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20 Outdoor Cinemas in Melbourne You Need to Visit This Summer

There’s no better way to enjoy Melbourne’s balmy summer evenings than watching a favourite movie together with loved ones under the stars. It’s a fun family activity as dusk falls relaxing on comfortable chairs or lounging on a picnic rug.

Here’s a list of the best outdoor cinemas Melbourne has to offer, many of which offer family-friendly films.

Just keep in mind that your kids will need to be able to stay up late, as screenings only start when the sun goes down – which during the height of summer (December/January) can be as late as 9 pm.

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BEST OUTDOOR CINEMA MELBOURNE 2024

1. Sunset Cinema, Melbourne

When Sunset Cinema locations open for this summer, make sure you cool down from the summer heat in the nicest way possible. Picture ice-cold drinks, delicious food and sinfully sweet candy all while watching a movie.

Looking for something a bit more special to enjoy with your friends? Check out the VIP Ticket to include your choice of a reclining chair or beanbag; a premium seating area; and bottomless fresh popcorn!

Sunset Cinema The Briars, 450 Nepean Highway, Mount Martha

Sunset Cinema St Kilda Botanical Gardens, 11 Herbert St, St Kilda

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2. Cameo Cinema, Belgrave

Cameo Outdoor Cinema provides a bucolic movie-watching experience with deckchair seating on the cinema’s rolling lawn, amidst the greenery of the Dandenong Ranges. This is one of the most unique ways to see an outdoor movie Melbourne wide.

Note that you will need to purchase any food and drink at the venue as no outside alcohol, food or snacks are permitted. Dogs are welcome to come… just be sure to clean up after them. 

Cameo Outdoor Cinema, 1628 Burwood Highway, Belgrave, +61 3 9754 7844

Cameo Cinemas

3. Classic Cinema, Elsternwick

Classic Cinemas holds the claim to fame as being the longest continuously operating cinema in Victoria. It boasts ten indoor screens as well as the Classic Rooftop. The stunning views all the way out to the bay make it one of the most gorgeous places to watch rooftop movies in Melbourne.

You’ll find comfortable director’s chair seating on staggered levels once you get up to the rooftop to watch your film.

Classic Rooftop Cinema 9 Gordon Street, Elsternwick, +61 3 9524 7900

Classic Cinema Elsternwick

4. Dromana 3 Drive In, Mornington Peninsula

The Dromana Drive-in is an iconic part of the Mornington Peninsula and you can see the screens as you zoom down the freeway. It’s been screening movies on its four screens since 1962 and it’s still going strong today!

Dromana Drive-in is perfect for a relaxing, low-key night out. Order some tasty food from the onsite restaurant called Shel’s Diner (they’ll even deliver it to your car) and enjoy watching your favourite classics or new releases with the fam!

Gates open approximately 30 minutes before the screening time and there are sometimes two screenings a night.

Dromana 3 Drive In, 133 Nepean Highway, Dromana, +61 3 5987 2492

Dromana Drive In

5. Lido Cinema, Hawthorn

At Lido Cinema’s open air cinema Melbourne, you can watch blockbusters and arthouse classics with bird’s-eye views of Hawthorn’s rooftops.

There’s no need to BYO snacks: Lido’s food and drink counter serves up great movie treats, from choc tops and vegan-friendly popcorn, to edamame and craft beers. 

Know someone who loves going to and watching movies outdoors? Why not gift them a ​​unique movie experience with a Lido on the Roof gift pack. This includes two adult tickets and a $10 food and drink voucher! They also offer custom Lido on the Roof E-Gift Cards.

Check out Lido on the Roof’s full program to see what’s showing this year.

Lido Cinema, 675 Glenferrie Road, Hawthorn, +61 3 8658 0000

lido cinemas

6. Lunar Drive In, Dandenong South

Don’t miss out on one of Australia’s largest drive-in cinemas! Lunar Drive In’s large screen is just what you need for an unforgettable movie experience.

It is the oldest drive-in theatre still operating in Australia, yet offers state of the art picture and sound presentation on all four screens. 

The Lunar Drive-in cinema in Dandenong is not just a place to watch movies; it’s also home to tasty classic Aussie burgers (don’t miss the Lunar Burger with the Lot). We can’t go passed the old-school hot jam doughnuts. Yum!

Films play every day except on Christmas Day which makes this an ideal outdoor cinema for any time of year.

