Saakshi Gupta

Saakshi Gupta

Articles (3)

The eleven best libraries in Melbourne

The eleven best libraries in Melbourne

Have you been to a library lately? If you're not a student, a freelancer or just someone who loves reading in quiet spaces, then it might have been a while. These state-of-the-art and historic libraries are quite a bit different to the places you remember. While we're talking books, it pays to know about Melbourne's best bookshops and second-hand booksellers. 

How to have the most Harry Potter weekend ever in Melbourne

How to have the most Harry Potter weekend ever in Melbourne

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has arrived in Melbourne, and the Princess Theatre is decked out for the magical event. To deepen the two-part experience further, here are 12 places in Melbourne suitable for witches, wizards and the occasional Potterhead Muggle. RECOMMENDED: How to get cheap Harry Potter and the Cursed Child tickets.

The best free events happening in Melbourne

The best free events happening in Melbourne

We don't have to tell you that most of the things to do in Melbourne aren't cheap, but you'd be surprised by to know that there's a wide range of free things to do in Melbourne ‚Äď including world-class events.¬† Melbourne offers a¬†host of events that cost a grand total of zero. We‚Äôve put together this list of free annual events so you'll have something exciting marked for every month of the year. And don‚Äôt fret if you miss an event ‚Äď you can always attend it the next year. Recommended:¬†Full guide to the best free things to do in Melbourne right now.

Listings and reviews (6)

Sri Lankan Festival

Sri Lankan Festival

Sri Lankan festivities will take over Queen Victoria Market on Sunday, April 28, coinciding with Sinhala and Tamil new year celebrations.  The festival will run from 10am to 4pm with immersive cultural experiences and culinary favourites to enjoy. There'll be activities for all ages, including live performances from local artists, traditional dance displays and workshops.  Naturally, you'll also be able to get your fill of Sri Lankan street food as well. Expect savoury bites including kottu roti, hoppers and curries and traditional sweets like kokis, plus plenty more.  The best part is, the festival has free entry. Find more details on the website.  Looking for more things to do? Here's our guide to what's on in Melbourne right now. 

Thornbury Bowls Club

Thornbury Bowls Club

Thornbury Bowls Club, with a history of over 100 years, is a place where all bowlers - new or experienced, young or old - are welcome. They have a synthetic upper green suitable for bowling all-year-round and barefoot bowling for a fun time with family and friends. The clubhouse also has a well-stocked bar for the members along with catering facilities, and dining and lounge areas.

Flockhart Reserve

Flockhart Reserve

Flockhart Reserve stands on the banks of the Yarra River. It is a small open space with picnic tables and barbecue. It is a dog off-leash area.

State Library of Victoria

State Library of Victoria

The State Library of Victoria is a cultural landmark that houses an incredible amount of books, as well as several exhibitions and galleries. The library was established in 1856 and is a grand presence on Swanston Street, with interior spaces to match. The La Trobe Reading Room is a six-storey-high domed room that is magnificent to look at. Beautiful artworks depicting Victoria‚Äôs history are exhibited in the Cowen Gallery for visitors to peruse. North and south rotundas and the Keith Murdoch gallery also hold exhibitions and artworks. The library offers everything needed for a productive work day ‚Äď free wifi, printing services and plenty of seating options (our pick is the¬†aforementioned La Trobe Reading Room). Along with books and artworks, the State Library houses thousands of heritage items, maps, manuscripts and newspapers. Digital material is also available for readers to access. And all of this is free. You¬†will find people lounging on the lawns in front of the library on a¬†sunny day, while¬†various cafes are located close by¬†to fuel the visitors with delicious treats. The Readings bookshop located inside the library gives them plenty to spend their money on.

The Albion Rooftop and Club

The Albion Rooftop and Club

Spread over three floors, the Albion is a versatile space where you can party with some of the best DJs and also host a professional gathering. Rain or shine, you can dance and enjoy some live entertainment on the rooftop that is equipped to handle the unreliable Melbourne weather and overlooks a picturesque Melbourne CBD skyline. The Albion offers a modern Asian, Italian and Australian food menu along with an elaborate drinks menu to fulfil all your eating and drinking needs. Located in South Melbourne, the Albion is just a stone’s throw away from Docklands, Southbank and Melbourne’s city centre.

The Mill Brewery

The Mill Brewery

The Mill Brewery is housed in a converted commercial warehouse in Collingwood with a cosy and quaint vibe. The classic handmade redgum tables and warm lights lend to its relaxing atmosphere. The brewery has several hand-crafted beers on tap which are changed frequently and you can see the 600-litre brewhouse on show at the back. Mirek Aldridge founded this brewery after years of brewing beers with a 70-litre garage setup. He can be found working the bar, happy to chat with patrons and even show them around.

