Wondering what to do in Melbourne in March? We can help. Check out our guide to all the fun things to do in Melbourne, including mega NGV art exhibitions, summer music festivals, rooftop cinemas and more. Plus there's plenty of free attractions, art exhibitions, theatre shows, activities for kids to get amongst as well.
Best things to do in Melbourne in March
Spend your Wednesday nights surrounded by food at the Queen Victoria Market's fantastic Summer Night Market. Expect rows and rows of street food stalls and festival bars as well as art, fashion, homewares and general knick-knack merchandise traders – there are 130 stalls to explore in total. Food stalls will be cooking up delicious snacks all night long, with plenty of wine, beer and cocktails also on the menu. New traders for this season include Portuguese tarts from Casa Nata, chilled chocolate drinks and desserts from Mork Chocolate, African barbecue from Tasty Suya, traditional Filipino cuisine from Kuya's Simply Pinoy and Israeli falafel pita pockets from Falafel Arayes. The highlight of the 2019/2020 summer season will be the Gin Springs Bar, a pop-up watering hole inspired by Palm Springs and filled with giant pink flamingos, desert plants and fruity perfect-for-summer cocktails. It's here that you can grab a gin cocktail made with Melbourne Gin Company gin, as well an adult version of the classic spider (they're made with Coldstream Cider). The summery fun continues with a full-sized beach volleyball court popping up within the market. You can play a match with your friends (or complete strangers), watch professional players in action or take part in a volleyball tournament or workshop. The summer night market will farewell Melbourne on Wednesday, March 11 with a live (and free!) performance by Ella Hooper. Hooper made waves in the late 1990s as the frontwoman
This summer's event marks the 33rd birthday of Melbourne’s biggest Greek street party, the Antipodes Festival (formerly known as the Lonsdale Street Greek Festival). Make your way down to Melbourne CBD's unofficial 'little Greece' (we would argue Oakleigh is the more official one) for two days of great Greek street food, traditional dances, and live music performances from local and international Greek acts. As usual, the event will see the city's biggest Greek chefs turn it on for live cooking demonstrations. Bring your dancing shoes for the Zorba 'Til You Drop dance competition, and the Pass the Pastitsio cooking competition where judges will be awarding the best Greek baked pasta dish. The two-day festival features 90 food, drink and craft stalls alongside three stages of free entertainment, children’s rides and more.
If you only do one thing for this year's Brunswick Music Festival, then make it the famous opening party. This mammoth one-day music festival sprawls across six stages down Sydney Road (and five venues), and will feature a bunch of musicians playing rock, hip-hop, reggae, soul, jazz, gospel and everything in between. Hop between stages and duck into venues including Stay Gold, the Brunswick Mechanics Institute (which is also the festival hub), the Penny Black, the Brunswick Green and the Retreat Hotel, who will all be getting in on the action. Artists to pencil into your schedule include Lady Lash, the Burnt Sausages (in costume as usual we presume), Kahlua Breeze, U-Bahn, Slush and the Mamas. You can also expect plenty of food, a First Nations artist market over at Blak Dot Gallery, a plant sale at the Mechanics Institute, and Triple R DJs.
Barefoot Cinema returns to Melbourne for a season of fun flicks. This chilled-out summer cinema has already set up in Portsea at Point Nepean National Park, the Briars Homestead in Mount Martha and Elsternwick's Rippon Lea Estate. Now, for the first time ever, Barefoot Cinema heads west – to Werribee! Barefoot Cinema's Werribee season runs from February 19 until March 4 at the State Rose Garden. Films range from family-friendly comedies to fantasies, cult classics and documentaries. Whatever your niche, you can watch a film against a stunning backdrop and get stuck into food and drink from the on-site bar, 400 Gradi's food truck and the candy bar, where you can pick up all of your favourite movie-going snacks. There will also be live music every night from 6.30pm so you can kick back before the movie starts at 8.30pm. Highlights from Werribee's line-up include the Oscar-nominated Ford v Ferrari, Jojo Rabbit and Bombshell, as well as Dirty Dancing, Joker and the super fun Elton John biopic Rocketman. Adult tickets are $22 and kids can get in for $15. There's also a VIP upgrade for an extra $20, which gets you into the comfy VIP Lounge. Check out the website for the screening schedule. Doors open at 6pm.
