Melbourne Events and Festivals

(Melbourne, Victoria - VIC, Australia)

Melbourne Events, Festivals and Things to DoMelbourne is a city boasting more than its fair share of festivals and every single month of the year there are all kinds of events and things to do, meaning that tourists will find plenty of choice. January sees the arrival of the Australian Open tennis championship and the Summer Music Festival, which is followed by the Australian Matchplay and Australian Masters golfing PGA tournaments each February.

Soon after, the St. Kilda Festival comes along, being traditionally staged on the last Sunday every February and comprising everything from beach activities and live music, to family themed entertainment, food stalls and parties, attracting crowds topping 400,000. Later on in the year, be sure to look out for the Royal Melbourne Show at the Royal Showgrounds and the Melbourne Fringe Arts Festival parades, both of which are held in September. The Bavarian beer festivities at the Oktoberfest draw thousands to the city and this is really just an excuse for a great big party.

National Public Holidays

  • 1st January - New Year's Day
  • 26th January - Australia Day
  • 2nd Monday in March - Labour Day (VIC, TAS)
  • Good Friday / Easter Monday March / April - Easter
  • 25th April - Anzac Day
  • 2nd Monday in June - Queen's birthday
  • 1st Monday in August - Bank Holiday
  • 25th December - Christmas Day
  • 26th December - Boxing Day

Melbourne Calendar of Festivals and Events 2014 / 2015


  • Australian Open - a grand slam tennis tournament
  • Hanging Rock Horse Races - an annual event dating back to the 19th century and held at Hanging Rock
  • Montsalvat Jazz Festival - a three-day jazz fest, held at Eltham and other venues
  • Summer Music Festival - an eclectic music fest, held at the Victorian Arts Centre
  • Midsummer Festival - January / February, a gay and lesbian celebration with numerous events including theatre, music, art and sports


  • Australian Matchplay and Australian Masters - famous golf tournaments
  • Chinese New Year - a spectacular New Year celebration in Chinatown, including street party
  • Great Melbourne Bike Rides - two cycle events 20 km / 12.5 miles and 45 km / 28 miles
  • Harvest Picnic - a popular picnic at Hanging Rock
  • Melbourne Music Festival - with lots of live music for everyone to enjoy
  • St. Kilda Festival - a local arts fest including art, music, food and writing events and including a fair and special children's activities, first held in 1980


  • Antipodes Festival - a celebration of Greek culture and music
  • Formula One Grand Prix - world-famous motor racing grand prix at Albert Park
  • Irish Festival - a popular celebration of 17th March St. Patrick's Day, featuring events all over the city, including an open-air concert
  • Moomba Festival - a ten-day lighthearted gathering featuring a hot air balloon fiesta, carnival, water-skiing, music and concerts
  • Melbourne Food and Wine Festival - mid-March / early April (to be confirmed), Australia's greatest food and wine extravaganza


  • Bells Beach Surfing Classic - one of the world's best surfing events
  • Melbourne International Comedy Festival - held over a three-week period and featuring an array of international acts performing at various venues
  • Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show - an annual flower show held in the Carlton Gardens featuring breathtaking landscapes and beautiful flower beds


  • Next Wave Festival - a two-week event of visual and performing arts, encouraging the young Australians to take an interest in the arts and culture
  • St. Kilda Film Festival - a contemporary Australian short film and video event


  • Brown Brothers Winter Weekend, Milawa, Victoria - second Monday in June, is the official start of the ski season and the famous winery Brown Brothers holds a food and wine festival to celebrate the changing of the season


  • Maverick Arts Festival - a variety of performances from artists, writers, singers and comedians
  • Melbourne International Film Festival - a two-week event showcasing the latest and best in local and international films


  • Exhibition of Victorian Winemakers - a local food and wine event
  • Sip 'n Sup Wine and Food Festival - a popular wine fest held just outside the city, in Sunbury


  • Royal Melbourne Show - large ten-day agricultural show at the Royal Melbourne Showgrounds, featuring art and craft and animal exhibits
  • Grand Final - last Saturday in September until mid-October, Australian Football League (AFL), played by the two most successful teams at the end of the season
  • Melbourne Fringe Arts Festival - late September / mid-October, a three-week celebration with street party and parade, dedicated to supporting local independent artists
  • Asian Food Festival - a popular month long food fest held in Chinatown


  • Lygon Street Fiesta - culture is celebrated with stage entertainment, craft market, carnival rides and cultural events
  • Herald-Sun Tour - a 20-day cycling event
  • Melbourne International Festival of the Arts - with Australia's top-performing artists, and featuring theatre, dance, opera and music
  • Melbourne to Warrnambool Classic - a professional bicycle race
  • Oktoberfest - a three-day event based on a traditional Bavarian beer festival
  • The Spring Racing Carnival - October / November, this five-week betting bonanza, features the Caulfield Cup, Victoria Derby Day, The Tooheys New Melbourne Cup, Crown Oaks Day and the Melbourne Cup. There are numerous social events to enjoy as well as races


  • Hispanic Community Festival - a lively Latin cultural celebration


  • MasterCard Masters - mid-December, Australia's premier professional golf event with many of the world's best-known golfers competing at this Australian Masters
  • Carols by Candlelight - Christmas carol service held in the Sidney Myer Music Bowl
  • International Test Match Cricket - beginning 26th December Boxing Day, international cricket competition
  • Outdoor Theatre - Evening performances held in the Royal Botanic Gardens