Disclosure: There's a good chance this post contains affiliate links. Purchasing through my blog helps me stay on the road! So, thank you!(Last Updated On: November 28, 2018)
Having just moved here as a music lover, I have been pretty overwhelmed looking at how much there is going on over the Melbourne summer. I’ve had my eyes on quite a few Aussie festivals over the years, but after moving to Victoria I’ve been hoping to hone in on the awesome events going on in this state (I would be in way too deep if I tried to make it to festivals all over the country!) After making my own little list of events I’ve seen here and there, I wanted to share it with all of you fellow music lovers so you can have some insight into what kinds of things are going on here that you’ll love too.
Being a house music and transformational festival fan, I have had the tendency to lean toward events that have a focus on house + techno, probably more mindful events like yoga and different workshops, and definitely a good focus on art. All of the complete festivals I’ve included will fit this bill, whereas most of the one-day events (of which there are also a surprising amount) do as well.
The festivals I have my eyes on are unique. A lot of these are during the day, and they all have a focus on good food, art, performances and/or activities, and obviously awesome music. One thing you will notice is that these all incorporate more than just a club-night music show… if you want to find club nights, you can easily check online.
When making my summer festival schedule, I thought it would be a good idea not to have more than one full 3-4 day festival a month (due to trying to maintain wellbeing, work, sleep, money, and all that
boring slightly important stuff :P) but fill in the schedule with a surprising amount of incredible 1-day events/doofs in the Melbourne area with awesome lineups and unique aspects in and of themselves.
So, if you’re a Melbourne doofer, house + techno lover, or transformational festie fanatic, I’ve done the research for you and all you have to do is plan your schedule and most likely save up just a a liiiiiittle bit of money.
Nov 2 Weekend
Chi Wow Wah Town: Nov 2-4
Where: “Out Friends Farm” near Melbourne
Lineup: Steve Bug, Andreas Henneberg, Bondi, Saand, Moontide, Doppel, Jamie Stevens, Sacred Summit many more
Time: 12pm Friday – 12pm Monday
Price: $180- $240
Notes: This is a 3 days camping, art, and house + techno gathering on a farm.
Nov 10th Weekend
Lake People Gathering: Nov 10
Where: Riva St Kilda
Lineup: Lee Burridge, Saand, Oona Dahl, Bondi
Price: $60-$80 on the Door
Notes: The All Day I Dream Crew comes to an awesome venue in Aus for a night of incredible melodic house music and interesting performers! Be there.
Nov 15 Weekend
Strawberry Fields: Nov 15-18
Where: Bank of the Murray River, Tocumwal, NSW (Just over the border from Victoria)
Lineup: Andhim, Blond:ish, CC:Disco!, Heidi, Honey Dijon, Hiatus Coyote, Max Gref, Oona Dahl, Sasha, Willow, Township Rebellion
Time: 12pm Friday – Monday
Price: $280 – $340
Notes: Strawberry Fields is one of Australia’s premiere transformational festivals/doofs and has the lineup, activities, art, and production to show it. If there’s one festival you make it to out here, make it ‘Strawbs’ as it’;s affectionately called by those who attend. It’s on the banks of the Murray river, and you can compliment your dancing and art0admiring with swims in the river.
Nov 24 Weekend
Grapevine Gathering : Nov 24
Where: Rochford Wines, Yarra Valley
Lineup: The Wombats, The Jungle Giants, Tkay Maizda, Lovebirds, Dom Dolla, MK, Miami Horror
Time: 1pm – 10pm
Price: $86 – $117
Notes: Victoria’s music and wine pairing festival… what could be better?! Head out to an actual winery in the Yarra Valley to see an incredible mix of TripleJ-esque music and some nice boiuncy + melodic house. This is an event not to miss this season!
