Melbourne Nightlife • A Complete Guide

melbournenight

Melbourne is the capital and most populous city of the Australian state of Victoria, and the second-most populous city in Australia.

With that, comes a rich and varied nightlife culture unique to Melbourne. You’ll find a little bit of everything in this city, just read on to discover what you’ll find.

Melbourne at Night
Melbourne at Night

The city is home to many of the best-known cultural institutions in the nation, such as the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the National Gallery of Victoria and the World Heritage-listed Royal Exhibition Building. It is also the birthplace of Australian impressionism, Australian rules football, the Australian film and television industries, and Australian contemporary dance. More recently, it has been recognized as a UNESCO City of Literature and a global center for street art, live music, and theatre. It is the host city of annual international events such as the Australian Grand Prix, the Australian Open and the Melbourne Cup, and has also hosted the 1956 Summer Olympics and the 2006 Commonwealth Games. Due to it rating highly in entertainment, tourism, and sport, as well as education, health care, research and development, the EIU currently ranks it the second most liveable city in the world, and it was ranked as the world’s most liveable city for seven years in a row, from 2011 until 2017.

The main airport serving the city is Melbourne Airport (also referred to as Tullamarine Airport), which is the second busiest in Australia, and Australia’s busiest seaport the Port of Melbourne.

So as briefed above the city of Melbourne offers a wide and great range of Bars, Restaurants, and Nightclubs which has actually improved the nightlife experiences for their locals as well as foreigners, in context of the same, here in this article we are going to take a deep look into such features of Melbourne which will make your journey excellent.

The Nightlife of Melbourne

Melbourne is a very exciting city filled with great places for various people. The city is very busy and beautiful during the day, however, during the night it becomes a relaxing, quirky and shining city. No wonder it is often called as the city with the best night skyline in all Australia. Also, it has plenty of great Bars, Restaurants and Night Clubs where you can enjoy a relaxed atmosphere and socialize with friendly locals and other tourists or you can enjoy quality time with your loved one at a beautiful night at Melbourne.

While visiting Melbourne try to get out more at night in order to truly experience this wonderful city, so check out our suggestion here and explore the city’s nightlife attractions to accomplish your trip at it’s best:

The Nightlife of Melbourne
The Nightlife of Melbourne

Old Melbourne Gaol – Night Tours

Old Melbourne Gaol - Night Tours
Old Melbourne Gaol – Night Tours

Once occupied by Victoria’s most notorious criminals, the Old Melbourne Gaol now operates as a museum with a range of spine-tingling night tours on offer. Explore the original cell blocks in A Night in the Watch House, tour the gaol with a hangman in the Hangman’s Night Tour and listen to frightful stories in Ghost? What Ghosts! Cast in candlelight, these tours will provide a thoroughly terrifying insight into prison life.

Karaoke

Karaoke
Karaoke

Unleash your inner superstar at one of Melbourne’s many karaoke bars. From FM Karaoke on Bourke Street, Jankara on Russell Street, KBOX Karaoke on La Trobe Street and karaoke at Strike Bowling on Little Lonsdale Street, these venues embrace embarrassment and celebrate performance which is rarely pitch-perfect. Let loose with friends or colleagues. You never know, you may discover a hidden talent.

Milk the Cow

Milk the Cow
Milk the Cow

Satisfy those late-night cheese cravings at Milk the Cow, a sophisticated wine and cheese bar. This licensed fromagerie boasts a selection of over 150 artisan cheeses from across the globe as well as seasonal cheeses which are available to enjoy on-site, by the gram or in a takeaway Cheesebox. Try a Cheesemonger’s Choice Cheeseboard, the Cheese & Booze Flights or indulge with an individual fondu pot in winter and artisan cheese gelato in summer.

Rooftop Cinema

Rooftop Cinema
Rooftop Cinema

In addition to the many rooftop bars, Melbourne also boasts rooftop cinemas where movie buffs can catch the latest blockbusters, cult classics and family favorites under the stars. Throughout the warmer months, Rooftop Cinema above Curtin House and Lido Rooftop on Glenferrie Road host nightly screenings where you can sit back, enjoy a snack and watch your favorite films while surrounded by Melbourne’s sparkling city skyline.

