10 Best Things to Do in Melbourne

What is Melbourne Most Famous For?

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    Melbourne is largely considered Australia’s cultural capital. As a thriving melting pot of diverse cultures and a sociable vibe that trickles throughout the city, it’s not hard to see why. It is a city of plenty, with world-class art and architecture, vivacious locals, vibrant music and food scene and stunning natural escapes right on its doorstep.

    Get in touch with nature and trail through the gorgeous outback or lose yourself in the city’s bustling nightlife – Melbourne provides a wide spectrum of things to see and do. Below is a list of only the best the city has to offer. You can also consider it as a place to start planning your trip.

    1

    Start your morning with a cup of coffee (or 2)

    Partake in the city’s rampant coffee culture

    The Melbourne coffee culture came with the migration of the Italians in the 1950s and the old coffee houses of the 1800s where businesses flourished. Today, a local’s routine makes room for a coffee break and many relish in the coffee culture with no shame.

    Even if it’s short and sweet, the city’s coffee culture has become some sort of religion in which Melburnians gladly follow. All across the city, crops of trendy coffee shops and cafes line the streets and fill the air with that arresting aroma. For some of the best coffee in the city, check out micro roaster Seven Seeds or head to ST Ali’s to try Melbourne’s new signature drink, “magic”: a small cup filled with steaming milk poured over a double ristretto.

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    2

    Spend a few hours at The National Gallery of Victoria

    Admire an impressive collection of Aboriginal artworks

    The National Gallery of Victoria was established in 1861, making it the oldest as well as the largest art gallery in the country. The gallery was opened during the Gold Rush days of the 19th century when there was a rampant appetite for fine art.

    Over time, The National Gallery has amassed an impressive collection and with that, a reputation to follow suit. Its collection spreads across original Australian Aboriginal art to post-colonial works that amount to over 70,000 pieces. It’s advised to spend a full day here, arriving early in the morning to avoid queues. After your visit, be sure to walk along the Southbank’s Yarra River for city sightseeing.

    Lokalizacja: 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne, VIC 3006, Australia

    Otwarte: Daily from 10am to 5pm

    Telefon: +61 (0)3 8620 2222

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    zdjęcie: Francisco Anzola (CC BY 2.0) zostało poddane edycji

    3

    Wander around the city’s laneways and arcades

    Uncover endless street art along cobbled walkways

    Strewn across Melbourne’s characteristic laneways and arcades are endless spreads of vibrant street art. Never mind that the city has grand Victorian arcades and charming cobbled thoroughfares, it’s the ever-growing art scene that just adds the cherry on top to the delicious treat that Melbourne is.

    The most famous of these is Hosier Lane, a quaint alley known for its evolving street art. Other places worth mentioning are Market Lane – a fragrant entryway to the city’s iconic Chinatown – and Block Arcade where ornate French Renaissance architecture frames trendy shops such as Georg Jensen and Crabtree & Evelyn.

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    4

    Visit Federation Square

    Explore this popular plaza rife with culture

    Federation Square is a centrally-located plaza and a famous landmark of the city where flurries of people meet for coffee, meals… you name it. Opened in 2002, this cultural hub is home to a museum, an art gallery, an auditorium, countless shops, restaurants and bars.

    The Ian Potter Centre is a must-visit for those who can spare the time. At this art museum, there are some remarkable displays of the Indigenous and non-Indigenous art from the colonial period to the present day, which is spread across 20 galleries. If you have time (and the energy), head over the river to its International gallery, where renowned museums, such as New York’s MOMA, have put on exhibitions. Highly advised: comfortable walking shoes.

    Lokalizacja: Swanton Street & Flinders Street, Melbourne, VIC 3000, Australia

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    zdjęcie: Terrazzo (CC BY-SA 2.0) zostało poddane edycji

    5

    Pop into one of Melbourne’s many excellent markets

    Learn about Melbourne’s many cultures

    Seeing that Melbourne is paving its way as Australia’s food capital, the markets it has to offer are no short of amazing. The most famous of them all is the vibrant Queen Victoria Market, which has functioned as a cemetery, a livestock market, and a wholesale fruit and vegetable market.