Lunar Drive In, 115 South Gippsland Highway, Dandenong, +61 3 9706 9988

Lunar Drive In

7. Moonlight Cinema, South Yarra

There’s nothing quite like watching a film under the stars in the evening cool of the Botanic Gardens with the original Moonlight Cinema Melbourne – our first outdoor cinema. 

You can BYO a grazing box or a picnic hamper. Or there’s a bar for refreshments as well as a selection of food trucks.

All films start at sundown so make sure you get there early to nab a good spot on the lawn.

It’s a great way to spend a summer evening in Melbourne!

Moonlight Cinema, Gate D Birdwood Avenue, Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne

Click here to check out Groupon’s deal for discounted tickets.

Moonlight Cinema

8. Pentridge Open-Air Cinema, Coburg

Experience the best global releases and hand-picked retro films under the summer stars in such a striking location!

The Palace Pop-Up Bar offers snacks and drinks from 7:30 pm when the gates open. You can BYO picnic boxes (and definitely bring a blanket for when the temperature cools down), but you can’t BYO alcohol.

This year, Pentridge Open-Air Cinema will also be hosting exciting pre-screening events such as trivia games, costume competitions and live music during selected sessions!

Make sure you arrive early to claim a deck chair, stock up on your favourite beverages and settle in for a beautiful evening.

Pentridge Open-Air Cinema, 1 Champ St, Coburg

Pentridge Open Air

9. Sun Cinema – ‘The Shore Outdoor’, Williamstown

The summer offering from the Sun Cinema called The Shore Outdoor Cinema in Williamstown is back for this summer. Pack some blankets and head to the waterfront for a relaxing night of movie-watching at Shore Cinema, a pop-up cinema collaboration between the Sun Theatre and Seaworks.

It’s especially nice that you can bring your own food or drink to enjoy during the movie and screenings start at twilight.

Seating options include Cape Cod Double (for two people), Bean Bag or Bring Your Own.

Note that the Sun Williamstown season is often short and tickets are popular. It’s best to keep an eye out on social media to see when movies are screening so you don’t miss out.

Ticket Prices:

  • $19.50 Adults, 18 and over
  • $14.00 Children and teens age 3 to 17
  • $14.00 Seniors card and 65+
  • $16.50 Pensioners, Students or Concession card holders
  • $15.50 Sun Theatre/Cinema adult members

Optional Extras:

  • $5.00 Reserved Cape Cod Chair (one seat)
  • $5.00 Reserved Bean Bag
  • $50.00 Scotchman’s Hamper

*Includes a bottle of Scotchman’s wine (1 x 750ml or 2 x 375ml), 2 choc tops & 1 x large popcorn

Gates Open at 7.30pm, movie begins at 8.30pm

Sun Williamstown, Seaworks, 82 Nelson Place, Williamstown, +61 3 9362 0999 

Sun Williamstown

10. Melbourne Cable Park, Bangholme

Summer movies are back at Melbourne Cable Park, and they’re bigger and better than ever before! Enjoy your favourite films, live music, and the company of your loved ones at this wonderful Melbourne outdoor cinema.

The live music begins at 2 pm while the movies begin at 4 pm. Entry is $10 per person, but for families of four living in the same household, I suggest the $30 family ticket instead. Check out the full movie schedule here.

Melbourne Cable Park, 5 Riverend Road, Bangholme, +61 3 8780 7777

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11. ‘Bourne Local Open-Air Cinema, Elwood

Enjoy a summer night out at ‘Bourne Open-Air Cinema where you can catch the newest blockbusters alongside cult favourites under the stars.

On top of this, the outdoor cinema experience includes live entertainment, food trucks, and a bar to make the night even more special.

‘Bourne Local Open-Air Cinema, Elwood Park, Elwood VIC 3184, Behind Elwood Beach

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12. Movies in the Square, CBD

Every weekend, come on down to Fed Square to enjoy an amazing selection of films at their Outdoor Cinema! Whether you’re looking for thrilling action or a movie night with your loved ones, there’s sure to be something that everyone can enjoy.

This year’s line-up features a host of Aussie classics, so don’t forget to bring a blanket or your cozy chair to stay cozy and comfy while watching flicks on the big screen!

Check out the full movie schedule here.

