Buttery midday sun, warm evening breezes, ice cream dripping onto sunlit cobblestones, and the waft of Christmas in the air. Summer is well on its way to Melbourne, and as the days grow longer and the nights grow milder, we think it’s time to get busy planning those much-anticipated summertime events sprinkled throughout the city.

Summer in Melbourne is a bright and shiny affair. From festive parades and activities to trussed-up shopping experiences, from New Year’s cheers to the globally renowned Australian Open Tennis, there are so many things to do in summer in Melbourne that we’re a little spoiled for choice.

Whether you’re into dining, shopping, entertainment, arts, sports, or a fabulous mixture of everything, Melbourne is the only place to be this summer. We’ve compiled a collection of must-do things in and around the city this season for you to dip your toes into.

So, if you’ve been seeking a reason to visit Melbourne this summer, look no further. Here are 7 irresistible reasons to spend some summertime fun in the best city in Australia.

The Best of Both Worlds: City Glamour Meets Natural Havens

We’ve spoken before about the delights of Melbourne’s rich variety of attractions. While the CBD is brimful with sparkling summertime fun, the city is also home to some stunning natural landmarks and locations.

This unique concoction of cityscape, beachside, and parkland offerings is part of what makes summer activities in Melbourne so perfect. You can spend a day living the high life in the heart of the city, then cool down the next day at one of the many breezy bayside locales.

Bask in the dappled sunlight that filters through the Royal Botanic Gardens, and sip a cool drink at one of the many riverside restaurants lining the Yarra River. Don’t forget to hop on a tram to the vibrant St Kilda Beach for a classic summer beach experience, before heading back into the city for a fabulous rooftop dinner in the mild evening air.

Summer Climate in Melbourne: What to Expect

Another reason to visit Melbourne in summer is the weather. While Melbourne is known for its chilly winters and rather unpredictable changes in weather at times, summer generally boasts a relaxed and consistent climate.

Temperatures in Melbourne range from 14-30°C from December to February, with hotter bouts here and there. These mild days and nights offer a much-needed reprieve from the cold months earlier in the year and set the perfect scene for al fresco dining, outdoor adventures, and sunny escapades that won’t get you overheated.

Towards the end of summer, you’ll likely experience a spike in heat (think above 30°C and a little sticky), but rest assured that the city has no shortage of indoor and outdoor activities to keep you cool.

The District Makers Market at The District Docklands

Credit: The District Docklands

Summer Shopping at The District Docklands

Just a 9-minute drive from Dorsett Melbourne, or a scenic 17-minute tram ride, you’ll stumble across one of the very best reasons to spend summer in Melbourne. The District Docklands is a mecca of shopping, dining, entertainment, and special events that will keep you occupied all summer long.

This indoor-outdoor precinct offers a fabulous mixture of all-ages fun. Immerse yourself in a world of optical illusions and captivating murals at ArtVo, Australia's pioneering 'trick art' gallery. For those seeking adventure, O'Brien Icehouse offers a chance to glide on ice, the epitome of summer activities in Melbourne.

There’s also a huge Hoyts cinema complex, where each seat boasts top-of-the-line technology and is a powered recliner (trés fancy). Alongside the latest Blockbusters, you can go ten-pin bowling, ride dodgem cars, and try your luck at arcade games at Archie Brother's Cirque Electriq.

After all that fun, you’ll likely need a little sustenance. The District offers more than 30 dining options, and its open-air laneways bring a little slice of central Melbourne charm with exquisite cuisine at every turn.

Christmas Fun at the Docklands

Alongside all the year-round fun of The District Docklands, summer presents a hive of even more excitement with festive treats and trinkets on offer. Celebrate the season in style with a string of Christmas-themed activities and events, including:

  • Christmas ice skating at O’Brien Icehouse: The rink transforms into a winter wonderland during December, allowing you to skate amongst sparkling decorations, light projections, the best festive tunes, and even share the rink with Santa himself.

  • The District Christmas Makers Market: The monthly Makers Market at The District will take on a special festive style for one special Sunday in December, with the best in Christmas gifts and goodies set to fill the stalls.