    Today, the market serves as a busy community centre, with entire halls designated to organic produce, meats, cheeses, and artisanal wares. In the winter, it even turns into a cosy night market. Another market making a name for itself is Preston Market, which has a range of cultural offerings such as Greek and Italian delis and bakeries as well as traders selling unique artisanal wares. For maximum hipster vibes, head to The Rose St. Artists’ Market.

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    zdjęcie: Crisco 1492 (CC BY-SA 4.0) zostało poddane edycji

    6

    Get lost in the green of the Royal Botanic Gardens

    Enjoy its gorgeous displays of wildlife

    Opened in 1846, the Royal Botanical Gardens is a truly beautiful display of plant life, with over 87 acres of landscaped gardens and over 10,000 species of plants and fauna. You can choose to spend a leisurely day walking the gorgeous, green grounds stopping to lay on the grass and soak in the sunshine or head on over for the last rays of the day after you explore the city.

    The gardens are easily accessible from the city’s CBD by train, bus or car, which is approximately 30km away. Don’t forget to bring a hat and some sunscreen to shield you from the strong Aussie sun.

    Lokalizacja: Birdwood Avenue, South Yarra, VIC 3141, Australia

    Otwarte: Daily from 7.30am to 7.30pm

    Telefon: +61 (0)3 9252 2300

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    zdjęcie: Neil Parley (CC BY 3.0) zostało poddane edycji

    7

    Meander along the Great Ocean Road

    See multiple iconic sights within this stunning drive

    Great Ocean Road is a wondrous, seemingly never-ending stretch of road that winds its way through the region’s countryside with the shimmering coast and the Ottaway Ranges at your sides. Start your road trip at Torquay and make sure to visit Lorne as well.

    This 250km-long natural wonder lets you come face to face with nature heavyweights such as the Twelve Apostles – colossal monoliths reaching from the waters’ depths, their thinning base a wave away from collapse – the Gibson Steps, the London Arch, Bells Beach and Logan’s Beach. For surfing fanatics, look out for the World Surfing Championship, which sees Bells Beach as a top surfing site. If the odds are in your favour, you may even witness a humpback whale giving birth on Logan’s Beach.

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    8

    Hang out on St. Kilda Beach

    Soak in the sunshine on a lively beach

    St. Kilda Beach is an iconic beach in Melbourne which is famous for its colourful bathing boxes that has made it somewhat Insta-famous. But other than that, the beach is excellent for beach walks or runs, rollerblading, windsurfing and everything under the rubric of water sports.

    Some consider you really haven’t even been to Melbourne if you didn’t go to St. Kilda Beach. For a bit of lively beach action, this is the place to be and you’ll more than realise this as you people-watch under your billowing parasol. For a good spot on the beach, head to there early and pitch up your base for a day on the sand.

    Lokalizacja: St Kilda Foreshore, St Kilda, VIC 3182, Australia

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    9

    Head to Phillip Island by late afternoon

    Spend the sunset with hundreds of tiny penguins

    Located on the city’s outskirts, Phillip Island is a wildlife lover’s paradise. For a sight to behold, head to the island’s shores just before dusk falls, where you’ll see hundreds of tiny penguins return from a busy day at sea. You can find them on Summerland Beach, where they’ll adorably waddle to their homes.

    If this isn’t enough for your wildlife needs, head to the island’s wildlife park, where koalas, seals, dolphins, wallabies, and kangaroos can be found. This is a great day out with kids and sure to keep them happy and occupied. For those wanting a more informative visit, there are tours available on the island.

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    zdjęcie: Schezar (CC BY 2.0) zostało poddane edycji

    10

    Hit up a rooftop bar

    Look out over city lights with a cocktail in hand

    Melbourne’s nightlife is arguably the best in the country, so its rooftop bars are no joke. Although the city can be known for its hit-and-miss weather, when the sun is out, it can be truly glorious. The Rooftop at QT is the spot to be for a bit of booze and sunshine. The bar is one of the city’s largest rooftop bars and also serves up crowd-pleasing bites, from lobster rolls to fresh oysters. The views here are snap-worthy, looking out at the city’s ever-expanding skyline. Another charming rooftop bar can be found at The Rose St. Artists’ Market where hipsters will rejoice.

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    Sophia Macpherson | Autor

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