Arguably the best time to experience Melbourne is at night. These days, you can take your pick of great restaurants at 1am, see late-night gigs and dance until 4am, then catch public transport home on the weekend. Here is your guide to making your next late-night adventure the best one yet. Good night, and good luck.
Looking for more things to do in Melbourne? Check out our bucket list of activities, events and venues to tick off.
16 Exciting Things To Do In Melbourne At Night
Melbourne At Night Bucket List
1- Ride The Melbourne Star
It seems most big cities these days contain a giant Ferris wheel, and Melbourne is no exception – although it is the only city in Australia to have one of this magnitude.
Located in the Docklands district of the city, the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel allows patrons a full 30 minutes to take in the sights of the city.
You can ride by day, but boarding the Melbourne Star is fun to do in Melbourne at night.
There are plenty of add-ons available if you want to spice things up a bit, from sangria jugs to flights of sparkling wine.
You can book a private cabin, join a yoga class, and it's a popular place to propose, as well!
Melbourne Star ticket prices start at $16.50.
2- Take In A Sunset View At Eureka Skydeck 88
Melbourne is beautiful after dark, and one of the nighttime activities in Melbourne, if you want to see the city in all its sprawling glory, is to head to Eureka Skydeck 88.
The tallest observation deck in the Southern Hemisphere is an impressive Australian landmark.
Sipping on wine, beer or champagne on the Skydeck itself is one of the more romantic things to do in Melbourne at night.
Take your experience one step further, and brave "The Edge" – adjoining glass cubes suspended 300 metres above the city.
These cubes (glass ceiling, walls and floors) project out from the floor, giving visitors a clear view of the city from all angles.
It's not for the faint-hearted or sufferers of vertigo!
Eureka Skydeck 88 is also home to the tallest post office box in this part of the world – a fun fact you can add to any postcard to send home.
Eureka Skydeck is open until 10 PM each night. Avoid the queue and BOOK YOUR SKYDECK TICKET HERE.
3- Explore The Laneways Of The City
The city centre of Melbourne is famous for its laneways that are filled with restaurants and cafés, bars that offer plenty of late-night Melbourne activities to keep you going to the wee hours.
These lanes are often adorned with an impressive display of Melbourne street art, and one of the fun things to do in Melbourne at night is to scour the streets for the best murals.
The artwork takes on a different dimension after dark, and you will find the best ones in these places:
- Hosier Lane
- Union Lane
- Degraves Street
- AC/DC Lane
A word of warning. Although these lanes are interesting to explore in Melbourne at night, I wouldn’t wander down any that look too creepy – safety is paramount after all!
These Melbourne lanes are where you will find the best coffee in Melbourne.
4- Tour The Old Melbourne Gaol
Melbourne Gaol officially closes at 5 PM each day but opens its doors to anyone brave enough to join the nightly ghost tours.
There are three tours on offer, including A Night in the Watch House, which allows you to take an hour-long time of the original cell block.
You can spend an hour ghost hunting throughout the gaol or go on a night tour with a Hangman, who can tell you many stories about those who were hanged at the prison, including famous Australian bushman Ned Kelly.
If ghosts are your thing, there are many other spooky tours you can do around Melbourne at night. It’ll allow you to get acquainted with Melbourne’s many streets, laneways and even outer suburbs while learning a little about its slightly macabre history.
Tour the city’s CBD, the disused Pentridge Prison in Melbourne’s north, the old port town of Williamstown and even a haunted homestead out west in Altona.
A tour of Old Melbourne Gaol costs $38 (adults), and here are some ghost tours to book:
- Melbourne Ghost Tour
- Haunted Melbourne Ghost Tour
- Eynsbury Homestead Dinner and Ghost Tour
- Point Cook Homestead Ghost Tour
5- Belly Laugh At The Comic’s Lounge
Melbourne is the place to be for comedy and is host to the four-week annual International Comedy Festival that starts in late March.
So it’s not surprising that going to a comedy show can be a fun night out in Melbourne.
You can see shows by local Australian talent or mix it up with comedians from further-flung places around the globe.
If you’re not in the city during this time, visit The Comic Lounge, where up and coming comedians practice performing.
Well established comics often visit to test new material in front of an audience.
6- Grab A Drink At A Themed, Rooftop Or Secret Bar
The bars in Melbourne are some of the best in Australia. You can’t have a night out in Melbourne without grabbing a tipple at one of the many bars that populate the city, offering a myriad of late-night activities in Melbourne.
