Lunar New Year is upon us, and celebrations in Melbourne are kicking off in style. See traditional lion dances bring in prosperity and good fortune, take part in local festivals and feast on delicious food. Here are some of the cool events happening around Melbourne for Lunar New Year.
1. Visit Chinatown for the Chinese New Year Festival
For over 160 years, the Chinatown Community and supporting organisations have celebrated Chinese New Year in Chinatown. While the Dragon Parade and cultural shows are cancelled this year, there will still be lion dance performances, and special banquet menus in participating restaurants. Join them in the festivities this year, from Sunday January 30 to Wednesday February 2.
2. Take part in Lunar New Year at NGV
On Saturday February 5, NGV is celebrating the Year of the Tiger with a day of art, food and a live DJ set. There will be a Dragon Dance Performance by Hong De Lion Dance Association at 1:30 and 2:15, as well as free activities for kids to try.Learn more here.
3. Listen to this Chinese New Year performance at Hamer Hall
This concert by Melbourne Symphony Orchestra will blend the world of western opera and Chinese masterworks. This musical celebration features an all-star cast and is great for the whole family. See it on Saturday February 5 at 7:30pm.
4. See Zodiac Spectacular at Crown
The Atrium in Crown will have a dazzling display cascading down the grand staircase. This installation will represent the twelve zodiac signs, and include a new aerial structure of 60 illuminated lanterns. This installation will last from Saturday January 29 to Sunday February 20.
There will also be a range of dining options at restaurants like Silks, Conservatory and Spice Temple. See more details here.
5. Check out the Lunar New Year Lion Dance at Queen Vic Market
On Tuesday February 1, there will be a traditional lion dance that will make its way through the market from 10am. There will also be festive decorations, including lanterns and dragon displays, near Meat & Fish Hall.
6. Head to Box Hill Central to see the Lion Dance performances
If you live on the east, visit Box Hill Central and see the traditional lion dance on Sunday January 30. A performance will start from the main entrance in the South Precinct from 11am, and another performance will start from the North Precinct entrance at 11:30am.
Meanwhile, try out the Room of Fortune from January 28 to February 6. They’re giving away over $8000 worth of prizes if you spend $30 or more in the shopping centre.Learn more here.
7. Take part in the Lunar New Year Festival at Sunshine
Sunshine is holding their first ever Lunar New Year celebration this year. Hampshire Road will be closed to traffic to make way for the celebration. There will be live entertainment, children’s rides, street performers, street food and of course, lion dances. There will be the fastest Pho and Bánh mì eating competitions, and spectacular fireworks to end the night. Join the festival on Sunday February 6, from 12pm to 9pm.Find more info here.
8. Visit St Albans for their Lunar New Year celebration
This annual celebration in St Albans typically attracts up to 90, 000 people. Join them on Alfrieda Street from 10am to 10pm on Sunday February 13, and enjoy their wide range of food and entertainment. The night will end with its signature fireworks display.Learn more here.