Things to do before summer’s over

Summer’s on the run, so get in quick to enjoy its warm, sunny days and balmy nights. From pool parties and alfresco films to chill drinks and street food, Melbourne is still so hot right now.


Nothing says summer more than an outdoor cinema. QV’s Flick/Fest sessions on Thursday to Sunday evenings are movie gold, from cult classics to Hollywood blockbusters. They’re nicely priced too, so you can spend the savings at Scrolls Ice-cream or the Prosecco Van (including $10 themed cocktails!). Maybe even dinner before at one of the restaurants a few steps away. Good news – it rolls on after summer, until 24 March.

An outdoor cinema at night

QV Outdoor Cinema

Free festivals

Celebrate Melbourne’s multicultural spirit at two big outdoor festivals. Experience traditional taiko drumming and try toy-fishing at the Melbourne Japanese Summer Festival (24 February). Or be part of the Zorba Til You Drop competition at the 32nd Lonsdale Street Greek Festival (23-24 February). Even if you just like to watch, don’t miss this Hellenic party that gets bigger every year.

A hand holding a souvlaki up to the camera

Feast at the Greek Festival this February

Stomping Ground La Boca

Mega musical Evita has got everyone crying for Argentina at the Arts Centre Melbourne this summer. But out in the forecourt, there’s a hot Buenos Aires party vibe at the Stomping Ground La Boca pop-up beer garden. Live la vida loca, with tango lessons and the event-exclusive Argentine-inspired lager. Until 1 March.

A colourful outdoor pop up bar

Stomping Ground has arrived at Arts Centre Melbourne

Pool parties

Giant inflatables, live music and DJs turn summer Sunday afternoons at Melbourne’s inner-city public pools into outdoor parties for all ages. Dive right in, because the final Sunday at the Baths in Carlton and Sunday Sesh in North Melbourne are happening on 24 February.

Summer Gin and Tonic Bar

Patricia Coffee Brewers has been setting aside the coffee bean and embracing the juniper berry on Friday evenings this summer. Their pop-up Summer Gin and Tonic Bar offers a rotating menu of four gin-tastic tipples. Of course Patricia isn’t completely forsaking the bean – the list includes a cold-filter coffee G&T. Hurry, last drinks are called 22 February.

A man in a blue shirt holding a clear glass with clear liquid and a sprig of green herbs in it

Gin Fridays at Patricia

Spritz and Snack Party

Based in the historic Federation Wharf vaults, Pilgrim Bar is really all about what happens out the front, by the river, alfresco-style. Which is why it’s one of the best places to be in summer, especially during a Saturday afternoon Spritz and Snack Party. For $25 you get a spritz on arrival, classy Aussie snacks like wallaby tartare and outback curry bean dip, and homegrown DJs. Psst! These sessions will hold onto summer’s good times until 6 April.

Showtime Night Market

Southbank’s Testing Grounds temporary creative space is hosting one more Showtime Night Market. OK, it’s on 1 March so technically autumn, but it’s a Friday so we’re decreeing this a bonus summer night! Science fair meets country show meets art fair and craft market at this event with way more than stalls by local artisans. Think DJs, food and drinks both yum and edgy, and activities hosted by contemporary artists, like playing a trumpet made of ice. Cool!