  • Tinseltown: The epitome of Christmas comes to The District thanks to Tinseltown. Running for one week only, this lively festive pop-up boasts a Christmas-themed bar with a themed cocktail menu, Santa’s elves, carols, tinsel (of course), and a whole lot of festive cheer. This one is a paid event, but tickets include a complimentary Christmas cocktail on arrival, so we think it’s well worth a visit.

Breezy and Boozy Rooftop Bars

What better way to cool off after a non-stop shopping day than with an ice-cold drink in the open air? Melbourne is home to some of the best rooftop bars and restaurants in Australia, and these havens become buzzing hotspots for locals and tourists alike when the summertime warmth kicks in.

Check out three of our favourite rooftop bars below, or check out our guide to the best eateries in Melbourne for all your delicious summer dining experiences.


You know Melbourne is famous for its laneways, but what about vertical laneways? Just a 7-minute Uber from Dorsett Melbourne, HER exudes exclusivity in every last moody corner of its skinny multi-storey spectacle.

Step off Lonsdale Street and enter Her Bar on the ground floor, a European-inspired food and cocktail haven where fine dining and exceptional service shine. Head upstairs to the Music Room, a sound-proof music bar with over 3000 vinyl records on display and the best beats spinning every night.

Upstairs again you can indulge in some of the best Thai food in Melbourne at BKK, and of course, indulge in sweeping city views at HER ROOFTOP on the top floor. Sit back with colourful cocktails and order a few bites from BKK brought up to your al fresco hot spot. Relax with chilled out sounds, just enough buzz, and a magical cityscape to welcome in the delights of Melbourne’s summer nightlife.


Take a leisurely stroll up Lonsdale Street from Dorsett Melbourne and discover Goldilocks Rooftop Bar, a cosy rooftop dining experience with an intimate atmosphere and a creative selection of cocktails and craft beers.

The Goldilocks rooftop is as much a treat for your camera roll as it is for your taste buds. The area features charming decor with painted trees, a small open-air area, and sweeping city views. Enjoy their inventive cocktails, craft beers, and Asian-inspired bites while catching up with friends. It's a must-visit for an intimate and relaxed drink experience this summer.

State of Grace

Summer activities in Melbourne don’t get much better than sipping fresh spritzy cocktails while grazing on charcuterie boards, pizzas, share plates, and moreish parmesan fries. At State of Grace, this is all served on a silver platter beneath the shimmering skies of Melbourne (and below at the secret basement bar Fall From Grace, of course).

One of our favourite rooftop spots in the city, and just a relaxed 11-minute stroll from Dorsett Melbourne, State of Grace Rooftop is the place to be this summer. Soak in sweeping views beneath twinkly lights as you feast on fresh seasonal produce and cocktails that are dangerously easy to drink.

Our top summer cocktails picks at State of Grace are the Frozen Limoncello (think a lemony, boozy slushie), the Fortune Teller (a gin and Aperol lover’s dream), and the elegant French Martini (vodka, Chambord, and a touch of pineapple).

The Myer Christmas Window Display

Credit: Visit Victoria

Christmas Festivities Done Right

Perhaps our favourite reason to experience summer in Melbourne is the city’s bountiful offering of festive events and pop-ups. Christmas in Melbourne is a wondrous affair, with endless markets, festivals, parades, and events taking pride of place throughout the city.

In our guide to the best Christmas markets and events in Melbourne, we outline all the jam-packed fun of several must-visit festive attractions. From The Big Design Market in Carlton to the South Melbourne Christmas Market, and the quintessential Carols by Candlelight at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, you’re sure to find something to tickle your festive fancy on this list.

If you’re staying at Dorsett Melbourne over the summer, we highly recommend you take a tram into the city. Hop off at Bourke St and treat your senses to the sparkling spectacle of the Myer Melbourne Christmas Windows. Bourke Street itself is also donned in fabulous decor and inside the flagship Myer and David Jones centres, you’ll enjoy larger-than-life decorations dripping down from every corner.

