Melbourne is one of Australia’s most popular tourism destination. There are many ‘Things to Do’ and ‘Places to Visit’ but this list is much more than that. Here we take a look at not just the iconic tourist spots but also find out from city residents the places that give Melbourne its unique character. Scroll down to watch HD video of top things to do and places to visit in Melbourne.
Melbourne CBD, hidden laneways, street art, Great Ocean Road, Eureka Skydeck, Yarra River walks, 12 Apostles, St Kilda, Brighton Beach, Fed Square, MCG, Puffing Billy, Yarra Valley Vineyards and much more – fasten your seatbelts because this is going to make you want to book a ticket to Melbourne right now.
Explore Melbourne CBD on foot
Not enough can be said Melbourne CBD. The city literally has a character of its own. Right from the upscale shops of Collins Street to the bustling Uni area at the end of Swanston Street, the feel changes at every corner.
Great Ocean Road and Twelve Apostles
Often found at the number one spot on many lists of ‘Things to do in Melbourne’, the Great Ocean Road is about a 3-hour drive from Melbourne and much less if you’re in one of the city’s Western Suburbs. This is a road trip of a lifetime.
The road runs along the coast and the drive is amazing. The entire stretch is peppered with lookout points and scenic beaches. It is one of the most popular attractions in the state of Victoria. For the trivia geeks, it was built during 1919-1932.
The Twelve Apostles is a popular tourist destination that is one of the crowns in Australia’s Tourism kitty. The apostles are limestone stacks and deserve to be in your life’s checklist of things to see and places to visit.
The Great Ocean Road trip is all about the outdoors and natural beauty. Hop over to the Official Great Ocean Road Tourism Website to plan your visit.
Take a cruise on the Yarra River
Melbourne has been blessed with a picture-perfect river running right through the city. Take a river cruise and just relax as you take in the sights and sounds on a sunny day.
Pedestrian Bridges on Yarra
There are a couple of famous pedestrian bridges on Yarra River that have a unique charm of their own. Head over to the corner of Elizabeth Street and Flinders Street and hop over to the other side of Flinders Street Station to the first such bridge. Standing in the middle of these bridges is a surreal thought – to be standing in the middle of a river, cutting through a modern skyscraper city! Plenty of photo ops here.
Hang out at Melbourne’s Cofffee Shops and the iconic Laneways
Melbourne CBD is peppered with coffee shops lined up along the iconic and cozy laneways in the city. Find your way to Degraves Street off Flinders Street and take it from there. Meander and get lost as you skip from one cuppa onto another.
One of the ‘entertainment’ highlights of Melbourne CBD is undoubtedly the Crown Casino. Located right across the bridge from Flinders Street, it is a landmark by itself. If you’re not into gambling, just hang out on the outside and watch the city go by. If nothing else, the flame throwers on the outside of the building will keep you entertained.
Melbourne’s famous street art and graffiti
Melbourne is world famous for its street art and graffiti. Just open Google Maps and find your way to Hoiser Lane just off Flinders Street. Art Lovers – arm yourself with a hot cuppa and be prepared to be lost in a world that may possible seem impossible to exist amidst a concrete jungle.
If you want more, Union Lane off Bourke Street is yet another hot-bed of street art in the CBD.
St Kilda Beach
St Kilda Beach is a 20-minute tram ride from the city centre. Even the tram ride is fun because it takes you through the transition of going from a concrete jungle to a world famous beach in the time it takes to finish a large cup of coffee!
The beach also has a pier that is simply magical during sunset. If Melbourne’s weather permits, that sunset will stay in your memory for a lifetime. At the end of the pier is one of St Kilda’s best kept secrets – a penguin colony. Evening time is when the little critters wander outside so plan accordingly if you want to spot the cuties.
The beach is packed on summer weekends so if you’re the kind who loves a crowd, make sure you visit then. St Kilda is also famous for its nightclubs, pubs and eclectic streets. Party animals will love this place. There are heaps of events going on all year round.
Hop on to a train on the Sandringham line and in less than 30 minutes you’ll find yourself at the beautiful Brighton Beach.
Amazing beach, colourful bathing boxes, cycling routes and a posh suburb behind it all – lots to keep you busy here.