Piknic Electronik #1: Nov 25 (+ Every Sunday Till Feb 24)
Where: Sidney Mywe Music Bowl Southside
Lineup: Mall Grab, Nite Leite, Lodos, Pelvis (week 1) Plus many other artists each week
Price: $20 – $35 / Season Pass $165
Notes: Piknic Electronik is an awesome event that takes place right on the banks of the Yarra River near the Botanical Gardens, twice a month on Sunday. Each week they have an awesome lineup with a backdrop of the city to spend a sunny Sunday with awesome electronic music.
Hatch Laneway Fiesta: Nov 25
Where: Apparently, a Secret Location in Melbs
Lineup: Lonely C from Soul Clap, Minilogue/Son Kite (Marcus), Edd Fisher (Wax’o Paradiso), SQL + Child, Muska
Price: $28 – $46
Notes: Hatch is a psychedelic Melbourne Events company running events in Bali and Melbs. Should always be a good vibe.
Dec 2 Weekend
LUFT: Dec 2
Where: Central Pier, Docklands
Lineup: Andhim, Alex Stein, Victor Ruiz, Solee, Boogs, Amuze, Leigh Boy, many more
Time: 2pm- 10pm
Price: $63 – $105
Notes: LUFT is a first year house and techno event held in a diverse venue with both inside and outside elements, right on the water in docklands. Along with great sounds, they also focus on art and delicious culinary experiences as well.
December 8th Weekend
Meredith Music Festival: Dec 7-9
Where: Meredith Supernatural Amphitheater (1.5hrs from CBD)
Lineup: Sampa the Great, the Presets, Dj Jnett, Clypso, Genesis Owusu, Billy Bragg, The Breeders, City of Ballarat Municipal Brass Band
Time: Dec 7-9
Notes: A bit more of an alternative/rock/basically everything possible festival, Meredith is known for being a little but of everything with a lot going on. It’s one of the most well-known festivals in Australia with an unfathomable amount of art, talent, performers, activities, and silliness. Oh, and did I mention it’s in its 28th year?! Yep.
It’s sold out for this year, so you’ll have to pull some strings for a ticket!
The Pleasure Garden: Dec 8
Where: Catani Gardens, St Kilda
Lineup: The Temper Trap, Zavier Rudd, Sampa the Great, Spoonbill, Stickybuds, Nora En Pure, A.Skillz, Jamie Stevens, Alex Stein
Price: $71 – $105
Notes: In a sunny field on the water in St Kilda you’ll find the awesome Pleasure Garden Festival. Along with a multi – genre lineup there will be handcrafted cockatils, awesome art installations and activities, and delicious food. There’s even yoga and workshops in the morning! Check, check, and check…. see ya there.
Smalltown: Dec 9
Where: Catani Gardens St Kilda
Lineup: Steven Bodzin, Marcel Dettman, Dense & Pika, Made in Paris
Time: 1pm – 9pm
Price: $65 – $97
Notes: Novel has come out with their very first edition of Smalltown for this year, with a massive international lineup – as would be expected by big shots like them. This daytime shindig will take place in the grassy fields of Catani Gardens on the shores of St Kilda – a perfect setting for some incredible daytime house + techno.
December 15 Weekend
Petting Zoo Festival: Dec 15
Where: Yarra Park, East Melbourne
Lineup: Denis Cruz, Latmun, Miguel Campbell, Max Chapman, Friend Within, Raffa FL, Dousk, Angelo Ferreri
Time: 12pm – 11pm
Price: $64.31 – $123.28
Notes: The Petting Zoo is where all the wild animals go to play on this (hopefully) sunny December afternoon in the park! Get your techno pants on and get ready for a nice of awesome music, rover artists, performers, and magicians, installations, and of course amazing food and drink.
December 22 Weekend
Elrow Melbourne: Dec 22
Where: Melbourne Showgrounds, Ascot Vale
Lineup: John Digweed, Kevin Knapp,
Time: 1pm –
Price: $93 – $114
Notes: The world famous ELROW comes to Melbourne just before Christmas this year. If you don’t know what elrow is…. I’m tempted to convince you to buy a ticket without telling you what it is and have your mind TOTALLY BLOWN when you arrive. But really, Elrow is unlike any party on this earth. If you take wierdness and square it a million times, throw in costumed characters and stilt walkers acting and playing within the crowd, add a sh*tload fo confetti/streamers and busloads of inflatable pool toys in wierd shapes… you get elrow. Just go, that’s all I can say.
