Summer has ended and autumn has begun but that doesn’t mean the fun has run its course. Feel the autumn breeze, watch the trees begin to change their colour, and feel spoiled for choice with all the incredible things to do in Melbourne and beyond this March. Have fun at festivals, try delicious food, see a cool show and more! Scroll through this list and start popping these ideas into your diary. What will you try first?
1. Have fun at Moomba
Moomba Festival is celebrating 70 years in Melbourne this March. Have fun at the carnival, watch the parade, see some fireworks, have fun at an ABBA tribute show and more! Moomba will run from March 7 to 11.
2. Savour a bite at the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival
The Melbourne Food & Wine Festival is coming back to town with plenty of festival favourites over a ten tasty days. Look forward to the return of the World’s Longest Lunch, Baker’s Dozen, the celebrity-inspired sausage sizzle, a massive Global Dining Series and more. Once again, the festival hub will be centred around Fed Square, but you’ll find plenty of culinary adventures around Melbourne. The festival will run from March 15 to 24.
3. Have a laugh at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Laugh your way through the month at everyone’s favourite comedy festival. There’s a huge roster of local favourites and international comedians that will hit the stage over three and a half hilarious weeks. The only question is, which one will you see? The festival will run from March 27 to April 21. Browse the program here.
4. Feel spellbound by Wicked
The gravity-defying musical, Wicked, is dancing through life and landing at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne this March. Almost 20 years after its premiere on Broadway, this popular musical has won over 100 major awards, including the Grammy Award, the Olivier Award and three Tony Awards. Wicked will play in Melbourne from March 2.
5. Take a look at PHOTO 2024: International Festival Of Photography
Australia’s largest photography festival is coming back to Melbourne for its third edition. Look forward to 100 free exhibitions and outdoor installations across seven Festival Precincts in Melbourne, as well as five cities in regional Victoria. PHOTO 2024 International Festival of Photography will feature over 150 contemporary photographers and artists from Australia and around the world. The biennale will take over ACMI, Fed Square, State Library Victoria and more. Check it out from March 1 to 24, 2024.
6. Indulge in a classic combo at Wine & Cheese Fest
Head to the Timber Yard and explore wine and cheese from 50 local producers. There will also be masterclasses, live music, a kids zone and more. Wine & Cheese Fest will take place on Sunday March 3.
7. Check out the NGV Teens: Art Party
Teenagers are invited to NGV for one night of art, music, talks and workshops. Explore NGV Triennial after hours, dance to your favourite tunes with the help of DJs, get your nails done at the pop-up salon and more. The dress code this year is MAGIC. Check out the NGV Teens: Art Party on Saturday March 2, from 6pm to 9pm.
8. Celebrate at the Turkish Pazar Festival
Head to Queen Vic Market and feel transported to a traditional Turkish street bazaar. Enjoy tasty traditional street food, entertainment and arts and craft displays. The festival will take place on March 2 and 3, from 9am to 4pm.
9. Feel swept away by The Sound of Music
Sing along to The Sound of Music at National Theatre Melbourne in St Kilda. This production, inspired by the memoir of Maria Augusta Trapp, follows an exuberant nun who becomes the governess to the seven children of Captain von Trapp. Check it out from March 2 to 17. See more here.
10. Have a feast at Flavour Fest
Head to Frontier Park in Aintree, and enjoy a fun day out with plenty of food trucks, a beer garden, live music, carnival rides, fireworks and more. Flavour Fest will take place on Saturday March 2 from 12pm to 9pm.
11. Check out the work of Steve McCurry in the ICONS exhibition
Steve McCurry is an established contemporary photographer whose work has been featured on the front cover of National Geographic and has won countless international awards. He is probably most famous for his iconic photograph “Afghan Girl” which has become one of the most recognisable images in history. Now, in this new exhibition you will be able to see over 100 of his photographs from all around the world, each one telling a unique and powerful story. Find the ICONS exhibition at Seaworks in Williamstown. Get your tickets here.
12. Attend the action summit Global Citizen Now
Advocacy organisation, Global Citizen, is bringing their first international edition of the Global Citizen NOW action summit to Melbourne this March. Hear leading voices and innovators from across the Asia-Pacific region. The summit will conclude with Global Citizen Nights at the Palais Theatre, and it will be headlined by Crowded House. The summit will feature notable names like Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York and Xanana Gusmão, Prime Minister of Timor-Leste. Other notable names include Hugh Jackman, Charlie Puth, and Julia Gillard, who will all join virtually. The summit will run from March 4 to 6. See more here.
13. See the best of contemporary French cinema at the Alliance Française French Film Festival
Be swept away by thrillers, dramas, comedy and more at the Alliance Française French Film Festival. Discover the best in contemporary French cinema in the 35th edition of this incredible film festival. It will run from March 6 to April 2. See the schedule for Melbourne here.
