It might be cold outside, but winter is the perfect time to rug up and embrace the vibe of the cultural capital of Australia.
Melbourne’s annual calendar is a tapestry of festivals and winter is home of some block busters to warm the hearts of visitors and locals alike.
Taking centre stage is the NGV (National Gallery of Victoria) Melbourne Winter Masterpieces exhibition, Terracotta Warriors: Guardians of Immortality showcases ten life size pieces from the original Chinese excavation site together with 150 significant archaeological finds from the Shaanxi province.
Sitting alongside, is The Transient Landscape, an eclectic exhibition of contemporary works by exciting Chinese artist, Cai Guo-Qiang who uses a mix media approach to create thought provoking works. ngv.vic.gov.au
White Night Reimaged (22-24 August), is a festival as diverse as Melbourne itself. Modelled on the original Parisian Nuit Blanche festival, as darkness blankets the sky, traffic is diverted and buildings, parks, gardens, streets and laneways around the CBD and inner city precincts transform into a mesmerising mix of art spaces, music venues and culinary havens. From art installations to light shows, music concerts to dance gigs, the program includes a mix of local and international artists, with a focus on emerging talent. whitenight.com
For film lovers, August is the month to curl up in front of the big screen. Up there with Cannes and Berlin, the Melbourne International Film Festival is one of the oldest film festivals in the world. With over 400 films running across several venues including the glorious Melbourne icon – the recently refurbished Capitol Theatre, the festival runs from 1-18 August. Single tickets to multi session festival passports can be purchased. miff.com.au
And for music fans with a penchant for the 1960’s, take a musical journey through time at the
Revolutions: Records and Rebels exhibition at the Melbourne Museum. Combining more than 500 objects from London’s V&A Museum together with artefacts from Melbourne Museum, the exhibition is a rare insight into the impact music had on a turbulent period in world history. museumsvictoria.com.au
When it comes to theatre, Melbourne holds Australia’s golden ticket. The gold rush of the 1850 – 60’s saw Victoria’s population treble and become so wealthy, gold was literally used to decorate the interior of grand buildings, including several theatres.
The Princess Theatre is the jewel in the crown of Melbourne theatres and is now the Australian home of the highest grossing non-musical production ever - Harry Potter and The Cursed Child. With a complete renovation of the oldest theatre on mainland Australia the Princess is like stepping into the pages of the book. With audiences sworn to secrecy about the magic that happens on stage, it’s fair to say the show has cast a spell over Melbourne since it opened last February.
Another Melbourne exclusive is the Broadway and London West End’s smash hit musical Come From Away. Based on real life characters, the musical tells the heart warming story of what happened when 7,000 passengers landed in a Canadian town with a population of 9,000 when America’s airspace was closed in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. Playing at the Comedy Theatre, the small cast of 12, play 78 characters and tell thousands of true stories in only 100 minutes on stage. It’s a story of hope, humanity and kindness. comefromaway.com.au
And for the ultimate golden ticket moment – Charlie and the Chocolate Factory opens this month at the magnificent Her Majesty’s Theatre. This timeless story penned by Roald Dahl is loved the world over and the theatre production is sure to spark the imagination and delight Melbourne audiences of all ages. charliethemusical.com.au
Travel Insider: MR. LAWIT SAWADIRAK
THAI General Manager, Southern Australia
A lively suburb with bohemian reputation. It’s sat at inner-city suburb of Melbourne in between Brunswick Street and Smith Street. There are number of popular bars, restaurants and vintage style cloth shop located in that area. Moreover, the hidden graffiti shown themselves in the narrow street along this area.
Where the place of Cooks’ Cottage (house of James Cooks’ parents lived in England and brought from England in 1930s) stand! The garden located on the south-eastern edge of Melbourne CBD with 64 acres area. To enjoy with magnificent Elm trees, variety of flower or relax on the extensive lawns
It can’t imagine that the best Croissant in the world was invented by an aerospace engineering who passion in patisseries. The queuing begins from dawn till early afternoon. One in a lifetime must experience that. Located at Rose Street, Fitzroy.
Located at Little Collins Street behind David Jones. It’s a cosy little coffee house that you may enjoy the flat white, cappuccino etc. that friendly barista may deliver to you.
The Block Arcade
Located in the heard of Melbourne CBD, Collins Street. There is so much to do and see including boutique fashion, art, gift shops, vintage jewellery, restaurants etc. Also, you may experience the famous afternoon tea at Hopetoun Tea Room with variety of cakes.
Located in the inner-northern suburb of Melbourne. The Little Italy is the other name of this area. You may enjoy variety of good Italian food.
Chadstone Shopping Centre
The biggest shopping centre in Australia and the biggest in the Southern Hemisphere that this shopping centre claim for. You may spend whole day shop, eat, entertaining within the area of 129,924 M2 with more than 500 stores.
Queenscliff and Sorrento
Driving away about 1 hour and 40 minutes from Melbourne to Geelong city, the Queenscliff small town on the Bellarine Peninsular. Get on the ferry with your car to Sorrento on the Mornington Peninsular and enjoy the lunch with perfect view at Hotel Sorrento.