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What’s On in Melbourne – May 2023

Hello May!

If you're a Star Wars fan – May the 4th be with you! And if you're Mexican – Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Don't forget that this year Mother's Day is on Sunday 14 May. Get organised by booking a high tea in Melbourne, organising a high tea delivery, treating yourself (or someone else) to a luxurious experience for a day spa in Melbourne or taking a day trip to visit the best day spas in Victoria.

Other dates to note:

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


Get ready for the greatest show in town! The iconic Circus Royale, with its 52-year history of captivating audiences with awe-inspiring acts, is making its way to Westfield Airport West, Mill Park and Narre Warren, bringing an exciting new addition – the only travelling Animatronic Zoo in Australia!

The state-of-the-art Big Top will come alive with the pulse-pounding performances of international superstars, delivering a high-energy, family-friendly show that will leave you on the edge of your seat. With mystic illusions, breathtaking feats, and moments of wonder, this show promises to be an experience of a lifetime

Book Circus Royale

CircusRoyale Pakenham copy
Circus Royale


Stepping into The LUME Melbourne is an epic adventure into art. Australia’s and the Southern Hemisphere’s first permanent digital gallery transforms the world’s finest art into fully immersive sensory encounters. The walls come alive as light ripples across every surface and masterpieces come to life. Curated tastes, aromas and a choreographed soundtrack add thrilling new dimensions to this 360-degree experience.

The LUME‘s current exhibition's theme is Monet and Friends.

Book The LUME tickets.

Lume Monet
THE LUME MELBOURNE – Monet and Friends

Melbourne Events may

What's on in Melbourne CBD / Docklands

  • Storytime at the Library (Wed 3 May & Wed 10 May) – Children and families will be able to join their favourite Library storytellers at the Pauline Gandel Children's Quarter every Wednesday at 10:30am
  • The Music of Hans Zimmer (Wed 3 May – Thu 4 May) – Experience the greatest pieces of film music of the modern era when the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra & conductor Nicholas Buc pay tribute to Hans Zimmer.
  • Autumn Harvest Festival (Sat 6 May to Sun 7 May) – Enjoy a jam-packed program of live music, sustainability workshops and even a mini animal farm.
  • Camp Culture (Sat 6 May to Sun 14 May) – A circus show that's serving up equal parts skill and sass. Hosted by camp leader Dale Woodbridge Brown
  • Melbourne Korea Festival (Sat 13 May) – Immerse yourself in Korean culture, food and music! Plus, enjoy lots of exciting activities such as games, crafts and a spectacular line-up of singing and dancing performances that you are sure to love!
  • Good Food & Wine Show (Fri 19 May – Sat 20 May) – go on a foodie journey around the country’s top wine regions; pour tipples of over 500+ wines, plate up over 60 different cheeses from Queensland to France and so much more!
  • Buddha’s Day and Multicultural Festival (Fri 19 May – Sun 21 May) – Enjoy a vegetarian feast from the many regions of Asia, Dharma talks, meditation, tea ceremony, multi-faith concerts, traditional arts and crafts, Tai Chi and more.
  • Melbourne Design Week ( Fri 18 – Sun 28 May) – Celebrate design in the annual 11-day program of talks, tours, exhibitions, launches, installations, and workshops across Australia’s design capital.
  • CoComelon Singalong at SEALIFE (27 May – 16 June) – Daily meet and greets with JJ and a boogie to the brand new, exclusive CoComelon song made just for SEA LIFE Aquariums.
  • Soul Sundays (Sun 28 May) – Professional tarot readers, astrologers, palmists, reiki and assorted healers all gathered in one place. Stop by to boost your well-being and soul.
  • Hawker 88 Night Market (Until Wed 10 May) – The Hawker 88 Night Market returns to Queen Vic Market, bringing the sights, sounds and tastes of Asia to Melbourne’s favourite market every Wednesday until 10 May.
  • Arts Centre Sunday Market (Sundays) – find unique, quirky and handmade items at the stalls. There’s always some yummy treats too!
  • Kids Passport Queen Victoria Market (Every market day) – Collect your passport, then journey around the Market collecting stamps from our friendly traders, before making your way to the Queen Victoria Market Visitor Hub to claim your prize.
  • Into the Music – Composition Workshop 2023 (Mon – Fri) – Participants in Into the Music – Composition Workshop will explore technology and techniques used to create the music they hear every day.
  • 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.
Lume Monet
THE LUME MELBOURNE – Monet and Friends
  • Docklands Community Market (2nd & 4th Sunday of each month) – Grab your early morning coffee, enjoy a lovely stroll & support your local producers at this lovely market.
  • The District Makers Market (Last Sunday of every month) – enjoy entertainment and shop fine arts, crafts, jewellery, and artisan goods.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • The LUME (until Thu 30 Jun) – Immerse yourself in the work of Monet and Friends at Australia's digital art gallery.
  • Imaginaria (until Sun 9 Jul) – Fully interactive bespoke sounds, scents and lights activate in response to your movement as you walk, slide and glide through the dreamlike landscapes. Walk into a giant inflatable bubble, navigate a futuristic light maze or jump into a cosmic abyss. Imaginaria review
  • 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.
harry potter cursed child melbourne

