FESTIVALS OF THE YEAR
Throughout the year Geelong and The Bellarine see some BIG festivities come our way; monster music festivals, serious sporting tournaments, fabulous food fairs. From January to December, we're well stocked with interesting events for everyone from families to seasoned festivalgoers. It's not a complete list, and we'll probably update it as more awesome events pop up, so take a look and start planning...
Find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow at the Great Australian Beer Festival (GABF). Sip, sample and savour hundreds of amazing beers and ciders. There’s also burgers, American BBQ and so much more on the festival’s munchable menu. And the epic entertainment is just the froth on top of the beer (so to speak).
It’s a sea of colour when the largest keelboat regatta in the Southern Hemisphere hits the waters of Geelong. Festival of Sails brings all the heart-stopping race action plus entertainment aplenty. he iconic waterfront is a stream of things to do, see, listen and taste; live music, kids entertainers, spectacular waterski and flyboard shows, family-friendly activities, rides, food trucks, market stalls and the iconic Australia Day fireworks display.
Each year one of Australia's most successful cyclists brings his top-notch tour to the region. The Cadel Evans Great Ocean Road Race delivers premier cycling action and entertainment for sports fans, cycling enthusiasts, spectators, families and the local community.
Stretching across the shores of Portarlington is the Portarlington Mussel Festival; 120 food and drink stalls, market stalls, five stages showcasing live and local talent, roving performers, cooking demonstrations, local tastings, art exhibitions and of course mussels!
So Frenchy So Chic – January
Australia’s one-of-a-kind French music and culinary festival sets itself up so chicly on the sprawling lawn of Werribee Mansion. This garden party festival will transport you to France with its music, wine, cuisine, culture and conviviality.
Staged at the spectacular 13th Beach Golf Links, the ISPS Handa Vic Open sees golf pros, men and women, play on the same course, at the same time, for equal prize money. There is also plenty of action for the spectators with a range of family friendly activities being run.
Step inside the wonderland that is the Nightjar in the City. Over four weeks in February, Geelong will be immersed in the magical atmosphere of live music, roving performers, buskers and culinary delights.
Packington Street ignites in colour and sound during the vibrant and energetic Pako Festa; Victoria’s largest free multi-arts and cultural party. Through a sensational street parade, food, performances, workshops and exhibitions, 43 cultures are superbly represented, all in one prime location.
Buckle in for a truly unforgettable experience at the Avalon Airshow. Held biennially, look to sky for high-flying antics and explore the extensive grounds that are swamped with defence aircraft, the newest technologies, historic exhibitions and so much more.
Cheese lovers unite. Set in the stunning surrounds of Werribee Park Mansion, Fromage a Trois Cheese Festival will have you meeting the makers, sampling their wares and pairing those delicious cheeses with handcrafted wine, beer cider and/or spirits. Place it on your picnic rug and enjoy in a relaxed and scenic setting.
Food, bevvies, produce and sweet treats are all awaiting your sampling at this ultimate foodie feast, the Lara Food and Wine Festival. The scene is set at the picturesque Pirra Homestead with the lawn laid out in a sensational spread of regional delights.
Celebrating the diversity and skills of artists and performers of all persuasions, Geelong lights up for visitors through this immersive arts experience. Laneways, hidden spaces and cultural buildings are all awaiting your discovery, after dark of course!
It’s a full weekend of folk music, Gaelic culture and all-round good times at the National Celtic Festival. Held over the June long weekend, Portarlington embraces and revels in all things Celtic with market stalls, masterclasses and musicians from all over the world.
Low Light Festival
Queenscliff and Point Lonsdale welcome a premier fringe festival for the third year running. Held over three winter weekends, there's music, art, live activations and a host of fabulous food. See things in a slightly different light.
The streets of Geelong are transformed into a living art gallery when music, performance and local culture shines brightly under the cover of darkness during White Night Geelong.
A festival jam-packed with incredible music, creative activities, entertainment and camping. Designed for families to dance, let loose and enjoy breathtaking performances altogether.
Held over the Melbourne Cup weekend, participating vineyards and wineries across the Geelong region seamlessly serve up food, entertainment and of course wine in this massive amalgamation of veritable vino.
It’s an action-packed motoring festival held at Geelong’s picturesque waterfront. Watch the historical quarter-mile sprints and marvel at over 700 classically cool cars. Plus there’s also vintage caravans, vintage fashion awards, music, trade expo area, delicious food and entertainment.
It hits the shores of Queenscliff and it absolutely rocks it! The Queenscliff Music Festival has fast become a hot-ticket item with international exclusives and local legends delivering great tunes across a scope of stages.
North Bellarine Film Festival
The North Bellarine Film Festival (NBFF) is a three day cultural event held each November at the Potato Shed in Drysdale and the Portarlington Neighbourhood House. The festival program is typically comprised of five Australian and international feature films and short/ experimental/ avant-garde film sessions. Grab the popcorn!
A three-day festival that blends music, nature and humanity to create a dreamy wonderland. Held on a private property near Meredith, the music of revered artists rolls through the hills and captivates the audience.