Marvellous Melbourne: 10 Locations to Get the Most out of the City

Melbourne’s must see sights


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With so much on offer in Melbourne, it can be difficult to know where to start. Do you soak up some culture in one of Melbourneโ€™s many museums, or some sunshine in its public parks? Below weโ€™ve gathered together some of the cityโ€™s most unmissable locations to make planning your trip a breeze (a nice, warm, south coast breeze at that).

1. Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria

Opened in 1846, the Royal Botanic Gardens spans 94 acres and displays over 50,000 individual plants. The gardens bring together native and non-native species, including a collection of rare and threatened specimens. Itโ€™s free to enter and offers visitors a tranquil haven away from the city centre, as well as activities such as punting on the lake, and a number of cafรฉ kiosks to grab some picnic grub.
Image Credit: @royalbotanicgardensvicย ย 

trees in the botanic gardens

2. City Circle Tram

If you want to see the sights of Melbourne without the leg work, hop on the free City Circle Tram. This iconic heritage vehicle provides audio commentary on major attractions and landmarks such as the Melbourne Museum, Parliament House, and Federation Square. Itโ€™s perfect for hopping on and off, while the 60 minutes it takes to make a full loop offers plenty of time to get to know the city. Additionally, the tram provides tourists with free maps and information leaflets, ensuring a smooth ride at every stage of your journey.
Image Credit: @yarratrams

one of the heritage trams

3. Queen Victoria Marketย 

Queen Victoria Market has been a hub of activity since 1878. Itโ€™s a massive site, covering over 17 acres, making it the largest open air market in the Southern Hemisphere. Itโ€™s one of Melbourneโ€™s last Victorian era markets still in operation, welcoming a whopping 10 million visitors a year. During the summer months it hosts a night market packed with bars and live entertainment. Stalls sell everything from food to handmade jewellery, so thereโ€™s something for everyone. You can find a list of all the shops and stalls here.
Image Credit: @vicmarket

exterior of Victoria Market

4. Eureka Tower Skydeckย 

Once the tallest residential building in the world, Eureka Tower offers stunning 360ยฐ views across Melbourne. Located on the 88th floor, the Skydeck is the Southern Hemisphere’s highest viewing platform at 285 metres. For those with a head for heights, Skydeck has created The Edge, a cube that slides out from the side of the building and suspends you above the city. In a terrifying twist, the opaque walls and floor of the cube turn clear once itโ€™s fully extended. After that youโ€™ve definitely earned a drink in the exclusive Eureka 89 Dining, located on the floor above.
Image Credit: @eureka_skydeck

view from the skydeck at dusk

5. Cookโ€™s Cottage

Itโ€™s not everyday that you can visit a house thatโ€™s travelled halfway around the world. Originally constructed in North Yorkshire, England, in 1755, the building was moved brick by brick to Melbourne in 1934. The reason? This inconspicuous cottage was built by the parents of Captain James Cook, the famous navigator who made numerous voyages to Australia from 1768 to 1779. While Captain Cook probably never lived in the house, itโ€™s certain that he visited it. Costumed volunteers will help you explore this historic oddity and its adjoining English cottage garden.
Image Credit: @melbournetouristguideย 

exterior of Cooks Cottage with flowers

6. Old Melbourne Gaolย 

Take a trip into the more grisly aspects of Melbourneโ€™s past at the Old Gaol. In operation from 1845 to 1924, the Gaol housed some of Australiaโ€™s most notorious criminals. Among them was Ned Kelly, the outlaw who has since been dubbed Australiaโ€™s Robin Hood, and who was executed in the Gaol in 1880. Tours are available throughout the day, but stop by for a nighttime tour to hunt out the spirits of the inmates who never leftโ€ฆ
Image Credit: @oldmelbgaol

interior of the gaol

7. Berlin Bar

Cold War Germany may not be the first thing that comes to mind when looking for a cocktail, but Berlin Bar provides just that. Using imaginative decor to transport you to another time and place, the Bar offers two seating zones: East and West. The opulence of the West is countered by the Communist propaganda and austerity of the East, mirroring the division of Berlin. Rather than gimmicky, the decor is supported by a range of excellent and imaginative cocktails. Frequently listed amongst the worldโ€™s best bars, this is one location thatโ€™s not to be missed.
Image credit: @berlinbarmelbourne

interior of the Berlin Bar

8. St Kilda Pier

Head down to Port Phillip Bay to breathe in some sea air on this picturesque pier. Itโ€™s been offering panoramic views of Melbourne since 1853, and now provides a space for strolling, cycling, and rollerblading. Thereโ€™s plenty of kiosks offering al fresco snacks, and a ferry service is also available to Williamstown. Itโ€™s also the ideal spot to watch the penguins and native water rats that live around this part of the city.
Image Credit: @littlebluestkilda

St Kilda pier at dusk

9. Degraves Street and Centre Placeย 

Melbourneโ€™s laneways are hives of activity, filled with pint-sized bars, boutiques, and hole-in-the-wall cafes. Ever changing street art is also on offer, from paste-ups to murals. Degraves Street was one of the original laneways, and continues to offer a vibrant range of shops and bars. Head over to nearby Centre Place to continue your laneway tour, or go underground to Campbell Arcade.
Image Credit: @visitmelbourne

centre place laneway in the rain

10. Carlton Gardens

These historic gardens are a World Heritage Site located at the edge of Melbourneโ€™s sleek Central Business District. Itโ€™s home to the Royal Exhibition Building and Melbourne Museum, as well as an Imax Cinema. A variety of Australian and European plants offer plenty of shady spots for picnics, while fountains and lakes provide some relaxing views. Carlton Gardens are also home to brushtail possums, kookaburras, and grey-headed flying foxes, so make sure to bring a camera. Escape from the city for a bit to this urban oasis.
Image Credit: @royalexhibitionbuilding

park with view of exhibition building


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