Autumn school holiday activities in Melbourne

Fun and educational activities for kids and the young-at-heart
Healesville Sanctuary
Photograph: Cormac Hanrahan
By Time Out editors |

Just because summer has come to an end doesn't mean that the fun is all over. This year's autumn school holidays (March 30-April 15, 2018) coincide with the Easter public holidays, which means double the fun is happening all over Melbourne. There are plenty of activities for kids and young-at-heart grown-ups, and here are the best. 

For more Easter fun, check out the best hot cross buns for the sweet stuff and fish and chip shops for your seafood fix.

Otway Fly
Sport and fitness

Otway Fly

High above the Otways rainforest, this platform-to-platform flying fox takes you on seven ziplines of varying speeds and lengths, and two rope bridges. There are no excursions beyond 4pm, so as not to disturb the largely nocturnal wildlife. As for the experience itself, while exhilarating (particularly when the fog is so thick as to render the next platform invisible), it also feels very secure. Even those with a fear of heights (we have our hands up here) will find they're soon impatient to be airborne as they progress from platform to platform. If you're not game enough to fly (or abseil – there's that, too), you could try the treetop walk.

Gumbuya World
Photograph: SDP Media
Kids, Active events

Gumbuya World

"Gumbuya Park, where the city meets the country..." Chances are you grew up hearing that jingle on the radio. But Gumbuya Park has had a $50 million facelift and rebranded as Gumbuya World – and there is a lot more fun to be had. Gumbuya World comprises four discrete areas: Oasis Springs, Wildlife Trail, Oz Adventures and Outback Explorers. The Oasis Springs water park features fast slides with steep drops and exciting twists and turns. For a walk on the wilder side, there is the Wildlife Trail, with more than 50 animal species to see. Visitors can hand-feed kangaroos, wallabies and emus, and there are also two new young koalas in the park. Little ones can get up close and personal at the petting zoo, where they can pat lambs, ducks and baby goats. Oz Adventure is a rides section for everyone, and Outback Explorers comprises rides for smaller visitors. Gumbuya World is open every single day except Christmas Day, so it's a fun place to take children who are bored by their school holidays. Here's hoping for a great day out.

Live Wire Park
Photograph: Supplied
Attractions, Theme parks

Live Wire Park

icon-location-pin Lorne

Live Wire Park is passionate about two things: adrenaline rushes and sustainability. The high-flying elevated adventure park is the first of its kind in Australia to go completely off the grid, with its attraction powered by the sun and its water collected and treated on site. But you're here for the zip lines, and they don't disappoint. Live Wire Park has four zipline circuit experiences ranging in thrill level from mild to scream your lungs out. There's the leisurely 120-metre Canopy Circuit for those looking for a scenic flight; the hair-raising 525-metre Shockwave Zip Coaster for adrenaline junkies; the challenging Super Circuit for the puzzle lovers and the Short Circuit for kids looking to test their physical and mental problem-solving skills.  The Canopy Circuit is included with general admission, with each additional zipline circuit incurring an additional fee. 

Legoland Discovery Centre rides
Kids, Playgrounds

Legoland Discovery Centre

icon-location-pin Malvern East

Lego has opened a Legoland Discovery Centre at Chadstone Shopping Centre. It occupies a whopping space (2800 sqm) and includes a bunch of attractions, including Miniland Melbourne, where the city has been recreated out of thousands of Lego bricks, play zones and Lego-themed rides. There is also a 4D cinema (it’s a sensory cinematic adventure – the wind will actually blow in your hair) on site so you can rewatch your favourite Lego movies on the big screen, and a Lego factory tour. 

Want to get out of the city for the holidays?

Great Otway National Park
Photograph: Robert Blackburn
Travel, Short getaways

The best day trips from Melbourne

The state of Victoria is full of friendly neighbourhood towns, whether you're in the mood for a winery tour, a road trip or a national park to explore.