe
253 Flinders Lane Melbourne
A mix between your dream library and your friendly local, Journal Cafe has everything you need to warm you, from the inside out. Cozy, communal tables and the perfect brew make this the go-to place at the Flinders Lane precinct. Simplicity is key at this restaurant, centred on classic breakfasts such as crumpets, croissants and topped toasts. Plus, you can pick up wifi from the City Library.
1 Flinders Walk, Melbourne
Arbory Bar & Eatery is a lively all-day outdoor bar and eatery located between Melbourne’s Flinders Street Station and the world famous Yarra River, at the epicentre of Melbourne’s riverside arts and entertainment precinct.
Boasting over one hundred meters of absolute uninterrupted river frontage, and situated beneath a line of iconic plane trees, Arbory Bar & Eatery offers an escape from the city in the heart ... Hot cocktails, warm fires and woolly blankets.
Outdoor Winter Activities
Getting sick of being stuck indoors? We’ve got you covered there, too!
The Winter Village
A magical snow-covered winter village has landed at Federation Square
The Skyline Terrace at Federation Square (the roof of the Fed Square car park) is home to the Winter Village: a (faux) snow-covered pop-up bar inspired by European winter markets.
The pop-up is surrounded by snowy pine trees à la the Black Forest, while inside guests can enjoy an ice skating rink, 21 toasty warm private igloos and a mega igloo where it snows (inside!) every hour.
<target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Ice skating at O'Brien Group Arena
What says winter more than ice skating? A fantastic place for kids (and adults, too) to enjoy, head to O’Brien Group Arena for some indoor winter fun. If you’re not the strongest skater or a first timer, visit on a day that has a free lesson available and book in for an O’Brien Group Arena Ambassador to take you through a free 15-minute crash course before you take to the ice solo. Be sure to check the website if you plan to come during the school holidays and see what special programs are on offer.
Winter Night Markets
Queen Victoria Markets
Did you hear the rave reviews of the Summer Night Market at the Queen Vic Market? Well, the good news is the fun isn’t just only for the warmer months, with a Winter Night Market on Wednesdays from 5pm drawing in the food-loving crowds.
Warm up with some mulled wine or a pint of delicious hot cider while gathering around a crackling fire with friends. More than 30 vendors will be serving up delicious international cuisines, while a revolving line-up of quirky performers and musical acts keep you entertained.