What's On

15 Free Things To Do In Melbourne This Month

By Steff Tan
2nd Oct 2017


Not gonna lie, there's a lot of free stuff happening in Melbourne this month. There are October festivals like Spring Fling and Halloween. There are markets and gothic picnics and quality memes brought to life. There's even a pets' day out for your four-legged fur baby. And the best part is they’re all 100% free.

So if you’re not a fan of breaking the bank for a quality day out, then check out these free things to do in Melbourne this month.

The Monday Bone Machine

Monday nights just got a LOT more fun, with Boney running a DJ dance party late into the wee hours. Entry is free, and the drink specials will be flowing all night. Resident DJ T-Rek will be on hand, playing a broad mix of blues, golden oldies, punk disco, garage and psychedelic to keep you bopping all night long. 

Where: Boney, 68 Little Collins St
When: From 
9pm, every Monday in October
For more info, click here.

Dance Technique At New Guernica

Escape the 9–5 grind with a free Thursday night dance party at New Guernica (which, incidentally, runs from 9pm to 5am). With a set like that, you're gonna need one hell of a Berocca on Friday morning. Entry is 100% free, and there are drink specials running all night. The DJ line-up changes each week, but good tunes are pretty much guaranteed. Sweet deal.

Where: New Guernica, 318 Little Collins St 
When: From 
9pm, every Thursday in October
For more info, click here

Hugathon At Flinders Street Station

Drop by Flinders Street Station during the peak hour rush for a few seconds of peace with a free hug. Back for its second cuddly event, the good people at Awaken Venus and Currency of Love want to spread more love with a dose of free hugs. The hugathon will open its arms from 5pm by the clocks, so if you’re still feeling fully devo your footy team didn’t win it big, then look out for those friendly “free hugs” signs.

Where: Flinders Street Railway Station (Under the clocks)
When: 5pm-6:30pm, Friday 6 October  
For more info, click 

Lantern Festival

Also a mid-autumn celebration, the fifth annual lantern festival will be taking over Crown Riverwalk from Friday 6 October. Stretching over three days, this year’s festival will see cultural performances including lion dances as well as a range of delicious traditional and modern Asian food for all to enjoy. Make sure to stay past sunset to watch the lantern parade light up the night.

Where: Crown Melbourne Riverwalk
When: 10am-10pm, Friday 6 October to Sunday 8 October
For more info, click here.

Diwali Festival Of Lights

Celebrated every year in autumn (it's autumn on the other side of the world), the Diwali festival of lights is a lively celebration of light and belief that good will triumph over evil. This year the festival will play host to a string of cultural performances and hearty food from India, Malaysia, Nepal, Singapore, Bangladesh and Myanmar, just to name a few. Heads up, this is an alcohol-free event.

Where: Queen Victoria Market, Corner of Victoria Street & Elizabeth Street
When: 9am-3pm, Saturday 7 October & 9am-4pm, Sunday 8 October
For more info, click here.

Pets Day Out

Our four-legged friends are getting a day of their own, with loads of free activities to keep the tails wagging. Doggos and woofers of all kinds can get their photos taken with their humans at the Ash Marton Realty Pet Photobooth. You can also get your paws on pet product samples from our faves at the Costco marquee, and don’t forget to enter the draw for a chance at a fluffy pet bed. Lil’ doggo costumes are encouraged.

Where: Ballam Parade, 30 Davey Street, Frankston
When: 10am-3pm Sunday 8 October
For more info, click here.

Boho Luxe Market

Bohemian lovers, you don’t have to travel far for this one, because the 2017 Boho Luxe Market is transforming Fed Square into a beachy paradise. The market will bring together the best of local Bohemian brands from the bay, accompanied by live music and market food. And if you’re one of the first 100 shoppers then you score a Boho Luxe Market tote bag filled with goodies like natural products, vouchers, and a style magazine.

Where: The Atrium, Federation Square, Cr of Swanston and Flinders Street
When: 10am-5pm, Sunday 8 October
For more info, click here.

