Marionette Fob Watch – Melbourne, Australia - Atlas Obscura
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Melbourne, Australia

Marionette Fob Watch

Every hour a secret compartment drops from this giant pocket watch, revealing a lovely surprise. 

Given as a gift to the city when the vast Melbourne Central shopping complex opened in 1991, this giant gold pocket watch, hung nearly 40 feet high (over 12 meters), counts down to a lovely surprise.

Every hour a secret compartment drops slowly down from inside, revealing a display of gold marionettes and Australian wild birds. One marionette is playing the flute, the other the violin, and rose-colored galahs and white cockatoos perch and “sing” alongside them as they leisurely perform a kind of cute cartoon version of “Waltzing Matilda.”

If you take the elevator up to the next level you’ll see the back of the fob watch, where two koalas swing from side to side as part of the timekeeping mechanism.

The watch originally had a 12-foot chain that hung down from two floors above, but that never returned after being moved for renovations.