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400+ reasons to visit the Multicultural Festival 2018

Tori Shingles and Tessa Domzalski

Joyous, tasty and eye catching. 

These are just three ways to describe the 2018 Multicultural Festival . With highlights such an appearance by Masterchef’s Poh Ling Leow, over 400 stalls (yes, four hundred) and Leo Sayer and Baker Boy performing, it’s set to be a huge three days of food, fun and entertainment to celebrate the diverse range of cultures who call Australia home.

Taking place on 16-18 February, summer’s fiesty temperatures will have cooled slightly, making this an unmissable weekend of fun for the whole family. Here’s what not to miss.


Image: Martin Ollman

From salsa to Bollywood to Nordic folk dance, there will be a performance for everyone. Grab some delicious food (see below for our suggestions!), pull up a chair and indulge in a few hours of free entertainment by some of Canberra’s most accomplished performers.

Click here for the full line up.

India In the City

This year, Saturday will see India in the City take place across Stage Six. Featuring primarily dance performances but also music, this is sure to be a jam-packed day of high tempo music and dance.

Click here to see the full program.


Photo: Martin Ollman

While there will be music across the entire weekend, Friday night will see the grand opening of the festival with headline acts sure to impress.

Get down to Garema Place from 5 pm to get a good seat and catch:

Leo Sayer

Leo Sayer is well known to all and this is the perfect opportunity to watch a live performance from the legend himself. This one is sure to make you feel like dancing.

Lucy Sugerman

Lucy Sugerman on The Voice.

Canberra local Lucy Sugerman is not only a runner-up of The Voice Australia but will be sure to put on a show-stopping performance for this years audience. You can’t miss it.

Baker Boy


Known as ‘the fresh new prince’ from Arnhem Land, Baker Boy is one of Australia’s biggest up and coming hip-hop performers. With songs sung in Yolngu Matha, Baker Boy’s performances reflect on his journey through life while showcasing his heritage.

Food glorious food 

If you’re looking for something to tickle your tastebuds then look no further. With over 400 stalls and counting, there’s everything from sweet Dutch mini pancakes to Asian style street food and everything in between.

Poh Ling Leow

Masterchef’s Poh Ling Leow will be joining in the festivities this year, wowing the littlies with a presentation of her children’s story Sweet Petite.



This Hungarian dish will make you throw your diet to the wind. It’s a sheet of deep-fried dough that is topped with garlic, butter and cheese. Yes. Delicious.


After a traditional sweet dessert? Loukoumades has you covered. Puffed balls of soft batter are carefully drizzled with honey and other splendid toppings after being lightly fried. Heavenly.



And not just any old dumplings, either. One of the best parts about the Multicultural Festival is the variety. You’ll be able to try these little babies from almost every part of the world.

There are Polish pierogies, Chinese dumplings, Japanese gyoza, and even Nepalese momos. The only question is: which are the best? Better try them all.


While you’ve probably heard of Spain’s famous paella before, for those who don’t, you can’t miss out. Warning: they can sometimes be a little spicy so best to have a cool drink on hand just in case…


sri lankan egg hopper

Hoppers, also known as appam, are a popular and versatile pancake with a unique flavour from coconut and the slightly sour fermenting process. Described as the love child of a crepe and a crumpet, these Sri Lankan bowl-shaped pancakes shouldn’t be missed.



Take your tastebuds on a trip to Ecuador with these vegetarian Llapingachos – potato cakes stuffed with cheese and cooked until crispy brown and served with peanut sauce.


With a large range on hand, there’s sure to be a drink suited to every character. Whether it’s an ale or cider from a local brewer or a wine or spritzer the festival has it all.

Don’t worry, there are plenty of non-alcoholic options too.

For the kids

Children’s Sanctuary

Looking for a place for the kids to chill out in? The Children’s Sanctuary has been created to offer a range of activities for the little ones away from the buzz of the festival.

Visit the Civic Library and Canberra Museum and Gallery on Saturday and Sunday and enjoy the facilities the sanctuary has on offer.

Find more information here.

the essentials 

What: The 2018 National Multicultural Festival
When: 16-18 February 2018
Where: City Walk and Garema Place, Civic
Cost: Free
More information:

Feature image: Martin Ollman


Tessa Domzalski

Tessa Domzalski has an insatiable appetite for food, culture, and thrills. She was born in Switzerland, raised in Hawaii and educated in the heart of Thailand. A lover of all things avocado, you’ll be able to find Tessa in any hip coffee spot that serves interesting dishes with the green superfruit. A student, an avid Instagram-er and a Youtuber, Tessa is always on the hunt for a new adventure. More about the Author