Santa's Tree House - The District Docklands - Review - Melbourne

Kate and her little ones headed to The District Docklands this weekend for a different type of Santa Claus photo. The traditional red velvet throne has been taken to the next level and has been replaced by a very special woodlands inspired swinging chair complete with its very own scandi inspired ‘Santa’s Tree House’!

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

After a browse through the scandi tree house, it was time to get to business! While the little ones were having a very important chat with Santa, Kate and her husband watched on at the gorgeous interaction before taking a family photo with Santa.

The seat is big enough to fit a family which is great and Kate found both Santa and the photographer to be patient, friendly and really interactive with the children (and adults). Each child that visits Santa Claus will receive a free colouring-in book with pencils to take home! 

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Santa photos are on now until Sunday 24th December 2017 next to Le Cirque Café. No bookings required however contact Customer Service for a photo with your furry friend.

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

You can also meet Mrs. Claus and take part in weekend craft activities at Santa's Tree House!

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Everyone is welcome to take part in Christmas craft activities every weekend - hosted by Poppies for Grace - at Kids Craft Zone until Sunday 24th December.

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids - Poppies for Grace

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids - Poppies for Grace

Kate's little ones loved the craft activities and made their own little pom pom Christmas tree!

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

While they were there, they had fun amongst balloons.

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

And watched on as customers were getting strapped to pickup a free gift with Santa Claws! Lots of fun this Christmas season at The District Docklands!

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman @busycitykids

For more information on Santa's Tree House, Craft Activities, Santa's claws, head to The District Docklands' website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

ArtVo Pop Up at Crown - Review - Melbourne

There's nothing better than ArtVo than FREE Christmas ArtVo painted by the ArtVo Melbourne crew through the Crown complex!

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

I remember it like it was yesterday when Kel and the Melbourne Minor gang popped into the ArtVo Melbourne exhibition to experience this fully interactive and selfie friendly exhibition. If you don't, checkout Kel's review of ArtVo here. 

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

The Melbourne Minor checked out the eight freshly hand painted new walls at Crown last weekend and suggested a brilliant idea! If you need a Christmas card photo then the Christmas ArtVo Pop Up has you covered!

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

There is one wall by the epic Christmas Tree in the atrium and the rest are scattered around on level one, near the cinema.  

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

While you're there, visit the Crown Christmas Spectacular Show. The show runs on the half hour daily from 10am to midnight. It happens where the giant baubles are in the atrium. 

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Thank you Kel for the fantastic pics and info! To follow Kel and the gang at Melbourne Minor, head to their Instagram page.
For more information on Crown events and the Christmas Spectacular Show, head to their website.

For more ideas on Christmas activities and events in Melbourne, head to our special Christmas 2017 post.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our WebsiteDaily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Santaland - Myer - Review - Melbourne

This year, Myer has reimagined Santaland to create the ultimate, Christmas adventure: an in-store, immersive experience and recreation of a magical, winter-wonderland.

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

The key showpiece of the in-store experience is the Santaland Express – a life-size train that will whisk shoppers of all ages away on a virtual journey from Myer Central Station to the North Pole. Kate's little ones especially loved having snow balls thrown at them!

Photo credit: @activedisplaygroup

Photo credit: @activedisplaygroup

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Once in the North Pole, you can meet and have your photo with Santa, enjoy Santa’s workshop with various interactive Christmas themed play stations including Lego and Duplo, Nerf Gun target shooting and of course letter writing for kids (and adults) to send Santa their wish-lists! Book your session(s)/visit(s) online to avoid the queues.

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Don't miss out on Storytime with the wonderful Mrs Claus too! Your little ones will love reading the Myer Christmas storybook, The Completely & Utterly, Absolutely Perfect Christmas.

Kate's little ones also loved posing for photos & giving cuddles to the Large Scale Christmas Characters.

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

The Christmas Giftorium is also great to visit while you're at Myer. The Christmas Giftorium is Australia’s number one destination for all your gift giving needs and is famous for its personalisation. An exciting new addition to Myer this year is personalised Tim Tams.

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Of course, don't miss the Myer Christmas windows while you're there!

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Thank you Kate for your photos and review on Santaland. To follow Kate's adventures with her little ones across Melbourne, head to their Instagram account.
For more information on Myer Santaland and more, head to their website.

For more ideas on Christmas activities and events in Melbourne, head to our special Christmas 2017 post.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our WebsiteDaily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Christmas 2017 Activities in Melbourne

The Christmas season is upon us! We have put together a list of events and activities you can attend from now until Christmas. We will keep updating it as we go - enjoy!

