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Melbourne

 
Melbourne is a maze of hidden laneways, opulent bars, exclusive restaurants and off-the-beaten-track boutiques.

Here you can soak up culture, hit the sporting grounds, taste the dynamic food and wine scene, dance til dawn or wander the parks and leafy boulevards.  Visit Federation Square, the city’s landmark cultural space, and enjoy a sunset beer on the St Kilda promenade. Shop till you drop on funky Brunswick Street or upmarket Chapel Street. Wander Southbank’s cafes, bistros and bars and get a world tour of cuisines in Carlton, Richmond and Fitzroy. Take an Aboriginal Heritage Walk through the Royal Botanic Gardens and cheer with a capacity crowd at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.


MY TRAVEL AGENT'S suggested Melbourne experiences:

 

Melbourne, VIC1. SHOP TILL YOU DROP

Bag a bargain at the Rose Street Artist’s Market and browse the funky boutiques on Brunswick Street. Buy designer labels such as Akira Isogawa and Zimmerman on Chapel Street in Prahran or in the historic Melbourne General Post Office, which covers an entire city block. For everything from fashion to furnishings at fantastic value, visit Bridge Road in Richmond. Melbourne is a shopper’s haven, offering eclectic boutiques, high-end fashion, funky homeware stores and European style piazzas in the city’s arcades and hidden laneways.

 

2.  HAVE DINNER ON THE COLONIAL TRAMCAR

Dining in Melbourne can be a fabulous experience, especially aboard the fleet of historical trams that have become The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant. These glossy, burgundy restaurants on wheels are the first travelling tramcar restaurants in the world and ensure a delightful innovative approach to dining.  As they cruise the scenic streets of Melbourne, diners can enjoy fine cuisine and drink the very best of Australian wines or make a selection from our fully stocked bar at a fully inclusive price. The atmosphere is cozy, the service friendly and the decor as inviting as the colonial period these trams reflect.
 
  
3.  EXPLORE FEDERATION SQUARE
 

Bordering the Yarra River, Federation Square serves as the focal point of downtown Melbourne. In addition to sporting outstanding architecture, the Square holds numerous attractions, ranging from nightspots and restaurants to cinemas and art galleries. The Melbourne Visitor Centre, the Ian Potter Centre, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, and the Australian Racing Museum are all located in this inclusive destination.

 
Melbourne, VIC4. BAR HOP AND DANCE TILL DAWN 

Sip a cocktail in a converted sea container in Chinatown, enjoy a sunset beer in a St Kilda pub or listen to cabaret in lush retro surroundings in jazz bars in the city. Linger over exquisite tapas and exotic wine in a Little Collins Street bar and mingle in a pink parlour with fake grass in Bourke Street. You can party from dusk in the bars of Brunswick Street. Or dance till dawn in bars in the city’s lantern-lit laneways, secret apart from the spill of coloured light under heavy brass doors.

Melbourne Cricket Ground, VIC5. GO SPORTS MAD 

Cheer for an Australian Rules Football game with a capacity crowd at the Melbourne Cricket Ground over winter.   Go cricket mad in summer, when the city hosts the Ashes and one day internationals. Or join the huge crowds watching the Australian Tennis Open at Melbourne Park. Rev heads head to Melbourne in March for the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix in Albert Park. And whether you are a racing fan or just a casual punter, you won’t want to miss the Melbourne Cup - the world’s richest horse race on the first first  Tuesday in November.

 

6. VISIT THE QUEEN VICTORIA MARKET

 

Queen Victoria Market is Victoria's premier open-air market. It's a thriving and vital place pulsating with life.  The friendly competition between stallholders, and their concern for customers, is what gives the Market its Old World charm and the addictive power to draw millions of visitors each year. 

 
Queen Victoria Market, VIC7. GET INTO THE GOURMET GOODNESS
 
Let the aroma of good coffee waft over you in Melbourne’s gothic European laneways. The city is famous for its coffee and old-world café culture but there’s so much more to explore. Once you’ve downed a ‘short black’ or taken an afternoon aperitif, try tea in a nineteenth-century hotel or salivate over your silver spoon in acclaimed restaurants like Nobu, Botanical and Becco. Pick up fresh fruits, vegetables and seafood at the Queen Victoria Market on a Saturday, known for its bustling crowds and buskers. Try out the restaurants, cafes, bistros and bars in Southbank or Federation Square. Make your way around Melbourne’s multicultural cosmos of cuisines: Carlton for Italian classics, Richmond for budget-friendly Vietnamese and Fitzroy for Spanish tapas.
 
8. FILL UP ON CULTURE

See a performance by the Australian Ballet, which is based here in Australia’s cultural capital. Or enjoy a dazzling musical at the Princess Theatre. Browse the Southern Hemisphere’s best collection of international art at the National Gallery of Victoria. Challenge yourself with the creative collections in the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art in Southbank. To learn more about Melbourne’s Aboriginal cultural heritage, see contemporary and dreamtime art or take an Aboriginal Heritage Walk through the Royal Botanic Gardens.

 

9. GO WINE TASTING IN THE YARRA VALLEY

A short drive from Melbourne lies the Yarra Valley, Australia’s leading cool climate wine region. The Yarra Valley is Victoria's oldest wine region, with over 3 600 hectares under vine. It is also Victoria's most visited wine area, located just one hours drive from Melbourne's CBD and airport.  From elegant sparklings, chardonnay and sauvignon blanc, to complex pinot noir and rich cabernet sauvignon, shiraz and more - you are sure to find YOUR favorite wine style in the Yarra Valley.

 
10. DRIVE THE GREAT OCEAN ROAD
 
Recognized as one of the world’s most scenic drives, the Great Ocean Road follows the stunning coastline of Victoria’s south-west. Stretching 243 kilometres from Torquay, just south of Geelong, to Allansford, just east of Warrnambool, the road winds along cliff tops, up to breathtaking headlands, down onto the edge of beaches, across river estuaries and through lush rainforests offering panoramic views of Bass Strait and the Southern Ocean at every turn. 

 
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