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What’s On in Melbourne – March 2023

It's officially the start of Autumn, my favourite season!

Coming up is the Labour Day long weekend in March (Saturday 11 March to Monday 13 March) plus probably the last of the hot weather. Other key dates include:

This post is updated regularly so check back in to see what’s on in Melbourne today, and this weekend as well as what’s happening for the whole month. 

Featured Event #1

Frankston’s legendary street art festival, The Big Picture Fest, returns from 20 to 26 March 2023. This bold and powerful festival is set to transform the city’s buildings and laneways into explosions of colour and movement!

The weeklong celebration will be filled with live bands, street art tours, night walks, digital projections, street performances and food trucks. PLUS, Frankston will be the beneficiary of 9 new large-scale street artworks from artists from right around the globe, etching their stories onto the walls.

Don’t miss the epic Big Picture Fest celebration as well as The Block Party on Friday 24 March, as the festival reaches its peak.

Melbourne Events March

What's on in Melbourne CBD / Docklands

  • Baby Bounce (Wed 1 Mar, Mon 6 Mar, Wed 8 Mar & Wed 15 Mar) – Join in at the Pauline Gandel Children’s Quarter for a fun, interactive session designed for your little ones as they discover the joys of books, rhymes, & stories from Victorian & Australian authors.
  • Shadows in the City (Sat 4 Mar – Sun 5 Mar) – In this strange and fun workshop, you will listen to places, then using Hanji (handmade Korean traditional paper), create and situate ghost-like characters to express their secret stories.
  • Moomba (Thu 9 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Victoria's biggest community festival.
  • Water Sports at Moomba Festival (Thu 9 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Watch waterski acrobatics, including pyramids, tricks and more and also see world-class water sports athletes battle it out at the Moomba Masters competition.
  • Toddler Tales (Mon 6 Mar, Mon 20 Mar & Mon 27 Mar) – Come along and make some noise as you explore language and literacy through stories, rhymes, and songs every Monday at 11:30 am.
  • Mosaic Making Workshop For Kids (Sat 11 Mar) – Looking for a fun and creative activity to enjoy with your family? Then come join the team at Like Minds Studio for a beginner’s mosaic workshop that is perfect for kids!
  • Parrtjima – A Festival in Light (Fri 10 Mar – Sat 11 Mar) – for two nights only, the only authentic Aboriginal light festival of its kind in the world, will present the much-loved Grounded installation!
  • Rent with RNTR (Sat 25 Feb – Sat 11 Mar) – Discover the fun in renting your fashion week looks from a highly curated selection of designer pieces powered by RNTR.
  • Vans Make Impact Tour (Mon 13 Mar) – Melbourne Central is lucky enough to host the in-store signing with some of your fave international skaters.
  • PASIFIX (Sat 18 Mar) – Incredible artists and hidden gems from across the Pacific Ocean come together for PASIFIX, an all-ages music event celebrating Australia’s proud Pacific Islander community.
  • Member Annual Party (Sat 18 Feb) – Gain exclusive after-hours access to the Gandel Gondwana Garden, a 900-square metre outdoor gallery where you can step into the ecosystems of the past.
  • Robotics and coding workshop (Sat 18 Mar) – Discover the power of mBot robots in this fun introductory workshop that explores how simple programs can control complex machines.
  • Taste of Asia Festival (Sat 25 Mar) – Enjoy Asian street food and fusion – inspired bites prepared by local vendors, drinks at the Asian beer garden, and a fun-filled day of entertainment including dance and instrumental performances and cultural activities.
  • Obang (Sat 25 Mar – Sun 26 Mar & Thu 30 Mar – Sun 2 Apr) – a performative installation space designed for babies 6 to 18 months and their carers. Enjoy a joyful, interactive experience featuring puppetry, story-telling & free play in an immersive environment.
Moomba px
  • The LUME (until Thu 30 Jun) – Immerse yourself in the work of Monet and Friends at Australia's digital art gallery.
  • Queen Victoria Night Market (Until Wed 15 Mar) – Eat and drink your way around the world one dish at a time with more than 50 street food traders cooking up a global feast every Wednesday plus specialty shopping and entertainment. Queen Victoria Night Market review.
  • MPavilion (Until Sat 6 Apr) – free events including talks, workshops, performances, family-friendly experiences, community projects and installations, and more.
  • Shrine Kids (Daily) – The Shrine of Remembrance is the National War Memorial of Victoria and it makes for an educational (and sobering) outing for families. 
  • Melbourne Book Market (Saturdays & Sundays) – a curated collection of more than 5,000 new and pre-loved titles selected and presented by 15 of Melbourne’s most experienced booksellers.
  • Punting on the Lake (Until Wed 31 May) – Settle back in an elegant wooden punt to enjoy a unique view of one of the world’s finest gardens as a professional guide tells you about its history and wildlife.
  • Sonica Botanica: Stories and Sounds from the Gardens (Until 31 Dec 2023) – Weaving together interviews, field recordings and a musical score, this evocative listening experience responds to collectors’ passions, botanical knowledge, favourite memories, childhood impressions, historical anecdotes and cultural viewpoints
  • The Explorer – Melbourne Gardens (Until Thu 31 Aug) Discover the beauty of this inner-city oasis and enjoy live commentary in the comfort of an open-air minibus.
  • Aboriginal Heritage Walk (Until Thu 29 Jun) – Journey into Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne, a significant cultural site for the local Kulin Nation, with a First Peoples guide.
  • Seek and Find Nature Cards (Until Fri 30 Jun) – Set your young ones on an adventure exploring nature with Seek and Find Nature Cards to be used at Melbourne Gardens or download the cards and explore your neighbourhood.
  • Moonlight Cinema Melbourne (Until Sun 26 Mar) – Australia’s favourite open-air cinema returns to the beautiful green Central Lawn for another season of balmy nights, lush picnics and sizzling silver-screen blockbuster movies and fan-favourite films.