Fed Square Christmas Hub - Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Fed Square Christmas Hub - Photo credit: @melbourneminor

  • Myer Christmas Windows - Perfect Christmas. The annual windows are now open in Bourke Street Mall for you to visit. Now open until Thursday, 5th January 2017 7:30 am to 1:00 am daily. For Kel's cute review over at Melbourne Minor, head to this page. FREE.
     
  • Santa's Magical Kingdom - This popular event will deliver a Christmas wonderland full of activities to capture children's imagination. Opens Friday the 17th of November till Sat 23rd of December. For our 2016 review, head to our dedicated page. 
     
  • David Jones Christmas Concert - PJ Masks, Peppa Pig and everyone's favourite Christmas characters are coming to Santa's Grand Arrival with 2 concerts! You can also join us in the LEGO Play Zone before and after the show. Saturday 18th November from 9am. More info via this event. FREE.
     
  • Myer Christmas Carnival - Join Myer as they turn our Bourke Street Mall store into a festive fun fair with live entertainment, workshops, giveaways and more. Saturday 26th November 10am-6pm. More info here. FREE.
     
  • Christmas Festival Official Tree Lighting Ceremony - The City of Melbourne is throwing a Free Ceremony Event on Friday 24th of November at 7pm to 9:15pm to mark the beginning of the Christmas Festival. This year's NEW Christmas Festival Hub will be at Federation Square with the 16 metres high Christmas tree higher than ever! Roving performers will entertain children before the tree lighting. More info on their page. FREE.
     
  • Santa's House - Open from Saturday 25th Nov to Sunday 24th of December, Santa will be there every day from 10am to 12pm and 1pm to 3pm and 4pm to 7pm Fridays. Queues may be long but his elves will be there to entertain. More info on their page. FREE
Myer - Christmas Windows - Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Myer - Christmas Windows - Photo credit: @melbourneminor

  • Giant Christmas Bauble - The Giant Christmas Bauble will be back again this year at Federation Square. It was a huge hit last year! You can walk inside this six-metre-high white wonder, which is a perfect spot for Christmas kisses and #melbmoment selfies. Thursday 30th November to Monday 25th December. More info on their pageFREE.
     
  • Santa’s Post Box - Drop off a letter to Santa or a gift for a child in need this Christmas. To receive a personalised reply, a self-addressed envelope and stamp must be included. Santa's Post Box and Spirit of Giving Box will be outside the Australia Post GPO on Elizabeth Street this year and a second letter box outside the District in Docklands. To give a gift to someone less fortunate this Christmas, put it in the Spirit of Giving box with a tag showing the recommended age for your gift. Open from Saturday 3rd of November to Friday 15th December. More info on their page.FREE.

  • Fed Square, the State Library of Victoria and Docklands will become windows onto Santa’s workshop during the festival. Every night, magical, colourful Christmas Projections will show St Nick visiting the hard-working elves in his various toy-making departments. At Docklands, projections will be on the ground and interactive. Kids will love chasing and engaging with the Christmas colours, characters and imagery along New Quay Promenade.  Friday 1st of December to Monday 25th of December. More info on their page. FREE.
     
  • Gingerbread Village by EPICURE - One of the city centre’s most popular Christmas attractions, the Gingerbread Village is a wonder for all ages. Spot iconic Melbourne locations including the MCG or MelbourneTown Hall, purchase festive buttery biscuits and remember to make a gold coin donation as all proceeds will go towards the Royal Children’s Hospital Foundation. Opens Friday 1st of December to Sunday 24th of December at Melbourne Town Hall. Our 2016 review here. Gold Coin.
     
  • Santa's Tree House at The District Docklands - Meet Santa in a scandi inspired tree house, have a chat and a photo and take part in free Christmas craft activities after! Our review here.
     
  • Christmas delights at Docklands - The Melbourne Star Observation Wheel will have its nightly transformation into a kaleidoscope of colours for the Christmas-themed light display. From Monday 13th November to Sunday 24th December. More info here. FREE.
     
  • Enjoy a FREE Christmas ArtVo Pop Up at Crown during the Christmas season as well as the Crown Christmas Spectacular Show. Our review and info here. FREE.
     
  • Christmas Bricktacular at Legoland Discovery Centre - Experience the true magic of Christmas at the popular Melbourne attraction with festive activities scheduled throughout the month including special LEGO builds in Santa’s workshop, cupcake decorating and visits from Santa. More info here.
     
  • Santa at David Jones Bourke Street - Visit the Magic Cave and meet Santa. Open various times. More info here. 
     
  • Santaland at Myer - Meet Santa and Mrs Claus at Myer. Open various times. Read our review here. FREE.
Myer Santaland - Photo credit: @activedisplaygroup

Myer Santaland - Photo credit: @activedisplaygroup

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our WebsiteDaily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Busy City Kids - Melbourne July 2017 & School Holidays Events Lineup

Find something to do with the kids in July and during the school holidays! Share your experiences with us by tagging us on Instagram or using #busycitykids to be featured! Have fun!

