The Hispanic Festival - Why Johnston St?

Johnston St is the Hispanic equivalent of ‘China Town’ in Melbourne. It’s home to several of Melbourne's best-known Hispanic establishments:

Casa Ibérica - where you can stock up on authentic produce from the Iberian Peninsula and Ibero-America

The Spanish Club - normally packed to the rafters during the festival (Also where El Patio goes to do Spanish Bingo!)

Kanela Flamenco Bar – to catch some LIVE flamenco action!

Naked for Satan - Beautiful Basque-inspired cuisine and one of Melbourne's very best rooftop bar views

All these places are worth a trip down to Johnston St on their own merit, but they come alive together for this special annual festival. For the whole weekend the street is blocked off from Brunswick St to Nicholson St and filled with music, stalls, dance and food.

Bring a decent appetite and be spoiled for choice. Just try and resist the smell of paella, tacos and churros in the air!

Then slip on your dancing shoes because this is the one place and time of year where dancing on the tables isn’t just tolerated – it’s celebrated, and well into the night. If you’re not a ‘dance-all-night’ type of person you can still check out the many dance shows all throughout the day. From Peruvian folk dance to tango and salsa, it’s always an incredible spectacle!

You'll not only have the opportunity to absorb some Hispanic culture in the diversity of food and dance, you'll also get the chance to surround yourself with SPANISH. Even if you're not at the point of conversing and practising yet, prick up your ears and get used to the sounds and pick up a few words here and there!


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By Penelope Ray
October 3, 2021


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