Last week of November and less then 5 weeks until Christmas!
If you haven’t gotten into the Christmas spirit yet you won’t be able to avoid it! Lucky for you I’ve collected the best free Christmas events and activities happening in Melbourne CBD so it doesn’t have to be an expensive month either.
This weekend I’ll be holding Byk Bikes kids bike test rides and helmet fittings, visiting Santa’s Magical Kingdom and aiming to bake 300 cupcakes for Footscray Primary School’s Democracy Sausage Sizzle and Election Cake Stall on Saturday 24 November (Gilmore Girls College 298 Barkly St Footscray). Wish me luck!
WHAT’S ON IN MELBOURNE – CBD/DOCKLANDS
- Santa’s Post Box (Fri 23 Nov – Fri 14 Dec) – write a letter to Santa and receive a personalised response. Post outside the Australia Post GPO and The District, Docklands
- Christmas at Old Treasury (Fri 23 Nov – Fri 5 Jan) – The Old Treasury Building is once again showcasing homemade decorations of the 1920s!
- Night Noodle Markets (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 25 Nov ) – all the sights, sounds and smells of an Asian hawker market plus the buzz, hype and vibe of a huge outdoor festival.
- Myer Christmas Windows (Fri 23 Nov – Sat 8 Jan) – expect to be wowed by Myer’s Alice in Wonderland animated windows. Read the review.
- Christmas at Old Treasury (Fri 23 Nov – Fri 7 Jan) – The Old Treasury Building is once again showcasing homemade decorations of the 1920s!
- Julian Opie: Studio for Kids open (Fri 23 Nov – 17 Feb 19) – new children’s gallery exhibition by British artist Julian Opie. Full review.
- MPavilion (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 3 Feb 2018) – An event hub, a meeting place and an invitation to experiment, each MPavilion brings creative collaborators together to present a free, four-month program of talks, workshops, performances and installations from October to February.
- Entertainment Weekend Docklands (Fri 16 Nov – Sun 18 Nov) – live music, DJs, face painting, rides with Wonderland Junior and an eclectic Makers Market.
- The Magic Cave (Fri 23 Nov – Mon 24 Dec) – Create precious memories this Christmas in David Jones’ enchanted Magic Cave and see Santa and his Elves.
- Santa’s Christmas Spectacular (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 23 Dec) – Celebrate Christmas with the whole family as Santa’s magical workshop comes to life this Christmas season in a fun-filled circus adventure for the whole family.
- Etsy Made Local (Sat 24 Nov) – 100 stalls showcasing handmade goods from local crafters, collectors and makers including homewares to jewellery, stationery and arts and crafts.
- Gardening Workshops Immigration Museum (Sat 24 Nov) – Join us for a day in the garden as we celebrate our new exhibition Grow Gather Share with workshops for all ages by Cultivating Community.
- Under 8s Ice Fun (Sun 25 Nov) – unique toddler experience in shoes or skates.
- Kids Oktoberfest Munich Brauhaus (Sun 25 Nov) – every Sunday kids eat for free, face painter and activity packs.
- Crown Christmas Spectacular (Sun 25 Nov – Thu 3 Jan) – free light and music show, free Santa photos, ArtVO 3D Christmas walls. Full review.
- The District Docklands Christmas Tree Exhibition (Mon 26 Nov – Tue 25 Dec) – local primary schools and groups in our community helped us decorate Christmas trees.
- Queen Victoria Night Market (Wed 28 Nov) – Melbourne’s original night market returns every Wednesday over summer. Full review.
WHAT’S ON IN MELBOURNE – NORTH / NORTH-EAST
- Corroborree Fridays Melbourne Zoo (Fri 23 Nov) – Every Friday 10.30am-11.30am learn all about the critically endangered Corroboree frog through stories, craft, games, and face painting (extra cost).
- Nature Play Clifton Hill (Fri 23 Nov) – Open your child to the wonder and learning local nature provides, with a free program in a nature setting for two to five year-olds (carer or parent must attend).