14. See the timeless musical RENT
Walk through the vibrant streets of New York City’s East Village and celebrate life, love and the human spirit with this Pulitzer Prize-winning show. Hear songs like “Seasons of Love,” ”Take Me or Leave Me” and “La Vie Bohème” come to life on stage. RENT will play at the State Theatre in Arts Centre Melbourne from now until March 7.
15. Dance your way over to this Saltburn-themed event at Rippon Lea Estate
Dress up like you’re at Oliver’s birthday party and head over to Rippon Lea Estate for a Saltburn party. There will be a dance class hosted by Neville Parry, picnic hampers for luxurious feasting and access to the ballroom and gardens of this 19th century space. Twilight at the Mansion: Saltburn will take place on Thursday March 7, from 7pm to 10pm.
16. Walk through an illuminated wonderland at LIT in Wyndham Park
Head to Melbourne’s west and enter a magical, glowing dreamscape with LIT. Wander along an illuminated nature trail, see magical installations, marvel at nocturnal creatures and more. This immersive experience will transform Wyndham Park over 14 glimmering nights. It’s free to attend, and will run from 8pm to 11pm, on select dates from Friday March 8 to Sunday March 24.
17. Have a laugh with West End comedy The 39 Steps
The Tony and Award-winning show, The 39 Steps, was the fifth-longest running play in West End history. Running for nine years, this satirical homage to the Alfred Hitchcock film blends suspense with a dash of Monty Python. See it for a limited season at Chapel Off Chapel from March 8 to 17. Learn more here.
18. Get dressed up for the Melbourne Fashion Festival
The Melbourne Fashion Festival is back with over 100 events. Check out the runways, explore exhibitions, listen to talks and more. The festival will run from now until March 9. See more here.
19. See an outdoor movie with The Sunset Cinema
20. Swing into the Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival
The Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival is returning to South Melbourne Market. Expect plenty of seafood, jazz and soul musicians, cooking demonstrations, roving entertainers and more. Check it out on March 9 and 10. See more here.
21. Have a poo-fect day out at Unko Museum
Japan’s surprise sensation, Unko Museum, has taken over 360 Bourke St, Melbourne. Unko Museum is the only international touring museum dedicated to poop, but don’t hold your nose – the focus here is all about kawaii exhibits and photo-friendly moments, making it a fun and family-friendly day out. Get your tickets to Unko Museum here.
22. Go on a Sunset Safari at Werribee Open Range Zoo
Hop on a safari bus and witness some of the world’s most majestic animals roam about the Savannah at dusk. Immerse yourself in this stunning natural adventure on Saturdays from now until March 9, from 5:30pm to 9pm.
23. Watch movies under the stars at Moonlight Cinema
Enjoy the summer nights by watching festive favourites and new releases at Moonlight Cinema. Find it on the lush Central Lawn at Royal Botanic Gardens.
24. Check out the Blak & Bright Literary Festival
Celebrate First Nations writers and storytellers at the biannual literature festival, Black & Bright. This festival will feature 30 events and 80 First Nations artists, and take over major venues like The Wheeler Centre, Fed Square and State Library of Victoria. Check it out from March 13 to 17. Find out more here.
25. Voyage through history with the Titanic exhibition at Melbourne Museum
The most extensive Titanic exhibition in the world now showing in Melbourne. Feel transported back to 1912, and see over 200 artefacts recovered from the wreck site. In this experience, you’ll discover recreated ship interiors, including the Grand Staircase, First Class Parlour Suite and Verandah Café, combined with real objects rescued from the depths of the ocean. TITANIC: The Artefact Exhibition will dock at Melbourne Museum from now until April 21.
26. Stay out late with Nocturnal at Melbourne Museum
The electrifying, after-hours event, Nocturnal, is returning to Melbourne Museum. Listen to DJs, play drag bingo, enjoy late-night access to exhibitions and more on Thursday March 14.
27. Check out the Palestinian Film Festival
See a mix of premieres, award-winning features and unforgettable documentaries at the Palestinian Film Festival Australia. Back for its 12th year, the festival navigates themes of people, place and politics. Check it out in Melbourne from March 14 to 17. More info here.
28. Embrace the warmer nights at the Summer Night Market
The iconic Summer Night market is back in Queen Vic Market. Sip on cocktails, feast on delicious food, browse through stalls, enjoy live entertainment and more. It runs on Wednesday nights, from now until March 15. Learn more here.
29. Marvel at the work of Leonardo da Vinci at The LUME
Take a journey back in time, and explore the genius of Leonardo da Vinci. Step into the 3,000m², and watch some of the worlds most famous artworks come to life, like the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. Leonardo da Vinci – 500 Years of Genius will open at The LUME on March 16.