The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant

The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant
The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant

Unique to Melbourne, the fleet of Colonial Tramcar Restaurants has been a popular culinary experience since 1983. Enjoy the seasonal menu and quality Australian wines as you dine within the opulent burgundy trams while beholding city sights. The all-inclusive moving menu includes three, four or five-course meals with vegetarian and gluten-free options.

The Comics Lounge

The Comics Lounge
The Comics Lounge

Located in North Melbourne, The Comics Lounge is Australia’s longest-running comedy club. Generating laughs six nights a week, guests are treated to Joe King’s Bistro dinner and a three-act comedy show featuring both local and international comic geniuses. Performers include radio and television personalities such as Dave Hughes, Adam Hills, and Carl Barron.

Melbourne Star

Melbourne Star
Melbourne Star

For dazzling panoramic views of Melbourne’s skyline, take a ride on Melbourne Star. Towering over the Docklands at 120 meters, ‘the Southern Hemisphere’s only giant observation wheel,’ features 21 air-conditioned cabins which offer 360 views of Melbourne, Port Phillip Bay, the Dandenong Ranges, Mount Macedon, and Arthur’s Seat. Take a turn at dusk to watch the sunset or watch the glittering cityscape at night.

Cabaret Show

Cabaret Show
Cabaret Show

It is said that Melbourne has the best and the most entertaining cabaret shows. There are lots of cabaret theatres in the city, however, we had selected only one that is special. Butterfly Club is located in the heart of Melbourne. The theatre is very small and cozy and is hidden in narrow alleys so it can be difficult to find it if you don’t know your way around Melbourne. The theatre is very intimate with a quirky design, cozy chairs and great bar with its signature cocktail called Thai Butterfly. If you visit this theatre, surely you will get the coziest and quirkiest cabaret show experience!

Best Bars in Melbourne

Bar Liberty

Bar Liberty
Bar Liberty

To drink at Liberty is to drink in heaven where all kinds are available. The only rule about each drop here is that it must be a superlative example of its style. Whether it’s wine, cider, cocktails, whiskey, vermouth or even housemade soda, every item on the long menu is carefully curated, the variety and quality on offer hard to overstate. You should eat here, too. Raw beef is diced and mixed with capers and Dijon for a velvety texture, ready to be scooped mouthward by crisps of dehydrated polenta and sweet caramelized onion.

Black Pearl

Black Pearl
Black Pearl

Melburnians never needed the succession of big international awards to know that the Black Pearl is where you go for a bloody good cocktail – though undoubtedly those accolades benefited the travelers who now flock to the bar as a checklist destination. Tash Conte’s family-run bar has been a beacon of excellence for 16 years now. Not content to sit pretty on tried-and-tested masterpieces, the list is always on the move, keeping step with moods and seasons. 

Clooney Kitchen and Bar

Clooney Kitchen and Bar
Clooney Kitchen and Bar

Clooney might be young, but Shannon McFarland and Will Crennan together have clocked decades in the industry, and it shows. The cocktail list confidently stretches from the elegant restraint of a Modest Proposal to the exuberance of the Screw Pine Delight. In the kitchen, Leigh Stanicic is also splicing textures and flavors, reaching across borders to put white anchovy frito inside crisp lettuce cups with kewpie mayo, chili and mint, or fold ribbons of jamón over whipped pea and pickled shallots.

Kirk’s Wine Bar

Kirk’s Wine Bar
Kirk’s Wine Bar

opened in 2015 this place immediately felt like a substantive thread in our city’s fabric, with its familiar, lived-in feel, confident service, and mature wine list. At last, Spring Street sophistication had come to the shouty end of town. Years have passed, but it feels as essential as ever, proving that a classic wine bar, done well, never goes out of fashion. The list is as deep as it is broad, paying respect to all the old-world staples before giving equal ardour to trailblazing makers like Radikon and local innovators like Memento Mori. 

The Elysian

The Elysian
The Elysian

A bad vote can lead to true devastation but the people of Melbourne are using it carefully, Which is why it’s a relief to see that the people of Melbourne are still wielding their powers wisely, anointing the Elysian Whisky Bar their favorite place to drink for a second year running. Key to this specialty bar’s success is the painstakingly built a 350-strong back bar of rare and independently bottled whiskeys. Each bottle has been hand-selected, resulting in an eclectic collection full of one-offs you won’t find elsewhere in the city. 

