The City will swarm with more than 200,000 local and interstate visitors this weekend for the three-day National Multicultural Festival. In its 23rd year the festival is set to have over 330 stalls – how the hell am I going to eat that much food in three days.

What’s new

As the annual festival grows so does the concept, this year seeing Civic divided into separate areas of the world between Akuna Street and East Row (you can catch us in the Latino quarters).

For us, the most exciting news has to be the NMF Cookbook titled ‘Festival Food.’ So basically, the food you can’t fit in over three days you can attempt to make yourself at home! The biggest question is: will the controversial ‘chip on a stick’ feature in the book? Local talents from Pew Pew, Rohan Thompson and Ashley St George will be in charge of capturing all the diverse flavours of the festival. ‘Festival Food’ will feature countries

represented at the Festival, producing another Canberra foodie cookbook!

Go for the food stay for the entertainment.

You’ll want to lock in early mark this Friday, the festival kicks off in the arvo at 3pm.

There are 150 acts on six stages across the festival weekend. Headline act Christine Anu is opening the festival at 7.30pm (Garema Place stage). Entertainment will run all day from 10am till late on Saturday. You’ll be moving your hips for salsa, circling for zorba and gathering to Irish dance. Keeping your eyes peeled for the Bollywood and folk dances too!

The Parade will start at 4pm on Saturday with an expected 2000 performers displaying Canberra’s inclusive and diverse community. Isaiah Firebrace will perform Saturday 7.30pm (Bunda St stage) & 9.30pm (Garema stage). And The Voice America contestant Michel Zaib will be representing the United States in Garema Place.

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Keep the kids entertained

For the kids, the Museum and Gallery will transform into a Children’s Sanctuary  on Saturday and Sunday. Dance, yoga, playdough sculpting, Aboriginal hand painting and wrap and weave are among some of the activities. Kids will also have the chance to learn about cooking with bush foods in a mini masterclass with Indigenous chef Mark Olive.

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Good luck parking!

Additional 200 and 300 Rapid bus services will be in place on Saturday 16 and Sunday 17 February to get you to and from the National Multicultural Festival with ease. Regular fares apply.

A Late Night Red Rapid will service Gungahlin, City and Kingston & Belconnen, City, Woden and Tuggeranong. Buses will depart the City every 20 minutes with the last bus departing the City at approximately 2am on Friday and Saturday night. Transport Canberra is partnering with Uber to offer $10 off trips home.

Visit transport Canberra for more