Beautiful lights, a fantastic selection of Christmas drinks, mouth-watering desserts, and other festive delicacies are sure to make you feel warm and happy inside. After all, Christmas is that time of the year when everyone looks forward to the holidays, spreading the cheer and taking in the good vibes. However, this time of the year can sometimes be especially difficult for international students who are away from their homes and loved ones for the first time.
But, you don’t have to mope during the holiday season if you’re a student studying abroad in Melbourne. Because, we’ve got ways to spread the Christmas cheer and help you ring in the holiday season.
Sure, it may not be the winter wonderland that you are used to, but what Melbourne lacks in snow, the city makes up with barbecues, fresh seafood, unique-tasting drinks, and festive lights. Whether you choose to visit the malls and markets for inspiration on Christmas gifts or head down to a Christmas tree farm to get your own Christmas tree, here’re some things to do this December:
In the summer holidays of December, visit some of the markets in Melbourne like Queen Victoria Market to shop for handmade gifts that will make your loved ones smile. For more unique gifts, you can always take the tram out to Rose St Artists’ Market (open on Saturday and Sunday) – the market has gained popularity since 2003 and is modelled off similar markets in cities like London, Berlin, and New York.
Gathering some of the city’s talented artists and designers to display their wares and talk about all things handmade, you can weave your way through the crowds and head into the warehouse for a variety of handmade fashion, jewellery products, and even food for sale. Many artists there are also open to being commissioned for bespoke items that you would like them to design, so be sure to chat them up if you are looking for something specific to gift to your loved ones this Christmas!
No one can get enough of Christmas light animations unless you are the Grinch, and Melbourne boasts some of the best we’ve seen. Follow Santa, his elves, and all the Christmas magic into an immersive animated projection show across the beautiful facades of St Paul’s Cathedral, Chapter House, Melbourne Town Hall, and more.
You can also head down to Federation Square and be amazed by the beautifully decorated Christmas tree, visit Santa’s workshop, or bask in the joyous atmosphere with music performances around you.
While the convenience of a plastic Christmas tree can be rather alluring, this year, you should get into the festive spirit by opting for a real Christmas tree instead! You don’t have to get a big one; if it fits into your student apartment and you still have space to move around, then all is well! Christmas tree farms are scattered throughout Melbourne, so fret not if you can’t lug the tree home on your own – your options for purchase or delivery are plentiful.
The fresh scent of natural pine will have you feeling more festive than ever, and you can invite your friends over for an intimate Christmas celebration too! If you’re celebrating this Christmas with a group of friends, you can consider doing a ‘potluck’. Besides asking guests to bring a traditional Christmas dish from their home country, you can also get them to bring festive dishes that start with the letter of their first name. If you are living in student housing in Melbourne, like Y Suites, then there may also be Christmas festivities, dinners and celebrations that you’ll be invited to. So, be sure to attend them and not coop yourself up in your room!
Christmas is a time for you to come together with your friends and loved ones to share the joy of the festive season. Apart from the above-mentioned Christmas things to do in Melbourne, the city also has other intriguing sights, sounds, and celebrations that you can immerse in.
Suppose you’d like to do something more wholesome and give back to the community this Christmas. In that case, you can always donate to specific Christmas charities in Melbourne or volunteer your time with The Salvation Army on Christmas Day.
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