We'd be lion if we said that Zoo Twilights wasn't our summer highlight. The concert series kicks off in January and attracts some pretty big names in music. Kicking things off on January 24 is Aussie duo Confidence Man supported by party starters Wax’o Paradiso. The next night audiences will be treated to a special performance from Iva Davies and Aussie music royalty Icehouse. Influential Jamaican reggae troup Toots and the Maytals will also hit the stage this summer, as well as a run of Aussie favourites like Missy Higgins, the Cat Empire, Methyl Ethel, Meg Mac and Julia Jacklin. ‘I’m Not in Love’ singers 10cc are also gracing the line-up, as is UK art pop pioneers Stereolab. Randy Newman, whose inescapably hummable 'You've Got a Friend in Me' anchors the Toy Story film series, will hit the stage as part of his Australian tour. The festival will close on Saturday, March 7 with a performance from living legend and soul king Mavis Staples. Topping the line-up, of course, are the Zoo's wild residents. All proceeds from the Zoo Twilights summer concert series will be going back towards the zoo's conservation work, including work to save the critically endangered mountain-pygmy possum from extinction. No Zoo Twilights night is complete without a gourmet picnic – pre-order a hamper with your tickets or check out the Taste of Twilights food zone on the night for street eats from some of Melbourne's best food trucks. Zoo Twilights tickets also include exclusive zoo entry f
Peninsula Hot Springs is Victoria’s first geothermal mineral springs and day spa. It’s here you’ll find more than 50 bathing experiences, including shared thermal mineral pools, wet and dry saunas, a hydrotherapy pool, Turkish and Moroccan hammams and the frequently Instagrammed hilltop pool, which boasts 360-degree views over the farmlands of Fingal. Naturally, it’s very popular. One event that’s going to drive its popularity even higher is the Bathe in Cinema. This cinema lets you watch a film from the comfort of your own hot spring, spread out among the Bath House Amphitheatre, which is located on the Peninsula Hot Springs property. The Peninsula Hot Springs Bathe in Cinema runs every Friday night at 8pm from February 14 until March 6. Guests can lay under the stars and stay warm with the heat of the hot springs. Movie selections will be announced on their Facebook page soon, but the first screening on Valentine's Day will be Notting Hill, starring Hugh Grant and Julia Roberts (look out for the Time Out reference in the middle of the film!) The film screening is complimentary with bathhouse bathing (which starts from $25). Head in early to score a good spot in the amphitheatre as there’s no reserved seating.
Have you ever wanted to be a part of your own Japanese game show? Well, wonder no more, because Tokosan holds pub trivia, Japanese-style, on the first Wednesday of every month, called Ninja Nite Battle. There are no ninjas, so you'll just have to use your imagination. Instead of flexing your brains, Ninja Nite Battles pits teams against each other in eating competitions, sumo wrestling, human curling (we don't know what this is, but we imagine it is ridiculous and awesome), takoyaki mouth catching (yes, that is catching a hot octopus fritter with your mouth) and many more – all performed while under the safe and calming influence of alcohol. Aside from being extremely fun and potentially embarrassing, you get to win prizes along the way, as well as go up for larger prizes like a $100 dinner for two, bar tabs and merchandise. It is free to participate, but you do have to register each month.
This is a review of the Sydney Festival season of Double Delicious Double Delicious is the perfect title for this nourishing night of storytelling and food by Contemporary Asian Australian Performance. Perfect because it has the double-punch of engaging your tastebuds as well as your emotions, and because the five storyteller-cooks all share their experiences of living with two cultures: Australia, where they all currently live, and their Asian heritage. It’s also an apt title because the food that emerges from that fusion is properly delicious. First up is Korean chef Heather Jeong, who shares her love of the rituals of kimchi alongside the story of her sometimes difficult relationship with her father, eventually serving up a dish that’s not at all the kind of refined cuisine you might expect from a chef of her talents. Actor Valerie Berry shares a story of her family migrating from the Philippines, and the way her mother used food to stay anchored to her culture. Dancer and choreographer Raghav Handa talks about his attempts to connect with India, and how living a fulfilled single life presents a unique cultural challenge, and Benjamin Law ruminates on life on the Sunshine Coast in the 1980s and ‘90s as one of the only Asian-Australian families around, while picking up cooking techniques that his ancestors have been practicing for hundreds of years. The audience all sit at large round tables, like at a wedding reception. As each story ends, a group of waiters whisk into
Lulie Tavern is such a great time that Shania Twain even hosted her end of tour staff party there. On Saturday, March 14, Lulie will be throwing an all-day party kicking off with doggie disco, two-for-one drinks, merch giveaways and cheap drinks ($5 schooners, $10 Boilermakers, $10 Margaritas). There will be a line-up of local DJs such as Annaleise Replica, Ol Sneaky Pete, Nkechi Anele as well as an hour of sacrilegious, request-only songs dubbed the House of Cheese between 7pm-8pm (requests via the Facebook event only). You'll also have the chance to be crowned the Mayor of Lulie where you can score yourself a free keg party and some pretty badass bragging rights. Enter through the bar or via the website. Entry to Lulie's fifth birthday party is free, and you'll be guaranteed a rollicking good time. Dancing will be strongly encouraged. Who knows, maybe Shania Twain might turn up with her crew again. (Shania Twain will not be turning up with her crew again.)
Sustainability is all around us in Melbourne – at least that’s what you’ll learn on the Green Tour. This eco tour takes the environmentally minded (and sometimes a less environmentally minded friend or partner) on tours around Melbourne that showcase the city’s ecological history and sustainability initiatives. The Green Tour is run by tour company Wayward Wanders, which is owned and operated by Liam Gook. Liam discovered his passion for helping others discover places while working as a tour guide in Berlin. After returning to Melbourne, he worked as a traditional tour guide, which gave him time to design his own tours. "I wanted to create tours that give guests a deeper understanding of Melbourne, beyond the regular tourist attractions," says Liam "To introduce guests to community projects and discuss the challenges Melbourne is facing both socially and environmentally." The urban eco tour begins by painting a picture of what Melbourne looked like in the very early days of European colonisation. You’ll be sitting right in the middle of the city (we won’t spoil it by saying exactly where) as Liam describes the landscape of Melbourne in the early 19th century, using information gathered from the diaries of early settlers as well as from Bruce Pascoe’s luminary tome on Indigenous agriculture and civilisation, Dark Emu. The tour gives a remarkable insight into how some of Melbourne’s most recognisable natural landmarks have changed over centuries, and the ecological impacts
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