In Focus

What to do in Melbourne this summer

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Teleisha Thomas

Teleisha Thomas

December 2023

January is an unusual time to be in Melbourne. There is a dry heat in the air and a lack of cars on the road, the streets are bare, and the shops are empty. And yet, for some people, these very reasons are why Melbourne can be the best place to be at this time of year. When the crowds move down to the Mornington or Bellarine Peninsulas, Melbourne is left delightfully empty.

Found yourself one of the people in Melbourne during the height of summer? Read our guide on all the best bars, restaurants and things to do in our city over summer.

Juniper laurangelia



A small café in South Melbourne doing big things. Juniper is the sister venue for Carlton North’s Florian, and it has become a much-loved favourite by locals thanks to its delightful menu and community feel.

Julie Samantha Schultz 2


Julie is a recently opened dining destination in Abbotsford Convent. The romantic restaurant allows diners to enjoy the heritage dining room, or, if the weather is right, the outdoor seats positioned against the idyllic backdrop of the convent and its well-maintained grounds.

Mietta by Rosemary

Mietta is a sweet dessert pop-up shop opening in Malvern in December and featuring trifles, tarts, cheesecake, sponge cakes and more. The pop-up will be open for 6 months, after which the owner is looking to open a bigger location with dine-in space, more products, and an expanded team.


Images via The LUME Melbourne


Connection at THE LUME

A digital experience at one of Melbourne’s newest art galleries in Southbank showcases a breathtaking collection of First Nations art, music and culture. The experience features nearly 650 artworks from over 110 visual and musical artists, representing the largest collection of First Nations art ever assembled. Developed with the National Museum of Australia and curatorial experts, Connection fuses the world’s oldest culture with the most cutting-edge technology.

Northcote Aquatic & Recreation Centre

The new neighbourhood hub (with a six-star Green Star rating), featuring an indoor pool, outdoor pool, water slides, sauna, and fitness and wellness facilities has reopened, after an extensive 18-month redevelopment, just in time for summer. The new centre was designed by Warren & Mahoney Architects Australia and promises to be the place to be over the holiday season.

Artwork by Lucy Bull

NGV Triennial

NGV Triennial 2023 is a powerful snapshot of the world today as captured through the work of 100 artists, designers, and collectives. The Triennial brings together more than 75 projects that invite us to reflect on the world as it is, as well as where we would like it to be. The key thematic pillars of Magic, Matter, and Memory for this year’s Triennial indicate it will be one of the most memorable exhibitions yet.

Artwork by Lucy Bull



Pincho Disco

Recently opened in Collingwood is Latin American bar and restaurant, Pincho Disco. Split across two levels, the new space is a choose-your-own-adventure dining experience with the colour-soaked interior designed by Melbourne interior architecture firm, Studio Tate. The menu highlights bar snacks and plenty of Latin American flavours.



Coburg welcomed new wine bar and community hub, Gemini, earlier this year. Gemini is an elegant yet versatile space that invites locals and wine lovers to stop by and settle in for an array of shared European-leaning snacks and wines.


For a comprehensive list of walks in Melbourne and surrounds, read our guide here.


Out of town

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Heading out of town for the day or a weekend? Read our guide on what to do in the regional neighbourhoods here.

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