Well almost .. ! 

Well almost .. ! 

More July events, activities and programs coming soon .. !

  • School Holidays at Zoos Victoria - Healesville Sanctuary will be all about storytelling and warming up with soup. Melbourne Zoo will host The National Geographic Photo Ark photography exhibition, find out more here. Werribee Open Range Zoo will once again throw open its doors after dark for visitors to experience the thrill of Wild Nights, find out more info here. All starting from Saturday 1st of July. 
     
  • The Big Freeze Festival at Fountain Gate Shopping Centre - Last year's popular city snow festival will again provide city peeps an affordable snow experience and this year it has 9 interactive zones and will run from Saturday 1st of July to Sunday 9th of July. Journey through the snowfall forest and winter village before tossing a snowball, playing in the snow pit and riding down our snow slide. Continue the fun with the kids’ active challenge, polar bear slide, circus skill workshops, construction zone and art ’n’ craft activities. Opens Saturday 1st July. Find out more info or buy tickets here. Our review of this year's festival here.
     
  • LEGO City at Harbour Town Melbourne - A LEGO City Play Zone is coming to Harbour Town Melbourne these holidays! Children and parents are invited to make their way to Docklands everyday between 12pm – 4pm from Monday 3rd of July through until Sunday 16th July to experience fun and free LEGO City activities. Activities include a Free Build Zone, Take a pic in front of the LEGO Police Jail and the LEGO Fire Station, Play some of the amazing LEGO City iPad games and watch the virtual LEGO City come alive before your eyes and come and see a LEGO City model and spectacular LEGO statues guaranteed to impress. Starts Monday 3rd July. Read our review here.
     
  • Imaginary Architecture with ArtPlay at Kensington Town Hall - Join ArtPlay and artist Lara Tumak as they take over Kensington Town Hall. Kids can make their own special diorama to add to a mega mini city in this cool FREE event. On from Thursday 6th of July 2017 to Sunday 9th of July 2017. More info and our review here.
     
  • Bug Lab: Little Bugs, Super Powers at Melbourne Museum - Bug Lab will allow visitors to marvel at ultra-detailed large-scale models of bugs, discover cutting-edge science and explore the world as bugs do, through immersive sensory experiences. Opens Friday 23rd June. Read our review here.
     
  • LightTime: Illuminate your eyes, ears and mind at Scienceworks - A collective of 11 Melbourne based artists who have created hypnotic and mesmerising work that invite visitors to engage their senses to explore the phenomena of light, sound and optics. Kids can be immersed in a space where lasers project holographic effects to an evolving original soundtrack; enter a room of LED screens that create a spectacle to confound and entrance; and lie beneath an ultraviolet garden of floral meditation. Opens Saturday 1st July. Read our review here.
     
  • Gods, Myths and Mayhem at Immigration Museum - Celebrate the final weeks of the Ithacan community exhibition Our Odyssey and explore Greek mythology through dance, stories and craft. Hear stories of heroic gods, legendary creatures and mythical monsters, try traditional Greek dancing and create crafts inspired by ancient Greek beasts. Sessions will run for 90 minutes and include a dance workshop, storytelling session and make and take craft activity. Numbers are limited, bookings recommended. On Thursday 6th to Sunday 9 July. More info here.
     
  • Little Art Big Art - The very popular Little Art Big Art Holiday Program is jammed packed with workshops that is sure to ignite imagination, exploration and creativity whilst expanding skills and having fun! More info & bookings have now been released check out their website. More info here. Our review here.
     
  • Mess Matters - Mess Matters offers each and every child a unique art experience. At the Mess Matters studio children are free to express themselves in an unstructured yet supportive environment. Their school holiday program is out now. More info & bookings here. Our review here.
     
  • SciencePlay Kids - SciencePlay Kids classes are designed to encourage your little scientists to explore science in the world around them. Each class runs for an hour, has 2-3 hands on experiments that foster creative thinking and problem solving in a fun and MESSY way. Dressing in mini lab coats and safety glasses, each child has their own scientific equipment and materials to undertake their experiment at their own pace. More info here. Read our review here.
     
  • Craftercise - School holiday sessions registrations now open. Classes will be running on Wednesday 5th July, Friday 7th July, Tuesday 11th July and Thursday 13th July. Times are 9.30 am to 10.15 am, 10.45 am to 11.30am for both 18 months to 3 years, 12 noon to 12.45pm for 3 to 6 years and 1.15 am to 2pm for 6 to 18 months (Tues, Wed, Thurs). Book to avoid missing out. Read more info and book here. Read our review here.
     