What's on in Melbourne North / North-East

  • March Walkies for The Lost Dogs' Home (Wed 1 Mar – Fri 31 Mar) – Get tails wagging this March, set yourself a walkies challenge and help raise vital funds to care for lost and abandoned animals at The Lost Dogs' Home.
  • Gandel Gondwana Garden (Fri 3 Mar) – Explore Victoria’s ancient landscapes and learn about creatures that once walked this land, from dinosaurs and megafauna to the ancestors of today’s iconic Australian species.
  • Reels on Wheels (Fri 3 Mar & Fri 10 Mar) – Each ride features short films created by local artists, projected onto different sites and surfaces along the ride.
  • Family Runway (Sat 11 Mar) – Enjoy the runway and then stay and explore, as all Family Runway ticketholders receive complimentary access to Melbourne Museum.
  • Craigieburn Festival (Sat 4 Mar) – Join in for a jam-packed day of activities that the whole family (including your pets) will enjoy!
  • Brunswick Music Festival (Sun 5 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Enjoy live music performances from artists like Adalita, Birdz, Didirri and more.
  • Sydney Road Street Party (Sun 5 Mar) – live music resonating from six street stages, roving performers, art, colour, food and fantastic fun for the whole family.
  • Turkish Pazar Festival (Sat 11 Mar – Sun 12 Mar) – See Queen Victoria Market transform into a traditional Turkish bazaar and experience the vibrant tastes, colours and sounds of Turkey through food, music, dance, and cultural displays.
Begoina Festival px
  • Diamond Valley Railway Community Night Run (Sun 12 Mar) – Every year Diamond Valley Railway runs continuously for twelve hours all the way from 11am to 11pm.
  • Out of the Park Picnic (Sun 12 Mar) – Revive with an afternoon of musical royalty at Out of the Park Picnic, a free celebration at Reservoir's celebrated lake.
  • Thingamabobs (Sat 18 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – See inventions that might change for the better, interact with some of the apparatus or just enjoy how other contraptions complicate simple things in the most outrageous ways. 
  • Lantern Festival (Fri 17 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – a free event taking place over 3 nights and will transform Malahang Reserve into a colourful, illuminated dreamland featuring a canopy of glowing multi-coloured trees and large-scale lanterns.
  • HOT Pride Makers Market (Sat 25 Mar) – Come along to Heart of Thornbury’s inaugural Pride Makers Market and discover a wide range of LGBTQIA+ makers, creatives, small businesses and community groups.
  • Ricotta Festival (Sun 26 Mar) – The first and only Ricotta Festival in Australia is back again, with huge vats of fresh hot ricotta, Italian food and drinks pop-ups, a local producer marketplace, entertainment for the whole family and kids activities.
  • Melbourne International Flower & Garden Show (Wed 29 Mar – Sun 2 Apr) – See the best landscape and floral talent from Australia and around the world alongside an extensive array of garden retail products.
  • Little Explorer Wednesdays (Wednesdays until 5 Apr) – each week where your minis will explore their creativity through a variety of fun (and free!) kids' craft activities.
  • Carlton Street Eats (Thursdays until 25 May) – Bring a picnic rug and enjoy the expansive lawn area while you enjoy your choice of sweet and savoury foods, freshly squeezed juice, beer, wine, gelati, wood-fired pizza or French patisserie.
  • Triceratops: Fate of the Dinosaurs (Daily) – An immersive voyage into a lost world, where visitors will explore the landscapes of the Cretaceous and get to know the creatures that thrived there.
  • Heide Gallery Kids (Fridays) – Join Art Therapist Tanis Douglas, who supports pre-school children and their carers to gain confidence observing artworks in a small group.
  • Diamond Valley Railway (Sundays) – miniature railway with a playground next door. Diamond Valley Railway Review

