Let’s daydream about Melbourne. Picture yourself clad in red and white watching England play Australia in the Rugby League World Cup at AAMI Park. Visualize yourself walking past gigantic ferns in a quiet koala-filled forest or tasting vintage wines in the Yarra Valley as the sun sets over the mountains. Now, imagine being in the grandstand at the famous Melbourne Cup cheering on racehorses alongside 100,000 spectators. All of this is possible in Victoria in the coming year.
Clearly, there’s a lot happening in and around Melbourne, so let us guide you through the exhilarating experiences that you could encounter in your next visit.
This year’s Love Winter in Aireys festival will season a Great Ocean Road trip with a mix of live music, art shows and dinners, to yoga retreats and salsa dancing. Local venues in the coastal town of Aireys Inlet open their doors to you for an eclectic bit of fun along one of the world’s most scenic drives.
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The Australian winter offers a unique opportunity: spotting the majestic Southern Whales during their annual migration along Victoria’s coastline. Sightings can be had anywhere along the coast. For a guaranteed wildlife spotting, join a Wild Oceans Eco Boat Tour to Seal Rocks to see thousands of fur seals lounging.
The Grampians National Park in September carries an additional splash of colour to the park’s natural beauty. The springtime wildflowers dotted amongst the woodland, forest and heathlands is a sight for sore eyes, which makes walking around during this time of year everyone’s ultimate dream.
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This year, Melbourne will host the opening match and a quarter-final of the Rugby League World Cup. Even better, England opens the tournament in Melbourne with a match against Australia. Be a part of history and support your country during the opening match and beyond!
During the Melbourne Cup, the greatest thoroughbreds from across the globe gather at Flemington Racecourse for quite the spectacle. This day puts Australia in the international sporting spotlight, and since the introduction of The Park, a fashion hotspot at the races, the racecourse is even more the place to be in November. Alternatively, head to the Toast To The Coast wine festival which is held during the same weekend.
Always wanted to experience a warm Christmas and Boxing Day? Well, now is your chance because tickets for the Melbourne Boxing Day Ashes Test are currently on sale! This is a truly remarkable cricket event. You’ll find yourself watching a historic rivalry between England and Australia, whilst sitting amongst an enthusiastically chanting crowd.
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January in Melbourne will be all about sailing and serves. Victoria’s capital is a host city for Volvo Ocean Race’s 2017-2018 route. Meanwhile, also in the first month of the year, the Australian Open will welcome the best tennis players in the world, including some living legends. Definitely two competitions which shouldn’t be missed!
In Melbourne’s annual celebration of creativity, you’ll be able to uniquely enjoy the city from dusk til’ dawn during White Night. Local, national and international artists, musicians and performers will cast a spell over the city and transform it into a place where lights and art meet an energetic audience. Weave your way through the laneways, parklands and cultural institutions in one wild night and see everything in a different light.
Start revving that engine and get in the mood for a long weekend of F1 action on and off the track, including motor shows, air displays and let’s not forget; the Australian Grand Prix. This time it will be extra spectacular as the world’s fastest cars just got faster. They are set to lap the iconic Albert Park Grand Prix circuit up to five seconds faster than in previous years. If you’d rather sip than race, get tasting at the Melbourne Wine and Food Festival.
Looking for a unique way to spend Easter? How about on Bells Beach watching the world’s best male and female surfers compete for surfing’s most treasured trophy; the Rip Curl Pro Bell. They’ll offer up a show to remember on the sport’s most iconic beach.
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The weeks before winter are a good time to celebrate the last of the autumn colours and produce from the valleys of Victoria’s Alpine High Country during The Bright Autumn Festival. The festival ends with a weekend gala filled with copious market stalls, street musicians and even a parade.
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To celebrate the Queen’s birthday, go and enjoy the Winter Wine Weekend on the Red Hill Showgrounds. Here you’ll get acquainted with more than 200 premium wines from 50 different wineries. Alternatively, put on your dancing shoes and pay a visit to the International Jazz Festival in Melbourne.
Ready to plan? We can’t wait for your visit! Our Australia Road Trip blog is full of tips and customised itineraries for UK travellers, with many more facts about what you can expect per month. For even more planning tools visit our website at www.visitmelbourne.com!