The weekend is here, and Melbourne is filled with cool and interesting things to keep you occupied. There’s plenty of fun things to do, food to try and shows to see. Here are some of our top recommendations on where to go, what to eat and what to look forward to this weekend in Melbourne and beyond.
1. 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.
2. Feel spellbound by Wicked
The gravity-defying musical, Wicked, is dancing through life and landing at the Regent Theatre in Melbourne this weekend. 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.
3. 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.
4. 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.
5. 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 February 24 to March 9. See more here.
6. Have a blast at Brunswick Music Festival
Brunswick Music Festival is back with nine days of music. Look forward to over 60 gigs in over 30 venues. This weekend, don’t miss the Sydney Road Street Party on March 3, and find art, performances, food and more along the shopping strip. The festival is on from March 3 to 11. See more here.
7. 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.
8. 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.
9. Explore the tremendous NGV Triennial
NGV Triennial is back in Melbourne for its third iteration. This incredible exhibition will take over all floors of NGV International, showcasing works by 100 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.
10. Do the time warp at The Rocky Horror Show
Due to massive demand, cult classic musical The Rocky Horror Show is back in Melbourne. 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 this weekend.
11. Voyage through history with the Titanic exhibition at Melbourne Museum
The most extensive Titanic exhibition in the world is 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. Find TITANIC: The Artefact Exhibition at Melbourne Museum from now until April 21.
12. 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 February 17 to March 7.
13. 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.
14. 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.
15. 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.
16. 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 10.
Ever wanted to get up close to a dinosaur? Dinos Alive is the new exhibition in Melbourne that’s letting you do just that. Explore the world of the giants who walked the Earth millions of years ago, with life-sized animatronic replicas of more than 80 dinosaurs, a unique virtual aquarium, VR and interactive experiences and more. Aside from being jaw-droppingly impressive, Dinos Alive will also teach you a few things about the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous periods. Get your tickets here.
18. Swim over to SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium
Visit SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium this weekend, and check out their newly renovated Oceanarium, and new exhibit, Night on the Reef.
19. Embark 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. This year, you’ll admire some truly adorable animals, including young giraffes and zebra foals. Sunset Safari is running on Saturdays from January 13 to March 9, from 5:30pm to 9pm.
20. Travel 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. Find the BBC Earth Experience at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre this weekend.
21. 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.
22. Immerse yourself in Marshmallow Laser Feast: Works of Nature
Visit ACMI and gain a deeper understanding of the natural world and our place within it at the world premiere exhibition, Marshmallow Laser Feast: Works of Nature. See five major digital artworks on an awe-inspiring scale, and look forward to immersive and interactive moments. This exhibition is on from now until April 14.
23. Watch movies under the stars at Moonlight Cinema
Enjoy the summer nights by watching familiar favourites and new releases at Moonlight Cinema. Find it on the lush Central Lawn at Royal Botanic Gardens this weekend.
24. Pass go and discover Monopoly Dreams
Australia’s first Monopoly-themed attraction is now open at Melbourne Central. Immerse yourself and wander around Monopoly City and Mr. Monopoly’s Mansion. Complete challenges, check out a 4D cinema and more!
25. 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.
26. Immerse yourself in the mesmerising Rain Room
After a sell-out season in 2021, the interactive installation, Rain Room, is now showing in St Kilda. 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. Ideal for a summer’s weekend if you need a break from the heat!
27. 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.
28. Pick your own sunflowers from this sunflower field
Pick Your Own Sunflowers is gearing up for another season of sunflower picking. Drive out to Dunnstown, not too far from Ballarat, and wander along the golden fields. Soak in the sunlight and take home your own sunflowers at the end of the day. The field will open to the public from Thursday February 22. Keep an eye on their social media for updates, as this is a weather-dependent activity.
29. Discover the beauty of Blue Lotus Water Garden
Escape to Blue Lotus Water Garden, and delight your senses with dreamy water lilies, lotus flowers, scenic trails and calm lakes. Really, it’s like stepping into a Monet painting. This garden paradise is open from now until April 14.