Best annual family events in Victoria

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Sarah Hinder Last updated: 14 November 2017

A fantastic calendar of family events abound both in vibrant Melbourne city and destinations across regional Victoria. Free summer celebrations White Night and St Kilda Festival bring to life the city of Melbourne in great family friendly atmospheres. Regional event the Rainbow Serpent Festival celebrates music, art and Indigenous culture, while Bendigo's Vesak Festival of Light is a peaceful festival of Buddhist tradition.


2017 Events

4 – 22 October, Melbourne 

Melbourne Festival

One of Australia’s best celebrations of the arts and culture, Melbourne Festival features theatre, circus and dance performances, outdoor installations and free events across the city.


25 November – 3 December, Victoria

RACV Great Vic Bike Ride

This fun, friendly and challenging camping and bike riding event allows families the opportunity to spend a week on their bikes riding across two of Victoria’s greatest destinations – the Grampians and the Great Ocean Road. There’s the option for the full 9 days, 5 days or 3 day rides. 

kgrahamjourneys; iStock

1 December – 1 April, Melbourne

Moonlight Cinema

In Melbourne's wonderful Royal Botanic Gardens, outdoor screenings of great classic kid’s movies are set to screen throughout the summer season. 

Centennial Parklands

10 December, Melbourne 

Luna Park’s Christmas Gala Lunch

Among the iconic rides and attractions of Melbourne’s Luna Park, their Christmas event will feature carols, a special visit from Santa and a classic Christmas roast buffet all in a family-friendly setting. 

26 December – February, Fingal 

Lantasia 2017

At this illuminating sculpture event, the enchanting wetlands of Boneo Maze are transformed into a magical night garden for families to explore. With Indigenous cultural workshops, lantern making and delicious dinners, this summer event on the Mornington Peninsula is not to be missed. 


26 – 29 January, Lexton 

Rainbow Serpent Festival

Artistic and welcoming to all, the Rainbow Serpent Festival is suitable for the whole family. Along with its showcase of music, the arts and Indigenous culture, the Kids Space hosts fun activities and performances, while there is even a family-friendly camping area away from night-time activities. 


28 January, Melbourne 

Victoria Street Lunar Festival

At this vibrant, cultural celebration of the Chinese Lunar New Year, Lion and Dragon Dancers parade the streets, there are showcases of Asian cuisines and culture at over 100 stalls, displays, restaurants and the main stage, and free family activities around Victoria Street in Richmond.

11 February, Melbourne 

St Kilda Festival

Australia’s largest free summer celebration with entertainment from Australian artists across multiple stages, sports, dancers, carnival rides, workshops, poster design competition, buskers and a whole range of family entertainments. 


17 February, Melbourne 

White Night

At this free event for all ages, the entire city of Melbourne comes to life for a night with light displays, musicians, street performances, film screening and extended open hours throughout the city. White Night is a celebration of Melbourne’s rich culture and creativity. 

May, Bendigo 

Vesak Festival of Light

A multicultural celebration of peace and harmony inspired by Buddha, the Festival of Light features traditional cultural performances, workshops, vegetarian cuisine and a beautiful coloured light show projected onto the Great Stupa. 

Meg West Photography
Meg West Photography

4 May, Geelong 

Geelong After Dark

Light installations, street performances and art light up the streets of Geelong in this annual artistic celebration. 

Geelong After Dark

July, Warrnambool 

Fun4Kids Festival Warrnambool

At this five-day children’s festival in regional Victoria, kids take part in themed workshops, games, activities and interactive performances. 


23 September – 3 October, Melbourne 

Royal Melbourne Show

At the Royal Melbourne Show, see animals up close, learn about agriculture, discover dazzling art, craft and cooking exhibits, watch spectacular stunts, marvel at the fireworks display and indulge in a scrumptious showbag. 

ymgerman; iStock

3 – 4 November 2018, Werribee Park 

The Lost Lands

This family weekend festival held in Werribee Mansion is a celebration of music, the arts and the environment. Dedicated to bringing entertainments to every age, The Lost Lands is filled with performances, comedy, outdoor cinemas, and great entertainment for kids.


First published: 17 October 2017