10 things to do in Melbourne over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend

Living Well | Tianna Nadalin | Posted on 10 June 2021

How to make the most of the Queen’s Birthday public holiday.

With lockdown restrictions easing just in time for the Queen's Birthday long weekend, Victorians will be looking forward to making the most of their new-found freedoms. Eating out, driving 25km for breakfast just because we can and catching up with friends for a friendly park hang or winter hike is just what the doctor prescribed. So, even though many of us can't enjoy a weekend away in the regions, it doesn't mean we can't make the most of the 14 June public holiday. Here's our guide to what to do in Melbourne over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend.

Penguin hiding in rocks at St Kilda beach

See the Little Penguins at St Kilda. Photo: Getty.

10 things to do over the long weekend in Melbourne

See the penguins at St Kilda

If your plans to check out the Phillip Island penguin parade have been thwarted, never fear. You don't need to leave Melbourne to get up close and personal with the flightless furry sea birds. The St Kilda Breakwater is home to a colony of Little Penguins and you can catch their nightly waddle from the promenade just before dusk. There is a viewing platform at the head of St Kilda Pier, however, it can get very busy so remember to have a mask handy and be careful to maintain a safe social distance at all times. 

Get on your bike

Forget the Grampians and the You Yangs. Melburnians will be looking a little closer to home for their dose of bush bashing, bike riding or nature bathing this long weekend. Thankfully, when it comes to quiet walking tracks and local bike trails, Melbourne's suburbs are littered with lush treks to suit even the most avid ambler or cyclist. So grab your raincoat, pull on you walking shoes or pump up your tyres. These are six of Melbourne's best secret suburban walks. Or explore the city on two wheels with our guide to Melbourne's best bike tracks.

Dine in at your favourite local bars and eateries

It's been a couple of weeks since hospitality-starved Melburnians have been able to sit down for a pub meal or cafe brunch. Well, that all changes this weekend. If you're itching to feast on food that has been lovingly cooked by someone other than yourself, or just looking forward to sipping your barista-made espresso from a ceramic cup, celebrating the end of lockdown is the ideal excuse to get out and support your favourite local haunts. 

Take a virtual cooking or cocktail class

Not ready to brave dining out just yet? Treat your tastebuds to a restaurant-quality meal without the fuss of having to change out of your trackie dacks. Unleash your inner chef by signing up for an Atlas Masterclass,  or join Cameron Parish and Lachlan Bentley from the city's swankiest new restaurant and bar, Gimlet at Cavendish House, for an intimate cocktail class.

Pamper yourself

The wintry weather has well and truly set in, which means it's never been more enticing to keep warm, dry and cosy in the comfort of your own home. Cue up some Bluey on ABC iview or Cobra Kai on Netflix and plonk the kids in front of the TV while you soak up some serenity. Relax in a hot tub with a good book and some homemade bath salts, get your glow on with a full body scrub, brightening face mask and your favourite body butter, read the newspaper in peace or set up your own at-home zen zone. What better way to kick off your long weekend than with a few hours of much-deserved self-indulgence. 

Visit the pop-up Winter Village at Federation Square

Melburnians might not be able to hit the slopes this weekend but that doesn't mean we can't experience the magic of the snow. Until August 29, the car park at Federation Square has been transformed into a whimsical winter wonderland. Warm up over hot chocolates with toasted marshallows from the comfort of your own private igloo, or head to the pop-up kitchen for a giant pretzel and a hot toddy. There are also snow showers daily (12pm, 3pm, 6pm and 9pm). Visit thewintervillage.com.au.

Hot chocolate with toasted marshmallows

Warm up with a decadent hot choccy at Federation Square's pop-up Winter Village. Photo: Facebook.

Practice your short game

Don't live within 25km of your favourite golf course? If you have a hallway, you have a driving range so why not get into the swing at home. Place a cup at the end of the corridor then grab your putter, get dressed in your finest fairway attire and start working on your short game. For a real hole-in-one experience, head to your local hardware store and pick up some fake turf to really round out the indoor experience.

Head to the drive-in

Feel like you've streamed every movie on Netflix or Stan? If you're not ready to head to the cinema but you're still craving some big screen action, make a night of it at the drive-in. You'll get to catch the latest blockbusters without having to leave the comfort of your car, plus you can BYO blankets, popcorn and chocolate for an authentic cinema experience. Drive-ins are located at Coburg, Dandenong and Dromana so make sure they're within your permitted 25km bubble before booking. 

Take an online art class

Have a blank space at home that is in need of a statement art piece? Why not paint one yourself. Get creative over the long weekend and learn how to create beautiful artworks from your favourite abstract artists. This is Artify is an online platform delivering step-by-step art classes in which you'll learn how to unleash your inner artist. From the tools you'll need to get started to composition and palette selection, you'll be colouring yourself happy in no time. 

Go ride a wave at URBNSURF

Whether you're a beginner board rider or avid surfer, there's nothing like the thrill of scoring the perfect wave. But if you're not lucky enough to live near a surf beach (or not brave enough to paddle out in this weather), you can still catch a break from the safety of a controlled environment at URBNSURF, Australia's first surf park. The Tullamarine surf spot also boasts Three Blue Ducks cafe so you can kick back with a coffee and a scrumptious meal while still providing moral support for your wetsuit-clad kids.