The silly season is officially here and with it comes a slew of our favourite activities, namely eating, drinking and generally just being merry.
If you’re walking around town with a spring in your step, you might be captive to one of the many Christmas carols already playing in stores, or maybe you’re just as excited as we are for the month ahead. That’s why we’ve teamed up with The Body Shop to bring you the best activities to get around this holiday season in Melbourne. Clear your calendars, here’s what you should hit up this month to launch you into the festive spirit.
Snap A 'Gram With Mrs Claus
Yas Christmas queen, The Body Shop are flipping your favourite Santa photo on its head, offering pictures with Mrs Claus at select stores staring some of our favourite Aussie women. Our favourite funny lady, Em Rusciano, will be spreading cheer at the Melbourne event. Book your snap here for just $10, with all proceeds donated to Plan International Australia's 2020 Youth Activist Series, a 12-month training and leadership program to launch the dreams of Australia's future change-makers.
When: 29 November–1 December
Where: The Body Shop, 271 Bourke Street, Centrepoint Arcade, 11am–2pm
Cry At Love Actually In Concert
Forget Hallmark (though we do love a cheesy Christmas romance), we all know that the real OG cult favourite holiday movie is Love Actually. Your favourite Christmas romance flick is coming to Melbourne with a full orchestra to play the score. Cry your eyes out to Joni Mitchell and feel alive while belting ‘All I Want For Christmas Is You.’ Love Actually in Concert coming to Hammer Hall for not one but four epic shows on December 15 and 22. With UK tours selling out, you’ll want to get your tickets now.
When: December 15 and 22, various times
Where: Hamer Hall, Melbourne
Cost: From $60.10–$132.40
Rummage Around Artisan Markets
'Tis the season to go Christmas shopping. But mainly, 'tis the season to stuff your face. So what better way to do both than hit up all the Christmas markets Melbourne has to offer in November and December? Grab a few last-minute gifts at Another Artist Market where you’ll be treated to a drink on arrival as you peruse the charming and creative stalls. For something earlier in the season, hit up the Nicholas Building’s Makers Market which offer unique local artworks, ceramics, clothing and jewellery and treat someone (or yourself, we’re not judging) to something uniquely Melbourne.
When: Another Artist Market, December 19, 5pm–9pm; Nicholas Building’s Makers Market, December 12, 5pm–12pm
Where: No Vacancy Gallery, 34-40 Jane Bell Lane and Nicholas Building, 37 Swanston Street
Dream Big And Win At The Body Shop
Head to The Body Shop this month and take part in their initiative to help launch the dreams of our future activists in partnership with Plan International Australia. This Christmas, The Body Shop will donate $20,000 to kickstart Plan’s 2020 Youth Activist Series, a 12-month leadership development program to empower young people who are fighting for equality. Cast your vote for one of three incredible causes—ending period shame, girls and climate change, and equal education—and you’ll get the chance to score some free products, vouchers or discounts.
When: December 4–8
Where: Your Local The Body Shop or online
Boogie Down At This Festive Silent Disco
Ugly Christmas jumpers and garish festive frocks at the ready, this is one party you don’t want to miss. Rock around the Christmas tree at this holiday-themed silent disco. Dance your heart out to classic Christmas bangers (remixed, we’re sure) and act a fool with strangers at this joyous free party. Running hourly from 7pm, the tours will begin at two different meeting points—Federation Square and the State Library. The two eventually meet in the middle at the Melbourne Town Hall for the ultimate silent dance-off.
When: December 6–21, Fridays and Saturdays, 7pm–10pm
Where: Federation Square and State Library Victoria
Hit Play At These Outdoor Christmas Movies
An outdoor cinema is the perfect way to enjoy those balmy summer evenings, and now you can take in a festive flick to add to the joy. Throughout December you can catch a few favourite flicks like The Muppets Christmas Carol, The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Holiday and How The Grinch Stole Christmas (or hit up all four, we’re not judging). The Lygon Street locale makes it the perfect end to an evening, following a tasty feast on the strip, of course.
When: 30 November–21 December, Saturdays, 8.30pm–11pm
Where: Argyle Square, 153 Lygon St
Get Lit At These Christmas Lights
It doesn’t matter how old you are, Christmas lights are incredibly captivating, and there’s something nostalgic about jumping in the car and going for a drive to find the best ones. Make your way out East to Lebanon Crescent which will put you in front of more than 100,000 lights at house number 11. Check out the Polar Express as it makes its way around the track. If you’re out West, don’t bypass one of the OG Christmas light displays in Melbourne at Crana Cour—this one’s been going strong for more than 20 years. Want more? Check out the best streets to see Christmas lights in Melbourne here.
Cook Up A Cheery Storm
Not quite ready to impress your guests this holiday season? Up your festive culinary game at Henry and the Fox. Here, you can get amongst an array of Christmas-themed cooking classes, from gingerbread making to nailing the turkey (or even a vegan turkey). In keeping with foodie trends, Tutto Bene Head Chef, Meurig Jones, will host the Vegan Christmas Masterclass, complete with a cheery lunch. Meanwhile, Henry and the Fox’s resident pastry chef will have you constructing a work of gingerbread art in no time at their Gingerbread Masterclass.
When: Various dates
Where: Henry and the Fox, 525 Little Collins St
Go Green This Christmas
Opt for a more sustainable option this holiday season and snap up your very own real potted Christmas tree at Seafarers Christmas Pop-Up store. If you can’t resist lush greenery and the cheery scent of fresh pine, Melbourne’s ritziest plant experts, The Plant Society, are also hosting a wreath-making workshop on opening day. Get in early and prepare to deck your halls with gorgeous greenery because, let’s be real, you can never have enough plants.
When: December 8, 10am–4pm; December 9, 11am–4pm
Where: Seafarers Residences, Docklands (opposite the Seafarers Bridge)
Get Merry At Christmas Square
If you can’t quite make it to the North Pole this season, opt for Christmas Square. It’s the city’s festive hub and an absolute must-do for every Melburnian come December. Have your photo taken with Santa at Santa’s House and, of course, don’t miss the big tree. Each night until Christmas the 16-metre tree will be the centre of a marvellous light and sound show that will definitely make you feel the Christmas spirit.
When: 30 November– 25 December
Where: Federation Square
Do good and feel good this Christmas with The Body Shop, who have teamed up with Plan International this holiday season to provide training and skills to girls in Indonesia and Brazil. Every purchase during November and December will make a difference to hundreds of young women, helping them to unlock their dreams.