- There's Berlin Bar, where you must sit in affluent West Germany or grungy East Germany.
- Storyville has a fairy tale theme, and Lui Bar is fabulous for views of the city.
- Murmur Piano Bar conducts crowd sing-alongs, and at Holey Moley, you can play a round of mini-golf whilst sipping from a cocktail.
- If you're after rooftop views, Madame Brussels puts on an exaggerated garden party.
- The Rooftop Bar screens movies alongside serving drinks.
- At Easey’s in Collingwood, you can eat hot dogs and burgers in an old, converted train.
- For secret bars, enter through the sliding fridge door in Boston Sub in Prahran to get to Jungle Boy.
- The tiny Above Board bar is accessed via an unmarked alleyway, and Lay Low Bar is hidden inside a clothing store.
- Vue de Monde on the 55th floor of the Rialto Tower has stunning city views.
- Transit Cocktail Lounge has a rooftop bar with black leather sofas and late-night jazz.
- Seamstress Bar has a colourful past as a Chinese textile factory, brothel and Buddhist Monastery.
If you’d prefer to follow along and be surprised, here are some excellent tours:
- Melbourne’s hidden bars
- Melbourne Gangsters and Candy Stores Night Tour
- History and Whiskey Bar Tour of Melbourne
7- Tuck Into Some Food At The Queen Victoria Night Market
If it’s summer or winter and a Wednesday, head to the Queen Victoria Night Market.
There are all sorts of food options on offer, from pizza to burgers – you can even grab a dozen oysters for an appetizer if you feel so inclined. The area is licensed, so you can stroll around with a cold beer or cider in the summertime to cool you down. A mulled wine or hot cider in the winter is just the thing to keep you cosy.
If you’re a foodie, it’s worth taking a tour of the Victoria markets with a local who can guide you to find the best spots to eat.
8- Go For Late Night Fondue At Milk, The Cow
Milk, the Cow, is a fromagerie, with locations in both St Kilda and Carlton.
Here, you can order delicious cheese to have on its own, choose to pair it with your beverage of choice (from wine to whisky and sake) or tuck into a delicious pot of fondue.
It’s one of the things to do in Melbourne at night in winter with a group of friends.
They also do to-go bags, so if you try something you love, you can take it back to your accommodation to snack on later.
9- Watch A Movie In An Outdoor Cinema In Summer
Melbourne is a city of film buffs, and in the warmer months, outdoor cinemas spring up all over the city.
The most popular is the Moonlight Cinema in the Royal Botanic Gardens, which screens a range of new flicks and old favourites (such as Home Alone and Love Actually before Christmas and Australian cult classics like Muriel’s Wedding and The Castle).
There are bean beds on offer, or you can bring your blanket and a picnic.
The Rooftop above Bar is also the location of the Rooftop Cinema, where you can chow down on burgers and sip drinks while you watch the latest flick.
There’s the South Wharf Pop-Up Cinema and Park Cinemas at Docklands.
At the Gourmet Cinema in the city's east, you can watch a flick surrounded by food trucks from local restaurants selling delicious wares.
Melbourne's famous stadium, the MCG, even opens its grounds occasionally for outdoor cinema. Many suburbs around the city will close a street every few weeks, lay down some astroturf, pop some popcorn, and throw a flick on as a fun, family-friendly activity.
Keep in mind that just because it's summer in Melbourne doesn't mean it'll be warm. Make sure you check the local weather forecast and bring some extra layers to snuggle up in if it's going to be a fantastic night.
10- Catch A Double Feature At A Beautiful Old Cinema
The Astor in St Kilda is a one-screen cinema, which showcases films old and new.
It tends to have feature nights with two screenings, and much thought is put into the program.
Movies will be paired together based on a common theme (such as Clueless with Mean Girls) or director (like a double billing of Alfred Hitchcock or David Lynch).
They often have movie marathons, too, such as all the Harry Potter or Fast and the Furious films back to back.
I sat through 14 hours of Mission Impossible films once, which was… interesting.
The cinema is also home to a fluffy and friendly cat called Duke, who'll usually be waiting around for pats from patrons once the movie is over.
11- Take A Dinner Cruise Along The Yarra River
I believe a city is always best seen from the water, and Melbourne is no exception. Night sightseeing in Melbourne delivers a different perspective compared to during the day.