What's on in Melbourne South / South-East / Bayside

  • Films Ocean Film Festival World Tour (Wed 1 Mar 2023 – Thu 2 Mar) – a three-hour celebration of the oceans comprised of sublime footage taken above and below the water’s surface.
  • Future Creatives (Wed 1 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Geelong Gallery celebrates the achievements and creative practice of young emerging artists living in Geelong and the surrounding region who completed their Victorian Certificate of Education in 2022.
  • Elwood Market (Sat 4 Mar) – Experience all the fun, music and community atmosphere of the Elwood Market: vintage goods, second-hand treasures, art, books, a petting zoo, face painting and all sorts of bargains and beautiful items.
  • Knox Festival (Sat 4 Mar) – local performers, artists, sports, amusements, culture, food and entertainment for the whole family to enjoy.
  • Global Flavour Feast (Fri 3 Mar – Fri 24 Mar) – head down to the Bunjil Place Plaza Friday nights through March 2023 for this year’s exploration into some of the rich cultural diversity Melbourne and the Southeast have to offer.
  • Rapunzel: A Tangled Tale (Fri 3 Mar – Sat 25 Mar) – Full of laughs, magic, and hijinks, Rapunzel is a pantomime for the whole family and a great way to introduce children to the world of theatre.
  • Musicmania (Sun 5 Mar) – Sing your heart out! Music has the unique magical power to stimulate emotions and allow expression beyond the limits of the spoken language.
  • Shaun the Sheep: Hide & Sheep (Thu 9 Mar – Thu 30 Mar) – Adults and kids of all ages can follow the trail, seek and scan the markers along their way to reveal a series of 3D animations of Shaun hiding out within a farmyard scene.
  • Bhangra Down Under (Sun 12 Mar) – Nothing connects communities like art, dance and… Punjabi culture. Pleasure your senses at this Bhangra festival delight.
  • Emergent 2022: Graduate Showcase (Sat 18 Mar – Sun 9 Apr) – Immerse yourself in the future of art and design from our local region.
  • Emergent 2022: Performance Showcase (Sat 18 Mar) – explore the human condition, emotional states, pain and relationships.
  • Casey Kids Carnival (Sat 18 Mar) – free activities for families, including live performers and entertainers. There will be lots of fun rides, interactive games, face painters, art and crafts and live animals.
Knox Festival px
  • Melbourne St Patrick's Day Festival (Sat 18 Mar) – Celebrate Irish culture and heritage at this free family event. Enjoy street performers, traditional Irish food and other cuisines, Irish dancing and live music creating
  • In One Voice Festival (Sun 19 Mar) – In One Voice is the greatest celebration of Jewish culture. In 2021, IOV will take a new form through “For One Day” and “For One Night”. Intimate, yet vibrant celebrations of our community.
  • Melbourne Fair (Thu 23 Mar – Sun 26 Mar) – The renowned Melbourne Fair is returning to Caulfield racecourse, turning the inside room into a treasure trove of antiquities, fine art, vintage fashion, jewellery, and even furniture.
  • Embrace Harmony (Sat 25 Mar) – Enjoy a a range of activities and entertainment for everyone to enjoy!
  • Candlelight Concerts (Sat 25 Mar) – Immerse yourself in a stunning, multi-sensory experience this March as the critically acclaimed Candlelight Concerts comes to Prahran Square for two free live and intimate concerts.
  • Us and All of This (Sat 25 Mar – Sun 26 Mar) – In a once-in-a-lifetime event, 300 local participants will join award-winning choreographer and creator Liesel Zink at Bunjil Place in the City of Casey.
  • Victorian State Ballet: Snow White (Sat 25 Mar – Sun 26 Mar) – a spectacular classical ballet rendition of this most famous of fairy tale stories. Its fiery passion and exciting choreography will have audiences on the edge of their seats from beginning to end.
  • The Tempest (Sat 25 Feb – Sun 12 Mar) – This performance is guaranteed to entertain audiences young and old with its laugh-out-loud comedy, beautiful choreography and musical medleys.
  • Space Jam: Family Slam (Fri – Sun until 31 March & Daily until 23 April) – Family Slam is a fun and active basketball play, video gaming and skills testing event experience for all ages coming to The Glen Shopping Centre
  • Minifigure Madness (Daily until 31 Mar) – Every child who visits gets a FREE Minifigure to swap on the brand new Minifigure Trading Wall!
  • Skyline Attractions (Until Thu 25 Apr) – Take in the breathtaking views of the St Kilda foreshore and pier at the KIIS Eye Ferris Wheel which makes its debut this Summer!
Victorian State Ballet Snow White px
  • LEGO Friends (Daily Until 25 March 2023) – Visit LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne to meet your new Friends, receive fun show bags, join in a scavenger hunt activity and more!
  • Busy Bodies (Mondays until 2 Apr) – Join in each Monday during the school term from 10 am – 1 pm to play, learn, cook and so much more during these FREE activity sessions for preschool-aged children outside Micheli on Level 4.
  • Bentleigh Sunday Market (Sundays) – plants, clothing, cosmetics, jewellery, books, videos, tools, antiques, crafts, pre-loved goods, and more! Every Sunday. 
  • Mornington Railway (Sundays) – Climb aboard the Mornington Railway steam train for a fun-filled outing.
  • Gasworks Farmers’ Market (Third Saturday of every month until Fri 15 Dec) – On Saturdays soak up the vibrant atmosphere and sample the very best of local Victorian produce, directly from Victorian farmers and specialty makers.
  • Lilydale Rotary Craft Produce Market (First Sunday of the Month) – craft stalls, food, and fresh produce on the first Sunday of the month.