Day Doof: Dec 23
Where: Greenfields Albert Park
Lineup: Sebastian Leger, Davi, Khen
Time: 2pm – 11pm
Price: $40 – $50
Notes: After orignally being held iunsude a venue, this year Day Doof will be in a beautiful aprk overlooking Albert Lake. Expect performers, installations, activations, yoga + lifestyle, and food trucks alongside your incredible melodic house/techno lineup. Like honestly, these three dj’s together is dream… I hope I’m in town.
New Years Weekend/Day
Beyond the Valley Dec 28 – Jan 1
Where: Lardner Park, Victoria
Lineup: The Kooks, Fisher, Tash Sultana, Duke Dumont, Pnau, Yotto, Boo Seeka, Sonny Fodera, Peggy Gou, Safia, Vera Blue, Boogs, Foals, CAssian, Richy Ahmed, Mall Grab
Time: Thurs 28 Dec – Leave Jan 1st
Price: About $465
Notes: Beyond the Valley is an absolutely stacked festival taking place over New Years in Victoria. The lineup is unbeatable, and its shaping up to be an epic weekend with lots of different camping options, workshops, yoga, colorful art all over the place, and an equally stacked lineup of food and drinks. If there’s an easy pick for New Years… it’s this. And hey, iif you’re a bit crazy, you can still make it to some NYD events afterwards! 😛
Falls Festival Lorne: Dec 28 Dec – 31 Jan
Lineup: Anderson.Paak, Catfish + the Bottlemen, Vance Joy, Chvrches, Dizzee Rascal, Toto, Flight Facilities, Golden Features, Tkay Maizda
Price: $350+ For 4-day
Notes: Falls is a classic traveling festival that takes place in most Aussie states on/around New Years.
Let Them Eat Cake: Jan 1
Where: Werribee Park Mansion Grounds
Lineup: Ama Lou, CC; Disco!, Opiou, Peggy Gou, DJ Tennis, Moxie, Flava D, Nightmares on Wax
Time: 11am – 10:30pm
Price: $130 – $160
Notes: Let Them Eat Cake is the quintessential and trendy Melbourne New Year’s Day event – anyone who is anyone should be there. Taking place in a beautiful park outside the Werribee mansion, the venue will set it up to be another incredible year of house music and good times to start out the new year. If I’m still alive after my New Years festival, I’ll be there 😛
Jan 19 Weekend
Electric Gardens: Jan 18 (Friday)
Where: Shed 14, Docklands
Lineup: Erick Morillo, Eats Everything, Set Mo, Bag Raiders, Underworld
Time: 6pm -1am
Price: $85- $128
Notes: Electric Gardens comes for another edition this year just outside the CBD inside a shed in Docklands… perfect for the deep warehouse vibes that will be going on inside it. This begins in the daytime and continues into night, with special VIP experiences available.
Jan 25 Weekend
Rainbow Serpent Festival: Jan 25 -28
Where: Lexton, Victoria
Lineup: Altruism, Christopher Lawrence,Pollyfonkia, Clozee, Oliver Koletzki, G.M.S., Nanoplex, Patrick Topping, Way Out West, The Funk Hunters, Super Flu
Time:Jan 25th morning to 28th Afternoon
Price: $330 – $400
Notes: The quintessential Australian bush doof, Rainbow Serpent is a haven for music, arts, and all types of creativity. There’s a little bit of everythiing at this incredible and colorful summer gathering, which is surely the one doof to attend if you had to choose. There are millions of workshops, permaculture, kids areas, cinema, ceremonies, live art, installations, performances, and more at Rainbow, as well as an absolutely killer lineup. You’ll be absolutely spoilt for choice when deciding what to do, but that’s the beauty of it!
