To celebrate the arrival of winter and the Queen’s Birthday long weekend, Falls Creek and Dinner Plain will kick-off the season with firework displays, live music and if the snow gods play nice it will be full steam ahead for skiing, snowboarding, tobogganing and snow play.
For the seventh time, Falls Creek will again host its annual Falls Creek Sled Dog Classic on 4 and 5 August which is tagged as the premier alpine sled dog race in Australia – the only sled dog race through an Alpine Village. This year, 30 sled dog teams will be seen racing a 5km course through the Falls Creek Village under lights.
Held over two days (11 and 12 August), The Annual Dinner Plain Sled Dog Challenge showcases the top dogs of sled dog racing in Australia and is unique in being the first Australian snow-based race of its kind. More than 80 mushers (dog team drivers) and in excess of 350 sled dogs are expected to compete at this year’s event.
Those wanting a bit more action than just watching from the sidelines can jump on a sled dog rides with through snow-kissed landscapes behind a team of gorgeous huskies at Mt Hotham, Mt Buller, Mt Baw Baw.
Mt Baw Baw is home to Alpine dingoes Warragul and Rowdy at the new Dingo Resource Centre. Visitors can learn about the dingoes, the critically endangered Baw Baw Frog, Leadbeater's Possum and other species of plants and animals that occupy the mountain.
Lake Mountain’s Burton Riglet Park provides a safe and encouraging environment for 3 to 6 year olds wanting to learn how to ski and snowboard. New this year, the park is offering the Learn To Ride program to 7 to 14 year olds and those progressing on from the Burton Riglet Park program.
Mt Hotham alpine adventurers can ease into dinner and take a guided snowshoe adventure at sunset and end the walk with a warming, authentic French cheese fondue as part of a three-course dinner, all in a tipi.
Nights come alive at Mt Buller in July and August for the Weekend Twilight Sessions. On Saturdays and Sundays from 7 July to 26 August guests can ski and snowboard or hit the village toboggan slope under lights until 8.30pm. Après ski fans can enjoy the magical winter wonderland from 5pm with crackling fires, live music and toasted marshmallows.
Those wanting to relax well-used muscles or melt away city stresses can head to Dinner Plain’s Onsen Retreat + Spa featuring a Japanese-inspired 40 degree outdoor Onsen perfect for bathing and restoration after skiing and snowboarding. The Spa also offers beauty and body treatments, massage, an indoor pool, gym and group fitness classes for a complete wellbeing experience amid mountains and gumtrees of the high country.
Adventurers not wanting to miss a minute off the snow can book a Ski-In Ski-Out tepee at Mt Stirling, adjacent to Mt Buller. The Alpine Winter Camp will complete the ultimate overnight stay with an Insta-worthy value to boot.
QT at Falls Creek offers guests boutique luxury to the snowy slopes and rolling green hills of Falls Creek. The 39 designer apartments offer uninterrupted views, access to the main ski runs and the chance to escape to the snow in style.
No snow required
Those wandering towns and cities can include these on their list where no snow is required:
- Ballarat Winter Festival, Ballarat – experience winter in a city setting. Highlights include Sovereign Hill’s Winter Wonderlights and pop-up ice skating rink in the heart of Ballarat CBD.
- Warratina Lavendar Farm, Yarra Valley - Those wanting to take a stroll in the gardens can take in the acres of lavender, breathe the fresh country air and enjoy the display gardens and views of distant hills across the Yarra Ranges at Warratina.
- Winter Blues Festival, Echuca – Come July 26, music fans will come together to celebrate the country’s best Blues musicians playing at the historic Port of Echuca’s heritage precinct and surrounding venues. ‘
- MoMA at NGV: 130 Years of Modern and Contemporary Art, Melbourne - Opening 9 June and running till 7 October 2018, National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) will be the sole international venue for the Masterworks from The Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) New York exhibition. Visitors will see the works by internationally renowned artists like Paul Cézanne, Salvador Dalí, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Lyubov Popova and Vincent van Gogh.
- Winter Night Market Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne - Wednesday nights in Melbourne are set to warm up as the Winter Night Market returns to the iconic Queen Victoria Market every Wednesday from 6 June to 29 August 2018. Visitors to the night market can escape from the chill with more than 30 global street food and drink stalls, 50 specialty and artisan stores, plus a weekly programme of quirky entertainers and some of Melbourne’s best live music performers.
For more winter events, visit www.visitmelbourne.com/june