30. Spend those summer nights at Grease the Musical
An electrifying new production of Grease is now playing at Her Majesty’s Theatre. Listen to all your favourite songs, like Greased Lightnin’, You’re The One That I Want, Hopelessly Devoted to You and more. It’s playing in Melbourne from now until March 16.
31. Walk with the dinosaurs at Dinos Alive
Travel back millions of years and explore the world of the dinosaurs. Life-sized animated replicas of more than 80 dinosaurs have filled a Melbourne venue, and aside from being jaw-droppingly impressive, Dinos Alive will teach you a few things about the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods. Entry tickets are available here.
32. Voyage around the world in the immersive BBC Earth Experience
Take a 360-degree audio-visual journey through the seven continents of the world, with narration from the iconic Sir David Attenborough. This technological marvel will use footage from the BBC Studios Natural History television series, Seven Worlds, One Planet. Melbourne is the second city in the world to host this incredible experience. The BBC Earth Experience is now open at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.
33. Have some topsy-turvy fun at House Down Under
Flip your world on its head at House Down Under. See an inverted house that looks like it dropped straight from the sky in Docklands. When you enter, you’ll walk on ceilings and explore heaps of upside down rooms.
34. Explore the tremendous NGV Triennial
NGV Triennial is back in Melbourne for its third iteration. This incredible exhibition has taken over all floors of NGV International, showcasing works by 120 artists, designers and collectives from 30 countries, including Yoko Ono, David Shrigley and fashion label Schiaparelli. Get ready for painting, sculpture, robotics, fashion, multimedia and interactive art installations, and marvel at over 25 world-premiere projects commissioned by the NGV.
35. Explore the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show
The heritage-listed Carlton Gardens and iconic Royal Exhibition Building will be transformed into a plant paradise. Be amazed by enchanting floral and landscape designs, workshops, a floral-inspired high tea and more at the Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show. This festival for all ages will run from Wednesday March 20 to Sunday March 24.
36. Have a royally good time at the Princess Diana: Accredited Access exhibition
Go on a visual journey through Princess Diana’s life with countless photographs, and listen to royal photographers tell the story behind these famous images. You’ll find this exhibition at Tea House in Southbank. Get your tickets here.
37. Feel razzle dazzled by Chicago
The longest-running American musical in Broadway and West End history is coming to Melbourne this March. Chicago, the multi-award winning musical, will soon paint the town with murder, greed, corruption and all that jazz. Check it out at Her Majesty’s Theatre from March 23.
38. Race over to the Grand Prix
Zoom over to Albert Park and watch F1 cars race around the Grand Prix Circuit. Off the track, there will be other cool stuff to check out like musical acts, a family zone, delicious food and more. The Grand Prix will run from March 21 to 24. See more here.
39. Have a spectacular time with Cirque du Soleil
Cirque du Soleil is coming back to Melbourne with another round of awe-inspiring acrobatic acts. This time, they’re whisking us away to an imaginary Mexico. In this surreal world between dreams and reality, you’ll see a tapestry of vibrant locations as a traveller meets a variety of mystifying characters. The show, LUZIA, is also the first touring production by Cirque du Soleil that artistically incorporates water into the acrobatic performance. See it in Melbourne from March 24 to May 19.
40. Do the time warp at The Rocky Horror Show
Due to massive demand, cult classic musical The Rocky Horror Show is back in Melbourne this February. Whether you’re a long-time fan or a ‘virgin’, you’ll have fun when Frank N Further, The Narrator, Brad, Janet and more come to town. See it at the Athenaeum Theatre.
41. Experience the magic of a Candlelight Concert
The candlelit performances have taken place at venues like The Athenaeum and The Astor Theatre as well as at The Timber Yard, the Meat Market and Fed Square. With more venues being added to the growing list, there’s a Candlelight concert around every corner.
42. Immerse yourself in the mesmerising Rain Room
After a sell-out season in 2021, the interactive installation, Rain Room, is here in Melbourne. This immersive experience merges art, technology and nature together, in a 100 square metre space of continuous rainfall. The rain responds to your presence and movement, which gives you the feeling of being in a fierce rainstorm, without having to get wet. Find it in St Kilda.
43. Pass go and discover Monopoly Dreams
Australia’s first Monopoly-themed attraction is here in Melbourne. Immerse yourself and wander around Monopoly City and Mr. Monopoly’s Mansion. Find Monopoly Dreams at Melbourne Central.
44. Watch Groundhog Day the Musical
See the hilarious 1993 film, Groundhog Day, brought to life on stage at the Princess Theatre. With music and lyrics from Tim Minchin, you’ll watch weatherman Phil Connors live the same day over and over again. Groundhog Day The Musical is playing in Melbourne for a limited season.