Movies in the Square, Corner of Swanston and Flinders Streets Melbourne, +61 3 9655 1900, info@fedsquare.com

pexels pixabay

13. Movies by the Bay, Hobsons Bay City Council

Gather the family and enjoy a fun night filled with movies in the great outdoors at Hobsons Bay’s Movies by the Bay. Enjoy the sunset while snacking on treats you’ve prepared from home or from one of the delicious local eateries.

The show starts at around 8:45 pm – 9 pm, but to get the best spot, be sure to get there early, and don’t forget to bring your own picnic and chairs! There are various screening locations, including Altona and Williamstown, so check the website for details.

movies by the bay

14. Palace Penny Lane Cinemas, Moonee Ponds

Palace Cinemas opened Palace Penny Lane Cinema in Moonee Ponds on December 21, 2023. This cinema blends modern luxury with retro charm, featuring fully-reclining leather chairs, a rooftop cinema, 4K laser projection, and an exclusive wine menu.

Situated just 6.5 kilometres from the city centre, it’s easily accessible via tram, train, and bus services. Penny Lane retail centre offers complimentary three-hour parking with ticket validation, ensuring convenience.

Local residents are invited to join the Palace Movie Club, providing exclusive offers and rewards. Palace Penny Lane Cinema represents a commitment to delivering exceptional film experiences and enhancing Melbourne’s arts and culture scene. It’s a cinematic landmark for movie enthusiasts!

Palace Penny Lane, 17 Puckle St, Moonee Ponds VIC 3039

eac palace web x

15. Cinema in the Vines, Tokar Estate

For the first time ever, Tokar Estate has partnered with local business Offshore Cinema to present a program of films this summer.

The week before Christmas is all about family, so head out and enjoy an evening with the little ones. There will be lawn games, a candy bar, and Christmas classics like the Polar Express and Elf to round off the Christmas countdown.

Cinema in the Vines, Tokar Estate, 6 Maddens Lane, Coldstream, VIC, 3 5964 9585, bookings@tokarestate.com.au

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16. The Gardens, Scoresby

The Gardens outdoor cinema is Melbourne’s cherished spot for summer entertainment, where communities bond, relive memories and craft new tales.

Choose your next cinematic adventure at The Gardens outdoor cinema. From luxurious seating to a laid-back grassy experience.

The Gardens, Caribbean Gardens, 850 Stud Rd, Scoresby, VIC,

garden cinema

17. Summer Cinema Series, Prahran Square

Prahran Square will be presenting a special free Summer Cinema series of family-friendly classics and more recent movies to appeal to all ages and different audiences.

The movies will run alternate Fridays over December to February in the Square with films screening at sunset. There will also be a special Valentine’s Day screening on Wednesday 14 February. Before each film there will be a live music performance, too!

Summer Cinema Series, 8 Dec 2023 – 14 Feb 2024, 7pm – 11pm, The Lawn, Prahran Square, Cato St, Prahran, VIC,

WSP

18. Station Place and Kelly Park, Werribee City Centre

Get ready to soak up the summer vibes in Werribee City Centre, 13 to 27 January. Two of Werribee’s favourite parks will come alive with movies, music and more.

Kelly Park will transform into a Saturday night pop-up movie haven, while Station Place will be buzzing on weekdays with dance workshops, tunes, Tai Chi and more.

Station Place and Kelly Park, 13 Jan – 27 Jan 2024, 45 Princes Highway, Werribee City Centre

Summer in the Park FB event cover x

19. Summer Cinema, Hellenic Museum

From ancient plays at the Theatre of Dionysus to Hollywood classics at Cine Thisio, open air theatres are a long-standing and much loved Greek tradition. At the annual Summer Cinema, the Hellenic Museum brings a slice of this great pastime to Melbourne.

Summer Cinema, 9 Feb – 23 Feb 2024, Hellenic Museum, 280 William St

Hellenic Museum Cinema

20. Drive-In Cinema, Coburg

Village Cinemas Coburg Drive-In invites you to a blockbuster experience where family togetherness meets big-screen thrills.

Experience the newest blockbuster hits magnificently displayed on expansive 33-metre wide screens. Coupled with crystal-clear sound delivered directly to your car’s FM stereo broadcast!

Best of all, kids aged 11 and under get in free!  So pack the snacks, gather your crew, and let the silver screen magic illuminate your family outing under the starry sky.

Village Cinemas Coburg Drive-In, 155 Newlands Rd, Coburg North VIC 3058, 1300 555 400

Coburg Drive In Cinema
Coburg Drive In Cinema

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Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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