Lunar New Year in Victoria is vibrant and noisy, celebrated by many different communities within Melbourne's multicultural city and surrounding suburbs.

Victoria is open to people of all cultures and communities and there are many opportunities to join the festivities and recognise the contribution to a diverse and rich culture that the diaspora which celebrates the Lunar New Year brings to the State.

Melbourne will light up in 2018 to welcome the Year of the Dog, with family and friends coming together across the city to share traditional festivities including firecrackers, feasting, light installations, lion dances, and street performances. 

It is a time to to keep traditions alive to remind us what is truly important in life, family and loved ones - especially those who have made it possible for you to come to Melbourne and Victoria to pursue an education.

Some events to enjoy during Lunar New Year in Melbourne

women dancing at Lunar New Year

Lunar New Year at the Melbourne Star

1 February to 2 March

Get 40% off Melbourne Star Observation Wheel flights. Use promo code LUNARNY40 when purchasing your tickets online to get 40% off single general admission adult and child tickets. Valid until 2 March 2018. Go to www.melbournestar.com to book.

NGV Triennial

Until 15th April, 10am to 5pm daily

Free Entry

NGV Triennial presents the work of over 100 artists and designers including Xu Zhen and Chinese fashion designer Guo Pei.

Featuring the work of over 100 artists and designers from 32 countries, NGV Triennial surveys the world of art and design, including cutting edge technologies, architecture, animation, performance, film, painting, drawing, fashion design, tapestry and sculpture.

Visitors have an opportunity to look at the world and its past, present and future through the eyes of some of the most creative minds working today.

Highlights include Xu Zhen’s remarkable and imposing reclining Buddha with replicas of various Greco-Roman sculptures, and an installation of elaborate, Marie-Antoinette inspired gowns from Chinese fashion designer Guo Pei’s latest haute couture collection.

Chinese language guided tours are available by appointment, phone 03 8620 2222.

Connect to the NGV WeChat account for Chinese translated exhibition information or visit ngv.melbourne

Chinese New Year at Vicinity Centre – DFO South Wharf

1, 18 and 24 February, 11am to 2pm

Over three afternoons, Vicinity Centre will be home to oodles of Chinese New Year fun for the whole family to enjoy. Acrobats, Lion and Dragon Dancers will grace the center as well as traditional arts and crafts for kids, and a meet and greet with Caishen, the Chinese god of wealth and fortune. Visitors will also have the opportunity to have their picture taken with The God of Wealth, God of Luck and the God of Fortune.

LEGOLAND Discovery Centre

3 to 28 February

Experience Lunar New Year at LEGOLAND Discovery Centre. To celebrate the Year of the Dog we have some special activities:

  • Themed photo opportunities
  • See mini dragons, and mini China Town in MINILAND
  • Build your own year of the dog mini build

Purchase the Melbourne Big Ticket which includes entry to LEGOLAND Discovery Centre Melbourne and SEA LIFE Melbourne and quote 'Year of the Dog' at admissions this February to receive a small build it yourself LEGO Dog. See instore for details.

Free LEGO red packets for first 500 LEGO Shop purchases made during February. Book tickets on the LEGOLANDn website.

Zodiac Spectacular – The Atrium, Crown Towers

8 February – 5 March

Visit the stunning Zodiac Spectacular in The Atrium, Crown Towers from 8 February – 5 March.

See more at crownmelbourne.com.au/lny

Fire Dragon Show, Crown River Walk

12 to 27 February, every 30 minutes from 8pm to 12am

Watch dragons come to life along the Crown Riverwalk

See more at crownmelbourne.com.au/lny

New Year’s Countdown at Queensbridge Square

15 February, 6pm to 12.30am

The New Year Countdown at Queensbridge Square will feature traditional Chinese dance and cultural activities, music and complimentary Chinese dumplings. The stage performances will include Kung Fu, Dragon Dance, youth performances, as well as Chinese musical instruments. There will also be a special broadcast of the marvelous official Chinese New Year National Television Program, a highlight for tourists, international students and locals alike.