News (15)

7 Victorian versions of these famous Australian destinations

7 Victorian versions of these famous Australian destinations

Please check with Parks Victoria about park openings before heading out. Does this sound familiar? You’ve been itching to visit some of Australia’s famous destinations (like the Great Barrier Reef, Wineglass Bay or the Daintree) for some time now but something always gets in the way of planning that trip. But did you know you can actually get a taste of the best Australia has to offer right here in Victoria? Victoria has many natural wonders and we’ve found some quite similar to their famous interstate counterparts to satisfy your travel-hungry soul. 1. Want to get lost in the Daintree Rainforest? Try walking around Great Otway National Park.   (L): Daintree Rainforest, QLD. (R): Melba Gully, Great Otway National Park, VIC. Photograph: FNG Nature Tours & Visit Victoria   Sure, the Great Otway National Park isn’t a World Heritage-listed site but you can still experience the cool lush greenery of rainforests there. You can find Melba Gully, one of the wettest places in Victoria, deep within the national park and walk through surrounded by a dense cover of Myrtle Beech, Blackwood and Tree-fern. 2. Want to go snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef? Head over to Port Phillip Heads.   (L): Great Barrier Reef, QLD. (R): Port Phillip Heads Marine National Park, VIC. Photograph: Tourism Port Douglas and Daintree & Park Victoria   The Great Barrier Reef is an iconic Australian beauty, but little did you know that Victoria has its own breathtaking alternative to it. You can head on

Belles Hot Chicken is serving a limited edition chicken katsu sandwich

Belles Hot Chicken is serving a limited edition chicken katsu sandwich

You know the Maisen Katsu Sando, the glorious and thankfully ubiquitous katsu sandwich that you get all over Japan. Well, Belles Hot Chicken executive chef Morgan McGlone ate so many on his 30 trips to Japan he's using his American-style fried chicken shops to bring it to home shores. The limited edition sambo will be available as a part of Kyoto Protocol, a Japanese-inspired 12-day pop-up menu that hits all Belles Hot Chicken stores from Wednesday, March 20. Maisen Katsu Sando is traditionally made with breaded pork cutlets, but here it's being made with Belles' famous fried chicken in a golden panko crumb and served with Japanese mayo, Tonkatsu Bull-Dog sauce, crisp shredded cabbage and served in a seedless bun. To accompany the sandwich, Belles will be serving $12 Yuzu Spritz made with Heiwa Yuzusha and pet nat for that citrus, sake and wine trifecta. Garage Project has also brewed a Japanese-inspired pilsner, the Hatsukoi. If you're down at Barangaroo there won't be any katsu on the menu, but you will be able to order togarashi spiced nuggets for $8 a pop to please your inner child. The Kyoto Protocol menu is available at Belles Hot Chicken stores Darling Quarter, Tramsheds and Barangaroo from March 20 to March 31. Love a sambo? Try Sydney's best sandwiches and make lunch the best meal of the day.

A CBD hotel has transformed one of its rooms into a (Pot)terrific magical chamber

A CBD hotel has transformed one of its rooms into a (Pot)terrific magical chamber

Melbourne is at its magical prime this year and the fans of a certain bespectacled boy wizard are truly thriving. The Hotel Windsor had recently announced its wizard-themed room and¬†yet another hotel is putting on the wizard charm right now. DoubleTree by Hilton has transformed one of its rooms into a ‚ÄėMystic Chamber‚Äô. The room will be available to book until May 12. Think antiques, mystical artefacts and fancy furniture fused with the modern luxuries of a hotel room.¬†We might¬†even venture to say that the designers of the room, JAK Creative, are full-blown wizards as they were also responsible for the insanely popular Wizard‚Äôs Brunch which was¬†held last year.¬† This particular DoubleTree by Hilton room has been styled to include a genuine crystal ball, stained glass windows and lush velvet bedding¬†that'll make you immediately want to...¬†slytherin. Photograph: Supplied Your stay will begin with a magical cocktail, Flinders Quarter Aurora, which will be waiting for you at your arrival. It's¬†a blend of red cabbage infused gin with fruit juices and bitters¬†chosen for their so-called "healing properties". As you build your cocktail and pour it over ice, the colours of your potion will change from pale violet to bright fuchsia pink.¬† To make the whole (Pot)terrific experience sweeter, we suggest ordering the Fortune Teller‚Äôs Fantasy for dessert. It's a chocolate ball with a mousse centre, toasted white chocolate, berry sauce and chocolate popping candy. There‚Äôs even a hint of magi

