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What Things Do With Melbourne’s Christmas Lights And Decorations?

Now, more than ever, we could all use a joyful Christmas. As more and more holiday events have been postponed or cancelled in recent years, these uniquely creative decorations and homes have provided a welcome dose of holiday cheer.

This year, you and your holiday companions can relax thanks to Christmas Light Search. It's the most wonderful time of the year, so put your worries aside and join in the revelry. Get in the car with some friends or family, turn on the GPS, and drive around looking for the lights in your area.

The Christmas lights in Melbourne are truly unparalleled. During this holiday season, be sure to check out the Melbourne Central Business District and Docklands' best Christmas displays.

View the festively decorated trees in Bourke Street Mall, Chinatown, and Queensbridge, and take a picture in front of the dazzling lights and impressive projections.

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Melbourne's Christmas Lights And Decorations

Across the city, Melbourne Christmas lights get bigger and better every year. There are plenty of locations throughout the city that will make you stop and gawk with wide-eyed wonder at the giant Christmas trees and glittering lights.

But it’s not just the city streets that get fascinated at this time of year. We’ve scoped out the suburbs where the residents have been planning their decorations for months and who could give Clark Griswold a run for his money. Here are just a few of the biggest and brightest Christmas lights to gawk at this December.

Christmas Square

Make merry at Melbourne’s Christmas wonderland at Federation Square. Christmas comes to life with festive decorations aplenty and the city’s iconic 16-metre light-up tree. The dazzling structure lights up with a gorgeous festive glow like the sunsets.

Pop in to visit the big man himself and get a free photo at Santa’s Workshop from 13 November.

New additions to the square include sparkling neon trees, giant bell swings, beautiful baubles and other glittering new decorations from 21 November.

Visitors are encouraged to check-in at Fed Square and follow Safe practices at all times.

Head to Christmas Square at Federation Square to marvel at the giant 16-metre tall LED Christmas Tree. The dazzling structure lights up with a gorgeous festive glow like the sunsets. New additions to the square include sparkling neon trees, giant bell swings and beautiful baubles. See the tree from 12 November and the glittering new decorations from 21 November.

Coleman Parade

Tucked away in the quiet streets of Kew, many sparkling & synchronised lights await. Melbourne’s long-standing computerised light show in the city is, no surprise, back on again. Eighty thousand lights dance to music—tune your car radio in or watch from the footpath. 

The show runs nightly until Christmas day. So walk around the streets, and you might even find a few other displays too.

Hamer Hall Projections And Arts Centre Laser Show

Check out the newest addition to the city's renowned projections programme, as the riverside façade of Hamer Hall is illuminated with festive flora and fauna. Starting on November 12, catch the sunset from Princes Bridge. Then, on December 1st, see the magnificent Arts Centre Spire become a blazing laser Christmas tree.

In a new addition to the city's renowned projections programme, the riverside facade of Hamer Hall will be illuminated with festive flora and fauna. The best time to visit Princes Bridge is after sunset. Then, for a truly unforgettable evening, you should also check out the projections at Melbourne Town Hall and Chapter House Lane.

Iconic Laneways

During these festive weeks, the city’s beloved laneways are lit up with gorgeous streams of Christmas lights. Take a stroll through Centre place, Manchester lane, Degraves street and Hardware lane to enjoy boutique shopping and dine alfresco under the lights.

Lance Close

A sparkly and funky display that’s been a local’s favourite for years. Come stand at the fence, gaze down the drive, and spot the singing elf, decorations, and glowing Christmas characters. There are heaps to see at this house, and if you look long enough, you may even spot Santa with his reindeer.

Chapter House Lane Projections

On November 12th, nightly projections will begin transforming this city arcade into a winter wonderland. Visit St. Paul's Cathedral, the Chapter House, and Torrens University to take in the vibrant displays that cover their facades.

See the happy ending unfold before your eyes as snowflakes fall from the sky. You should know that you won't be able to see the projections on December 17, 18, or 24. Entering Chapter House Lane is like stepping into a European plaza. Each night, the facades of St. Paul's Cathedral, Chapter House, and Torrens University are transformed into a winter wonderland thanks to the projections on Chapter House Lane.

Experience a 270-degree animated projection show across the stunning facades of St. Paul's Cathedral, Chapter House, and Torrens University as you journey with Santa through a winter wonderland. Get the most out of the evening by also checking out the projections at Hamer Hall and Melbourne Town Hall.

You can rest assured that the Chapter House Lane Christmas Projections will be held in a secure environment with a check-in desk, vaccination records, and a capped attendance. Therefore, there might be a brief wait during peak times.

Elevation Boulevard

Located on the edge of Melbourne, this property warps classic Christmas lights with miniature Christmas themes. Enjoy not only the music and lights but also the handmade Christmas wonderland village that sits in the front window—running nightly to midnight, until Friday 7 January.

Southbank

Watch the sunset from Princes Bridge, and stroll along the Yarra as Christmas shines and shimmers against the water. Then, climb inside the big new golden Present Box for a perfect install-moment, and wait for the giant Merry Christmas letters to light up on Hamer Hall. 