Lunar New Year at the Zoo! 

Melbourne Zoo, Werribee Open Range Zoo and Healesville Sanctuary

15 to 28 February, 9am to 5pm

Melbourne Zoo, Werribee Open Range Zoo and Healesville Sanctuary!

The wildlife at Melbourne Zoo, Healesville Sanctuary and Werribee Open Range Zoo can’t wait to celebrate Lunar New Year with you!

Bring your family to meet our family of wildlife wishing your own zodiac animal a happy Lunar New Year and see our properties dresses with beautiful red lanterns.

Take a photo of yourself with the lanterns hanging at one of our Zoo entrances or a photo with our animals at one of the Zoos and send to the Zoos Victoria WeChat backstage. Three entries will receive a special gift afterwards.

See information in Chinese on the Zoo website www.zoo.org.au/chinese

Chinese New Year’s Day Celebration at Queensbridge Square

16 February, 6pm to 10pm

The special program will include performances of many different styles, genres and forms and feature more than 20 organizations comprising of 300 performers. Performances will include a flash mob of 300 performers, martial arts, traditional Chinese instruments, dragon dance, lion dance, youth bands, children’s dance, magic performances and traditional singing.

Chinese New Year in Southgate

16 February, 11.30am to 1.30pm

As locals and visitors unite to celebrate Chinese New Year, Southgate will welcome the ‘Year of the Dog’ and wish for a prosperous twelve months ahead with display light installations, traditional lion dances and other cultural performances.

Chinese New year in the Docklands - Melbourne Star Observation Wheel:

16 February

Red Envelope Gifting: It’s your lucky day! Don’t miss out on Lunar New Year Friday, 16 February where guests will receive Red Envelope giveaways full of vouchers and special offers.

White-Night at Chinese New Year

17 February, 6.30pm to 2:00am

The celebrations will continue into the early hours on White-Night as Melbourne lights up once again with colorful displays and projections throughout the city. The Queensbridge celebrations will feature food from some of Melbourne’s best Chinese restaurants and food trucks as guests enjoy several performances from Chinese youth groups. Be sure to head down early as this event is sure to attract a crowd.

Hawkers Bazaar at Crown Riverwalk

16, 17, 18 February, 11am to 11pm

Experience our famous Hawker’s Bazaar on the Crown Riverwalk from 11am-11pm on Friday 16 – Sunday 18 February and immerse yourself in cultural performances, activities, food stalls and more.  Plus, don’t miss the vibrant fireworks display at 9.45pm on Saturday 17February

Chinese New year in the Docklands - Melbourne Star Observation Wheel

17 and 18 February, 24 and 25 February, 11.00am to 3.00pm

Melbourne’s iconic Ferris wheel will become a Chinese cultural hub over the New Year period where traditional performances, dance workshops, Children’s activities and more will run throughout the 2018 Chinese New Year celebrations. All the fortunes of the season. Be enchanted by the Blessing of the Lion Dancers, take part in our cultural workshops, and don’t forget to collect your Red Envelope gift!

Blessing of the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel: Be there as the Lion Dancers bless the Star on Lunar New Year, Saturday, 17 February commencing 11.30am.

Dragon Dancers: Invoke luck and good fortune with our traditional Dragon Dance event

Cultural Workshops: Be introduced to the beauty and wisdom of one of the world’s great traditions

Cultural Performance at the Queen Victoria Market

17 February, 10.30am to 1.00pm

18 February 11am to 1.30pm

The Queen Victoria Market will be showered in traditional Chinese dance and culture with live performances by Lion and dragon dance troupes.

See find out more on the Chinese New Year Melbourne website

Docklands Library

17 and 18 February, 10.00am to 12noon

The Docklands library will come to life with cultural performances, traditional Chinese arts and crafts, Chinese tea ceremony and Children’s storytelling.

