In Partnership with NIB

There’s an undeniable electricity in the air around Melbourne over the 2024 Toyota AFL Grand Final long weekend. Punters spilling out of pubs and onto the road, venues buzzing with noise late into the night and the vibrant colours of football scarves and jerseys out on display on front porches and woven through city laneways.

To get you in the finals season spirit, nib is giving one lucky person the chance to win their way to game day – with tickets to the 2024 Toyota AFL Grand Final up for grabs, plus a $5,000 nib Digital Visa Gift Card to eat, drink and play as you please.

The Best Ways to Spend a Grand Final Weekend

With the celebrations starting well before game day and continuing right through the weekend, we’ve lined up a sure-fire way to enjoy your Grand Final celebrations in Melbourne – from bars and restaurants to get you hyped, spots to celebrate after your team wins and the obligatory refuel and reset the morning after.

Catch up over dinner at Lilac Wine

Hidden in the back streets of Cremorne you’ll find wine bar Lilac Wine. This unassuming warehouse boasts a grungy yet cosy fit out, with green velvet couches, exposed brick walls lined with vinyl and twirling disco balls. Their woodfire kitchen serves up piping hot garlic sourdough, roast lamb and duck fat potatoes, making it a vibrant spot to gather around a table with mates for a feed.

Shop local, with the locals, at the Gleadell Street Market

Located on Gleadell Street in Richmond every Saturday morning, this local farmers market is the perfect spot to stock up on some produce for a Grand Final BBQ or simply explore what produce the region has to offer. Expect stalls serving piping hot cinnamon donuts, pastries and bacon and egg rolls, and pick up kitchen staples like fresh eggs, locally grown vegetables, organic meats and experimental kombuchas.

Bottomless noodles and margaritas at New Quarter

Prep for the big day out by slurping your way through 5 types of noodles at New Quarter, a modern Vietnamese-style restaurant in Richmond open for lunch and dinner. Enhance your meal with 2 hours of house-made margarita carafes, complemented by an impressive wine list and tap beers. Located on Swan Street, you’ll be steps away from all the action pre and post match. If a big feed isn’t for you, opt in for dishes like wagyu beef skewers and banh mi fingers instead.

Grab a late night refuel on Bourke Street

If your night takes you to the top end of the city, you’re spoilt for choice on some institutions serving up late night food, fuelling up party-goers or those finishing their evening. Butcher’s Diner is a hole in the wall joint slinging cheese burgers, steak sandwiches and even blood sausage and devilled egg rolls. Or, Pizza Pizza Pizza just around the corner serves up giant American style slices for $5 and through the back, you’ll find a hidden cocktail bar. Located a few doors down from bars like Siglo, Angel Bar and Spleen, you may end up continuing the night – don’t say we didn’t warn you.

Discover a secret bar in Chinatown

Located in an alley in Chinatown, find the unassuming door to One Or Two, a 26-seater contemporary bar focusing on whiskeys and a regularly rotating, artisanal cocktail menu. This intimate space with moody Japanese-inspired dark wood interiors offers a temporary reprieve from the bustling city surroundings on a night out.  Expect drinks like a blueberry milk punch or coconut old fashioned on the menu, plus wine, sake and soju.

Plunge at Inner Studio

Being a football punter can be a physically demanding feat. So if you’re looking to include a moment to unwind, Inner Studio in Collingwood is a recently opened retreat where you can sink into hot and cold magnesium plunge pools or escape into their sauna in a serene greenery-filled warehouse. Their hour-long sessions make it easy to slip into the weekend schedule if needed.

Authentic street food in a city carpark at Soi 38

One of Melbourne’s most unique dining spots, Soi 38 is a Thai restaurant nestled inside of an above-ground concrete garage. Grab a spot around colourful mismatched tables and chairs, and order by scribbling on a print-off menu with favourites like pork belly, papaya salad and mango sticky rice. If you’re hungry, opt in for an Ultimate Bowl – a tasty soup loaded with noodles, scallops, crispy pork and egg served over a gas burner to keep it bubbling and fiery.

Spend a sunny afternoon in Abbotsford

An epicentre suburb of places to eat, drink and wander, swing by Abbotsford for a leisurely afternoon. Local venues like Lulie’s Tavern, Bodriggy Brewery and Dr. Morse will be bustling with energy over the long weekend just moments away from one another. If you’re wanting an escape into greenery, head down the road to the Abbotsford Convent – a sprawling historic estate converted into a cultural hub. Located along the Yarra Bend Park and Collingwood Children’s Farm, you can meet some of the local animals before grabbing an afternoon spritz at Cam’s Kiosk, or sit down to unwind with a produce-driven, elevated menu at Julie Restaurant.

If this sounds like the perfect weekend away – it could be all yours.

To go into the draw to win two tickets to the 2024 Toyota AFL Grand Final plus a $5,000 NIB Digital Visa Gift Card, sign up for nib’s free membership – nib GreenPass – and let us know how winning $5,000 and tickets to the 2024 Toyota AFL Grand Final would get you excited and why.

You’ve got to be in it to win it, so enter now.

*Competition closes Sunday, 25 August 2024. Eligibility and Terms & Conditions apply. See website for details. Promoter is nib Health Funds Limited (ABN 83 000 124 381). AFL Authorised GF Promotion: GFAFL24/46.

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