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A family picks up Christmas paraphernalia at a Christmas winter market
Photograph: Supplied

Where to celebrate Christmas in July in Melbourne

From snow-covered markets and decadent Christmas feasts, here are six ways to recreate the wintery Christmases in movies

Adena Maier
Written by
Adena Maier
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While we're used to celebrating Christmas over barbecues and beers while donning Hawaiian shirts and summer dresses, it's tough not to feel FOMO from the wintery festivities of our mates in the Northern Hemisphere. And while Melbourne rarely gets snow — if light dustings even count — we'll be damned if that stops us from trying to recreate our very own white Christmas in July. 

Round up your mates, minus the Scrooges, and hit up these snow-covered markets and historic towns and decadent Christmas feasts.

There's a lot to love about winter in Melbourne, but here are our top picks. And if the sky starts bucketing down, we've got you covered with ample rainy day activities.

Enjoy the festive chill

  • Shopping
  • Melbourne

If you've ever dreamt of going to the famed Christmas markets in Germany, the next best thing in Australia is when the Queen Victoria Market celebrates Christmas in July. Every Wednesday from July 6 to 27, don your best ugly holiday sweater and make tracks to the market from 5pm to 10pm.  Enjoy a mini forest of illuminated trees, watch live ice sculpting, groove to a Christmas-themed silent disco and marvel at stilt-walking angels and roller-skating Christmas trees. Don't forget to snag some handcrafted gingerbread and mugs of mulled wine, spiked Milo or Gin Toddies. 

  • Restaurants
  • Southbank

Track down your loosest pants, because the Crown Conservatory is hosting a sumptuous Christmas feast. Upon arrival, enjoy a glass of Piper-Heidsieck Champagne before digging into the Christmas ham and turkey with all the trimmings. Save room for dessert, though, because there will also be a decadent buffet of cakes and pastries. Make your bookings here.

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  • Restaurants
  • Modern Australian
  • Melbourne

While normal Christmas in Australia is all about beach barbecues and seafood banquets, when you're celebrating in July you want those decadent, wintery feasts you see in American movies. Thankfully, the Commons is hosting a month-long Christmas feast with a themed menu and cocktails. Think rib-sticking roasts, comforting soups and lots of carbs. To book, head to the website.

The team behind pop-ups like the Wizard's Den and Karen's Diner are back with a month-long Christmas pop-up that's overflowing with holly jolly cheer. Expect the halls to be fully decked with baubles, bows, hanging trees, tinsel, wreaths and every festive goodie imaginable. Santa and his elves will make an appearance, and while you wait to see them, you can enjoy cocktails like egg nog and mulled wine. There will be prizes for the ugliest sweater and best dressed, so start planning your outfit now. Tickets are $15 and can be booked here.

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  • Things to do
  • Food and drink
  • Spotswood

If you haven't been to Grazeland yet, it's an exciting permanent market in Spotwood spanning 10,000 square metres and hosting 50 food vendors, three bars, artisan stalls and more. And for Christmas in July, punters can swing by for neon lights, faux snow, fire pits and mulled wine, alongside scrumptious savoury and sweet delights. To warm your belly, stallholders will be dishing up Spanish paella, dumplings, hand-made Italian pasta and mulled wine. The activation is running every weekend until July 31, and entry is $4 per person. 

  • Bars
  • Melbourne
  • price 1 of 4

On Thursday, July 28, Arbory is transforming into a gin-soaked Christmas paradise. In partnership with Four Pillars Gin, the eatery is decking the halls with a Christmas-themed menu featuring dishes like hay-smoked beef short rib, hapuka with mustard greens and chocolate fondant with Christmas gin ice cream and blood orange. Tickets are $125 per person and include two snacks on arrival, a three-course meal and five matched cocktails. Get your tickets here.

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