  • River Rink at Fed Square - School holidays are coming around again so it’s time to get your skates on, grab your best mates, rug up and head to Fed Square’s outdoor skating sensation, River Rink. A winter experience like no other in Melbourne, skaters will enjoy the picturesque backdrop of the Yarra River and the city skyline whilst gliding on the ice. And all in time for school holiday fun. Opens Saturday 1st July. More info here.
     
  • Winter Wonderlights at Sovereign Hill - Back on again this year to celebrate Christmas in July from Saturday 1st July to Sunday 30th July 2017, the Sovereign Hill township will evoke a sense of old-world wonder during the day and Main Street will sparkle with an amazing light projection show with over 20 of Sovereign Hill’s buildings lit up with large-scale image projections and Christmas animations at night. Opens Saturday 1st of July. Read our review here.
     
  • Roola Boola Festival at City of Stonnington - The Roola Boola Children’s Arts Festival returns for its eighth year with a program packed full of intimate performances, workshops spanning music, dance, circus and magic and unique activities! Running from Tuesday 4th to Friday 14th of July 2017 with fantastic FREE and affordable ticketed events happening daily! Our review of Once Upon a Time and more festival info here.
     
  • National Trust of Victoria - Polly Woodside on Pirate Sunday - Sunday 2nd July. Bring along your scallywags and buccaneers and join the Polly Woodside for a day of adventures. $16 per adult and $9.50 per child. Read our review here.
     
  • Fiona Hall: Uneasy Seasons at the NGV Melbourne - Uneasy Seasons is a captivating and imaginative response to the environment and changing seasons through the lens of one of Australia’s most brilliant artistic minds. The exhibition features two large scale tree houses - one for young visitors and the other for teenagers. Visitors are invited to explore the two spaces and participate in art making activities and how they feel about the natural world. On until 8th of October. Read our review here.
     
  • Van Gogh and the Seasons at the NGV Melbourne - We loved the exhibition and living the four seasons through Van Gogh's eyes. Little Miss loved the NGV's Van Gogh An Art Book for Kids. Now closes on Wednesday 12th of July. Win a family pass and a copy of Van Gogh and the Seasons an Art Book for kids here.
     
  • School Holidays event at Eastland - Get the kids decorating cupcakes, decorating cookies, learn create & play with realm workshops, do a chocolate workshop, build a bear and experience a future of infinite possibilities with Inflatable sculptures all at Eastland shopping centre. More info here.

Also checkout these great places in July ... entertain them for hours to avoid cabin fever!

  • Latitude Melbourne - Let the kids jump around at Latitude Melbourne this winter and wear themselves out for a good night's sleep. Latitude is the first integrated trampoline and climbing park in Australia. With over 100 interconnected trampolines, a massive air bag, basketball lanes, an obstacle course, climbing zone, dodgeball arena and dedicated Kids Zone, there’s something for everyone and every age.  Read our review here.
     
  • Legoland Discovery Centre Melbourne - Kids will turn into a Lego by the end of their trip to Legoland in Chadstone or you will ha! They will enjoy spending hours looking at Lego, playing with Lego, going on rides, using the play equipment etc. Read our review and tips here.
     
  • Little Creatures Play Space - Kids can play pretend for hours in this awesome indoor play centre. With an open-plan set up consisting of different play themes including a home corner, grocery store, fire station, builder’s workshop, costume room, soft play equipment, reading corner and train table, Little Creatures is the perfect play space for little ones. Read our review here.
     
  • Pauline Gandel Children's Gallery at the Melbourne Museum - Children 0 to 5 years, their siblings and older children have an amazing space to visit, discover, explore, read, relax, learn and imagine! So much to do and explore - we love it! Read our review here.
     
  • Play Pod at the State Library of Victoria - Play Pod is the Library's program for children aged under eight years, packed with activities to read, create and play. With a new theme every season. This season welcomes 'Penguin Problems'. Read our review here.

For more ideas, checkout our popular pages below:

Sovereign Hill Winter Wonderlights 2017 - Info & Giveaway

Sovereign Hill's Winter Wonderlights is back on again this year to celebrate Christmas in July from Saturday 1st July to Sunday 30th July 2017. We sent Kel from Melbourne Minor to Winter Wonderlights last year and the family and Kel loved it - raspberry drops and all! Read Kel's review here as well as her 10 essential tips before you head to Sovereign Hill.
Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

During the day, the Sovereign Hill township will evoke a sense of old-world wonder. Visitors can stroll down Main Street as snow-flakes fall at regular intervals over the Victorian-style buildings, decorations fill the window displays, the smell of Christmas treats and spices fill the air, and traditional Christmas-themed pantomimes are performed!

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

At night, Main Street will sparkle with an amazing light projection show with over 20 of Sovereign Hill’s buildings lit up with large-scale image projections and Christmas animations. Children can also catch the Gingerbread Man as he dashes from building to building, peeking out from the Christmas themed lights and animations!

