There's plenty to entertain pint-sized punters in Melbourne. Rain, hail or shine, our guide will keep your crew out of trouble for an 'arvo. And if everyone's super good, maybe you could treat them with a spin through one of Melbourne's cutest toy shops or fuel up post-play at one of Melbourne's kid-friendly cafés.
Things to do with kids in Melbourne
No childhood is complete without a walk through that famous giant mouth at Luna Park. From the moment you walk through you're exposed to a world full of carnival flair; older kids will love The Power Surge and Enterprise, while the family-friendly Silly Serpent and Arabian Merry are best for the little ones. But nothing beats the classic Scenic Railway Roller Coaster for a whirlwind adventure around the entire park. Classic carnival treats are on offer, and those with a more sophisticated pallet can enjoy gourmet pizzas, deli-style sandwiches and burgers at Café Luna.
Melbourne Museum's children's gallery is designed for very young children from babies to five-year-olds, setting a new standard in early childhood learning. Walk in the shoes of a palaeontologist at the Dinosaur Dig or dance the morning away at the Camouflage Disco, complete with a mirror wall, light projections and unique soundscapes. Tired tots can then rest their weary legs at the ‘nothing nook’ – a quiet space to recharge in between adventures.
On the first Sunday of every month, ACMI will be hosting a day of free family and kid-friendly events and interactive activities for Family Sundays. The event will have a different theme every month, and kids of all ages will be able to take part in fun activities from creating YouTube videos, singing Frozen songs in a round of karaoke, to painting a 3D masterpiece in virtual reality with Google's Tilt Brush tool. ACMI favourites including the Screen Worlds permanent exhibition and the Kids' Flicks program curated especially for kids will be on during Family Sunday days, so be sure to check out these popular ACMI fixtures.
Bringing the country to the city, the Collingwood Children’s Farm gives urban kids a chance to give farming life a go. You can milk the cows, feed the chooks, ride a pony or play with the baby lambs. A farmer’s market takes place every second Saturday of the month, where you can pick up fresh produce. The Farm Café serves up hearty meals with a paddock-to-plate policy: everything is made from scratch and ingredients are sourced locally. Check the website to make bookings for children's parties.
Plunge head first into the aquatic world of Melbourne Aquarium. There are 12 themed zones filled with aquatic animals and plenty of educational and interactive exhibits for all ages, including a state-of-the-art Croc Lair, an interactive Rainforest Adventure and a Penguin Playground.
Funfields, located in Whittlesea, opened in 1985 and has since become one of Melbourne's best-loved attractions. Your entry ticket gets you access to 22 rides, plus a water play area for kids and barbecue area. Little children are well catered for, with mini go karts, ferris wheels and carousels tailored just to them. From there, things get more adventurous: take the journey to the top of the hill and zoom back down the Alpine Toboggan Slide, feel that flutter in your stomach on the Blackbeard's Fury pirate ship and challenge your friends to a race on the go karts, for a start. Make sure you bring your bathers, because the waterslides are always a highlight.
Revolutionising the climbing experience, Clip 'N' Climb has exploded in popularity since its opening in March 2013. How is it different to other climbing experiences, you ask? Well, there are 33 different climbs, each with different themes and difficulties. You can also race your friends on the Speed Wall or use the challenge boards to tackle each wall in a different way.