Don't let an empty wallet stop you from enjoying Melbourne's best festival line-ups, cultural celebrations and epic street parties.

Interior of a shed at Queen Victoria Market with crowds watching a live cultural performance.

Malaysia Hawker Festival

10 Sep - 11 Sep

There’s another cultural food fest taking over Queen Vic Market this September, and it’s a celebration of all things Malaysian. Factor in cash for laksa and mooncakes at the hawker market and look out for roving performers. If you’ve ever wanted to try the world’s smelliest fruit, there’s also a free durian tasting that is not for the faint-hearted. 

Red-coloured illuminated lantern, with a black ink drawing of fish and calligraphy on the exterior.

Moon Lantern Festival

10 Sep - 11 Sep

See Queensbridge Square aglow as lanterns illuminate the night sky for a two-day festival. The event brings Melbourne’s Asian communities together to celebrate and give thanks to the moon. Feast on street food then watch cultural performances, including Bollywood and lion dancers. Bring the entire family for kids rides, lantern-making activities and more. 

People at an Oktoberfest party in German-themed costumes next to a big keg.

Oktoberfest at Hofbräuhaus

17 Sep - 29 Oct

Don your dirndls and lederhosen, Oktoberfest is coming to Melbourne. For six weeks, the Hofbräuhaus will transform a Chinatown laneway into a pop-up beer garden. Join the revellers singing and dancing on tabletops to live music from German bands. It’s free to join in the party, but bring some extra coin for ridiculously cheap beers and a hearty Bavarian feast.

Person in aqua frock hula-hooping with multiple bright pink hoops, large lizard puppet behind, sax player to right.

Fringe Parade and Lygon St Block Party

15 Oct

Melbourne Fringe is turning 40 and throwing a giant free party to celebrate. Swing by the Fringe Parade to see a bevy of colourful and creative characters marching to the beat of their own drum. Then join the revellers at the Lygon Street Block Party in Argyle Square. There’ll be live performances and plenty of foodie treats from Lygon locals.

A man cooking meat at a festival.

Antipodes Festival

22 Oct - 23 Oct

Melbourne’s largest Greek cultural celebration is back for another epic street party. This year’s Greek fest will take over Lonsdale Street for a weekend packed with music, dancing and carnival rides. Eighty-plus food, drink and craft stalls will take your Hellenic experience way beyond souvas and baklava.  

Illuminated logo of MIFF in a dark crowd of people in a theatre.

MIFF talks

4 Aug - 28 Aug

The Melbourne International Film Festival is back in cinemas for the first time since 2019. There’s a ton of free events in the lineup. Cinephiles will love the MIFF talks series. Join your fellow film buffs for conversations on iconic Melbourne creators, what's trending and the punks of filmmaking.

A family walking into a large building with columns.

Melbourne Writers Festival

8 Sep - 11 Sep

After a two-year hiatus, Melb’s annual literary fest returns this September. As always, there’s a stacked lineup of free events for word nerds. Sit in on a live podcast recording of Conversations with Richard Fidler. Meet the ‘book of the year’ winners. Or strike up a chat with your favourite storytellers. 

A billy cart race with a blue car cart and a red bull can cart.

Red Bull Billy Cart Race

3 Dec

For one day only, see Melbourne's most fearless (and possibly foolish) rev-heads as they battle it out for Billy Cart glory. Head down to watch weird and whacky creations speed along Lansdowne Street. Costumes, novelty designs, gravity-defying displays - nothing is off limits at this free spectator event. Stay tuned for more info on activations taking place during the race!

More festivals to book in 2022

1 Sep - 2 Oct

Wisdom and Light

Immerse yourself in a transcendent digital art experience at Golden Square Rooftop.

14 Oct - 23 Oct

Melbourne International Jazz Festival

Showcasing the best of international and local jazz culture.

10 Oct - 16 Oct

Melbourne Fashion Week

Celebrate the city's fashion scene with runways, talks, pop-ups, exhibitions and more.

10 Sep - 11 Sep

Asian Fun Festival

Showcasing the best of Asian culture with delicious food, music, market stalls and more.

Last updated on Mon 15 Aug 2022

Get to the city or get FOMO

We’ve got every FOMO-worthy Melbourne event and experience in one place.

Find out more
7 Aug - 9 Oct

Hairspray

The multi award-winning Broadway musical opens at the Regent Theatre in August.

How to spend 24 hours in Melbourne

From secret street art to seasonal events, you’ll find something for everyone.

16 Mar - 18 Dec

Hamilton

The award-winning musical has arrived in Melbourne.

Discover more

30 Jan - 27 Nov

Makers Market at The District

This outdoor undercover family-friendly market at Docklands features craft, gifts, fashion and food.

11 Oct - 10 Dec

Always Live

Enjoy a brand-new Victoria-wide celebration of live contemporary music.

29 Aug - 28 Nov

Library Cinema

See contemporary, classic and documentary films on the big screen at Library at The Dock.

6 Oct - 30 Oct

Bernie Dieter’s Club Kabarett

Award winning, boundary-pushing Spiegeltent spectacular hosted by cabaret icon Bernie Dieter.