With its captivating activities, warm hospitality, and natural beauty, Port Fairy's Winter Weekends is the perfect destination for a winter getaway that will leave you enchanted and longing to return year after year.
When winter arrives in the picturesque coastal town of Port Fairy, a sense of enchantment fills the air. Port Fairy Winter Weekends is the uplifting community festival that beckons visitors to immerse themselves in a world of warmth, culture, and festivities. With its charming streets, cozy atmosphere, and a myriad of captivating activities, Port Fairy becomes a haven for winter wanderers.
Returning for 2023, the Winter Weekends will run over three weekends throughout June and July, transforming this coastal gem into a winter wonderland. The town’s historic buildings, lined with vibrant gardens, take on a magical aura as they embrace the chill of the season, and with the backdrop of the wild Southern Ocean, Port Fairy becomes a scenic haven for those seeking respite from the hustle and bustle of city life.
Port Fairy Winter Weekend Dates 2023
Weekend 1 – June 9,10,11 (Dachshund Dash)
Weekend 2 – June 23, 24, 25
Weekend 3 – July 7, 8, 9
Stay up to date with what’s happening in and around the region here.
As part of the lengthy event, a Winter Hub will take to the centre of town in the form of a huge, warm beautiful teepee from the tea, at Tierra Events. It’s here that visitors will attend opening night (featuring music from local DJ Naomy, Rainbow Connection DJ’s and other special guests) and a bunch of other events over the June long weekend. Come for the music and the bar, stay for a little or a looooong while and revel under the canvas crown, right in the centre of town…it’s a stunning festival first.
Alongside the opening party, the first weekend, 9-11 June will host Port Fairy’s much-loved Women in Song concert showcases, Queen Camilla’s Market, twilight market, pre-loved art sale, a live music event with Guy Blackman, Sweet Whirl and Cool Sounds; and a songwriter panel, Sonder: A Circle of Stories and Song by Find Your Voice Collective.
Other highlights include the Winter Weekends and the Port Fairy Folk Festival’ showcase artists and official launch the 2024 Port Fairy Folk Festival, and of course the 15th Port Fairy and Community Bank Dachshund Dash. Immerse yourself in the thrill of 100 canines dashing, leaping or sniffing to the finish line.
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The second weekend, 23-25 June, will see live performances from the likes of Alt-folk singer-songwriter Billy Barker and Geelong talent Georgia Rodgers, a special selection of works by Australian-based artist Rory Carter, alongside a drumming workshop, guided walk, a Winter Solstice Dawn Swim, a Vinyl Swap Meet, and a night of tales and ales at Noodledoof Brewery. Attendees will also be able to sip and savour in first in a series of special afternoon events at our beloved Merrijig as they unveil the Winter Wine Shed.
The final weekend, 7-9 July, will feature Melbourne artist Sarah Mary Chadwick, an exhibition by emerging artists Jackson McLaren and Madeleine Peters, a pool party, the oh-so-cherished, always-heart-warming, ever-popular 15 Minutes of Fame, a performance from the Southern Ocean Sea Band, and a Winter Weekends closing party, among many other events.
For the duration of the entire festival, punters will be able to head down to the Moyne for a reflective riverside stroll in ‘Light Up Port Fairy’. Here you’ll find the port buildings and surrounding grounds transformed in a vivid play of colour, shadow and light. Bring your jacket, friends and your camera and experience our crisp winter nights in a brilliant new light. Meander from the footbridge to the wharf for the best views.
A park run, a timeless treasure hunt, community and makers market, ghost tours in the cemetery and a Cottagecore exhibition which features works from local artists romanticising western agricultural life are all event that run throughout the entire festival.
So go on, get out and about in the exhilarating elements to celebrate the art, music, performance, produce, food and wine, history, environment and people that make this place so special.
For a full list of events and schedules, and to purchase tickets, head here.