Melbourne is consistently ranked one of the best cities in the world. It is the capital of the Australian state, Victoria, and the second-largest city in the entire country. Given its size, importance, and coastal location, it’s no surprise that the city has become a popular travel destination for people all over the world. Specifically, Melbourne is known for its culture and activities at night. From top-notch bars and restaurants to incredible street art, you’ll never be bored in this Australian city in the evening. Check out the 16 best things to do in Melbourne at night.

1. IceBar Melbourne

Spend your evening at the coolest bar in Australia – literally! IceBar Melbourne; Australia’s only sub-zero bar, keeps things fun and freezing with a constant temperature of -10 degrees Celsius. Upon arrival, you’ll be given comfortable outdoor gear to prepare you for the cold climate in the bar. Once inside, you can expect an arctic experience suitable for people of all ages. In total, over 30 tonnes of ice were used in the bar.

  • Duration: 1-2 hours
  • Address: The Atrium Federation Square, Melbourne.
  • Inclusions: Entry into the icebar, one cocktail or non alcoholic drink, use of hooded cape, gloves, and boots.

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2. Melbourne Horse-Drawn Carriage Tour

See Melbourne at night on this unique horse-drawn carriage tour around the city. Classic Carriage Hire has professional drivers dressed in period attire to add to the experience. There are 4 different tours to choose from including Garden Highlights, Extended Garden Tour, Premium Garden & City Tour, and Deluxe Romantic Tour. You can expect to pass sites such as the Victorian Arts Centre, Walker Fountain, King Domain Gardens, and the Melbourne Observatory. Carriages operate in all weather conditions and blankets are provided on cold days.  Bookings are available up to 9pm so you can pick the perfect time slot to see Melbourne light up at night!

  • Duration: 30 – 60 minutes
  • Departure Point: Federation Square/Swanston St, Melbourne VIC
  • Inclusions: All taxes, transport by private vehicle.

Official site

3. Spirit of Melbourne Dinner Cruise

What could be better than an evening cruise down the Yarra River? This dinner cruise will have you hopping aboard the Spirit of Melbourne vessel. Gaze at the city’s illuminated skyline from the river, which offers one of the best views of Melbourne. Sip on beer or wine on the upper deck and indulge in a 4-course meal. All meals are prepared by expert chefs on board and paired with Australian wines. As you float along the river, keep your eyes peeled for the Royal Botanic Gardens and Federation Square.

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure Time: 7:30 pm
  • Departure Point: Southbank Promenade, Southbank VIC
  • Inclusions: Dinner, beer, wine, soft drinks

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4. Burlesque Showboat Cruise

Spend an unforgettable night on a burlesque showboat cruise. This cruise tour is one of Melbourne’s longest-running burlesque events. The city’s top burlesque dancers will be performing. In addition to the live burlesque show that takes place on board, canapes and cocktails will be served. The burlesque show will be presented on the upper deck while the main deck features cocktails and DJ music.

  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Departure Point: Central Pier, Docklands
  • Inclusions: Canapes, live show, dinner, beer, wine, soft drinks

Official site

5. Yarra River Sunset Kayak Tour

You’re never far from nature in Australia – especially in the city of Melbourne. Take advantage of the city’s scenic coastal location by going kayaking on the Yarra River. And there is no better time to kayak than at sunset. This 2.5 tour will have you paddling by some of the city’s top attractions. And before getting into your kayak, you’ll be treated to an on-the-water fish and chips dinner in Victoria Harbour. All tours conveniently end next to the Princes Bridge in the city centre.

  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • Departure Point: The wharf behind the Community Hub at The Dock
  • Inclusions: Bottled water, dinner, use of all equipment, fish and chips, experienced guide

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6. Melbourne Observatory

Spend an evening stargazing at Melbourne’s very own observatory. The observatory was built in the 1860s as the centre of the city’s weather forecasting. Although initially just a research institution, it is now open to the public. It is located in the Royal Botanic Gardens. The observatory allows locals and visitors alike to learn more about space and the stars. There are even giant telescopes on site for the public to use.

  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Departure Point: Kiosk, 100 Birdwood Ave, Melbourne VIC
  • Inclusions: Parking fees

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7. Hidden Bar & Cocktail Walking Tour

Wander off the beaten path on this beer and cocktail walking tour. Melbourne is known for its vibrant nightlife scene, which is why visiting a bar while in the city is a must. This tour takes you to 10-15 bars over the course of 3.5 hours. It is the most comprehensive beer and cocktail tour in Melbourne. Discover the city’s unparalleled hidden bar culture and be treated to two delicious complimentary cocktails along the way. The tour can even be customised to your preferences.

  • Duration: 3 hours 30 minutes
  • Departure Time: 7:00 pm
  • Departure Point: Bourke Street Mall
  • Inclusions: Local guide, two cocktails

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8. Melbourne Dumpling Experience

The culinary vibe in Melbourne is as diverse as its residents. Asian food is extremely popular in the city, so if you love dumplings, you’ve come to the right place! Melbourne has tours for all kinds of foodies. When it comes to dumplings, there is a walking tour of the city that takes you to all the best dumpling restaurants. Or there is a dumpling-making party where you’ll learn how to make the delicacy from scratch with the help of a local instructor. Whatever you choose, you can bet the results will be delicious!