A Sport Enthusiast’s Paradise

Melbourne truly is a sports lover’s heaven come summertime with two of the most exciting and globally renowned events taking place in the heart of the city. The Boxing Day Test Match and the Australian Open Tennis transform Melbourne into a frenzy of excitement.

Witness the Boxing Day Test

As the sun shines bright and the city comes alive during the summer, Melbourne hosts one of the most iconic cricket events on the sporting calendar – the Boxing Day Test.

Cricket enthusiasts from around the globe flock to the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), a revered sporting cathedral, to witness this thrilling five-day battle. The atmosphere at the MCG is electric as passionate fans cheer on their favourite teams.

From the traditional Boxing Day Test match to the T20 format, cricket lovers can revel in the on-field action while basking in the warm Australian sun. The MCG's rich history and grandeur make it the perfect venue to indulge in the world of cricket.

The Australian Open Tennis in Melbourne

Credit: Visit Victoria

Revel in the Australian Open

Melbourne sets the stage for another spectacular sporting event during the summer – the Australian Open. This Grand Slam tennis tournament attracts the biggest names in tennis to compete on the blue hard courts of Melbourne Park.

From watching legendary players on the Rod Laver Arena to exploring the vibrant festival atmosphere of the AO Precinct, the Australian Open offers an unforgettable experience for all ages.

Whether you're an avid tennis fan or just looking for a fantastic sporting spectacle, the Australian Open is a must-do event during the summer months in Melbourne. There are plenty of ticketing options still available, so get in quick!

Experience the Best New Year’s Eve Fireworks

Synonymous with summer in Melbourne is the extravaganza of New Year’s Eve. When it comes to ringing in the New Year, Melbourne knows how to throw a spectacular celebration, and the city's fireworks display is second to none.

Finding the perfect spot to catch the fireworks can elevate your New Year's Eve experience. Here are some of the best places in Melbourne to view the dazzling pyrotechnics and welcome the new year in style:

  • Yarra River: The banks of the Yarra River offer prime viewing locations for the fireworks. Join the crowds along Southbank, Princes Bridge, or Birrarung Marr for an excellent view of the fireworks as they light up the night sky, reflected in the waters below.

  • Fed Square: Melbourne's iconic Federation Square hosts a fantastic New Year's Eve celebration. It's a popular spot to gather with friends and enjoy live music and the midnight fireworks. Arrive early to secure your spot.

  • The Docklands: The Docklands precinct provides a more relaxed atmosphere to watch the fireworks. Explore NewQuay, Harbour Esplanade, and other waterfront areas for a delightful view of the pyrotechnics.

  • Eureka Skydeck: For a unique perspective, head to the Eureka Skydeck. This towering vantage point provides an awe-inspiring view of the fireworks as you stand high above the city. Remember to book your tickets in advance.

  • Rooftop Bars: Melbourne is famous for its rooftop bars, and many of them host exclusive New Year's Eve parties. Enjoy a cocktail in style while you take in the fireworks from above.

  • St Kilda Beach: Join the vibrant crowd at St Kilda Beach for a beachside New Year's Eve celebration. Spread out on the sand, enjoy the live music, and watch the fireworks illuminate Port Phillip Bay.

Each of these locations offers a unique New Year's Eve experience. Whether you prefer a lively celebration in the heart of the city or a tranquil spot by the water, Melbourne has a perfect vantage point for you to welcome the new year with a bang.

Sunset views at Dorsett Melbourne

Elevate Your Summer With Dorsett Melbourne

Don't miss the chance to experience Melbourne in all its summer glory. Whether you're a shopaholic, a Christmas fiend, a sports enthusiast, or a foodie seeking new delights, Melbourne has the perfect summer escape ready and waiting for you.

To ensure your summer getaway is absolutely perfect, consider booking your stay at Dorsett Melbourne. Our hotel offers a luxurious haven in the heart of the city and is close to all the hotspots mentioned above. Enjoy stunning views, a sleek indoor pool, exceptional service, and a range of amenities to make your stay unforgettable.

Book your stay and get ready for an unforgettable summer in Melbourne!