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20 Things To Do On The Longest Night Of The Year

By Mona Chatskin
20th Jun 2016

things to do winter solstice melbourne

Melbourne’s winter is getting colder and colder, so crack out the winter woollies because the chill isn’t going anywhere. It has to get worse before it gets better, right? We’re here to help you through the pain.

So how can you fight those winter blues? Here’s 20 things to do during Melbourne’s Winter Solstice:

1. Welcome to Thornbury Winter Solstice Celebration | Northcote

This food truck bonanza is at it again to keep our bellies full. Get ready for fairy lights, roasting fires, and heaters to keep you cosy. Don’t stress about the rain - umbrellas will be pitched up to keep you dry. Along with a delicious winter cocktail list, get ready for an array of winter eats. There’ll even be a small artisan market to keep you in good spirits. Find all the deets here.

2. Boney | CBD

From the guys who brought you Cookie, Boney will be be open till 3am so you can make the most of your winter night. With cocktail specials starting from just $2, you can easily get your booze buzz going.

3. Max Brenner | CBD

This one’s for those with a sweet tooth. If you’re a lover of all things chocolate, Max Brenner is the place to be during this Winter Solstice. Be sure to get a hot chocolate to keep you toasty. There’s Classic Chocolate, Salted Caramel, or American Marshmallow to please even the most extravagant cravings. Be sure to order the chocolate covered bananas and strawberries, 'cause fruits are healthy…right?!

4. Light in Winter Festival | Federation Square

Running for the tenth year, Fed Square is celebrating the Winter Solstice with a program of light installations, live music, and dance performances. Don’t worry, they’ve got you covered for food too. With the likes of Mr. Burger and St. Ali Coffee, you’ll be celebrating Melbourne’s longest night in style.

5. Rooftop Bar | CBD

After you’ve eaten yourself silly at Cookie, work it off when you tackle the stairs on the climb to the Rooftop Bar. Located on the 7th floor of Curtin House, this stunning rooftop bar is open from 11am. So you can start the Winter Solstice fiesta before the sun sets, and watch the city light up.

6. St. Jerome’s – The Hotel | CBD

For more rooftop fun, camp under the stars at St Jerome’s. End this freezing winter night in the most luxurious tents we’ve ever seen (you’ll be just as amazed). It’s just what you need after a night of exploration! Best part? It doesn’t matter if you’re too tired to make breakfast, it will be served right to your tent door.

7. The Brunswick Hotel | Brunswick

Celebrate the Winter Solstice with some poetry or stand-up. And, best of all…it’s free! The Brunswick Hotel offers great entertainment every Monday. The $10 jugs are the cherry on top of the cake.

8. Winter Solstice Chanting Meditation | Hawthorn

To get in touch with your inner zen, pre-book your meditation session with Jarek Czechowicz and his musicians. After some musical meditation, you’ll indulge in a vegetarian supper. Get in quick to get the early bird fee of $45pp.

9. Untz Untz | Hawthorn

Melbourne’s first 24 hour nightclub is here. If you want to spend your night grooving your winter blues away, this is the place to be. Their 24 liquor license makes sure you can dance all night…if you can handle it.

10. Belgrave Lantern Festival | Dandenong Ranges

If you’ve got the kiddies with you, this is the perfect place to bring in the Winter Solstice. Celebrating its 10th annual year, it promises not to disappoint. Activities start as early as 4pm, so you can get a head start on the night. Bring your kids, bring your lanterns, and get ready to light it up.

11. The Brunswick Street Gallery | Fitzroy

Time to get artsy. The Brunswick Street Gallery is open till 8pm, and is the perfect place to wait for your dinner reservation. The gallery prides itself on having nine galleries under just one roof, so dash in and see the works of emerging artists.

12. Eureka Skydeck | Southbank

Melbourne’s tallest building will let you see the year’s longest night from a view. When you’re trying to swoon your date, the Eureka Skydeck will provide the goods. Open till 10pm, and perfect to wander to on a night time stroll.

13. Doughnut Time | Fitzroy and CBD

If the hot chocolate didn’t satisfy you, Doughnut Time is here to help. With over 10 weekly specials, the hardest decision will be picking just one. Grab one to ease the chill of this winter’s night.

14. Winter Solstice Bonfire, Collingwood Children’s Farm | Abbotsford

Another perfect option for a family activity. But this isn’t just fun for the kids. With a mulled wine bar, food stalls, and a giant bonfire, this will keep the spirits soaring – and warm – over the Winter Solstice. 3500+ guests are expected, so clearly word has gotten round.

15. Matilda the Musical | Princess Theatre

If you want to get cultural during Melbourne’s longest night, Matilda the Musical has got you covered. With its rave reviews, you’ll be lucky to snag a ticket.

16. The Railway Hotel | Windsor

Offering Mates Rates every Monday, happy hour drink prices last till 9pm. The Railway Hotel will keep you boozy and warm this Winter Solstice, and you can stroll over to Messina for a sugar hit.

17. Hozier lane | CBD

Tried to see the street art but stampeded by bustling tourists? Meander down Hozier lane at night for easy access. You’ll be surprised by how different street art can look at night!

18. Melbourne International Animation Festival | CBD

Starting June 19th and going until June 26th, this festival is for the cartoon lover in all of us. Exclusive shows are running throughout the day and night. That way you can cosy up to some TV and ease the winter chills.

19. Winter Solstice Festival, Matcham’s Paddock | Eltham

This is the Winter Solstice Festival’s fifth year, but it’s upped the location. There’ll be live music, delish food, fire entertainers and yes – a bonfire. You’ll stay toasty and fed during Melbourne’s longest night. Bring a blanket or picnic rug for a proper snuggle sesh.

20. Nieuw Amsterdam | CBD

End the night in Nieuw Amsterdam. The kitchen is open till 3am, so there’s no rush. Order off the Pitt Grill for a proper winter feast, while their extensive cocktail list will keep you buzzing the whole way through.

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