Princes Bridge is also a newly added spot for the Christmas Projections, so make sure you stick around to see the static display from 9 pm.

Grange Road

The famous ‘Get On The Beers 2020’ house is back for 2021. But what new hit do they have planned for this year? You’ll have to come to check it out for yourself. Raising awareness for breast cancer and taking donations plus hamper raffles. So watch the lights come to life and dance to the beats.

A favourite for Bayside families. Christmas light display in Sandringham, Victoria!

Stunning Christmas lights programmed to dance to music while spreading a little cheer at the end of 2020. Raising awareness for breast cancer and taking donations PLUS hamper raffles! 100% non-profit.

Knightsbridge Avenue 

A host who clearly enjoys the holiday season has put together a tidy and attractive display, complete with plenty of festive colour and interesting ornaments. It's worth your time to check out all of Altona Meadows because there are some wonderful properties there.

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Melbourne Town Hall

In Melbourne, it is customary to decorate Town Hall for the holiday season. You can admire the nutcracker soldiers, the town bow, and the themed flower beds during the day. Then, beginning on November 15th, come back later in the evening to witness breathtaking projections that illuminate the entire building.

Melbourne's most well-known Christmas projections can be found at Town Hall, where the countdown to Christmas can be witnessed by thousands. View the Nutcracker soldiers by day and the town hall bow and themed flower beds with glowing projections at night.

Intend for it to shine! The iconic Christmas projections of the city are back at Melbourne Town Hall this year, with five new stunning decorations and a countdown to the holiday clock. Make it a memorable evening by checking out both the Chapter House Lane and Hamer Hall projections.

The Giant Reindeer

The gorgeous golden reindeer returns to Harbour Esplanade on 12 November in all its sparkling glory. You can find more unmissable decorations in Docklands. In addition, there's a present box dancefloor at District Docklands. 

The iconic Merry Christmas letters across Harbour Esplanade. Plus traditional crackers along New Quay Promenade and Victoria Harbour Promenade.

Middlesex Court 

Squiggly flashing tubes of lights weave around the pavement and up the walls at this fun and classic display in Cranbourne North. Tucked away at the end of the court, this is a display that all ages will appreciate. 

Meet the friendly owners who give out sweets (if you ask nicely). Lights dazzle the entire length of the property and accompany various Christmas scenes located throughout the driveway and garden.

Shaftsbury Street

This store owner has the biggest heart of anyone I know when it comes to Christmas. You'll be pleasantly surprised by the creativity of Coburg's holiday display. As you approach the driveway, you'll be struck by the meticulous preparation; it's a miniature version of a winter wonderland.

Come see Santa's workshop, the sleigh, the reindeer, the bears, and the moving Christmas train in the Light Show.

Evan Walker Bridge, Southbank

The footbridge is a spot that always offers the most breathtaking views, and for Christmas, it hosts a spectacular star-studded installation that will bathe the area in a whole new light. Afterwards, capture a magical animated Elfie Selfie at Southbank Promenade.

This footbridge always offers the best river views, but from 26 November, you’ll be seeing it in a whole new light. Visit after dark for a spectacular star-studded installation. Then wander over to Southbank Promenade to capture a magical animated Elfie Selfie.

Snap a selfie with an elfie to unlock a magical Christmas world and create an animated augmented reality Christmas card to share with all your friends. Find Merry at Fed Square, Jingles in Bourke Street Mall and Jolly at Southbank. Can you get a pic with all three?

Bourke Street Mall

This Christmas, everyone’s favourite outdoor mall, Bourke Street Mall, is dressed to the nines. Discover dazzling decorations, take your place on Santa’s throne, and have your picture taken with Melbourne’s quintessential Nutcracker soldiers. 

State Library Victoria

Experience a dramatic transformation of this well-known structure as the result of an incredible light show. The State Library of Victoria will host the opening night of this year's Christmas Projections with a special presentation titled A Melbourne Night Before Christmas, written by Marieke Hardy and narrated by Lee Lin Chin.

State Library Victoria, originally known as the Melbourne Public Library and founded in 1854, is the oldest public library in Australia and one of the earliest free public libraries in the world.

The Library is a cultural icon and a well-known landmark in Melbourne, housed in a magnificent 19th-century building with some of the city's most stunning historic interiors. The majestic octogonal domed ceiling of the La Trobe Reading Room is a particular highlight.

You can see the evolution of Victoria over the past 150 years reflected in the library's collections, which include Ned Kelly's full suit of armour as well as over two million books, hundreds of thousands of images, newspapers, maps, and manuscripts, and tonnes of audio, video, and digital content.

The grassy lawn outside the library is frequently used as a venue for concerts and busking acts.

The library's galleries host both permanent and temporary exhibits. Moreover, there are free guided tours available.

Boyd Close

Formerly the big redtreeonaintree, they have relocated for 2021: new location but the same great display. You'll find roof decorations, blow-ups, wooden cutouts, lights, plus a life-size Santa sleigh. Almost every inch of the property is decorated—there are lots of displays around Mooroolbark, so make an evening of it.  