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Dress up, find gold and don't forget to bring raspberry drops home - ah!

When: Saturday 1 st July – Sunday 30 th July, 2017. Open daily from 10am. The ‘WinterWonderlights’ show will start each evening after 5.45pm.
Where: Sovereign Hill, 3 Bradshaw Street, Ballarat, 3350.
Cost: General admission: Adults $59.50, Children (5-15) $27.00, Concession ($47.60), Family ($150.00) and Single Family ($107.00) passes available.

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

Photo credit: Melbourne Minor @melbourneminor

To celebrate, we are giving away 2 Family Passes to visit Sovereign Hill's Winter Wonderlights in July. Each family pass is worth $150 and is valid for 2 adults and up to 4 children. Enter below. Good luck! Entries close Tuesday 13th June 2017 at midnight AEST.

For more ideas on what to do with the little ones, head to our blog or CBD Top 5 FREE activities or our popular Daily Spots List.

Santa's Sand Land Christmas Festival - Review

We were recently invited to preview Sand Sculpting Australia's Santa's Sand Land Christmas Festival on the Frankston Waterfront. Kate took her little ones to preview this special Christmas festival and were the first ones to exclusively experience the main exhibition 'Lands of Imagination'.
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The Santa’s Sand Land Festival is new to the Sand Sculpting Australia event this year, is held inside the main event space and will take place from Friday 16th December until Friday 23rd of December. Children are invited to take part in Christmas themed activities (with a hint of sand) and it's all included in the ticket price!

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The Christmas activities will have the kids do Christmas crafts like Christmas Sand Art and a Christmas Sand Bottle. 

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They are also invited to write a letter to Santa and send it off using a special letter box.

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There's also a Christmas Live performance by The Kazoos, Christmas face painting, a visit from a magician and balloon twister and a Sandsational play pit zone filled with fun cubbies by Castle & Cubby. 

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Little ones are also invited to an interactive photo in the sand carved Santa's workshop with Santa himself and will receive an early gift from him.

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With this special Christmas festival, visitors are invited to be the first to view Sand Sculptures' main attraction 'Lands of Imagination' which was made by twenty one of the world's finest sand sculptors during sixteen days and took more than 5,000 hours! The official opening of the main event is on Boxing Day.

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The 'Lands of Imagination' includes Australia's largest ever sand sculpture towering at over 8 metres tall and is an imitation of a 'sand castle' and was carved by four world-class sand artists and titled 'The Sand Kingdom'.

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Other sculptures include lands of dinosaurs, dragons, sea creatures, spaceships, pirates, princesses, Candy Land, The Gingerbread Village, Enchanted Forest, Santa’s Workshop, Wonderland and more!

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Kate recommends bringing a hat and sunscreen as there is limited shade at the event. There is only shade in the craft & entertainment tents. There are no baby change facilities on site, the closest one is adjacent to the carpark next door. It's also a good idea to bring a drink bottle and snacks for little hungry tummies during the event.

The Santa Sand Land Christmas Festival will be on from Friday 16th to Friday 23rd of December 2016.

The Lands of Imagination will be officially opened from Boxing Day Monday 26th of December 2016 up to Anzac Day Tuesday 25th of April 2017.

Checkout Sand Sculpting Australia's website for more details and tickets.

Melbourne Epicure Foodies Gingerbread Village 2016

Kate had a peek yesterday at the Gingerbread Village by Epicure located at Melbourne Town Hall until Saturday 24th of December 2016. Thank you Kate for these delicious photos! Catherine xo
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The Epicure team have done it again! Comprising 500 kilograms of gingerbread, 360 kilograms of royal icing, 150 kilograms of marzipan and around 800 miniature Christmas trees for the festive backdrop, the Gingerbread Village includes Melbourne Town Hall, Melbourne Cricket Ground, Luna Park, the zoo, and new to this year The Royal Children’s Hospital. 

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Entry is FREE with a gold coin donation which will go to The Royal Children’s Hospital and there are cute gingerbread men on sale too! 

The Gingerbread Village by EPICURE is now open until Saturday 24th of December 2016 at Melbourne Town Hall on Swanston Street and will be open daily from 9am – 8:45pm.

For more Christmas ideas around Melbourne, head to our Melbourne Events Christmas Guide.

For more information from Epicure, head to their website.

Santa's Break-Down Under - Info & Giveaway

Be part of a Santa's Break Down Under family circus show this December in Melbourne.

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Join acrobats, daring aerialists, a crane truck, blasts of fire and ice for an open-air Christmas show like no other. 

Due to global warming and melting glaciers, Santa’s tops scientists have given him no alternative but to relocate from the North Pole so Santa has decided to hang up the beanie, park the boots and trade them in for a cork-string hat and a pair of thongs. 

