Melbourne is known for its style, beautiful buildings, fantastic shopping and a wealth of sporting and cultural events. Melbourne is also the coastal capital of Australia's southeastern state Victoria, it's also Australia's second-largest city and carries a distinctive European feel and style.
Melbourne City Breaks: Melbourne has been voted (several times) one of the world’s most livable cities, which also helps make it one of Australia's most exciting cities to visit. Melbourne is dynamic, cosmopolitan and offers a diverse range of attractions, including: cultural sights, museums, a giant observation wheel, art galleries and a fantastic selection of bars and restaurants, making Melbourne a great destination to explore.
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Start planning your Australian holiday adventure now and you'll soon be discovering the diversity of Australia's six states and two territories. Explore cosmopolitan cities with easy-going and exciting lifestyles, world-class cuisine and fine New World wines.
Introduction: Melbourne is an attractive garden city combining elegant Victorian architecture with superb shops, markets, theatres and beautiful parks, not forgetting the historic and cultural sights that patiently await your exploration. Top Tip: plan your sightseeing time well to avoid missing out on Melbourne's wonderful, but sometimes not so obvious attractions.
(1). City Circle Trams: To get your bearings Jump one of the many burgundy-coloured City Circle Trams. They rattle through the streets past Victorian buildings, parks and outdoor cafes and are a great way explore the inner city. The City Circle Tram is free to use, simply hop on and off these historic trams as often as you like.
(2). Eureka Tower: Next stop is the 300 metre high Eureka Tower (the tallest residential building in the southern hemisphere). For the best view of Melbourne catch a lift to the Skydeck viewing platform on level 88. A must do attraction at the Skydeck is to stand on 'The Edge', a single sheet of transparent glass that forms a platform 300 metres above the ground, look down if you dare for a view of the city you'll never forget. If time allows take a journey of discovery on the 'Skydeck Voyger' - an award wining Pod Chair that gives you a 6-D immersive experience of Melbourne.
(3). Queen Victoria Market: The enormous Queen Victoria Market is another important Melbourne landmark, and worth visiting if just for the atmosphere. The outdoor market has lots to offer, from fresh produce, souvenirs, food stalls to homewares and on wednesday-nights the market comes alive with food stalls, eateries and live music.
(4). Federation Square: On the edge of Melbourne's central business district you'll find Federation Square - a festival vibe venue for arts, culture, public events and the heart and soul of Melbourne. Here you'll find specialty stores, an array of mixed restaurants, wine bars, pubs, theatres and event spaces full of cultural attractions and world-class events.
(5). Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria: For a peaceful break from Melbourne's city centre head to the nearby Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria. The 89-acre gardens is home to more than 8,000 plant species, lush lawns and open spaces, stunning vistas and tranquil lakes. The park attracts over 2 million visitors annually and provides guided walking tours, workshops and presentations to help you enjoy and appreciate this treasured and highly valued asset. Top Tip: Book on to the Aboriginal Heritage Walk for an introduction to the ancestral lands of the Koolin nation, learn about Aboriginal traditions and other fascinating insights about Aboriginal life, with help from an Aboriginal guide. If you want to save energy book on to the open-air minibus garden tour, and enjoy live commentary in comfort.
Other attractions: Other attractions include Flinders Street Railway Station, with it's iconic early 20th architecture that's become an emblem of the city. For an intriguing insight into the city's fascinating past pay a visit to the Old Melbourne Gaol, the prison that once housed the infamous Ned Kelly. To escape the city completely try a self-drive tour along the Great Southern Touring Route, which includes spectacular scenery and takes in some of Victoria's most beautiful, scenic and cultural attractions along the way.
Local Transport: Melbourne's public transport is easy to use and has a convenient smartcard payment system, city transport options include the Metro, Trams and Buses.
Melbourne Metro: The Metro's city loop is Melbourne's underground system, consisting of five underground stations servicing the central business district: Southern Cross Station, Flagstaff, Melbourne Central, Parliament and Flinders Street. The Metro services run from 5am to midnight Monday to Thursday, Night-time networks run all night Fridays and weekends. You can plan your route online by using the Victoria Public Transport route planner.
Melbourne Trams: The Yarra Tram company operates Melbourne's city tram service. Melbourne has the world's largest operational tram network, the service has a 100 year operational history and operates 24hrs a day with a fleet size of 475 trams. Top Tip: Use the journey planner to plan your trip.
Travelling by tram is free in the city centre (Free Tram Zone) with tram stops in the Free Tram Zone being clearly marked. If you start or finish a journey outside the Free Tram Zone you will be charged a fare, payable with a valid myki card (see myki card details below).
The City Circle Tram: Perhaps one of the best ways to see Melbourne is to use the burgundy and gold City Circle Tram service. These trams offer free travel to the city's main sights and attractions, the service includes audio commentary on points of interest along the way. Tram service routes include Flinders Street, Harbour Esplanade, Docklands Drive, La Trobe Street and Spring Street.
Melbourne Bus Services: Melbourne's buses are plentiful and provide frequent services to major hubs and places of interest, including shopping malls, leisure and sports venues, and most of Melbourne's main tourist attractions.
Myki Travel Smartcard: The myki is a smartcard ticket for travel on Melbourne's public transport network including trains, trams and buses and includes travel to many parts of regional Victoria. The myki smartcard can be topped up with myki money or a myki travel pass. Myki will automatically calculate the lowest fare based on where you travel, you can buy a myki online at myki.com.au or at main train stations and retail outlets displaying the myki sign.
Nightlife: Melbourne is notorious for its lively nightlife with rooftop bars, luxurious nightclubs and trendy cocktail bars. Melbourne has seen an explosion of bars and nightclubs over the last several years and is now regarded as one of the world's most exciting cities after dark. Cocktail bars, themed bars and high-altitude drinking (well established rooftop bars) can be found spread across city. The Central Business District (CBD) is the area to head to for culture, dining and the liveliest bars and chic eateries.
Melbourne International Airport (IATA: MEL). Melbourne Airport is approximately 16 miles northwest of the city centre.
Melbourne Airport is a principal hub for Qantas Airways, Virgin Australia and is a home base for Jetstar. The airport has 4 terminals: one international terminal, two domestic terminals and one budget domestic terminal.
Airport Transfers The Skybus Super Shuttle operates express coach services from the airport to Southern Cross railway station in Melbourne city centre. Regular bus services also operate from the airport to downtown Melbourne. Taxi services are readily available from outside the arrival terminals.
Car Hire: All major car rental companies are represented at Melbourne (MEL) airport, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and Sixt.
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