This is another popular beach in Melbourne. Make a trip for it only if you have the extra days to squeeze in more than two days to the beach within Melbourne. If you don’t, St Kilda and Brighton should suffice.
Hop on to the City Cirle Tram
The city circle tram is free and takes you through Melbourne CBD. Need we say more?
Eureka Tower and Skydeck
Located on the Southbank Promenade just across Flinders Street, Eureka Tower is a magnificent work of art on the banks of the Yarra River in Melbourne. The building is 975 feet high and was the tallest residential building in the world when it was made in 2006.
Your visit to the Eureka Tower is incomplete without a trip up to the Skydeck and then the Edge – which is a glass box that extends 10 feet outside the building, leaving you suspended nearly 1000 feet off the ground. Fun for all, plenty of excitement and unlimited photo ops for shutterbugs.
Your experience at the Skydeck will largely depend on the time and the weather. Evenings are best and make sure you check the Official Website of Eureka Skydeck to plan your visit.
Hang out at Federation Square & Flinders Street Station
Flinders Street Station that has served Melbourne since 1854. It was the first railways station in an Australian city and the busiest in the whole world during the 1920s. Iconic and legendary, a trip to Melbourne is incomplete without a trip to this station.
Federation Square or Fed Square as it is popularly known, is buzzing beyond words. It has open public places to hang out, a cathedral, a pub, access to the riverfront walk, art gallery, museum and a giant screen to show major sporting events and what not. Check Fed Square’s Official Website for the entire list of events happening in the area.
Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)
Popularly known as ‘The G’, Melbourne Cricket Ground is a sports stadium located just outside the CBD in the suburb of Richmond. This is a must-see for sports fans who should ideally work their schedule to catch a match live. MCG also offers tours – Google it for timings or here’s the link MCG TOURS Official Website.
Soak in Melbourne’s architecture
Architecture and design buffs will have a field day going through the city streets. Melbourne architecture is a delightful mix of modern towering glass buildings, Victorian era masterpieces and quirky little places.
Road Trip to Mornington Peninsula
Mornington Peninsula is slightly more than an hour’s drive from Melbourne CBD. It is a short road trip and plenty of things to do – beaches, golf courses, cycling tracks, water sports and heaps more. It is a short drive from Melbourne and most likely a full day trip. Plan your trip and check the Official Mornington Peninsula Tourism Website.
Puffing Billy Train Ride – Dandenong Ranges
Probably more for families, Puffing Billy Train ride is something that takes you back in time. It is a magnet for kids who love riding on the steam powered locomotives. This is a must-do thing on your iteniery if you are travelling with children. It is less than an hour’s drive to the suburb of Dandenong. For details you can visit Puffing Billy’s Official Website.
Royal Botanical Gardens
Got some spare time in Melbourne? Hop over to the Royal Botanical Gardens. The 94 acre landscape is like a jungle bang in the middle of Melbourne city. Great for families and kids.
Yarra Valley Vineyards
The Yarra Valley is an iconic Australian wine producing region. It has a cool climate and is a very popular tourist place. It is a must-see place if you are a wine lover or just someone who likes to indulge in the beautiful idiosyncrasies of wine tasting.
There are many hotels, motels, B&Bs and cottages in the region. Visit the Yarra Valley Official Tourism Website to find out more or simply book a tour.
Take a morning and night Walk along the Yarra
If you’re going to be in Melbourne for a few days and are staying in or around the CBD, a morning walk along the Yarra is a must. The serene character of the city during these hours is a mind-blowing contrast to the hustle and bustle during day time.
Suburbs: Carlton, Richmond, South Yarra, Collingwood, Brunswick and more
There are many suburbs in Melbourne that have their own unique character. It may not be possible to specifically take time out to visit these suburbs but a lot of your road, tram and train trips will take you through these suburbs. Watch out for their names and hop out if you have some time.
We’ve outlined the most popular tourist spots and activities but there are heaps more things to do and places to see in Melbourne. The Official Website of Melbourne Tourism has a lot of info so make sure you take a look.
Article compiled with inputs from @ppbakshi by VOOMPLA’s editorial team. Last Updated: 29 November 2016