This three-hour cruise will take you along Melbourne's best-known waterway while you stuff yourself full during a four-course meal (inclusive of beverages, to boot!).
12- Go For A Moonlight Kayak
If you don’t want to be stuck on a boat for hours but still want to get out on the water, opt for a kayak ride instead!
This tour leaves from the Docklands area at sunset, with patrons paddling up Victoria Harbour, stopping to have fish and chips in their kayaks for dinner.
The tour then continues up past the city, Crown Casino and Flinders Railway Station, before ending in the sports precinct.
13- Visit A Luna Park Historic Amusement Park
Luna Park in St Kilda opened in 1912, making it the oldest continuously running theme park in the country.
Its most famous ride is the Scenic Railway, which runs around its perimeter.
The park is open until 11 PM, and there's plenty to do onsite – dodgem cars, carousels, carnival games and a ghost train.
Don’t forget to snap a picture under the giant face that serves as the entrance to the park, which definitely won’t haunt your dreams later on that night. Hrmm.
14- See The Phillip Island Penguins
One of Australia’s most popular attractions, it’s worth making the journey out to Phillip Island to see its population of Little Penguins returning home at sunset after a day spent fishing for food.
The island itself is home to many other attractions, such as a giant maze and chocolate factory.
You can make a day trip of it, exploring the island for a few hours before heading to Penguin Parade to see the little cuties shuffle on home.
Find out more about the Phillip Island day tour here.
15- Go On An Overnight Safari
If you want to make your day out at Werribee Zoo in Melbourne’s west memorable, consider booking a place on the Slumber Safari.
You'll clamp in tented lodges, be fed an African-inspired dinner and breakfast buffet and receive a two-day entry pass into the zoo.
The deal also comes with private tours and unique animal encounter and viewing opportunities.
Victoria is Australia's smallest mainland state, and one of the advantages here is that it's small.
In a vast country like Australia, which has wide-open spaces, it’s not uncommon to travel for days without seeing another soul.
So being a small state has apparent advantages for travellers wanting to explore a variety of regions.
You can go from the city to the wilderness in less than an hour, from the town to Phillip Island, where little penguins are an attraction, or along the spectacular coastal drive of the Great Ocean Road, which is one of the Australian landmarks to put on your bucket list.
As you can see, there’s a wide variety of things to do in Melbourne at night, no matter what your travel style, budget or preference. And if you’re looking to spend a few days in the city, here are the best neighbourhoods to stay in in Melbourne.
16- Check Out The Nightlife In St Kilda
St Kilda is a beachside suburb famous for football, excellent restaurants, trendy bars and live music.
From historic puns to cool nightclubs, St Kilda is the spot for a lively night out in Melbourne with a group of friends.
Rub shoulders with the cool crowd at Republica, which is right on the beach, or bop to the beat of live music at the Espy or the Prince of Wales Hotel.
If you’re travelling alone or are looking for a way to meet people, join one of these St Kilda night tours and have a ball:
- Melbourne Night Tour
- Nightlife in Melbourne – St Kilda
Things to Do in Melbourne at Night
Looking for the best things to do in Melbourne at night, this is the article.
Melbourne is probably one of the best-known cities in Australia. It is located in the state of Victoria and is the capital city of the state.
The city is called the cultural capital of Australia as it is the home of various famous galleries, museums, and other essential buildings. Melbourne is a very vibrant city that has an entirely different vibe day and night.
The majority of locals agree that Melbourne is the most beautiful during the night. The city's nightlife has lots to offer, including public transport running all night on weekends, fancy restaurants and cozy bars.
We have made a list of things to do in Melbourne City at Night in 2021. So take a look below and see yourself what Melbourne has to offer.
Best Things to Do in Melbourne at Night
1. Grab a Drink with a Perfect View at Loop Roof Cocktail Bar
Are you looking for Romantic things to do in Melbourne at night? Well, we have a perfect place for a couple who wants to spend a romantic night.
Loop Roof is an edgy cocktail bar set in the open air with a spectacular view of Melbourne. The bar is designed for all weather conditions, so you can visit it all year round, come rain or shine.
The bar serves extraordinary cocktails (non-alcoholic versions are available too). Also, you can enjoy refreshing drinks and a cup of coffee with some nice dessert. If you are looking for something to eat, don’t worry as the bar offers some great hot and cold snacks.