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure Time: 6:00 pm
  • Departure Point: 28-32 Elizabeth St, Melbourne VIC 
  • Inclusions: Local guide/instructor, dumpling dinner, tea and water

Walking Tour Dumpling Making Party

9. Melbourne Ghost Tours

Melbourne has a long, spooky history. Australia was once where the British Empire sent its prisoners so it’s no surprise that some people believe the city is haunted. If you’re into all things supernatural, then a ghost tour is a must while visiting the Victoria capital. There are all kinds of walking tours, including ones that specifically focus on ghosts and vampires. Each tour will take you to some of Melbourne’s most haunted sites, including Old Melbourne, Pentridge Prison, and Williamstown. Expect to hear legendary ghost stories that will give you a whole new perspective on the city. Also read 9 Scariest Ghost Tours in Melbourne.

  • Local guide
  • All taxes
  • Dinner

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10. Night Photography Sessions

Melbourne is one of the artsiest cities in Australia, which means you can bet it has a booming photography scene. This night photography tour puts you behind the camera. You’ll learn how to use your best digital camera in manual modes and master composition. Meanwhile, a local professional photographer will be guiding you around the city, taking you to the best photo locations in Melbourne. This tour provides a unique opportunity to learn a new skill while travelling and get some amazing photos out of it! Whether you’re totally new to the world of photography or already an amateur photographer, this is a great way to spend an evening in Melbourne.

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Departure Time: 5:30 pm
  • Inclusions: Photography guide, course notes, photography advice

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11. Melbourne’s Moonlit Sanctuary

A night at the zoo? Yes, please! At Melbourne’s Moonlit Sanctuary, you can experience nocturnal wildlife like never before. Watch nocturnal animals awake from their slumber at this special conservation area. Evening tours of the sanctuary allow you to see owls, feathertail and squirrel gliders, quolls, pademelons, and bettongs. In addition to taking photos of them, you can even hold or pet some of the adorable nighttime creatures. There are also kangaroos and wallabies on site that can be hand-fed.

  • Duration: 4 hours
  • Departure Times: 5:30 pm or 7:00 pm depending on time of year
  • Departure Point: Melbourne Tour Coach Centre
  • Inclusions: Drive/guide, city pick up and drop off, entry fees, transportation, animal food for feeding

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12. Melbourne Skydeck

The best way to experience the Melbourne skyline is from 88 storeys above the city! The Melbourne Skydeck offers 360-degree views of Melbourne. Located on the 88th floor, this stunning observation deck is not for those afraid of heights! From the Skydeck, you can spot Port Phillip Bay and the Dandenong Ranges. Before you go, be sure to wander out onto ‘The Edge,’ an all-glass section that even has a glass floor. This is a great spot to pose for pics and see the city illuminated beneath you.

  • Duration: 1 hour
  • Departure Point: 7 Riverside Quay. South Bank, Melbourne
  • Inclusions: Express elevator, entry fees, use of viewfinders and binoculars

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13. Graffiti in Hosier Lane

Melbourne is famous for its street art. Much of the city’s best and brightest graffiti can be found on Hosier Lane. This “hidden” laneway that was once forgotten about now attracts visitors and locals alike. It is now essentially an outdoor art gallery, with new street art being added regularly. There is also a series of light boxes that exhibit the work of up-and-coming contemporary artists. Many walking tours of Melbourne will take you to this vibrant spot so you can see the art for yourself.

  • Professional guide
  • All taxes
  • Transportation

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14. Melbourne’s Chinatown

A walk through Melbourne’s Chinatown will make you feel like you’ve been transported to Shanghai. Right in Melbourne’s CBD is where Chinatown is located, beginning on the corner of Swanston Street. Fun fact: Did you know that Melbourne’s Chinatown is the second oldest in the world after San Francisco? It was established in 1851 and quickly grew to become a thriving centre of Melbourne’s Chinese community. Therefore, this historic part of the city is a must-see for all travellers. While walking through the neighbourhood, you can expect to find a mix of colourful shops and restaurants serving everything from dumplings to Sichuan cuisine.

  • Local guide
  • All taxes
  • Entry fees
  • Transportation

Check Tours Official Site

15. Magic Show

Experience an unforgettable night filled with magic and illusion! Impossible Occurrences is Melbourne’s very own 75-minute magic show. Held at the Marriott Hotel, the show provides a fun night out for family and friends. You can expect non-stop entertainment from one of the country’s premier magicians, Luke Hocking. Hocking is known for his magic tricks, as well as his mind reading. Alternatively, if you prefer a few laughs while seeing magic, Sam Angelico’s show – Illusionaire, might be the better option. With the help of his assistant, he’ll make you laugh all night and showcase his creative talents. You’ll love this interactive magic show!

Tour details

  • Duration: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Departure Times: 7:30 pm or 9:30 pm
  • Departure Point: Marriott Hotel
  • Inclusions: 80-minute magic show, entry fee, general admission seating

Impossible Occurrences

As one of Australia’s biggest cities, Melbourne is crawling with fun activities. And the fun in Melbourne doesn’t stop when the sun sets! In fact, there is just as much to do in the evening as there is during the day, maybe more! From cruising down the Yarra River to taking a ride on the observation wheel, we hope this list has helped you plan your upcoming trip!

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For all new cities, I go overboard on my itinerary, just to see every major attraction. Countries I've visited include New Zealand, Singapore, Hong Kong, China, Cambodia, Japan and Thailand. Mostly Asian countries. Next target - Europe!