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Santa's having a Break-Down Under, at the picturesque Coburg Velodrome with high entertainment and a quirky plot for parents. The show will be jam-packed with circus, dancing and comedy, with performers using a crane to achieve what would otherwise only be possible in an enclosed tent. Surrounded by picnic blankets, food trucks and bars, Kiddimoto inflatable mini velodrome and balance bikes, Zorb Ball rides, reindeer antlers for Kids Hope Australia while families will have a safe, fenced in area for a relaxing outing under the starry sky.

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The show will be on at the Coburg Velodrome on Friday 16th, Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th of December 2016. Doors open at 5pm, show will be from 6pm - 8pm and open until 10pm. Tickets start at $25.

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For more info or to buy tickets to Santa's Break Down Under, go to their website.

To celebrate, we are giving away ONE family pass (valued at $100) to one lucky subscriber. To enter, make sure you are subscribed and write a quick comment below. Entries are now open and will close this Thursday 8th of December at 5pm AEST. Tickets are valid for any session. Winner will be announced on Facebook on the day. If not redeemed by Monday 12th of Dec, the giveaway will be redrawn - good luck!

For more ideas on what to do with the kids this Christmas season, head to our blog or special Christmas events list.

Christmas with Baby Love Music Fun - Saturday 10th Dec 2016

The Baby Love Music Fun school is holding a special festive concert on Saturday 10th of December to introduce your little one(s) to the joy and magic of beautiful Christmas music. 

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Melanie (professional opera singer of 15 years and teacher) and her team will share some interactive memorable Christmas fun with your little one(s). The Christmas concert will be suitable for children aged 3 months to 6 years and will feature live singing, video projection, dancing, props and facilitated movement to enhance your experience of the music together.

The delightful concert will incorporate well known Christmas songs such as Rudolf the Red Nose Reindeer, Little Drummer Boy, Jingle Bells, Nutcracker, Deck the Halls and more. There will be 4 concerts held on Saturday 10th of December at the Clifton Creative Arts Centre in Richmond. A 10am, 11:30 am, 3pm and 4:30 pm. Concerts last 50 minutes. Tickets start at $10 for adults and $20 for kids. All children must be accompanied by at least one parent.

Little Miss loves Baby Love Music Fun concerts, we have been to many and always have a great time, see a review we did for a concert last year.

To buy tickets or for more info, head to their dedicated page.

To celebrate, we are giving away ONE family pass to the 3pm concert on Saturday 10th of December. Entries are now open and will close this Friday 2nd of December 5pm. Winners will be announced on the day, please check Facebook for announcement. If the prize is not claimed by Monday 5th of December, the tickets will be redrawn. Subscribe and write us a quick comment below. Good luck!

For more Christmas events and ideas, head to our blog.

Christmas 2016 in Sydney

The Christmas season is upon us! We have put together a list of events and activities you can attend from now until Christmas. We will keep updating it as we go - enjoy!

Boulevard of Light: Pitt Street Mall - Discover a Christmas wonderland right every night in the heart of Sydney as you stroll along Pitt Street Mall underneath a canopy of suspended Christmas trees. On from Saturday 26th of November to Saturday 24th of December.

Christmas Tree at Martin Place - The 21 metre high Christmas tree will be lit up every evening in Martin Place. On from Saturday 26th of November to Saturday 24th of December.

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Lego Christmas Sleigh - Jump into the life-sized LEGO Santa sleigh for the ultimate Christmas snap this festive season. On from Saturday 26 November to Friday 23 December 2016.

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Carols in the city: Martin Place - Street choirs singing carols will perform every night leading up to Christmas.  On from Saturday 26th of November to Saturday 24th of December.

Carols in the city: Pitt Street Mall - The strains of traditional Christmas carols will fill the air in Pitt Street Mall this festive season every Thursday evening. On from Thursday 1st of December to Thursday 22nd of December.

{FINISHED} Christmas on the green: Hyde Park North - Sydney’s free Christmas concert on the lush lawn of Hyde Park North is perfect for families. Hosted by Jimmy Giggle performers include Justine Clarke, Australian Girls Choir, SplashDance and Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom. On from Saturday 26 November 2016 from 6.30pm to 8.30pm.

David Jones City Store Christmas Windows - Santa has asked a team of polar bears to prepare the presents and load the sleigh for take-off! On from Friday 4 November to Sunday 25 December 2016 8am to 9pm.

QVB Swarovski Christmas Tree - The beloved Swarovski Tree stands at 24 metres over three floors residing under the famous QVB Dome and is Sydney’s tallest Christmas Tree. On from Thursday 27 October 2016 to Sunday 8 January 2017.

