25 quirky date ideas in Melbourne for 2023
Looking for some good date ideas for Melbourne? Well, it’s a great city for both couples and singles, with plenty do see and do. We share options for day dates, night dates, outdoor dates and first dates – read on to find out more.
The whole dinner and a movie (or just simply “drinks”) routine when dating can get tiring and boring, quickly.
If you’re in a relationship, you may want to do something different once in a while, to spice things up.
If you’re single but playing the field, there is only so many times you can go through the routine of let’s-get-to-know-each-other-over-a-drink-or-two before your head feels like it’s going to explode out of boredom.
Who says a first date can’t be a whole lot of fun!
Most fortunately, there’s a ton of fun things to do in Melbourne as a couple or a single.
Some are more culinary, others are a bit more active.
Some options are versed in history and there are those with a sustainable twist.
Here are some fun and quirky date ideas for Melbourne, no matter what your preference or relationship status (ie long-term loving, or single and mingling).
Fun date ideas in Melbourne for couples (& singles!)
1. Hang ten at URBNSURF
Always wanted to learn how to surf, but never seem to catch the perfect wave?
Or seen Jaws one too many times and feel more than a little apprehensive when hitting the big blue?
Grab your significant other and head out to URBNSURF, Australia’s first surf park.
Here you can play in the bay, or opt for more advance waves. If you’re both complete beginners, why not book a series of ‘learn to surf’ lessons, taken in a controlled and relaxed environment?
A date to remember for sure.
Located at 309 Melrose Dr, Tullamarine
2. Sign up for a mystery picnic date
Take the hassle out of the organisational side of things. Let AmazingCo curate the perfect date.
This experience sees you choose a picnic destination. There’s a few places to choose from in Melbourne and others in nearby regions of Victoria.
You then follow clues around an area of the city, which lead you to cafes/restaurants/providores where you can pick up some gourmet goodies.
You then gather your wares and head to a the perfect picnic patch, where you can relax with your delicious spread.
This is a really fun date idea in Melbourne.
Read about our experience going on a mystery date to the Botanic Gardens in Melbourne.
3. Unleash your inner artists during a ‘paint and sip’ class
This is quite a cute date idea for people living in Melbourne (or visiting!).
You spend a few hours in an afternoon or at night painting a ‘masterpiece’, while sipping on wine or another drink of choice.
You definitely don’t have to be an artist, have painting experience or even be that creatively minded to enjoy this activity.
In fact, I’d argue the addition of booze levels the playing field somewhat.
There’s a few options for paint and sip classes in Melbourne and slightly beyond:
- Pinot & Picasso run a bunch of different classes at studios across the city.
- Bring your own bevy to a class at Cork & Chroma in Collingwood.
- Blanc Kanvas hosts boozy watercolour classes in Mornington where you can paint botanicals or your pets.
Try something new and impress your date!
4. Go on a Ghost Tour in Williamstown
Here’s a date idea in Melbourne for those who appreciate the darker side of things.
The old port town of Williamstown is said to be home to some friendly (and perhaps not so friendly) ghosts.
There are plenty of sites which are reputedly haunted, such as the Timeball Tower and not so surprisingly, the old Morgue.
For $36, you can take a ghost tour in Williamstown to explore some of its spookier sights.
It’ll give you the opportunity to hold hands with your date, if things get a little bit spooky.
Discover other haunted places in Melbourne to explore.
5. Check out an urban winery
Victoria is known for its wine regions, but you don’t actually have to leave the city to tour a winery. In fact, you only have to travel as far as East Brunswick.
Noisy Ritual is Melbourne’s first urban winery, which started in 2014 in “Cam’s basement”.
They now offer a range of activities, allowing people to get involved in the wine-making process.
You can tour the winery, have a stomp on some grapes (could serve as couple’s therapy, perhaps?), press the wine into oak barrels or learn the theory behind the wine-making process.
6. Go walking with llamas at Hanging Rock
For something completely different, why not book your beloved in for a 5 kilometre walk to Hanging Rock… accompanied by a llama?
On this three hour tour you’ll meet and greet your llama, before setting out on an easy hike, stopping to take photos with the dramatic rock as your backdrop.
It’s definitely one of the more quirkier date ideas in Melbourne (or just outside of) that I’ve heard of.
Find out more about walking with llamas to Hanging Rock and discover more unique destinations for weekend getaways from Melbourne.
7. Visit the Astor Theatre for a double feature
A movie may seem run of the mill, but this is still a great idea for a first date in Melbourne.
The Astor Theatre in St Kilda in particular, is one of the most beautiful cinemas in the city (trust me, there’s a few).