The Loop Roof bar is a great place not only for couples but for every traveller who wants to have one of the best cocktails in Melbourne and enjoy a spectacular view.
Take a good camera like this one, so you don't miss a moment.
2. Watch a Musical at the Legendary Princess Theatre
The Princess Theatre is located in the old Theatre District in Melbourne. The theatre is one of the world's most excellent Victorian theatres. It was built in 1886 and listed in a National Trust of Australia.
Princess Theatre is the most popular for its musicals such as ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ and ‘Les Miserables’. We highly recommend watching a musical there as the theatre has the best acoustics and set for the musicals.
However, if you aren't a musical fan, the theatre showcases good plays such as 'Harry Potter and the Cursed Child' and others.
3. Climb to the Eureka Skydeck
Are we looking for something spectacular to do on a Saturday night? No worries, we have a Eureka Skydeck in our things to do in Melbourne Saturday night list. Let’s see what Eureka Skydeck can offer you.
So, Eureka Skydeck is located in Eureka Tower (Southbank district, Melbourne), a couple of minutes from central Melbourne. The tower is almost 300 meters high and is one of the tallest buildings in Australia.
Eureka Skydeck is on the 88th floor that can be reached in 40 seconds by a lift. It offers a majestic view of Melbourne, and the bravest ones can step into 'The Edge' – a glass cube with a 360 view of the Melbourne skyline. The Skydeck is open from 10 AM to 10 PM. It is the most famous between couples and families.
4. Enjoy a Crazy Friday Night at the National Gallery of Victoria
Our number one place for the things to do in Melbourne on a Friday night is the National Gallery of Victoria. The gallery hosts great Friday night parties with live music, DJs and drinks. Those nights usually lasts through the summer.
Even though the National Gallery entrance is free, you would need to book tickets in advance if you want to go to the Friday night event.
All the tickets can be booked online, and you will find information about the event's theme. We recommend checking the music as only some of the sections can be opened during the late-night opening.
If you can't make it to the Friday night event, we recommend visiting the National Gallery during the daytime. The National Gallery of Victoria was founded in 1861 and is Australia's oldest and largest art museum. It has one of the most extensive collections of art in the world.
Even if you aren't a fan of art, you will enjoy the gallery and its memorable gigs.
You can wear shoes like these that are comfortable and dressy for a night out at the museum.
5. Drink at the Post-war Themed Berlin Bar
Berlin Bar offers another great and unusual experience of Melbourne nightlife. The bar is located just a couple of minutes' walk from Melbourne, China Town via the narrow alleys. The way to the bar might be pretty terrifying, but don't worry, it's safe!
Once you find a bar and enter, you will see a luxurious old-styled décor with leather chairs. This part of the bar is called West Berlin, serving the best cocktails. Even the menu of drinks looks fancy showing a map of Germany with drink regions.
Is it done with cocktails? Head to another part of the bar that is called East Berlin. This part of the bar serves German and North European beer and is designed to look rustier.
It's a very artistic and social bar so that you will have lots of fun.
6. Explore a Summer Night Market at Queen Victoria Market
The night market offers about 60 food stalls, more than 100 shopping stalls, live music, and other entertainment such as various games. The market is suitable for a late-night snack and shopping, and fun with locals while playing multiple games.
Even if you aren’t interested in socializing with locals, we highly recommend visiting this mid-week market for the best street food in Melbourne and authentic handmade souvenirs.
Wear something comfortable like this dress when you are out and about exploring the night market.
7. Watch the Sunset at the beach
Are you tired of paid activities in Melbourne? Looking for things to do in Melbourne at night for free? If your answer is yes, we have a perfect place for you – a beach with a gorgeous sunset.
The closest beach to the Melbourne city centre is St. Kilda beach that is just 6 km away from the centre and can be easily reached by Melbourne tram. We recommend being at the beach around the sunset as it is the most beautiful.
A beautiful St. Kilda's pier offers a great walk, excellent ice cream shops, and cafes. However, you can always walk on the sand along the shore.
If you are travelling with your friends or family, bring a ball and enjoy a relaxing evening on the beach. Take a blanket like this one to avoid the Melbourne cold.