St Mary’s Cathedral - The Cathedral will again be the centrepiece of Sydney’s public Christmas celebrations, with Lights of Christmas presented by PAYCE returning to capture the imagination of audiences with a spectacular light and sound show. On from Thursday 8th of December to Sunday 25th of December.

Christmas Trees - Spot a number of Christmas trees around the city at Customs House, in Hyde Park, Town Hall, Martin Place and more!

Crate Christmas Santa - Spot this fun guy in the Rocks next to the Museum of Contemporary Art.

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For more information on City of Sydney's Christmas events, head to their website.

Meet Santa

Santa at David Jones - Visit the Magic Cave and meet Santa. Open various times. More info here.
Santa at Myer - Meet Santa and Mrs Claus at Myer. Open various times. More info here.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids, head to our blog.

Santa's Christmas Spectacular - Wonderland Spiegeltent - Review

Little Miss is a big fan of Christmas this year, pointing at decorations everywhere we go, preparing her Santa list and loving the Christmas chocolates! It's so cute to see little ones' eyes light up at the shiny Christmas lights. Kate and her little ones are starting to enjoy the joys of Christmas too and had a fun time at the Santa's Christmas Spectacular show at Docklands last weekend. Thank you Santa's Christmas Spectacular for having us and Kate for the great review and pics. Catherine xo
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Christmas is the most wonderful time of year and if you have little ones then you have even more reason to be excited about the pending arrival of the big, jolly man in the red suit.  As children, part of the reason why Christmas is so magical is because everything is new and exciting. We get swept up in the mystery of Christmas – the sights, the sounds, the smells and the atmosphere.  

Recapture that sense of wonder this year by visiting Santa’s Christmas Spectacular at Wonderland Spiegeltent Docklands, a special fun-filled adventure for the whole family.

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As we arrived underneath the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel, the poppets were instantly drawn to the brightly coloured carnival rides and games located adjacent to the Wonderland Spiegeltent.  After a quick peek-a-boo game at the magic mirrors, the smell of freshly popped popcorn got the better of Arlo who headed in the direction of the Wonderland Sweet Treats shop.

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With two boxes of hot buttery popcorn being held tightly between little toddler hands, we made our way back over to the Wonderland Spiegeltent where the crowd was being greeted by Head Elf, Shiny who welcomed us into Santa’s magical workshop.  With much anticipation, we found seats in the front row (little ones were given the opportunity to sit on the floor closer to the stage) and with our Santa hats on (a gift from Shiny) we sat down and watched as two cheeky elves (Alan and Steve) got up to mischief before the show officially began.

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Starring an amazing cast (only six in total) of some of Australia's most talented acrobatic characters, the show was quickly underway with an engaging and hilarious story that centres around the beautiful – extremely flexible – Christmas Fairy being transported inside the magic snow globe by accident whilst the team of elves get ready for Santa to make his deliveries.  Will the mischievous elves finish making all the toys in time? Can the beautiful Christmas Fairy escape from the globe?

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The show perfectly engages children and adults alike with a combination of high-energy acrobatic adventures, astounding stunts, tumbling and flying through the air in Santa’s workshop and an upbeat Christmas soundtrack that will have you singing along before you even realise! Miss Macy particularly loved Rudolph spinning around inside his gigantic metal ring whilst Arlo squealed with excitement when Ragdoll Dolly wowed the audience with her foot juggling skills using foot catches and kick-ups to juggle five shiny, red balls and balance an astonishing six cardboard boxes! Wow!

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Of course no Christmas Spectacular would be complete without a visit from Santa himself and he joined Shiny and his team on stage for a beautiful rendition of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” (complete with falling snow) before greeting all the boys and girls after the show with a photo opportunity and small gift (Wizz Fizz, remember that?!).  

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I have to say, experiencing Christmas through the eyes of the poppets is most certainly proving to be my favourite thing about being a parent during Christmas.  Santa’s Christmas Spectacular is a magical show not to be missed, your children will adore it and you will too.

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For more information about Santa's Christmas Spectacular, head to their website.

For more Christmas activities and events, head to our special Christmas post or head to our blog for more ideas.

Santa’s Magical Kingdom Melbourne 2016 - Review

Last Friday, we were invited to the Santa's Magical Kingdom opening evening to celebrate all things Christmas, meet Mrs Claus, Santa and their friends at the Caulfield Racecourse in Melbourne. Kate, her niece Ruby and Ruby's parents attended the event and had a magical time! Santa's Magical Kingdom is on now until Friday 23rd of December on various dates. Enjoy the Kingdom and celebrate Rudolph's birthday this year with Rudolph the Reindeer and his movie star friends the Trolls. For more info re Santa's Magical Kingdom head to their website. Thank you to Kate and Stephen for this great review and photos! Catherine xo
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After four successful years, Santa’s Magical Kingdom has returned to Melbourne to bring the magic of Christmas to life with a Christmas wonderland of activities that will capture the imagination of both children and adults.

