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The best outdoor cinemas in Melbourne

Catch cult classics and new releases under the stars this summer

Moonlight Cinema at the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne
By Time Out editors |
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Outdoor cinema season is back – and there are more options to choose from than ever. Are you keen for a classic garden cinema experience? Or what about an inner-city rooftop? You could even catch a film by the beach. These are our top choices of al fresco cinema in Melbourne. While you're planning your summer adventures, check out our favourite places to swim, and our tips on the best road trips from Melbourne.

RECOMMENDED: What to do if it rains at an outdoor cinema.

Melbourne's open-air cinemas

1
Park Cinema
Photograph: Supplied
Things to do, Pop-up locations

Park Cinema Docklands

Buluk Park, Docklands

It’s back! Park Cinema Docklands is popping up for another summer of outdoor movie delight. And did we mention it’s free? Zilch! Nada! Niente! Put away the wallet, dig out the trusty picnic rug and run, don’t walk down to Buluk Park right in the middle of the picturesque Victoria Harbour on three Fridays. This year they are screening the original Robin Williams version of Jumanji, 2018 romcom favourite Crazy Rich Asians and the visually stunning reindeer story Ailo's Journey. There’ll be pre-movie entertainment on offer to enjoy as the sun goes down, then at 8.30pm, it’s showtime. This year, food is available from local retailers Chilangos, Pony Boy, Thai Thani and Pizza @ 888. There’ll also be a dedicated drop-off point for Uber Eats, Deliveroo and others, or you can BYO food and drink (alcohol permitted).  Tickets are free but extremely limited, so book yourself a spot soon to make sure you don’t miss out.

2
Moonlight Cinemas Melbourne
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Moonlight Cinema

Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Melbourne

Runs from November to March.

There's nothing quite like a film under the stars in the evening cool of the Botanic Gardens. Settle back with friends and family for a movie and BYO picnic on a balmy summer night, or let one of the food trucks take care of the edibles for you.

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3
Sunset over bed outdoor cinema
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Mov’in Bed Outdoor Bed Cinema

Catani Gardens, St Kilda West

It’s made big waves in Sydney, and now it’s Melbourne’s turn. Mov’in Bed Outdoor Bed Cinema is headed to Melbourne this summer as part of the outdoor cinema’s first national tour. The concept is irresistible. Imagine a large inflatable bed to snuggle into, food, drinks and a great movie. This summer it’s headed to St Kilda Beach, right in front of Catani Gardens, with its very own beach club popping up for 45 magical nights.   

4
Lido on the Roof
Photograph: Eugene Hyland
Film, Outdoor cinema

Lido on the Roof

Lido Cinemas, Hawthorn

Runs from November to April.

Catch a flick with a side of rooftop views at Lido Cinema's rooftop cinema which hosts costume parties, summer releases and classic flicks. 

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5
Classic Cinemas
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Classic Rooftop Cinema

Classic Cinemas, Elsternwick

Runs from December to April.

Classic Cinemas has announced the new Classic Rooftop, with nightly 9pm screenings all through summer 2019-2020 and into autumn. The rooftop cinema has comfortable director's chair seating on staggered levels, while sound is delivered through headsets. 

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Screen at Rooftop Cinema
Film, Outdoor cinema

Rooftop Cinema

Runs from December to March.

Grab a deckchair and make yourself comfortable – Melbourne's OG Rooftop Cinema hits the Curtin House to present an impressive roster of cult classics and new releases, right in the heart of the CBD.  

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7
Coburg Drive-In
Film

Coburg Drive-In

Coburg North

Runs all year round.

Make like a teenager of the 1950s and lie back on your car windscreen at Melbourne’s favourite drive-in cinema. You can roll on in, order your food from the retro diner via text message and enjoy brand new flicks.

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Rooftop Cinema at Rooftop Bar above Curtin House in Melbourne's CBD
Visions of Victoria
Film, Outdoor cinema

Rooftop Cinema

Runs from December to March.

Grab a deckchair and make yourself comfortable – Melbourne's OG Rooftop Cinema hits the Curtin House to present an impressive roster of cult classics and new releases, right in the heart of the CBD.  

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9
Croque monsieur L'Hotel Gitan
Things to do, Fairs and festivals

Gourmet Cinema

Runs for 11 nights in March.

Set on the lawns on Caufield Racecourse, Gourmet Cinema brings together food and film, showcasing the who's who of Melbourne's eateries paired with a cult film on the big screen.

 

Or visit a rooftop bar instead

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