45. Tantalise your taste buds at Dining in the Dark
Embark on a gastronomic adventure while blindfolded at Dining in the Dark. Taking place at Gingerboy, you’ll choose between vegan, seafood or meat options and feast on a three-course meal. Try it on select Wednesdays and Thursdays this month. Get your tickets here.
46. Revisit your favourite films with this celebration by Village Cinemas
Village Cinemas is celebrating their 70th birthday this March. Join in on the fun and revisit some nostalgic films every day of the month. Films on the program include Harry Potter, Pulp Fiction, Footloose and more. Learn more here.
47. See the Melbourne Women in Film Festival at ACMI
Celebrate the work of female and gender-diverse filmmakers at the Melbourne Women in Film Festival. Taking place at ACMI, this festival will focus on how filmmakers respond to their environments through storytelling. On top of the film screenings, there will be panel discussions and workshops. Check it out from March 21 to 25. See more here.
48. Feel mesmerised by Marshmallow Laser Feast: Works of Nature
Visit ACMI and see digital artworks on an awe-inspiring scale. The exhibition, Marshmallow Laser Feast: Works of Nature, will stay in town until April 14, 2024.
49. Take part in the Asia TOPA Radar event
Head to The Substation in Newport for an evening of conversations and performances by leading Asia Pacific artists. The Asia TOPA Radar event will take place on March 27 at 6:30pm. Learn more here.
50. Check out the Starry Sky exhibition at Met Art World
Visit Met Art World in Port Melbourne and feel transported to another world, with their immersive Starry Sky exhibition. Journey through mazes, enter a digital tunnel, see plenty of twinkling lights and more. Get your tickets here.
51. Check out MPavilion
MPavilion is back! Enjoy cultural events, talks, performances, installations and more. MPavilion will run until March 28. See the full program here.
52. Take part in Melbourne Holi Festival
Bring some colour into your life at the Melbourne Holi Festival. This exciting festival of colours is taking over Docklands for three fun-filled days. Enjoy live music, dance performances, food and more from March 29 to 31, from 11am to 10pm. Learn more here.
53. Frolic in the enchanting Tesselaar KaBloom Festival Of Flowers
Immerse yourself in fields of colourful flowers this autumn at the Tesselaar KaBloom Festival of Flowers. Wander through the stunning gardens, and be greeted by over millions of bright blooms. After admiring the vivid blossoms, stay a little longer and have fun with circus performers, tractor rides, food and more. Head out to the Dandenong Ranges, and see this festival from March 23 to April 21.
54. Explore Blue Lotus Water Garden
Spanning over 14 acres, Blue Lotus Water Garden contains over 40 different ponds, lakes and water features. Here, you’ll find the biggest display of lotus and waterlily flowers in the Southern Hemisphere. This dreamy garden is open to the public for the warmer months.
55. Heat things up at the Herb and Chilli Festival
The annual Herb and Chilli Festival is coming back to Wandin. Take a drive out to the Yarra Valley and challenge your taste buds with food trucks and market stalls. There will also be cooking demonstrations, live music, competitions and more. The festival will take place on March 16 and 17.
56. Pick your own sunflowers from this sunflower field
Brighten up your summer by picking your own sunflowers. Drive out to Dunnstown, not too far from Ballarat, and wander along the golden fields. Pick Your Own Sunflowers has reopened for the warmer months. This is a weather-dependent activity, so keep an eye on their website for opening hours.
57. Escape to the Ballarat Begonia Festival
Feel enchanted by the Ballarat Begonia Festival over Labour Day weekend. See thousands of beautiful blooms in the begonia display, as well as live music, markets, roving performers, a parade and more. This festival will run from March 9 to 11.
58. Feel enchanted by the Unicorn Festival at Kryal Castle
Whisk yourself away to a fairy tale dreamland at the Unicorn Festival in Kryal Castle. Take your little ones to meet unicorns and take photos, listen to live performances, have fun with unicorn-themed arts and crafts, and more. You’re encouraged to dress up, and face painting and unicorn hair sparkles will be available for that extra touch of magic. Check it out from March 9 to 11. See more here.
59. Visit Lorne Theatre for their pop-up summer season
One of regional Victoria’s oldest cinemas, Lorne Theatre, has reopened for a pop-up summer season. Look forward to summer flicks by the sea, as this heritage-listed theatre will play a blend of contemporary and classic films from now until the Easter period.
60. Have a frothy good time at The High Country Hop
Drive out to Beechworth and mark the end of the annual hop harvest at The High Country Hop. Sip your way through plenty of delicious beer, and enjoy live music, food and entertainment. The festival will take place on March 23, from 11:30am to 8pm. Learn more here.