What's on in Melbourne East

  • Let's Play (Fri 3 Mar) – Learn about the importance of play and tips to support your child's language development and pre-writing skills.
  • Glenferrie Festival (Sun 5 Mar) – Over 300 individual stalls serving up fine food, street food, live entertainment, fashion, hand-crafted goods, great amusement rides, pop up bars, kids' Entertainment and activities.
  • Holi Festival of Colour (Sun 5 Mar) – Free Bollywood dance and colour workshops for kids. You can also get a free gift by snapping a photo at the Happy Holi wall.
  • Asian Cooking with Kids (Sun 12 Mar) – The Kid Cooking Classes are fun and educational – parents, guardians and grandparents can join the class. Menus are designed to introduce your child to some of their new favourite meals together with their loved parents and families.
  • Warrandyte Festival (Fri 17 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – Enjoy a Film Feast, street parade and a solid music programme in the afternoon until the night!
  • Celebrate Mooroolbark Festival (Sat 18 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – 8 days of smaller pop-up style events during day and night, around town, on and offline.
  • The Herb and Chilli Festival (Sat 18 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – Two-day celebration of herbs and chillis in food, drinks, sauces, plants and the cultures associated with cuisines that focus on spice and flavour. Read the review
  • Summer in the Park (Until Sun 5 Mar) – Boroondara Arts’ Summer in the Park series of free outdoor events across February and March. Burgers, sweet treats and coffee are available.
Asian Cooking with Parents and Kids px
  • Mural Making with Baby Guerilla (Until Sat 1 Apr) – Learn how to design and create a public mural with street artist Baby Guerrilla.
  • Bounce Playdates (Weekdays During Term Time) – Extended toddler sessions offer little adrenaline hunters time to explore and play, while parents can choose to join in, or watch on from nearby.
  • Blue Lotus Water Garden (Until Mon 10 Apr) – explore gardens with lakes, ponds and lagoons and fairy garden. Blue Lotus Water Garden Review
  • Belgrave Big Dreams Market (2nd Sunday of the Month) – discover original and bespoke design pieces, some of the yummiest and freshest produce the area has to offer, live music, a bouncy castle and face painting for the kids.
Blue Lotus Water Garden

