There’s only two months to go before we say goodbye to 2020, and Melbourne is making up for lost time. New events are being scheduled every day. Here’s our list of must-do activities before 2021 rolls around.

NGV Triennial

Wondering what’s new in international art, design, architecture? Explore 86 projects by more than 100 creatives at NGV Triennial 2020. The new works capture the state of our world right now, and focus on four themes. Illumination, reflection, conservation and speculation. One highlight will be Jeff Koons’ larger-than-life mirror-polished sculpture of Venus. From 19 December 2020 to 18 April 2021.

A man being squashed by a giant ocotopus model
NGV Triennial

MPavilion

Exercise your mind and body at MPavilion, Melbourne’s annual summertime arts pop-up. The fresh program of free events and activities returns in November. Hear live music at the Boyd Walsh Street house or DJ sets in Docklands. Plus summer reading activities and much, much more. The online and physical program runs all the way through to April 2021.

ANZ City Vibes

Solo musicians are back out in full force, making sweet music to fill the streets. The ANZ City Vibes program is bringing buskers back to the city and you can find them in Hardware Lane, Flinders Lane, Southbank, and throughout Docklands.

Imaginaria

Check-in your shoes at the departure lounge and enter another dimension at Imaginaria. This immersive interactive experience at The District Docklands celebrates imagination, technology and play. Walk inside a giant bubble, navigate a futuristic light maze or jump into a cosmic abyss. It’s sensory, dreamlike fun for all the family. Runs from 27 November to 4 December.

A little boy in a purple room
Imaginaria

Sky Castle at Federation Square

Fed Square is celebrating blue skies ahead with the interactive sound and light installation, Sky Castle. Walk through the cluster of inflatable arches and see what happens. The arches respond to your movement, playing a xylophone soundscape and changing colour. The 24-hour installation runs to 14 December.

See new street art

Make a date for a Melbourne street art walk, and see what the city’s graffiti artists have been up to since lockdown. Winding from Duckboard Place to Blender Lane, the two-hour stroll covers a little over 3km. For a more leisurely meander, drop in for a Negroni at Bar Americano en route in Presgrave Place.

 A city road with a large mural of people kissing painted on the side of a tall building
City Road mural by @pete.cto

The District Makers Market

What’s better than a market? A market with dogs! November’s District Makers Market has a special welcome for our furry friends, with bowls, bows and bandanas. Along with pup treats, snacks and chews, there’ll be live music, stalls and food for human handlers. The dog market is on 29 November, followed by two Christmas markets in December.

MMW – Extended

See who’s playing in Melbourne Music Week’s extended three-month program of gigs. The usual November dates have been replaced by a summer-long fest of dates across the city. Enjoy the best local music like never before from 9 December 2020 to 28 February 2021.

Go for a garden walk

The sun is out and Melbourne’s leafy parks and gardens are calling, so follow your nose and this garden walk. Start your stroll at the Royal Exhibition Building in Carlton Gardens. Wander tree-lined avenues in the Fitzroy and Treasury gardens. Then cross the Yarra River at Birrarung Marr to Kings Domain. Finish the walk with a riverside picnic in the Alexandra Gardens.

Two people riding bikes on a sandy track beside a river
Riverside walks are back

Hope St Radio at Melbourne Zoo

During MPavilion’s summer arts fest, tune into Hope St Radio broadcast live from Melbourne Zoo. The 10-week program of free DJ sessions runs from 13 November to 29 January. It’s perfectly timed for the Zoo Twilights outdoor concert series, which picks up from 24 January. Zoo Twilights’ big-ticket acts include Icehouse, Missy Higgins, Toots & the Maytals and Randy Newman.

27 Nov - 25 Dec

Christmas Festival

The city lights up at the most wonderful time of the year with the Christmas Festival.

25 Nov - 16 Dec

Festive Food Truck Stop

Bring the family along to Queen Vic Market and feast at the Festive Food Truck Stop.

20 Nov - 31 Mar

Becoming You: An incomplete Guide

Explore the surprising, real-life coming-of-age stories of well-known and everyday Australians.

West Side Place Artcade

West Side Place Artcade is a public art collection celebrating the vibrancy of art and the city.

Last updated on Mon 30 Nov 2020

Discover more

27 Aug - 29 Aug

Boho Luxe Market and Glamping Festival

The 2021 Boho Luxe Market and Glamping Festival brings that Byron Bay vibe to Melbourne.

27 Aug - 29 Aug

Boho Bride

Don't miss Boho Bride 2021 if you're dreaming of a bohemian-themed wedding, birthday or celebration.

4 Dec - 29 Jan

Subterranean Femmes Group Show

An exhibition of women street artists deep in Melbourne’s underground.

2 Nov - 13 Dec

Sukkah on Birrarung Marr

Sukkah is a vibrant pop-up celebrating community and togetherness.