It shows the odd new release, but mostly screens the films of yesteryear, often in honour of milestones (like a forty year anniversary), or the release of a new print.
The cinema regularly holds double billings (for example, I watched Alien and Aliens there earlier in the year), which could be a perfect date night for film enthusiasts. Check out the Astor’s calendar here.
8. …Or head to the drive-in in Coburg
This is a particularly fun thing to do for couples in Melbourne.
If you have a car and fancy a little bit more privacy, you can take a trip out to Coburg to see a flick at the Drive In.
You can cuddle up together in the car in the winter, or take some folding chairs or a picnic blanket with you in the summer months. Sessions can end quite late, with some movies starting at 11pm.
If you’re looking for cheap date ideas in Melbourne, head to a Monday session as tickets are $10 a person, or $25 for a car-full.
If there’s four of you in a car, you won’t find any movie prices cheaper in the city.
9. Go for a night-time kayak along the Yarra
Are you after a night time date idea in Melbourne?
I often think a city is best seen from the water and this city is no exception.
Turns out, you can take a tour along the Yarra River, right at sunset. As the sky darkens, you’ll see the city come to life.
This kayak tour features a meal of fish and chips for dinner (had whilst seated in the kayak!) and ends right near Federation Square.
Kick on to Ponyfish Island, Arbory (or Arbory Afloat in the warmer months) or Big Esso for drinks after you’re done.
This is the perfect activity to do during summer in Melbourne.
10. Rent a boat and cruise the Yarra River
For something truly unique to do in Melbourne, captain your own boat along the Yarra.
GoBoat and On A Boat each allow you to book your own electric sea-faring vessel, to skipper past some of Melbourne’s most notable landmarks.
They’re very easy to drive and you can pack a picnic – and even take your pooch along for the ride.
11. Take a cruise down the Maribyrnong River
If you’re not a keen kayaker, but still enjoy the odd boat trip, why not take a cruise down Melbourne’s other great waterway, the Maribyrnong River?
It’s a little bit quieter and lesser-known than the Yarra and will make for a more peaceful day out.
(Note, public tours currently aren’t running due to restrictions, but we assume they will again in time).
12. Dine on a train… in the sky
Do you liker burgers?
Do you like trains?
Well, then you’ll probably enjoy Easeys, where you can drink cocktails and chow down on burgers and hotdogs on an old train that’s been popped on the rooftop of a building in Collingwood.
Bookings are essential.
13. Have a game of golf… in the dark
A really great option for a first date in Melbourne or even a group date, is mini-golf.
Holey Moley not only features a mini golf course, but has a bar to boot. The course is rather whacky in itself, which will keep you entertained.
Glow Golf is mini golf with a twist – with ten holes of the course played under UV lights.
The venue in Docklands features the smallest bar in Australia, which seats around four people at a time.
To add-on romance, why not take a staycation at one of the city’s world-class hotels, such as QT Melbourne or the very grand Hotel Windsor?
14. Have High Tea in a Castle
For a standard High Tea with a twist, look no further than Overnewton Castle in Keilor.
This 170 year old stately home opens once a month to patrons. Not only is there the option of a High or Devonshire tea… for $15 more you can tour the house and grounds, too.
Overnewton Castle is a unique part of Melbourne’s history and would make for an interesting date, for sure.
15. Stay at truly unique accommodation
Hotel No is a hotel with a twist.
These airstream trailers are an alternative space to spend the night in the city. They come with a full bar fridge and there’s even one with hot tub. Truly the makings of a unique date in Melbourne.
16. Dance to crap music for hours on end
Do you love dancing? Do you love crap music? Well, you’re in the right city, that’s for sure!
No Lights, No Lycra is a free-form dance class.
Patrons turn up in comfortable clothing with water bottles in tow. The lights are low and the expectation is for people to dance, without worrying about what they look like or what other people think.
NLNL is held weekly, in venues around the city.
Crap Music Rave Party is, as the name suggests, a dance party where only the most terrible music is played (think 80’s dance, 90’s pop music, 00’s house and such).
DJ Tomás Ford is entertaining to say the least, donning costumes and taking requests from those dancing up a storm on the dance floor.
Unlike NLNL, this event is held every couple of months or so, but if you and your date like to shake your tailfeathers on the d-floor, you’re sure to have a ball.
17. Take an edible weeds tour
Are you looking for fun date ideas in Melbourne for your green-minded other half?
If you have an interest in urban gardening, cooking, or sustainability in general, then this could be a great date idea for you.
This two hour activity takes you along the Merri Creek, where tour leaders Adam and Annie demonstrate which weeds we can forage and add to our meals (and the health benefits of doing so), whilst advising what you should avoid at all costs (such as the very toxic Hemlock!).