This CBD rooftop is serving bottomless pizza by the slice for just $25

This CBD rooftop is serving bottomless pizza by the slice for just $25

Pencil in bottomless pizza in your weekend plans. Happening every Saturday and Sunday, CBD bar State of Grace will be serving free-flowing pizza by the slice.  A chef's selection of pizza will be roving across State of Grace's inner-city rooftop from noon until 3pm. You can score slices of their classic (tomato, garlic, basil and mozzarella); honey pumpkin (pesto, goat's cheese, basil and pine nuts); mortadella (sugo, mortadella, bitter leaf, and balsamic); meatball (sugo, "mumma's" meatballs, smoked mozzarella, chilli and basil) and more varieties. Check out the full menu here. Photograph: Supplied They’ll also be serving everyone a spritz on arrival. You can choose from the Grace (peach Schnapps, Lillet, orange blossom, soda and sparkling); the Beauty (Aperol, soda and sparkling); and the Allure (spiced rum, plum, mint, soda and sparkling).  It's $25 per person to take part and it's only served on State of Grace's rooftop every Saturday and Sunday beginning Saturday, March 23. You can book a spot here. We love anything bottomless so check out our guide to Melbourne's best bottomless brunches.

Belles Hot Chicken is serving a limited edition chicken katsu sandwich

Belles Hot Chicken is serving a limited edition chicken katsu sandwich

Belles Hot Chicken has created a Katsu sandwich inspired by Maisen Katsu Sando that Belles executive chef found himself eating everywhere during his many trips to Japan. The sandwich will be available as a part of Kyoto Protocol, a Japanese-inspired 12-day pop-up that hits all Belles Hot Chicken stores from Wednesday, March 20. Maisen Katsu Sando is traditionally made with breaded pork cutlets. Taking that inspo and running with it, this limited edition sandwich is made with Belles' famous fried chicken in a golden panko crumb and served with Japanese mayo, Tonkatsu Bull-Dog sauce, crisp shredded cabbage and served in a seedless bun. It'll set you back $12. To accompany the sandwich, Belles will be serving a refreshing $12 Yuzu Spritz made with Heiwa Yuzusha and pet nat. It will be a beautiful combination of the flavours of citrusy yuzu fruit, sweet sake and aromatic Chardonnay. Garage Project has also brewed a Japanese-inspired pilsner, the Hatsukoi, to go perfectly with the sandwich. Kyoto Protocol can be found at all three of Belles Hot Chicken stores on Elizabeth street, Gertrude street and Collins street. It will run from March 20 to March 31. Love a sambo? Here are the best sandwiches to try around Melbourne.

Fancy Hank's is giving away 100 free sandwiches

Fancy Hank's is giving away 100 free sandwiches

Come one, come all for free sandwiches! Rock up to CBD barbecue joint¬†Fancy Hank‚Äôs on Wednesday, March 20 for a chance to grab one of the 100 free sandwiches they‚Äôll be giving away from noon. The first 100 customers can choose from smoked brisket sandwich, pulled pork sandwich and fried eggplant sandwich. These delicious barbecue sandwiches will be made with iconic Martin‚Äôs potato rolls which are known to soak up the filling juices, keeping the sandwiches from getting soggy (they even use them at NYC burger joint Shake Shack). So line up at Fancy Hank‚Äôs (located at 79 Bourke Street in the city) to claim¬†your free un-soggy sandwich.¬† We ranked Melbourne's best burgers ‚Äď did your favourite make the list?

A frozen gin cocktail bar has landed at this CBD beer garden

A frozen gin cocktail bar has landed at this CBD beer garden

Garden State Hotel has teamed up with Tanqueray gin to create a pop-up bar dedicated to frozen gin cocktails. You can head on over to this CBD pub’s beer garden which has been transformed into a Tanqueray-themed terrace bar filled with lush greenery. The bar will be serving up four different frozen cocktails until Monday, March 18 and they're all priced at around $14 each. Fair warning: you might have a hard time deciding on just one drink to order from the menu. You can go for a Frozen Green Tea Gimlet made with Tanqueray Rangpur, lime and refreshing green tea, or a Frozen G and T with Tanqueray Sevilla, tonic and orange. There's also the Frozen Clover Club which features Tanqueray gin, pomegranate and citrus, and the Frozen Salty Dog which mixes Tanqueray no. 10, pink grapefruit and salt.  Tanqueray Terrace bar will be open from 5pm till late from Mondays to Thursdays and from 11am till late on Fridays and Saturdays until March 18.  Love imbibing? Check out our guide to the best events at this year's Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.

Gumbuya World's water park will double in size as part of its $50 million redevelopment

Gumbuya World's water park will double in size as part of its $50 million redevelopment

Gumbuya World will soon be home to the state’s most impressive wave pool as the second stage of its $50 million expansion begins. Oasis Springs, Gumbuya World’s water world, is set to be doubled in size by later this year. The park will open six brand new waterslides by the spring school holidays, in addition to the already existing waterslides, lazy river and heated rock pools. The new waterslides will include two monster twister slides and four-lane rally race slides. Gumbuya World is currently undergoing a three-year redevelopment and expansion which first saw the park change its name from Gumbaya Park in 2018. Future plans for Gumbaya World include 50 new attractions, onsite accommodation, cafés, shops, a chocolate factory (!!!) and even a microbrewery. Indigenous, dinosaur and woolshed precincts will also be constructed for educational programs. Keep your eyes peeled for more updates as they come through, or visit the park today at 2705 Princes Highway, Tynong.  Test your limits with the 7 best waterslides in Melbourne.