See more on the Chinese New Year website

Chinese Cultural Kaleidoscope

18 February, 23 February, 6.30pm to 10.30pm

24 February 6.30pm to 11.55pm)

Over two wonderful weekends, Queensbridge Square will become a Chinese cultural hub, covering Chinese hand crafts, language, food stalls, cooking demonstrations, traditional dance and performances, Tai Chi, Chinese Square Dancing, Chinese waist drum and traditional tea ceremonies. Guests will then have the opportunity to have their photo taken with Caishen, the Chinese God of Wealth and Prosperity.

See more on the Chinese New Year website

International Student Chinese New Year Party

18 February, 7pm to 10pm

Melbourne has one of the largest populations of Chinese students outside of China. The FCA will host a celebration for these students that will include cultural performances from various student groups, a cross-cultural riddle solving competition and last, but certainly not least, a Chinese dumpling buffet. Students will also have the opportunity to have their picture taken with Caishen, the Chinese God of Wealth and Prosperity.

This event is free to attend, however, limited to 100 people. Bookings are essential and are on a first come, first serve basis. For bookings please email liangqing0815@hotmail.com or call 0432 026 602

Point Cook Lunar New Year Festival

Stockland Point Cook, Town Centre Main & Murnong Street, Point Cook

24 February, 12:00pm - 9:30pm

The event will showcase the multicultural diversity in and around Point Cook through food, music, performances and activities. Join us to celebrate the Year of the Dog with:

  • All-day live performances
  • Fireworks display
  • Lion dances
  • Food stalls and food trucks
  • Jumping castles
  • Face painting
  • Lantern making
  • Chinese art and calligraphy
  • Traditional performances

Find out more on the Wyndham website.

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra - East Meets West Chinese New Year Concert

24 February, 7.30pm to 9.30pm

Celebrate the Year of the Dog in a colourful and joyous one-night-only event showcasing Melbourne’s diverse culture.

This Chinese New Year, join the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, maestro Lü Jia and a stellar cast of guest artists to celebrate the Year of the Dog.

One of China’s most celebrated violinists, Lu Siqing, will perform with the MSO for the first time since 2014 as soloist in one of China’s most famous orchestral works, the lush and romantic Butterfly Lovers concerto. Written by composers Chen Gang and He Zhahao in 1959, it is the perfect inclusion in this concert.

Revel in the textured sounds of traditional Chinese instruments, new works and world-class musicians in the heart of Melbourne, a city with a rich Chinese-Australian history, worthy of celebration.

MSO’s annual Chinese New Year celebration has become a highlight on the concert calendar, celebrating the city’s cultural diversity.

Presented in Association with Arts Centre Melbourne.
Supported by the Li Family Trust.
Find out more at https://www.mso.com.au/whats-on/2018/chinese-new-year/

Closing Ceremony

Featuring Chinese Women’s Square Dance Competition and Lantern Parade

25 February, 6pm to 9pm

More than 200 Chinese Square dancers will compete in a 90-minute competition along the Queensbridge Square that will showcase the immensely popular street dance practiced around China. The day will conclude with a Lantern Parade featuring more than 300 people, in a spectacle that marks the closure of the festival.

Chinese Painting, Calligraphy and Paper Cutting Exhibition

125 Adderley St, Port Melbourne.

25 February, 2 to 4pm

A collection of traditional and modern Chinese paintings and paper cutting works held in the Showroom at the Chinese Museum in the CBD.

Chinese New Year Gala Concert at the Palais Theatre, St Kilda, Melbourne.

28 February, 7.00 – 10.00pm

The He Nan Province Arts Company and the Shao Lin Monk Chinese Culture and Martial Arts Academy will headline the spectacle supported by local community arts group. The concert is attended annually by more than 2500 people and is a highlight of the Chinese New Year Celebrations in Melbourne.

Pining Strings, Lingering Harmony at the Malthouse Theatre, Southbank

3 March, 7.00 – 9.30pm

This classic piece of Chinese theatre featuring beautiful music from ancient instruments, the Gu’ Qin, the violin and the didgeridoo. This adaptation will be a multicultural spectacle, performed in Chinese Mandarin with English subtitles.

For more inforomation or to purchase tickets visit malthousetheatre.com.au/whats-on/pining-strings