Galah

Galah
Galah

Galah’s point of entry might be a bottle-o, but a cursory squiz at the shelves neatly stacked with Si Vintners and cloudy pet-nats is your first indication that this bar is more bougie than bogan. No one is greasing the wheels with pints of Carlton or tangy Yellowglen – they’re using organic, small producer and minimal intervention wines from across our wide brown land. And given it might be new territory for some, a short, sharp list is a blessing – just ten Australian reds and whites, a Gippsland rosé and a single Champagne sneaking past border patrol like a well-connected au pair.

Best Bar Restaurants in Melbourne

Whitehart

Whitehart
Whitehart

This place is located in a converted car park in Melbourne’s CBD. Whitehart is a container bar (shipping containers, that is). Besides its unusual industrial design, Whitehart has a reputation for great live music, craft beers, and cocktails. One of the signature cocktails is the Wrong Island Iced Tea, with English breakfast syrup. Whitebar hosts a rotating lineup of food popups too, including Pok n Kok, a local Thai food truck.

Corner Hotel

Corner Hotel
Corner Hotel

Corner Hotel is known as one of the best live music venues in Melbourne. But what a lot of locals don’t realize is that the Corner Hotel also has a large rooftop bar and restaurant. The food menu includes share plates, counter meals, and mains, such as whole Korean fried chicken and braised lamb shoulder. The Corner Hotel also does a steak and pot deal on Mondays for $20, trivia on Wednesday nights, and a $15 local lunch from Tuesday to Friday.

Easey’s

Easey’s
Easey’s

Easey’s has to be one of the most unusual restaurants in Melbourne (and perhaps Australia). It consists of several floors, but the pinnacle is the three retired train carriages on the rooftop. You can dine either in the carriages or in the small courtyard. The graffiti inside and outside the carriages is constantly changing too. The food menu at Easey’s is a fusion between American and Australia. It includes ‘hot dawgs’, mac and cheese, and burgers, alongside Australian stalwarts like potato cakes and dim sims.

Campari House

Campari House
Campari House

Campari House is a rooftop bar, lounge, and restaurant that’s been trading in Melbourne’s iconic Hardware Lane for 50 years. It’s prepared for Melbourne’s unpredictable weather, with heaters and a retractable roof. The drinks menu includes wines from both Australia and Italy, as well as a range of unique cocktails. The modern Italian-inspired cuisine also includes pizzas, sliders, and small plates. Visit Campari House from Monday to Thursday for a Laneway Lunch. select from a pizza, pasta, or alternative dish with a glass of beer, wine, or soft drink in most affordable rates.

Loop Roof

Loop Roof
Loop Roof

Loop Roof is a rooftop cocktail bar in Melbourne’s CBD that was designed by Jesse Judd. It features fairy lights, colorful furnishings and decorations, and a jungle-like botanic vibe. The award-winning bartenders at Loop Roof present “a cocktail experience like no other”. The Grown-Up Fanta is just one of the creations and includes gin, tonic, blood orange, and sparkling wine. Loop Roof also serves share plates and tacos and is equipped with a retractable awning, heating in winter, and subtle misting in summer.

Joe Taylor

Joe Taylor
Joe Taylor

This northern star delights with its vintage-chic décor, prime footpath tables, and service that is at once switched on and supremely relaxed. The team has good reason to be laid back, so assured is the food and drinks offering. A leather-bound menu delivers seasonal, balanced cocktails; the 40-strong wine list skips happily from the Adelaide Hills to Argentina, and the craft beers run from hyper-local to heavy-hitting imports. 

Wolf and Swill

Wolf and Swill
Wolf and Swill

It’s barely sundown and the tiny corner bar on Thornbury’s High Street is a hive of activity, with staff squeezing and sliding past each other to take orders, pour beers and send food out to a swelling pack of hungry and thirsty punters. Given the divey, cobbled-together feel of the place, with its mélange of disco lights, wooden venetians, floppy pot plants and bolted spinny stools (from a previous life in front of the pokies at Brunswick RSL), you’d be forgiven for low expectations for the pizzas. Make sure to check out this absolutely awesome place.

Make sure you check out the above recommendations for best restaurants in the Melbourne city so that you could enjoy the best food along with the hangouts to fulfill your appetite.