Carl's Jr lands in Melbourne's CBD with free burgers for a year

Carl's Jr lands in Melbourne's CBD with free burgers for a year

This Valentine’s Day is about to get a lot more interesting for those in a relationship with food. American burger chain Carl’s Jr, known for their chargrilled thickburgers and hand-scooped ice-cream milkshakes, is officially opening their first Melbourne CBD store on Thursday, February 14.  To celebrate, the store will be giving away free burgers for an entire year to the first 50 customers who walk into the new digs in Docklands. The giveaway will take place after the grand opening of the store (yes, there will be a ribbon cutting ceremony), so beat the crowd and be there before 9am to win a year’s worth of food. Carl's Jnr will be located at The District Docklands shopping district at 440 Docklands Dive in Docklands.  Why not check out this nostalgia-inducing circus-themed arcade for adults while you're there.

Prahran's Grand Lafayette is doing a $33 all-you-can-eat Japanese dinner

Prahran's Grand Lafayette is doing a $33 all-you-can-eat Japanese dinner

Prahran restaurant Grand Lafayette serves up a menu that fuses the flavours of the east and west with Asian-inspired brunch dishes and Japanese dishes for dinner.¬†The best part? The restaurant hosts all-you-can-eat dinners six days a week for just $33. You can¬†fill up on a limitless supply of agedashi tofu, chicken katsu, salmon tataki, yuzu kingfish, miso grilled salmon, Angus steak, gua baos and heaps more. You can also tuck into bottomless plates of Grand Lafayette‚Äôs signature ‚ÄėFreakshii‚Äô, AKA freaky sushi rolls, which include tempura cooked tuna maki, soft shell crab maki and vegetarian maki which don't just sound delicious, but are also pretty nice too look at as well.¬† Grand Lafayette has your lunch covered, too. From Monday to Friday, you can enjoy up to six baos during lunchtime for just $15. Braised pork belly, confit pork, fried chicken, beef teriyaki and crispy eggplant are the options of baos they have available. Along with the solid food offerings, Grand Lafayette has an all-you-can-drink offer which lets punters order freak shakes, monster drinks, coffee and other barista specialties for $19 per person. The team behind Grand Lafayette is the same as Port Melbourne‚Äôs now-closed Caf√© Lafayette. The restaurant's two distinct services cater to both the brunch and coffee crowd during the day and double down with Japanese dishes at night. You can reserve a table at the restaurant here. Hungry? Here are 11 of the best all-you-can-eat restaurants in Melbourne.

Golden Gate Hotel has launched a boozy, bottomless pizza lunch

Golden Gate Hotel has launched a boozy, bottomless pizza lunch

Your weekends are going to get busy ‚Äď especially if you like sipping Prosecco and chowing down on pizza. The Golden Gate Hotel is bringing you bottomless pizza every Saturday and Sunday. Take your pick from salami pizza, barbecue chicken pizza, Hawaiian pizza, pumpkin and mushroom pizza, classic Margherita or a garlic pizza loaded with mozzarella. There will also be an unlimited supply of Prosecco to wash down the pizza and you can get it all for just $40 per person. Rope in a friend and book either a noon or 1pm spot to start your two-hour pizza and prosecco indulgence. Book a table at this South Melbourne pub here. More of a Mexican food fan? Try this boozy bottomless Mexican brunch.

This Caribbean restaurant has launched all-vegan Tuesday nights

This Caribbean restaurant has launched all-vegan Tuesday nights

Windsor eatery Queen Vee‚Äôs is turning its Caribbean-inspired menu vegan every Tuesday night. Opened late last year, Queen Vee‚Äôs has become the restaurant of choice for great food and drinks in the south side and the introduction of this all-vegan menu sounds like it could be a delicious addition. A four-course rotating menu will be on offer for $39 per person every Tuesday night. What‚Äôs more, the vegan dishes on the menu will change every week. All of the tasty Caribbean flavours will be infused in vegan dishes such as jerk jackfruit, jalapeno mac ‚Äėn‚Äô cheese and Jamaican patties made from plant-based mince with romesco and black salt. Located at 180 High Street, Windsor, Queen Vee‚Äôs is a fun new option for a vegan dinner. Plus, on Mondays, Queen Vee‚Äôs hosts a locals night where Windsor residents can avail 15 per cent off their entire menu. Looking for more fun vegan food? Here are the city's best vegan restaurants.