Funny At The Brunny

Free comedy nights? Yep, they do exist in Melbourne. The Brunswick Hotel are hosting comedy nights every Monday fortnight, and they're not charging a single dollar. Oh yeah. jugs of Draught are also a cool $10. The comedy line-up changes each week, but you'll probably catch some of the city's upcoming acts, or a few well-known faces testing material ahead of the 2018 MICF. Get on down for a free night of quality laughs (and quality beer). 

Where: The Brunswick Hotel, 140 Sydney Rd
When: From 
8pm, Monday 9 October and Monday 23 October
For more info, click here.

Seaside Street Food Festival

Now that the warmer weather and daylight savings is here, it's time to spend a little bit more time by the bay. Enter: the Seaside Street Food Festival. The Food Truck Park are making their way down the bay to Frankston to set up shop with an amazing array of food trucks to put a hold on chiselling that summer rig. The likes of Biggie Smalls, CALIKO BBQ, Nem 'n Nem, Ron's Handburger, Sparrow's Philly Cheesesteaks, and many more will all be down by the seaside on Frankston Pier.

Where: Frankston Pier
When: Wednesday 11 October to Sunday 15 October
For more info, click here.

Gothic & Victorian Picnic

For something a lil’ darker, head down to Fitzroy Gardens to embrace your inner Jane Eyre/ Mr Rochester for a Victorian gothic picnic. Family friendly with mysterious performers and enchanting music, the picnic is a great way to get in the Halloween mood. The event is totally free, but if you feel like chipping in a few dollars, you can enter the Fly By Night Bat Clinic raffle. Pack a basket and dress up for this different sort of day on the green.

Where: Fitzroy Gardens
When: 1pm-6pm, Saturday 14 October
For more info, click here.

Footscray Finds

Footscray's new craft market is back for another month, and if the crowds so far are any guide, it's gonna go off. For eastsiders, this one's a little like the weekly Camberwell Market: think boot sales, kitsch odds and ends, handmade crafts, vintage goodies and a heap of pre-loved fashion. Food trucks and live tunes will be pumping throughout the day. Grab a lobster and head on down—you might just find a bargain.

Where: 56 Paisley St, Footscray
When: From
8am, Sunday 15 October
For more info, click here

Spring Fling Festival

Apart from the already heavenly beer garden, street food, and pop-up markets at the 40th annual Spring Fling Festival, there’s also going to be a show-stopping Spring Fling Dog Show. Truly a day for everyone. Food treats include Donut Panic’s mini doughnuts drizzled in caramel, Nutella, and cinnamon, Billy Van Creamy’s gelato and vegan sweets from Von’s Vegan Bakehouse.  Pick up a vintage enamel pin at Vintageonline and then step into Birney & Co’s iconic mobile tram store for the coolest vintage threads and emerging trends.

Where: Errol Street, North Melbourne
When: 10am-6pm Sunday 15 October
For more info, click here.

Spooktober Halloween Festival

Count Carlisle welcomes you to the 2017 Spooktober Festival where you can step into The Doll Factory for a night of Chucky-like things, or the Blood Manor to have the colour drained from your face. But if you rather chill with the food trucks and carved pumpkins, you can do that too because entry is free (meaning there’s no pressure to go crap yourself).  

Where: St Kilda Town Hall: 99A Carlisle Street, St Kilda
When: 12pm-10pm, Friday 27 October to Tuesday 31 October
For more info, click here.

Scream Like Goku

Literally hundreds of people standing around screaming like Goku. Even if you weren’t a fan of Dragon Ball Z growing up, being able to scream in a crowd of other screaming Super Saiyan’s is a pretty good way to relieve stress. Either way, head on down to Fed Square, because who doesn’t love a good meme and scream?

Where: Outside Melbourne Convention Centre, 1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf
When: 1pm, Saturday 28 October
For more info, click here.

Spring Vegan Festival

Vegans are taking over The Meat Market to celebrate all things vegan with ethical shopping and a general big love of animals for the day. Everything will be 100% vegan, with tons of non-for-profit vendors, an art zone and a vegan high tea. Score.

Where: The Meat Market, 5 Blackwood Street, North Melbourne
When: 10am-5pm, Saturday 28 October
For more info, click here.

While you're here, check out Melbourne's best brunch in the CBD to treat yourself this spring.  

Image credit: Sparrow's Philly Cheesteaks | Griffin Simm

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