What's on in Melbourne West

  • Yarraville Community Centre Pop-Up Food Relief Markets (Wed 1 Mar) – Yarraville Community Centre will be hosting a food relief market for those in need of assistance with food and essentials.
  • Twilight Concert at Lincoln Park (Sat 4 Mar) – Pack a picnic, round up your family, friends and neighbours and get ready to sit back and soak up the serenity with an afternoon and evening of free live music, food and plenty of activities to keep the kids entertained.
  • Westside Slam (Sat 4 Mar) – a 1-day festival at Nicholson Street Mall in Footscray filled with 3×3 tournaments, shooting comps, free shooting games, NBL Player appearances, local DJs and entertainment!
  • Jams for Juniors (Sat 4 Mar) – Children aged 0-5 and their adults can explore, play and join in at these popular 30-minute musical workshops.
  • Holi Festival (Fri 3 Mar – Sun 5 Mar) – Three days of family fun, giveaways, bollywood dancing and more.
  • Yarraville Festival (Sun 5 Mar) – a family experience filled with delicious food, entertainment and stalls offering quality products and produce.
  • Movie Night: Yarraville Oval (Fri 10 Mar) – during this free open air movie night, see the movie Over the Hedge at Skinner Reserve and Yarraville Oval.
  • Movie Night: Skinner Reserve (Sat 11 Mar) – during this free open air movie night, see the movie Gnomeo and Juliet at Skinner Reserve.
  • Robin Hood Festival (Sat 11 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Enjoy free Robin Hood-themed activities, crafts, live performances, circlet making, potion making, face painting, Jousting, sword training, market stalls, roving performers, maypole dancing, games + much more!
  • Ballarat Begonia Festival (Sat 11 Mar – Mon 13 Mar) – Ballarat will be in full bloom once again as the Ballarat Begonia Festival returns and celebrates its 70th year.
  • Enterprize One Hour Day Sails (Sat 11 Mar – Sun 12 Mar & Sat 18 Mar – Sun 19 Mar) – sail from five locations in Port Phillip Bay and occasionally in other ports along the southeastern coast of Australia.
  • Meet me in Tarneit – Tarneit Twilight Market (Fri 17 Mar) – Browse the stalls, catch a performance, enjoy some kids activities and grab a bite to eat it’s the perfect way to spend a Friday evening this Summer.
  • Fairytales on Skates (Sat 18 Mar & Sun 26 Mar) – Meet your favourite fairytale characters as they zoom, twirl and roll around your neighbourhood!
  • Junior Chefs (Sat 18 Mar – Sun 19 Marb) – Calling all budding chefs! Join in each month to learn, make and taste a new delicious recipe!
  • LIT (Fri 17 Mar – Sun 26 Mar) – See Wyndham Park in Werribee City Centre become a glowing wonderland at this free immersive experience presented by Wyndham City.
  • 2023 Get Active! Expo Launch (Sun 19 Mar) – Enjoy an interactive kids' corner and activities from Western Bulldogs, Melbourne Victory, Cricket Victoria and Reclink Australia.
  • The Pet Show (Sat 25 Mar – Sun 26 Mar) – The first national show celebrating all of the pets in your life. There will be education, entertainment, and products for all dogs, cats, fish, birds, reptiles and small animals.
  • AVALON 2023 (Tue 28 Feb – Sat 5 Mar) – see hundreds of military and civilian planes at the Australian International Airshow and Aerospace & Defence Exposition.