When the sun ultimately sets, you can visit Luna Park that is big, just a couple of minutes' walk from the beach. You will find children's play areas, excellent trails and badminton courts there. Enjoy a relaxing walk before you head back to your accommodation.
8. Come to See a Quirky Cabaret Show
It is said that Melbourne has the best and the most entertaining cabaret shows. There are lots of cabaret theatres in the city. However, we had selected only one that is special.
Butterfly Club is located in the heart of Melbourne. The theatre is tiny and cozy, so tickets do sell out very quickly.
The Butterfly Club is hidden in narrow alleys, so it can be challenging to find it if you don't know your way around Melbourne. The theatre is very intimate with a quirky design, cozy chairs and a great bar with its signature cocktail called Thai Butterfly.
If you visit this theatre, you will get the coziest and quirkiest cabaret show experience!
9. Ghostly Tour at the Old Melbourne Gaol
Old Melbourne Gaol is the oldest jail in Melbourne. It was built in the mid-1800s. It was a home of dangerous criminals, petty offenders, homeless and mentally ill. The prison was closed in 1929 and hanged 133 prisoners.
You can visit the Old Melbourne Gaol during the daytime, but we highly recommend taking one of their night tours. Take a look at various night tours of the prison:
- Hangman's Night Tour is a tour that focuses on hangman's stories. You will get to know what hangman used to do before and after hanging prisoners. The time runs on various nights during the week. Remember that you will have to walk through enclosed dark places, and this tour is not suitable for kids under 16.
- Ghosts? What ghosts tour is suitable for kids over 12 years old. The tour takes you through various places and tells stories about ghosts that haunt the prison. It runs on multiple days during the week.
- A Night in Watch House tour runs only at selected times, so you need to check in advance if you want to participate. It takes you to the original cell that dangerous criminals inhabited. Due to its mature theme, everyone aged 16 and 17 has to be accompanied by an adult. It's probably the scariest tour.
10. Explore The Hosier Lane at Night
Hosier Lane is one of the most well-known streets in Melbourne. It is a very artistic street filled with graffiti on the walls, great coffee shops, boutique shops, and excellent high-class restaurants.
It is a very famous spot among locals and tourists to hand around, especially during the evening as you can enjoy dazzling graffiti and live street music.
Also, it is said that Hosier Lane has the best coffee in Australia so don't miss visiting its coffee shops. If you are hungry, you can pop into any of the restaurants for a lovely evening meal. And don't forget to order a glass of wine to go with your meal and street art.
11. Relaxing Walk Along Southbank Promenade At Night
Southbank Pomegranate is not too far from Melbourne city centre and offers a relaxing evening within the city. The pomegranate stretches along the Yarra River and is a popular place for evening strolls and late-night snacks.
You can enjoy a great night view of the river and incredible skyline, including a Eureka Tower. If you visit Southbank Pomegranate during summer, you will see many people playing ball games or sitting in a cozy outdoor cafeteria.
Also, the pomegranate is a popular spot for photos, so be prepared for people taking pictures or asking you to take a photo of them.
12. Watch a Film at the Rooftop Cinema
Melbourne Rooftop Bar is a prevalent location during the summer evenings. Rooftop Bar operates a Rooftop Cinema where you can watch old and new films almost every evening.
The atmosphere is very relaxed as you just need to buy your film ticket, grab a deck chair, order any snacks or drinks, and enjoy a calm evening with a good film. It sounds like a perfect place to fit in the things to do in Melbourne Saturday night list, doesn’t it?
We recommend trying their house burgers and popcorns, and, of course, delicious cocktails.
It is a perfect place to relax after a tiring day. If you are travelling with your partner, the Rooftop Cinema sets an excellent atmosphere for a romantic date!
13. Have a Ride in Melbourne Star Wheel
Melbourne Star is one of the most popular Melbourne attractions at night. It is a famous giant observation wheel that is well-known for being a great way to enjoy Melbourne from a different perspective.
The Ferris wheel stands tall at 120 meters and is one of four the world’s giant observation wheels in the world and the only one in the Southern Hemisphere.
It is open during the daytime and nighttime, allowing you to enjoy 360 degrees view of Melbourne. Twenty-one spacious cabins are comfortable all year round.
If you don't have much time in Melbourne, but want to see lots of things, take a flight on the Melbourne Star and listen to the in-cabin commentary that will introduce you to every important building of Melbourne, its history and the surrounding areas that you can see from the wheel.
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