- National Geographic’s 50 Greatest Wildlife Photographs (Fri 23 Nov – 30 Nov) – a world-first immersive photographic exhibition looking at wildlife through images from 130 years of National Geographic magazine.
- Make Believe Melbourne Museum (Fri 23 Nov – Sat 9 Feb) – Make Believe: The Story of the Myer Christmas Windows is a magical, glittering, experience for children and adults alike, inviting lovers of this cherished Melbourne tradition to reconnect with the nostalgia of their childhood, and offering younger visitors the chance to experience it all with fresh eyes. Full review.
- Make Your Own World: How to be an Architect (Sat 24 Nov) – Open House Melbourne is delving into the world of kids. They are inviting you and your budding architects to meet some people who can turn imaginary worlds into reality – virtual and actual.
- Batman Market (Sat 24 Nov) – food trucks, free entertainment, jumping castle. FULL REVIEW.
- Baby Sleep Feed Repeat (Sun 25 Nov) – www.treehutvillage.com.au is hosting the event that brings expert advice to you all at the same time in one place!
- Diamond Valley Railway (Sun 25 Nov) – miniature railway and two adventure playgrounds. Full review.
- Sundays Fun Day Preston Market (Sun 25 Nov) – free drop in activities every Sunday.
- Historic Playdates Melbourne Museum (Tue 27 Nov) – Each Playdate is facilitated by a learning expert, and is themed around exciting ideas to connect children to their world through museum objects.
WHAT’S ON IN MELBOURNE – SOUTH / SOUTH-EAST / BAYSIDE
- Santa’s Magical Kingdom (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 23 Dec) – Christmas event with rides, shows, activities. Full review.
- Cook It with Dad Clyde North (Sat 24 Nov) – program is an opportunity for fathers and children to experience cooking together.
- Dads Space St Kilda (Sat 24 Nov) – dads are invited to bring their kids (and their best dad jokes) to a weekly event where they can connect with other dads.
- Hank Marvin Market (Sat 24 Nov) – weekly Saturday market with awesome playground at Alma Park.
- Frankston Christmas Festival of Lights (Sat 24 Nov) – Enjoying entertainment and activities including Santa’s grand arrival and the traditional lighting of the Christmas tree.
- Mornington Railway (Sun 25 Nov) – Climb aboard the Mornington Railway steam train for a fun-filled outing.
- The Creators Market (Sun 25 Nov) – handmade crafts, exquisite culinary creations, and designer goodies.
- Unicorn Party Dandenong Market (Sun 25 Nov) – 14 of the market’s vendors produce their own unicorn inspired creations for one day only this November.
- Yarra River Blitz Herring Island (Sun 25 Nov) – Please join the the Yarra Riverkeeper Association and Cleanwater Groupfor our summer Yarra River Blitz.
- Green Spine Community Day (Sun 25 Nov) – Free activities and workshops include a pop-up library, Tuckonie Orienteering, The Sage Garden’s parent and toddler yoga workshops, Labcoat Learning’s waterbug and science stations and outdoor games with the brand new Active You program.
- Bumble Bee Kids Market (Sun 25 Nov) – high quality pre loved, handmade, and new goods at reasonable prices.
- Fairy Petunia South Melbourne Market (Wed 28 Nov) – free storytelling, drawing, face painting, games, bubbles and more.
WHAT’S ON IN MELBOURNE – EAST
- Santa’s Workshop Eastland (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 23 Dec) – kids will be entertained with all kinds of fun and educational Christmas crafts, creating their own mini Christmas wreath, Christmas card and Christmas decorations to hang on your tree at home.
- Urban Field Day Richmond (Sat 24 Nov) – free giveaways, a coffee truck, sausage sizzle, face painting, an animal farm, pop up bicycle repair garage, yoga on the lawn, a harvest market, a kids woodstock activity, homemade food stalls, a library sensory zone, secondhand book and clothes store and more!
- Kids Fun Run with Thomas (Sun 25 Nov) – lots of great entertainment planned for the day, including the opportunity for your children to run against Thomas the Tank Engine in age specific races
- Mooroolbark Miniature Railway (Sun 25 Nov) – miniature rail running every 4th Sunday.