  • Little Kids Day In (Fri 31 Mar) – A unique learning experience with activities, museum exhibits, STEM challenges, shows and storytelling for children and parents to get involved in.
The Pet Show px
  • FCAC Toddler Jam (Thursdays – Fridays until 6 Apr) – Our tutor Razz, a long-time member of the FCAC community, is highly skilled in getting toddlers active and learning through play, with a mixture of percussion, singing, and dancing.
  • Toddler Clay Club (Saturdays until Sat 1 Apr) – In this class, Artist Kari Lee McInneny-McRae shares simple clay-making skills for both bubs and their carers.
  • Let’s Dance: Hip Hop (Until Sat 1 Apr) – In these free kid’s dance classes, kids will get to learn some new moves, meet other kids and have fun!
  • Food Truck Festival (Until Sat 25 Mar) – The Food Truck Festival returns, bringing an array of local and international cuisines to Eynesbury.
  • Musical Minds Workshop (Mondays Until 3 April) – learn the fundamentals of music together in a fun & educational environment. Sing songs, play various instruments, move to music & learn how actions & Auslan can help in song memory retention & learning.
  • Eynesbury Market (Last Sunday of the month) – monthly community market in Eynesbury
  • Toddler and Kids Art Classes with The Fun in Art (Thursdays) – ‘The Fun In Art’ provides art classes for toddlers and kids where they're more about the fun of creation and less about the outcome of the artwork.
  • Fulldome Flicks (Saturdays in March and April) – A spellbinding cinema experience for the whole family is returning to the Melbourne Planetarium this autumn.
  • Creative Art with Little Art Big Art (1st Saturday of every month until 1 Jul) – Join Rachael from Little Art Big Art for FREE monthly family-friendly, hands-on art sessions.
  • Bulla Railway (3rd Sunday of each month) – Ride the dinosaur trail on the miniature railway. Bulla Railway Review.
  • Yarraville Village Farmers Market (3rd Saturday of Each Month) – enjoy a wonderful, relaxed community environment and sample the freshest products direct from the farmers and producers as you shop in the open.
  • Altona Miniature Railway (3rd Sunday of the month) – between 10 am and 3 pm, ride this wonderful Miniature Railway. Altona Miniature Railway review.
  • Grazeland (Fridays – Sundays) – huge dining precinct with city views and 50 stalls to choose from. Read the Grazeland Review
  • Essendon Traffic School (Saturdays) – Essendon Traffic School is a mini road set up for kids aged two to ten years, complete with road signs, railway bells and traffic lights. Essendon Traffic School review.
  • Sunday Funday Station Hotel (Sundays) – Every Sunday, The Station Hotel prepares an animal farm and other entertaining activities to keep the little ones busy while you sit back and relax. Station Hotel Review
  • Illuminate (ongoing) – a brand new exhibition exploring the science behind the fastest traveller in the universe – light. Ignite the senses and learn through hands-on interactive play. What is light, what can we do with it, and how do we see?
  • Rampfest (ongoing) – Camps are suitable for skateboarders, scooters & BMX riders aged from 7-14.

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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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