Our top ten holiday kids activities
With restrictions easing in Victoria just in time for the school holidays, we’ve put together our top ten list of activities for you to enjoy with your kids – from outdoor adventures to plenty of stay-at-home options. If you’re going to an activity, please check the website in case of last-minute changes.
We had to put this at the top of the list. What better excuse to head back into Melbourne’s CBD than a visit to the Queen Vic Market for a day of doughy and sugary deliciousness. Savour mouthwatering hot jam donuts, chocolate-filled donuts, vegan and gluten-free donuts, churro bowls, 1950s-style milkshakes and more. Also enjoy live entertainment, delicious food (other than donuts) and activities including the much-loved donut-eating competition.
When: July 4
Cost: Free entry (pay for food and drinks)
Learn more at: qvm.com.au/whatson/donut-festival
Image: Queen Victoria Market
The Winter Village has returned again to Federation Square, creating a pop-up winter wonderland perfect for the whole family. Famous for its igloo village and tents you can hire for yourself, there’s plenty to experience including ice-skating, magical snow showers, food trucks and pop-up bars – all with the city skyline as your backdrop.
When: now until August 29
Cost: Free entry (paid experiences)
Learn more at: thewintervillage.com.au/melbourne
Image: The Winter Village
Continuing the city vibe is The Melbourne Magic Festival, the largest festival of its kind in the southern hemisphere comprising more than 150 performances of 35 different shows held across the CBD. Be amazed as Melbourne becomes a magical hub with special events, workshops and live shows for everyone from child-friendly to adults only.
When: June 28 to July 10
Cost: Bookings online
Learn more at: melbournemagicfestival.com
Image: Melbourne Magic Festival
Celebrate the holidays and Christmas in July with a visit to one of Victoria’s most loved attractions, Sovereign Hill. From late June to mid July, Sovereign Hill becomes the quintessential white Christmas village, complete with colourful decorations and Christmas trees lining the streets. By day you can enjoy all of the fun activities Sovereign Hill is famous for, but by night the village comes alive with colourful projections, music, performances and even snowfalls.
When: June 26 to July 18
Cost: Bookings online
Learn more at: winterwonderlights.sovereignhill.com.au
If you’ve got a young one and you’re looking for something a bit different to fill in the day, why not head to Geelong and visit MOPA. Regarded as one of the world’s best children’s museums, MOPA offers exhibitions and activities specifically designed for children aged 1-7 based on play-based learning and creative exploration. You can book into one of three sessions held throughout the day, with all art supplies included in the cost of the ticket.
When: 7 days a week
Cost: Bookings online (infants are free)
Learn more at: museumofplayandart.com.au
Image: Museum of Play and Art
Who doesn’t like cooking cupcakes or cookies? And getting an extra reward for the best decoration! Get the kids involved by firstly helping bake a batch of cupcakes or cookies, and then set them loose to see who can come up with the the most amazingly decorated treat of the day. The winning decorator – as judged by a family member, friend or neighbour – gets to choose the next activity such as a special movie to watch that evening.
Here’s a great activity to get the kids active and creative at the same time. Have them take a walk around your garden or local park and pick up some leaves with interesting shapes. Using a black and white marker, have them turn their special leaf into an extra special leaf character. Unleash their inner artist by creating whole leaf families, and then make up stories with their new leaf buddies. You’ll be surprised how much fun this can be. For the rundown on how to go about it see the link below.
Image: Bright Star Kids
One of the tried-and-true fun activities the whole family can enjoy is the good old bike ride. Not only does it get them out of the house into the fresh air (and off their screens), you can easily make a day out of it. Ellaslist has done all of the hard work for you by finding some of the best and safest bike trails for you to explore over the holidays.
What’s oobleck we hear you ask? Oobleck is cornstarch and water that when mixed together can act like a solid and a liquid. It’s a great alternative to slime as it’s a lot easier to make and kids love playing with it! And for a bit of extra fun you can pair this activity with Dr Seuss’s Bartholomew and the Oobleck – the book that inspired this weird and wonderful slimy creation. You can learn how to make ookbleck and other fun experiments by clicking on the link below.
We came across this idea and loved it. If your kids complain that they’re bored these school holidays, we’ve got a special poster that will (hopefully) stop them complaining. It uses the BORED acronym – Build, craft or cook something; Outside play; Read a book; Earn some money; Do something for others – to give them plenty of ideas to keep them busy. We love the idea of turning their boredom into something fun. Check out the link to download the poster, and you’ll also find plenty of ideas for each heading.
If you’re looking for some other suggestions, here’s a list of sites with plenty of activities:
Things to do for family and kids during school holidays
School holiday boredom busters
School holiday activities in Melbourne
12 easy ways to beat school holiday boredom at home
Mum’s Little Explorers school holiday activities
And if you still run out of things to do, refer to our previous boredom busters lists for more inspiration: boredom busters #3, boredom busters #2 and boredom busters.
Please leave a comment below to let us know what creative activities you did during the school holidays.