Best Nightclubs in Melbourne

Radar

Radar
Radar

When beloved Melbourne club Lounge closed in 2018, it sent tear-streaked eyeliner running and club kids scurrying to find a new space for an all-night boogie. The lounge had operated on the site for 29 continuous years. But hospitality veteran Maz Salt came to the rescue, taking over the Swanston Street site and giving it new life as Radar. Radar focuses on catering to the dance music community, with a Function-One rig blasting until 6 am on weekends. The club is also committed to supporting Melbourne’s live music scene, so there are also occasional live shows. It’s kind of like Lounge, but Radar has its own personality.

Angel Music Bar

Angel Music Bar
Angel Music Bar

Music is absolutely front and center here, with a collection of records pumping out of Funktion One speakers specifically installed to fill the room. DJs play the likes of John Coltrane, Susan Wong, Esther Phillips and Ute Lemper with scatterings of David Bowie downstairs, or you can head upstairs to the 80-room black box venue and party to events put on by Animals Dancing, Crown Ruler, Cool Room and Pelvis. It’s super dark in the room, with a singular light that projects onto a disco ball that casts an eclipse shadow above the DJ booth. And we’re not kidding about the speakers – those Funktion Ones really pack a punch.

Gasometer Hotel

Gasometer Hotel
Gasometer Hotel

This place is known best for its revolving roster of bands and live acts, but it also hosts a range of club nights. Downstairs Gaso is summertime heaven, particularly when the retractable roof is open and everyone is dancing with a Spritz in hand. Upstairs, a smaller space that has a two-tier beer garden attached is a much more intimate space, offering music of all sorts.

Geddes Lounge

Geddes Lounge
Geddes Lounge

Geddes Ballroom presents a blend of live music and DJs, smack bang in the middle of the CBD. The venue itself is a three-tier 170-year-old bluestone building and, this place has some interesting decor. It feels sleazy but in a good way: red draping curtains, poles, and a catwalk – yes, this place used to be a strip club. There’s a night here to please us all, offering gigs of jazz, hip-hop, trap, electronica, punk, salsa, cabaret, and the odd drag show.

The Night Cat

The Night Cat
The Night Cat

The vibe is electric in this darkly red-lit boudoir of a band venue and it’s not hard to fathom why. The Night Cat has become a bit of a Fitzroy institution, with live jazz, funk and reggae among its diverse line-up. Entry is usually free unless time is money and you can’t afford to wait in the queue that snakes down Johnston St. It’s worth it once you’re inside, though, with a stage slap bang in the center, so you can see your favorite jazz band from every angle.

The Toff in Town

The Toff in Town
The Toff in Town

Curtin House is frankly ridiculous, brimming over as it is with a host of outstanding bars and club spaces. The Toff in Town is one of the swankiest joints in the building. Climb the stairs and you’ll find a private booth bar to the left and the excellent band space to the right. This cozy little red-curtained room has hosted a wealth of talent, both home and from far away. It’s a decadent haunt and one that reeks of character in an already vibrant Melbourne scene. Get right up and sweaty at the foot of the stage or sit back and sample their menu of delicious eats and the extensive range of drinks on offer.    

Make sure you try some of the nightclubs during your visit to Melbourne to enjoy the true feel of a night out in the city.

Conclusion

Let us conclude the topic, here in this article we had a brief introduction of Melbourne along with highlighting some of its prominent norms, culture, and nightlife features. We also went through different activities and places to enjoy the nightlife of the region, Musical venues, Bars, Restaurants and Nightclubs as well. Such activities provide a great source of entertainment for tourists and locals as well.

There are plenty of pubs & bars throughout the City areas and they are truly satisfying the desire of thirsty visitors where you can enjoy your cocktails with the mesmerizing architectural beauty of the hand-crafted beers and their decors. You don’t feel any hunger during your trip, that is why we also suggested some of the finest restaurants in the city that offer exotic and delicious food along with your favorite drinks. You can enjoy the taste of good food along with some great booze.

And lastly, we went through comprehensive options of nightclubs of the city that offers great music and fun with some delightfully exotic choices of drinks and cocktail that will delight your overall experience of charming nightlife during your stay at Melbourne.

All of the experiences as mentioned above will work together to make your journey to Melbourne absolutely a memorable one. A perfect and balanced blend of the above-identified activities can actually boost your experience and make your trip extremely unforgettable for you.

Find someone to share your night out with:

Read: The Best Dating Apps & Sites to Use

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