Feb 2 Weekend
Let Go Fest: Feb 2
Where: Mornington Racecourse
Lineup: Gang of Youths, Safia, Boogs, Allday, Bag Raiders, Remi
Time: 12pm – 9pm
Price: $80 – $175
Notes: Let Go Fest has just released their 2019 lineup, and it looks like it’s going to be a great one. Located on the sunny fields of the Mornington Racecourse, there will be great beats, good food, and an epic time.
Feb 9 Weekend
Laneway: Feb 9
Where: Footscray Park + Gardens
Lineup: Gang of Youths, Courtney Barnett, Mansionair, Cosmo’s Midnight, What So Not, Crooked Colours, Masego, Skeggs, Rex Orange County
Time: 11:30am- 10:30pm
Notes: Laneway is another popular Aussie summer festival, this one a one-dayer that travels through different main cities with a similar lineup. You’ll find Aussie-loved acts from quite a few different genres along with some great food and drink.
St Kilda Festival Feb 10
Where: St Kilda Foreshore
Lineup: announced January – local talent
Time: 10am – 10pm
Price: FREE.99 BABY!
Notes: St Kilda Festival is a classic celebration of summer on the beach in St Kilda. It’s totally free and a perfect summer activity!
Feb 16 Weekend
Babylon Festival: 14-17 Feb
Where: Carapooee West, Central Victoria
Lineup: Amelia Lens, Damian Lazarus, Behrouz, Stimming, Solardo, Bliss, Butch, Undercat, Woo York, Guy J, Electric Universe
Time: Thursday Eve- Monday Morning
Price: $260 – $330
Notes: Babylon is another incredible music, arts, and culture festival taking place deep in the Victorian bush. The top lineup is only a small part of this festival, however. Babylon also lends a great focus to all different forms of art and performance, psychedelic stage design, workshops and installations, and more.
For the Love 16 Feb
Where: Riva St Kilda
Lineup: Rufus Du Sol, Motez, KLLO
Time: 2pm – 10pm
Price: $90 – $130
Notes: For the Love is a festival that taken place at scenic venues in three different beachside countries, and boasts a great vibe and fun lineup.
Smalltown 2: Feb 16
Where: Caufield Racecourse
Time: 2pm – 10pm
Price: $40 – $80
Notes: Smalltown comes back for another amazing event after its incredible December edition. These events are put 0n by Novel – who put on Pitch Music + Arts, Let them Eat Cake, and Days Like This – and they’ve yet to put on a bad show.
Pitch Music + Arts: March 8-11
Where: Moyston, Victoria
Lineup: Charlotte de Witte, David August, Dixon b2b Ame, 16 Bit Lolitas, Daniel Avery, Disky, Four Tet, Horse Meat Disco, Monolink, Perc, Retiree, Job Jobse, Oliver Huntemann, Recondite, Tourist
Time: 12pm March 8 – March 12 morning exit
Price: $340 – $360 (4-day)
Notes: Pitch is now in its 3rd year and has quickly taken hold as one of the top transformational festivals in Australia. Pitch Music + Arts focuses on exactly that – music and arts – and large quantities of each. Pitch goes above and beyond a normal festival and elopes its festivalgoers into a wonderland full of creativity, knowledge, and relentless beats. It also has one of the best lineups out there!
Days Like This March 9
Where: Victoria Park, Melbourne
Lineup: Dusky, Dixon, CC:Disco!, Cassette, Kali, Sven Vath, Denis Sulta, David August, Kali, Tourist, Oliver Huntemann, DJ Harvey, Charlotte De Witte
Time: 12om – 10pm
Price: $130 – $150
Notes: Days Like This is put on by the same stellar company as Pitch, but more for the people who can’t quite swing a 4-day camping festival but still want to check out some of the all-star international acts it’s bringing in.
How many of these amazing events will y0u be going to? Which ones should be added? Let me know in the comments below!
Thanks so many of these events for hosting me; I can’t wait to share the magic of the Melbourne scene with the world!