What's on in Melbourne North / North-East

  • Child Nation (Until Wed 31 May) – Using a hand-held device, children are prompted to answer fun questions in response to the things they see around them.
  • Musical Jam (Mon 1 May – Mon 19 Jun) – an inclusive, interactive, relaxed, and social group music class that you can enjoy with your babies, preschoolers, and young kids under 6.
  • Fantastic Beasts™: The Wonder of Nature (Fri 19 May – Sun 19 Oct) – Wonder at the magic of the creatures from the Wizarding World alongside the remarkable animals from London’s Natural History Museum collection. Read the Review
  • One Fine Baby Expo (Sat 6 May – Sun 7 May) – A free-to-attend expo for new and expecting parents. Check out 150+ stalls, infant first aid courses, advice from parenting experts, & entertainment for little ones (including meet & greets with JJ from Cocomelon)!
fantastic beasts gallery
Fantastic Beasts™: The Wonder of Nature
  • The Big Design Market (Fri 26 May – Sun 28 May) – Celebrate 200 of the country's most coveted designers and makers all surrounded by an “Almost Winter” forest with twinkling lights. Prepare to be indulged with a new decadent selection of gourmet food and drinks.
  • Big Fish Little Fish (Sun 28 May) – Designed for parents and kids alike, these family-friendly raves are social, creative, anarchic, and a lot of fun – like a micro-festival for families! Read the review
  • 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

  • Are We There Yet? (Sun 30 Apr – Mon 1 May) – Join 8 year old Grace and her family on their adventurous and often funny expedition around Australia.
  • Pram People at Abbotsford Convent (Thu 4 May – Sat 6 May) – As part of the Convent Kids program, Pram People offers a playful & welcoming approach to community participation through joyful movement & connection, using the most universal of vehicles – the pram
  • South Side Festival Frankston (Fri 5 May – Sun 16 May) – Thought provoking performances, raucous comedy, dazzling installations, striking visual arts and fun for the whole family – the 2023 South Side Festival will delight, challenge and entertain.
  • Hakaya (Stories) of Eid – Bukjeh Annual Eid Celebration (Sat 13 May) – a fun day of performances for all families around Eid, celebrating the beauty of our rich cultures around the world
  • Botanica Festival 2023 (Sun 14 May) – Join in at Rippon Lea Estate for a day of botanical fun with an open-air market, informative garden tours and walks, displays, activities and more.
  • Casey 360 Youth Bus (Thu 18 May – Fri 16 Jun) – Come down and check out the Casey 360 Bus, a mobile youth information centre for young people that services the suburbs of the City of Casey.
Botanica Festival
  • Linden Plays: Sculpting Magical Animals (Sat 20 May) – dive into your imagination to design and create your own magical animals with modelling clay, gems and glitter.
  • The Little Folk Pregnancy, Baby and Kids Market (Sun 21 May) – the finest independently designed and handmade stalls will be serving up clothing, shoes, décor and furnishing, toys and personal products.
  • Children’s International Film Festival (CHIFF) at Classic Cinema – (Sat 27 May – Mon 12 Jun) – a festival of the best new kids' films from across the world. See the Moomins, a four-legged adventurer Titina, and more!
  • Teeny Tiny Stevies (Sun 28 May) – ARIA Award-Winning Children’s Artist, Teeny Tiny Stevies are heading out on the road for their most comprehensive National Album Tour to date!
  • Mozarts Requiem (Sun 28 May) – This year the Mornington Peninsula Chorale & the Frankston Symphony Orchestra return for their first joint performance since the Covid hiatus for a performance of Mozart's Requiem.
  • Gasworks Farmers’ Market (3rd 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.
Sonica Botanica
  • 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
  • Lilydale Rotary Craft Produce Market (First Sunday of the Month) – craft stalls, food, and fresh produce on the first Sunday of the month.
  • Gembrook Market (4th Sunday of Each Month) – a country market with a sustainable living focus located only 20 minutes from the south eastern suburbs.
  • Stories and Songs in the Square (Mondays and Wednesdays) – Stories help children to discover the world around them. Nurture your child’s early literacy skills by joining in to read aloud stories and sing action songs and rhymes.
  • Lego Builder Afternoons (Tuesdays) – Create a purple monster, a colourful car and more!
  • Gumbuya Wildlife Wanderers (Wednesdays) – Storytime, games, Nature Play-based activities plus the opportunity to meet some very special animals!
Wildlife Wanderers
  • 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.
  • Camberwell Sunday Market (Sundays) – secondhand retro, vintage, antique, fashion and collectible goods you just can't find anywhere else
  • National Steam Centre (Saturdays and Sundays) – A visit to the National Steam Centre will delight a wide audience from the pre-schooler obsessed with Thomas and train rides, to train enthusiasts of any age!

