9 THINGS TO DO IN MELBOURNE
Melbourne keeps visitors pouring in
with its array of kid-friendly cultural activities and
events. Gemma Shipley shares some 2017 highlights.
1. Become a Pirate for the day!
Climb aboard the tall ship Polly Woodside and
be a real pirate for a day. On the first Sunday of
every month, kids can unleash their inner
marauder and discover what life could be like
sailing on the high seas. Your little buccaneers
can head on their very own pirate treasure
hunt, scrub the deck, ring the bell and engage
in interactive pirate-themed games and crafts.
The Polly Woodside also offers other visitor
activities including a fascinating history
museum and picnic area.
2. Learn Important Computer Skills
If you already envy your child’s computer skills
then be prepared to become a little more
jealous, with CoderDojo for kids and teens
aged seven to 17. The volunteer-run centre
allows young people to understand computer
programming and coding in a way specifically
catering for their interests, and entry is free!
CoderDojo provides a fun and interactive
learning experience for tech-savvy kids and
teens, giving them a creative introduction into a
field with endless opportunities. CoderDojo
has multiple locations around Melbourne and
all kids need to bring is a laptop.
3. Find your Inner Drama Queen/King
Got a budding rock star or magician in the
house? Arts Centre Melbourne provides
drama workshops for kids of all ages, and is a
great starting point for them to learn about and
participate in the arts. Courses throughout
2017 include ‘Now Hear This’, a fun programme
where they can create live sound effects with
everyday objects. ‘The Magic Workshop’ is
designed for those children with a conjurer’s
touch. Another popular workshop will teach
them how to become the next greatest rock
star. The creative course teaches kids how to
create and make digital music and even
produce and star in their very own music video.
The workshops run until May, giving kids plenty
of time to try out each one.
4. Be A Part Of The LEGO Squad
Enthusiasts of the beloved bricks can gather
together every Thursday and be a part of the
LEGO Squad run by East Melbourne Library.
Challenges are set up at the start of each
month for builders of all ages and skills. Kids
can make stop-motion films, puzzles and
incorporate other types of craft to show off their
best ideas and LEGO creations. The LEGO
Squad is one of many events run across
Melbourne’s libraries, including coding
courses, toddler story time and songbirds.
5. Explore Sea Life
SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium is a perfect
way to spend a rainy day, and now with the
extra bonus of a screening of ‘Ice Age: No
Time For Nuts’, kids can feel like they’re a
part of the Ice Age! The giant 3D screen is
combined with extra effects for an exciting
4D experience, a perfect end to a day spent
at the aquarium next to the Yarra River. The
aquarium also offers a range of ocean
experiences for kids, including Penguin
Passport, Aquarist Programmes (both for
teens) and Ocean Rangers for younger kids.
6. Take Part in the CBD Treasure Hunt
Combining urban life and treasure hunting,
Cityseekers adventures are designed for small
groups of children to actively teach them about
engaging with the city. Volunteer leaders teach
little hunters to read maps and catch public
transport safely, while clues challenge their
minds and allow an appreciation of the cultural
and historical areas of the city. The hunt takes
place around the arts precinct of the CBD,
starting in Federation Square on the last
Saturday of every month.
7. Experience The Latest Gaming Equipment
Get the family together or invite a couple of
friends to the VR Plus Studio to experience
the latest in gaming technology. VR allows
up to four people to play games together in
whatever virtual world you choose! The HTC
Vive gear allows for room-scale technology
that is capable of fooling you into believing
that you are somewhere else!
8. Explore 3D Art
ArtVo is the first immersive gallery in
Australia, allowing visitors to become a part
of the 3D art. The kids are encouraged to
touch and interact with artwork, breathing
new life into their gallery experience. The
venue features 11 areas with over 100 giant
floor-to-ceiling artworks to explore.
9. Spend A Day in St Kilda
The seaside suburb of St Kilda has so much to
offer families, from historic Luna Park to visiting
the local penguin colony found on St Kilda Pier.
Take a stroll down Acland Street, home to
many continental cake shops that will delight
tiny taste buds. Nearby Alma Park hosts the
Hank Marvin food market on Saturdays for
families looking to spend their day tasting
delicious street foods and tempting treats.
Where To Stay
Oaks Hotels & Resorts
Bed down after your day of fun in one of
the Oaks Hotels & Resorts' properties
dotted throughout the CBD. The serviced
apartment accommodation makes it easy
to experience the city at your own pace.
Select properties also offer a babysitting
service, should parents wish to enjoy
dinner a deux. Choose from urban
sanctuaries along Collins, Lonsdale,
Market and William Street, or in leafy
South Yarra or in the growing
entertainment hub of Southbank.
Just down the road from Flagstaff
Gardens Playground and Queen Victoria
Market, Pegasus Apart'Hotel offers
long-stay apartments for families
planning to see every Melbourne
attraction. Stay in one of the two-bedroom
family suites - the kids will
just love the themed bedrooms!
This article appeared in volume 51 of Holidays with Kids magazine. To subscribe to the latest issue, click here.