Hidden Laneway Decorations

The city’s iconic laneways will be aglow with twinkling streams of Christmas decorations during the festival. Be amazed by the sea of lights in Degraves Street, then dine under glittering bells in Hardware Lane. Finally, make a beeline to snap a selfie among dreamy hanging foliage in Meyers Place, or have a photo sesh with fairy lights in Manchester Lane and Centre Place.

Docklands

Docklands, a shopping and artistic hub, will be bustling with holiday spirit. The stunning Giant Reindeer on Harbour Esplanade is a new addition that is sure to be popular this season. Take a stroll below it to take in the mosaic support structure and bright illumination. You can't have a proper Christmas Instagram without it. Harbour Esplanade in Docklands also features gift boxes, giant candy canes, and "Merry Christmas" greeting cards.

The District is Docklands' cultural epicentre. Visit Australia's first immersive "trick art" gallery ArtVo, filled with optical illusions and larger-than-life murals, or discover the future playground that is Imaginaria.

Experience the newest Hollywood releases in style at the world's most cutting-edge Hoyts theatre, where every seat is a power recliner equipped with the most advanced technology available. After that, stop by Archie Brother's Cirque Electriq for some food and bowling, try your hand at dodgem cars, or play some arcade games, or take a spin around the ice at O'Brien Icehouse.

If you get hungry, you can choose from more than 30 restaurants, including Carl's Jr., China Bar, Urban Alley Brewing, Dohtonbori Okonomiyaki, KFC, and Subway. Come spend the day with us wandering the open-air laneways of The District, where there is truly something for everyone.

The Queen Victoria Market

Queen Victoria Market offers a visual feast of decorations for your Christmas shopping, with stalls decked with gold stars, wreaths, Christmas trees and garlands. Take your family snap in one of the fun cut-outs and see if you can spot Santa, who will be roaming the markets on 22 and 23 December. If you miss the man himself, never fear – Santa’s throne in the Queen Street Plaza makes for an equally beautiful photo opp.

Queen Vic Market provides an authentic shopping experience right in the heart of the city. The market is home to hundreds of small businesses and is the largest open-air market in the Southern Hemisphere.

As well as a large range of fresh produce, you can discover your new favourite cheese in the Dairy Hall. Sit and enjoy a meal at one of the many cafes, or grab a coffee and croissant to go.

The huge range of specialty shopping includes locally-made art, clothing, homewares, jewellery, skincare, plants, books, pet supplies and flowers.

The market is proudly plastic bags and straw-free. If you don't bring your bag, basket or shopping trolley, you can buy a reusable bag or hire a trolley. Mobility assistance is available Friday to Sunday outside the deli on Cherry Street. If you can’t make it to the market, shop online with same-day delivery to more than 150 suburbs for fresh produce and more. 

 Middlesex Court 

Squiggly flashing tubes of lights weave around the pavement and up the walls at this fun and classic display in Cranbourne North. Tucked away at the end of the court, this is a display that all ages will appreciate. 

Meet the friendly owners who give out sweets (if you ask nicely). Lights dazzle the entire length of the property and accompany various Christmas scenes located throughout the driveway and garden. 

Crown Melbourne

The free Crown Christmas Display can be found in the Crown Towers Atrium, where a six-story Christmas Tree is lit up in a rainbow of colours and an animatronic character from a well-known Christmas carol can be spotted. Seeing the Crown Christmas display is one of the best free things to do in Melbourne this holiday season.

Starting on November 29, 2021, and running through January 3, 2022, you can enjoy the Crown Towers Christmas Spectacular. If you've been to the Crown Christmas Spectacular before, you'll notice that this year is very different. The decorations will only be displayed, and there will be no show played, in order to avoid crowding in the area. The display will show the iconic six-story high Christmas tree along with the encased Christmas characters, all open and ready to be viewed by visitors.

It's true that the six-story Christmas tree won't be lit up, but each jewelled egg will feature an animated character from a well-known holiday song.

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Conclusion

Immerse yourself in the magic of Christmas in Melbourne. The city transforms into a wonderland of light, sparkles, and decorations during the Christmas Festival. Many of the beloved favourites return, and there are also plenty of newcomers to admire. So wander the city, discover the sights, and snap your Christmas memories. 

FAQs About Christmas Lights And Decorations

The Christmas makeover at Melbourne Town Hall is a highly anticipated tradition. During the day, you’ll see nutcracker soldiers, perfectly cultivated flower beds, and large decorations. But it’s in the evening that the real magic happens, with the Christmas Projections bathing the building in beautiful static displays.

Sam's Christmas Lights, or as locals refer to them, "Tennis Court Christmas lights", are by far one of the most popular Christmas light displays in Melbourne. Sam is super passionate about his Christmas light displays and certainly goes the extra mile to make sure visitors are left spellbound.

Visit Santa’s House, get the ultimate Instagram shot in the Giant Christmas Bauble, check out City of Melbourne’s 16 m-tall LED Christmas Tree, watch the nightly Christmas Tree Light Shows projections and light show and much much more.

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