Bringing all the wonder and joy of a traditional festive season, Santa’s Magical Kingdom is certainly an event that cannot be missed. Visited by thousands of people from all around Australia, it’s easy to see why Santa’s Magical Kingdom has become a Christmas tradition for many families. 

Perfect for the whole family, I visited last Friday night with my (soon-to-be) nine year old niece Ruby who helped me compile a list of our highlights so that you can get the most out of your visit. 

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* Snowland & Meeting the Snow Queen*

Positioned directly opposite the front entrance, take a stroll through the beautifully decorated Snowland to meet the Snow Queen from Hans Christian Anderson’s classic fairy tale.  Best of all, you can catch the snowflakes (foamy bubbles) fluttering down around you.  Have your photo taken with the Snow Queen, Frosty the Snowman or one of the handsome reindeer.

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* Gingerbread Decorating *

Nothing says Christmas than the smell of gingerbread! Pop into Gingerbread Land (complete with a large gingerbread house and gingerbread making machinery!) to decorate your own gingerbread man.  Miss Ruby had lots of fun dressing up her gingerbread man with icing, mini marshmallows and M&Ms – she had lots of fun eating him too!  Look out for the Christmas trees decorated with gingerbread men and candy canes, way too cute!

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* Christmas Craft Village

Make your own Christmas tree ornaments in the Christmas Craft Village (located right next door to Gingerbread Land).  Using the supplied foam kit, little ones will enjoy piecing all the different elements together to create three fantastic Christmas tree ornaments. These are a great Christmas activity and once complete the ornaments make an ideal Christmas gift for a family member or friend.

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* Christmas Spectacular Circus Show

Roll up, roll up and prepare to be amazed at the 35 minute Silvers Circus Christmas Show – included in your ticket – which begins approximately one hour into your allotted session time.   This energy packed show complete with juggling acts, acrobatics and dare devil stunts as well as adorable puppy dogs (Ruby’s favourite part) will leave you on the edge of your seat, or shrieking with fear (I’m such a scaredy cat!).  Buckets of popcorn are sold within the arena and with a good balance of butter and salt, it was much enjoyed throughout the performance!    

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* Rides

With a fantastic selection of rides that have been carefully chosen to ensure minimal queuing and consistent traffic flow, there is sure to be a ride that will entertain all ages.  Santa's Magical Sleigh Ride appeared to be a big hit with steady lines all night, as did the Super Slide. The 48 metre long slide (located outside, to the rear of the main tent) is the biggest slide in the southern hemisphere.  With eight lanes of gravity fun as you hurtle down the bumpy slide, this is bound to provide lots of thrills and spills. It was far too high for Miss Ruby (and Aunty Kate!) so we opted to a ride on the Ferris Wheel instead which provided us with beautiful views across Caulfield Racecourse.

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* Giant Snow Globe

Based around the well loved concept of a miniature snow globe with flakes tumbling around a picturesque scene, step inside this giant snow globe which recreates that snowy scene we all remember… But this time, you are part of it!  Little ones will love having a snow fight and posing for photos alongside the polar bear, or perhaps even riding it like a horse+. (+Not recommended!) 

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* Mrs Claus Land and Santa photos

Write a letter to Santa, meet Mrs Claus in Mrs Claus' Land and have your photo taken with Santa himself on the day too!

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For more info on Santa's Magical Kingdom, head to their website

For more ideas on what to do with the kids this Christmas or these coming holidays head to our Melbourne Christmas list or to our blog.

Myer Melbourne Christmas Windows 2016 - One Christmas Eve

We know Christmas is coming when the magical Myer Christmas Windows have been lit up in Melbourne's Bourke Street Mall.

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

This year's beautifully animated production is based on the new children’s book, ‘One Christmas Eve’ by author Corinne Fenton and illustrator Marjorie Crosby-Fairall.

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

The story is set on Christmas Eve in 1968 in St Kilda and features 3D adaptions of some of Melbourne’s most iconic sites including Luna Park, The Palais Theatre and the Sidney Myer Music Bowl.

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

The Myer Giftorium and Santaland are also now opened for some personalised gift shopping and Santa meet, greet & photos. You can grab a copy of 'One Christmas Eve' from the store.

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

Photo credit: Kel from Melbourne Minor

The Myer Windows are now open and will close on Thursday, 5 January 2017 at 1am. The Windows are open from 7:30am daily, finishing with the last show at 1:00am (with sound stopping from 10:00pm daily).

Thank you Kel from Melbourne Minor for the gorgeous photos of the Myer Windows.

For a full list of activities and events this festive season, head to our Christmas lineup.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids this Christmas season, head to our blog.