What's on in Melbourne East

  • Rocky Road Festival Yarra Valley Chocolaterie (Mon 1 May – Wed 31 May) – enjoy a special menu of Rocky Road-inspired pastries, create your very own Rocky Road block and more!
  • Sleep tips with Prof. Harriet Hiscock (Thu 4 May) – Join Cotton On Kids as Prof. Harriet Hiscock shares expert advice to assist your family in sleeping better!
  • Musikfest Kew (Fri 5 May – Sun 28 May) – Enjoy 21 acts scheduled in various venues over the month of May
  • Kalorama Chestnut Festival (Sun 7 May) – Savour the abundant chestnuts, gourmet food, Devonshire tea, coffee, artisan beer and mulled wine.
  • Hawthorn Makers Market (Sun 7 May) – check out the unique one-off gifts plus there’s delicious food and entertainment.
  • The Beauty Parlour (Fri 12 May – Sun 14 May) – Celebrate mothers, muses, and mentors at a MECCA beauty masterclass!
Musikfest Kew
Box Hill Miniature Railway
  • Box Hill Miniature Railway (3rd Sunday of the Month) – Ride this wonderful Miniature Railway, the track winds through the picturesque surrounds of Elgar Park. Box Hill Miniature Railway Review
  • Mooroolbark Miniature Railway (Runs 4th Sunday each month) – miniature rail running every 4th Sunday.
  • Gembrook Market (4th Sunday of each month) – a country market with a sustainable living focus. Find crafts, plants, fresh produce, hot food selections fresh coffee and more.
  • Auburn Kids Sunday Funday (Sundays) – Petting zoo, Fairies, mermaids, superheroes, face painting and balloon animals galore!
  • Yarra Valley Railway (Sundays) – take a trip on the historic Walker RM22 Railmotor from Healesville to Tunnel Hill. Yarra Valley Railway review
  • 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.
  • Spirits of the Sky (Daily) – See the natural behaviours of a variety of native birds which may include the Wedge-tailed Eagle, Black-breasted Buzzard, Barking Owl, magnificent parrots and more.

What's on in Melbourne West

  • Rocky Road Festival Great Ocean Road Chocolaterie (Mon 1 May – Wed 31 May) – enjoy a special menu of Rocky Road-inspired pastries, create your very own Rocky Road block and more!
  • Toddler Art (Wednesdays 3 May – 21 June 2023) – Join mother and artist Kate Golding as she leads you and your kids to collaborate playfully and make art together.
  • Robotics and coding workshop (Sat 6 May) – Discover the power of mBot robots in this fun introductory workshop that explores how simple programs can control complex machines.
  • Let's Dance: Hip Hop (Sat 6 May – Tue 27 Jun) – Hëna’s FREE dance workshop is high energy with a focus on learning hip-hop skills, the confidence to dance freely, and a dance routine for a final showcase.
  • Mural Making (Sat 6 May – Sat 24 Jun) – Create a one-of-a-kind mural that will transport people into the worlds and stories of your imagination!
Mural Making
Mural Making
  • Altona Homestead Devonshire Tea (Sun 7 May) – historical homestead is open every 1st Sunday for Devonshire Tea.
  • Pinhole projector workshop (Sat 13 May) – Build your own camera obscura that you can wear and take home in this interactive workshop.
  • Junior Chocolatier Class (Sat 13 May) – a 45-minute class for kids aged 6-12 years where they'll learn from chocolatiers how to make their very own chocolate creations.
  • SloFo WeFo Farmers' Market (Sat 13 May) – We support real local Victorian farmers and artisanal producers by filling your baskets, bags, bike panniers and trolleys!
  • Ballarat Heritage Festival (Fri 19 May – Sun 28 May) – celebrate Ballarat’s rich heritage, iconic landmarks and vibrant community over a ten-day festival!
  • Junior Chefs (Sat 20 May – Sun 21 May) – Calling all budding chefs! Join us in the kitchen each month to learn, make and taste a new delicious recipe!
  • Enterprize One Hour Day Sails (Sat 20 May – Sun 21 May) – sail from five locations in Port Phillip Bay and occasionally in other ports along the southeastern coast of Australia.
Bulla Hill Railway, Bulla Recreation Reserve, 15 Green St, Bulla
Illuminate Scienceworks Anna Encio px
  • Samoan & Polynesian Dance (Fridays) – Samoan and Pacific dance classes catering for young people aged 5 to 18 years old. Learning song and movements to create a dance backed by live drumming and music.
  • 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?

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This post contains paid inclusions. We carefully select who we include in our content and if you purchase with our partners it helps me to provide free, valuable and useful information for you! Thanks, Joyce

cropped Kristyna Hess Lockdown Portraits x

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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