- Yarra Valley Railway (Sun 25 Nov) – take a trip on the historic Walker RM22 Railmotor from Healesville to Tunnel Hill. Full review.
- Wallaby Wednesdays Healesville Sanctuary (Wed 28 Nov) – Kids can dress up as wallabies with wallaby face painting, wallaby ears and wallaby tails for pouch races, hopping games and wallaby trails.
- Moonlit Markets Eastland (Thu 29 Nov) – Find an assortment of fashion, jewellery, art, homewares and delights for the kids made with skill by our talented stallholders. Plus with live music on offer, delicious street food and a pop up bar. Every Thursday until 20 Dec.
WHAT’S ON IN MELBOURNE – WEST
- Sunset Safari Werribee Zoo (Fri 22 Nov – Sat 23 Nov) – after hours safari experience of Werribee Zoo with food, entertainment and sunset tour.
- One Night in Footscray (Fri 23 Nov) – discover the burgeoning cultural hub’s galleries, venues and hidden in-between spaces.
- Art & Industry Festival (Fri 23 Nov – Sun 25 Nov) – various events celebrating the changing industrial and manufacturing heartland of Australia.
- Christmas in Geelong (Fri 23 Nov – Mon 24 Dec) – early evening event, culminating is a short fireworks presentation and the lighting of our floating Christmas tree at 9pm. Full review.
- A Night in Altona (Sat 24 Nov) – Altona will be transformed into a mini-festival for one night only. Enjoy art installations, live music and family entertainment in Pier Street and surrounds. More family friendly Art & Industry Festival events.
- Mesh Mash Wood Street Printing (Sat 24 Nov) – Join the Mesh Mash crew for an experimental printing day at the Woods Street Arts Space. You can try your hand at printing a tote bag or fabric samples. More family friendly Art & Industry Festival events.
- The L2R Experience (Sat 24 Nov) – event celebrates the thriving hip hop dance culture in Melbourne’s West, and showcases the passion, dedication, and community spirit of the very talented young people that access L2R’s yearly programs.
- Moonlight Cinema and Skate Comp (Sat 24 Nov) – Enjoy a fun summer night with your family and friends watching the movie Blended and take part in our skate competition.
- Christmas Tree Farm Forest Green Market (Sun 25 Nov) – new Christmas Market in Melbourne’s west. Food stalls, artisan and crafts, kids activities and more.
- Woodgrove Christmas Breakfast (Sun 25 Nov) – special Frosty the Snowman breakfast party with special guests DreamWorks Trolls!
- Truganina Explosives Walking Tour (Sun 25 Nov) – Take a walk in an old explosives facility. Truganina Explosives Reserve was established in 1901 for the storage and handling of commercial explosives, including gelignite and dynamite. More family friendly Art & Industry Festival events.
- The Colour Run (Sun 25 Nov) – the ‘Happiest 5k on the Planet™’ returns with an all-new superhero theme and exciting new course elements.
- Strawberry Forest (Sun 25 Nov) – vertical strawberry picking every Sunday. Full review.
- Scienceworks Weekend Workshops (Sun 25 Nov) – In pairs of one adult and one child, participants will work together to build skills in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths).
- Mini Makers Highpoint (Wed 28 Nov) – free creative workshops for kids
- Mini Zoo Keepers Werribee Zoo (Thu 29 Nov) – Children aged 2-5 years and their adults can go on an intimate guided tour with a Zookeeper to help look after some of the special animals in the zoo.
- Toddler Thursdays Werribee Zoo (Thu 29 Nov) – Toddler Thursdays brings the African Village to life with activities like face painting, crafts, hair braiding, music, and more.
- Toddler Circus Footscray (Thu 29 Nov) – circus class for 18 month -5 year olds. Full review.
- Red Arcade Werribee (Thu 29 Nov – Sun 9 Dec) – For eleven days the suburban arcade of Watton Plaza will be transformed into a dream-like world filled with curious characters and unexpected spaces, where the familiar becomes strange and a trip to the shops a full-blown adventure.