Tips for visiting the Heide Museum of Modern Art Melbourne
History of the Heide Museum of Modern Art Melbourne
The Heide Museum of Modern Art is an art museum in Bulleen, around 30 minutes drive from the Melbourne CBD, Victoria, Australia. The museum was established in 1981, and is home to a collection of houses modern and contemporary art in three exhibition buildings. Set within sixteen acres of heritage-listed gardens and a sculpture park, the Heide is the perfect Melbourne day trip offering an experience that includes art, architecture and nature.
After purchasing the property in 1934, owners John and Sunday Reed opened their home to artists including Sidney Nolan, Albert Tucker, Joy Hester, John Perceval and Danila Vassilieff. The Reeds established the Museum of Modern Art of Australia in 1958, which became a public art museum in 1981.
Visiting the Heide Museum of Modern Art Melbourne
While entry to the grounds, sculpture parks and gardens is free, there is an entrance fee to visit inside the galleries. The best option is to purchase a museum pass which is valid for an entire day and allows multiple entries and exists from the galleries, allowing visitors to explore the galleries, park and cafe in their own time. Museum entry is free for children under 16.
The beautiful gardens at the Heide offer a free space for the public to enjoy the sculptures and several of the original gardens, which are now heritage-listed.
Wandering through the kitchen gardens will lead to discoveries of birds such as rainbow lorikeets, various flowering plants and trees overflowing with fruits.
The gardens are a beautiful place to picnic, so pack a blanket and food for the day and set up under one of the many beautiful big trees.
Connie Kimberly Sculpture Park and Tony and Cathie Hancy Sculpture Plaza
More than 35 permanent sculptures have been placed around the 16-acre property, with a focus on Australian artists and a selective group of international works.
Pick up a map at the entrance or take a look at the informational boards set up in various spots to locate the sculptures.
On the 2nd Saturday of every month, the Heide Museum of Modern Art and The Rose St. Artists’ Market collaborate on a beautiful collection of stalls that offer visitors the chance to purchase skilfully created handmade goods. Jewellery, clothing, baked goods, and more are on offer.
Visiting the Heide Museum of Modern Art Melbourne with Kids
The Heide Museum of Modern Art is the perfect family outing. Entry to the galleries is free for children under 16, and there is a range of activities to keep kids engaged while visiting.
Pick up a Heide Detective sheet from the Heide III information desk, at the main entrance to the museum. Follow the clues around the gallery and sculpture park to solve the puzzle.
The Heide also offers facilities including a cloakroom and baby changing.
While the onsite Café Heide offers kids meals and treats, visitors can also bring a picnic and let the kids run wild around the sculpture park.
There are plenty of great trees to climb, too!
Locals can get involved with family-focussed programs such as Heide Art Kinder or Art Babies. The Heide also offers creative programs during the school holidays.
Be sure to take kids on a stroll through the kitchen garden so they can see where there fruit and vege come from!
We dined at the onsite Café Heide, which is located at the main entrance.
The cafe serves simple, fresh food, using fresh produce from the Heide kitchen garden.
There are plenty of options for kids as well as options for dietary requirements. Our group ordered the Asparagus and Broccoli Risotto, $24, Kids’ Pasta & Tomato Sauce, $15, Kids’ Calamari, $15, Wagyu Burger, $25.
There are also plenty of baked treats to choose from. The scones looked amazing.
Getting to the Heide
Get info on getting to the Heide by car and public transport here.
For more things to do in Melbourne with kids.
Find the best places to stop on a Sydney to Melbourne coastal drive.
Find the best places to stop on a Sydney to Melbourne inland drive.
Treat yourself to the Langham High Tea Melbourne.
Get tips for visiting the Rain Room Melbourne.
Heide Museum of Modern Art
7 Templestowe Rd, Bulleen VIC
Hours: Tue-Sun and public holidays, 10am-5pm
Heide Cafe Opening hours: Tue-Fri: 9-4.30pm, Sat & Sun: 9am-5pm
Christine is the editor of Adventure, Baby!