Have you seen Christmas decorations popping up around the city? Have you heard Mariah Carey or Michael Bublé crooning in the distance? Well, that’s because Christmas is just around the corner! And after another rough year of COVID-19, feeling festive and finding some Christmas cheer feels more important than ever. That’s why Christmas is coming early to Melbourne, with a whole range of magical events starting this month. Ring those sleigh bells and feel jolly for the Christmas Festival from November 12 onwards.
A whopping $15.7 million has been added to Melbourne’s events calendar, expanding the Christmas Festival to give you even more festive cheer. Expect dazzling events including a Christmas Carnival at Birrarung Marr, a Christmas night market at Queen Vic Market and floating art installations on the Yarra.
“The CBD is the heart of our great city and a magnet for all Victorians – and we’re making sure it can bounce back quickly and strongly,” said Premier Dan Andrews. “We want kids to enjoy the magic of Christmas in the city and businesses to get the benefit of an amazing vaccination effort that is delivering rewards for Victorians every day.”
What magical things are waiting for you this Christmas?
Glittering Christmas lights
When: November 12 to December 25
Explore the city and discover twinkling lights and festive decorations. There will be a giant sparkling reindeer on Harbour Esplanade, 3000 stars in Bourke Street Mall, Christmas projections on Hamer Hall, a 16-metre tree at Fed Square and more.
When: November 13 to December 24
Visit Fed Square and meet Santa! He’s working hard in his workshop from 10am-12pm and then 1pm-3pm every day of the Festival. Then, on Thursdays and Fridays in December, he’ll also be in his workshop from 4pm-7pm.
Docklands Christmas Maze
When: November 26 to December 24
Journey through a massive present-themed maze in Docklands and help Santa find his elves. After that, you’ll have a chance to win one of four prizes, including family passes to ArtVo, O’Brien Ice House and more.
Row ho ho
When: December 1 to December 25
See Santa and his Christmas dolphins float along the Yarra at Birrarung Marr in a 27 metre sleigh.
When: December 1 to December 25
Need to jazz up your Christmas card? Take a selfie with three elves around Melbourne to unlock a magical Christmas world. Then, create an animated augmented Christmas card to share with your loved ones. Find an elf at Fed Square, Bourke Street Mall and Southbank.
When: December 4 to December 18
Love a good Christmas movie? Get cosy at Argyle Square and watch your favourite Christmas films on Saturday nights. Grab some picnic snacks from Lygon Street nearby for the ultimate movie-viewing experience.
String Bean Alley Christmas Night Market
When: December 6 to December 20
Explore this alley in Queen Vic Market for some unique Christmas gifts. Try street food from local vendors, listen to Christmas carols and be delighted by snow.
When: December 16 to 24
Visit the banks of the Yarra and ride the ferris wheel, drive dodgems, play carnival games and munch on classic carnival food. Entry is free and tickets for rides can be purchased on-site.
That was just some of the awesome Christmas events waiting for you this year. See the full program here.