Tours are held every couple of weeks and are priced at $25.
18. Spend a night under the stars
There is something romantic about an open night’s sky, but the weather in Melbourne can be a bit hit and miss.
Thank goodness for the Planetarium, where you can watch an out of this world presentation under the domed ceiling.
After each show, there’s a live presentation of the current night sky, with astronomical objects that are visible at the time (such as planets) pointed out.
It’s the perfect activity for budding astronomers, whose view of the night sky is usually obliterated by the city’s bright lights.
19. Visit an urban farm
Another great outdoor date idea is a visit to the Collingwood Children’s Farm.
Despite what the name suggests, it’s a fun day out for kids and adults alike, making it one of the more unique date ideas in Melbourne.
You can brush a cow, cuddle a guinea pig, play with ducks, stroke the noses of horses or just wander the grounds.
After you’re done at the farm, you can check out the nearby Abbotsford Convent and grab a bite to eat at one of the cafés onsite, such as Lentil as Anything.
20. Try your hand at indoor rock climbing
If you want to show off your bravery and physical prowess to your date, then try your hand at indoor rock climbing.
There are venues all around the city, such as Northside Boulders in Brunswick and Hardrock Climbing in the east.
There’s a team-bonding element within this activity… of that I’m sure.
21. Feast upon cheese at Milk the Cow
Love cheese? Love wine?
Then you’ll adore Milk the Cow, a licensed fromagerie with venues in Carlton and St Kilda.
They have over a hundred cheeses and wine on offer and at least you’ll know if the company is dull, the food will be good.
This is one of the more fancy date ideas in Melbourne, while still being pretty affordable.
22. Ice-skate at Docklands
If heights aren’t really your thing, why not go ice-skating?
There’s an ice-skating rink in Docklands, featuring ‘Tight-Tuesday’, where all adult tickets are priced at $11.
You can hold hands and skate around the rink, pretending you’re in a winter wonderland, whilst ignoring the fact that it’s current 33° Celsius outside.
23. Work through any relationship issues at the Melbourne Break Room
Here’s a somewhat novel idea and a good way to let off steam, together.
At The Break Room you put on a “break suit”, pick up a bat and are basically allowed to bash the crap out of everything and anything, within your allocated time period.
This might be a novel idea for anyone just coming out of a relationship, as you’re also allowed to bring in your own items to break and they’ll handle the disposal.
A fine opportunity to rid yourself of that ugly vase your boyfriend’s mother bought you last Christmas.
Located at 29 Budd St, Collingwood
24. Take a new class at Laneway Learning
Laneway Learning hosts classes on just about everything you could imagine and more.
There are practical classes, like Spanish for travellers and money management sessions. You can get a bit crafty with terrarium building, embroidery classes and water colouring.
You can brew your own kombucha and learn how to make shortbread.
It can get a little deep, with psychology classes, defeating procrastination …even mindful sexuality, for those wanting to inject a little something something back into their love lives.
A first date may prove to be a bust, but you know how to tango now and that’s something.
25. Take them to a fancy bar in the city
Why not spoil your date with something special? There’s a couple of champagne (and in some cases, champagne and oyster) bars that have popped up in Melbourne.
Nick and Nora’s offers a range of champagne and cocktails.
You’ll find oysters, caviar, cheese and cured meats on their menu, to compliment these delicious drinks.
Pearl Diver is a fancy cocktail and oyster bar, and Society serves up some of the best (and admittedly most expensive) martinis in town.
More fun date ideas for Melbourne
If you have any suggestions of quirky date ideas for Melbourne, I’d love to hear about them in the comments. I’m always looking for fun things to do in the city, which I can drag my long-suffering boyfriend along to.
Looking for other things to do in Melbourne and Victoria? Check out these related posts.
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➳ Got a trivia night coming up?
Read these rather bizarre facts about Melbourne
➳ Love urban art?
Haha, so many cool ideas that I never got around to!! I want to go eat at the train restaurant, take the spooky tour in Williamstown and most definitely have afternoon tea at the castle!
I remember wanting to do the glow-in-the-dark mini golf thing years ago but they were closed at the time… 🙁
And I can’t believe I never managed to see Melbourne from the river (especially since the husband is a mad-keen kayaker!!). Sad, very sad.
That said, we explored Melbourne’s many bike trails and explored suburbs I’d never ever venture into otherwise… Plus we got lost plenty of times so that made for quite fun days, haha!
It sounds to me like you guys explored quite a bit! One thing I’ve really wanted to do is eat on the tram restaurant, but they took them off the rails a few weeks ago! Real bummer and it would’ve otherwise definitely made that list.