Flinders Street Station, Melissa Krafchek

Melbourne is renowned as Australia’s cultural capital. The city has a decidedly European feel, with neo-Gothic banks and cathedrals, much-loved department stores, art galleries and theatres around every corner. And hidden among these buildings is a string of vibrant laneways given over to cafe culture and boutique shopping. Yet Melbourne wouldn’t be Melbourne without sport – seeing a footy match at the MCG is a must.

Melbourne was born in 1835, and quickly became a city. With the boom of Victoria’s goldfields, unbelievable wealth was poured into public buildings and tramways, grand boulevards and High Victorian masterpieces.

Today Melbourne’s population of around 4,100,000 still enjoys the good life, at the very centre of which is a love of good food and coffee. You can find comfort food in a cosy corner pub or meals with a view and a waterfront setting – a trend in so many of the country’s coastal cities. Southbank, the shopping and eating precinct on the Yarra River, has become an extension of the city centre, while Docklands is the city’s latest waterside area.

You might come to Melbourne for the dining and the shopping; the gardens and the architecture; the arts and music; the football, cricket and tennis. The city has as much diversity as it has suburbs, and at last check these were marching right down the Mornington Peninsula.

Visitor information

Melbourne Visitor Centre

Federation Square Cnr Flinders and Swanston sts (03) 9658 9658.

Getting Around

Melbourne’s trams are an icon, but also a very good way of getting around the city. The City Circle tram is free and extends to Docklands. Trams depart every 12 minutes between 10am and 6pm from Sunday to Wednesday, and till 9pm from Thursday to Saturday. Other (paid) services head out into the suburbs, with especially good coverage of the eastern, south-eastern and northern suburbs. A map of the different services can be found inside most trams.

Trains are generally a faster option if there is a service that goes to your destination. Details of services can be found at each of the five stations in the CBD (see map on p. 128).

Buses tend to cover the areas that trains and trams don’t service. The free Melbourne City Tourist Shuttle is a hop-on, hop-off bus service stopping at 13 key city destinations. The service runs every 30 minutes between 9.30am and 4.30pm daily and includes an informative on-board commentary. Details of routes and stops can be found at, or pick up a brochure from the Melbourne Visitor Information Centre at Federation Square.

Melbourne’s public transport system recently moved from Metcard tickets to plastic myki smart cards. Myki cards are purchased prior to travel on the train, tram and bus networks. The price of your journey will depend on which of the two ‘zones’ you need to travel to. For ticketing and purchasing information and an excellent journey planner facility, see

For drivers, the much-talked-about feature of Melbourne’s roads is the hook-turn, a process of moving to the left of the road in order to turn right, and therefore getting out of the way of trams. If you wish to use the tollways CityLink or EastLink, either an e-TAG or a day pass is required (there are no tollbooths, but day passes can be purchased over the phone either before or after making a journey).

Public transport

Tram, train and bus information line 1800 800 007.

Airport shuttle bus

Skybus (03) 9335 2811.


CityLink 13 2629; EastLink 13 5465.

Motoring organisation

RACV 13 7228, roadside assistance 13 1111.

Car rental

Avis 13 6333; Budget 1300 362 848; Hertz 13 3039; Thrifty 1300 367 227.


13CABS 13 2227; Silver Top 13 1008; West Suburban (03) 9689 1144.

Water taxi

Melbourne Water Taxis 0416 068 655.

Tourist bus

AAT Kings (03) 9663 3377; Australian Pacific Tours 1300 655 965.

Bicycle hire

Rentabike @ Federation Square 0417 339 203; Bike Now (South Melbourne) (03) 9696 8588; St Kilda Cycles (03) 9534 3074.


Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG)

Barracking for your team at a footy match at the MCG

Federation Square

Admiring architecture and art in Federation Square

Queen Victoria Market

Shopping for produce at the Queen Victoria Market

St Kilda

A stroll along the St Kilda foreshore


Taking a ferry trip to Williamstown


Moonlight Cinema in the Royal Botanic Gardens during summer

Melbourne and Olympic parks

Sweating it out in the crowd at the Australian Open

Laneways and arcades

Stopping for coffee in Degraves Street, one of the city’s laneways

Brunswick Street, Fitzroy

Live music at a pub in Fitzroy

NewQuay and Waterfront City

Waterside dining at Southgate or NewQuay, Docklands

City precincts

Museums & Galleries

ANZ Banking Museum

Old money boxes, staff uniforms, historic displays and an interactive ATM exhibit in the glorious Gothic setting of the ANZ Bank. 380 Collins St; open 10am–3pm Mon–Fri; admission free.

Fire Services Museum

Huge collection of fire brigade memorabilia, including vintage vehicles and historic photos. 39 Gisborne St, East Melbourne; (03) 9662 2907; open 9am–3pm Thurs and Fri, 10am–4pm Sun.

Ian Potter Museum of Art

An extensive art collection, including cultural artefacts and contemporary artworks. University of Melbourne, Swanston St, between Faraday and Elgin sts, Parkville; (03) 8344 5148; open 10am–5pm Tue–Fri, 12pm–5pm Sat and Sun; admission free.

Jewish Museum of Australia

A record of the experiences of Australia’s many Jewish migrants. 26 Alma Rd, St Kilda; (03) 8534 3600; open 10am–4pm Tues–Thurs, 10am–5pm Sun.


An artist’s colony that began in 1934; magnificent French provincial buildings and artworks for view in the gallery. 7 Hillcrest Ave, Eltham; (03) 9439 7712; open 9am–5pm Mon–Sun.

Victoria Police Museum

Victoria’s life of crime revealed, from the capture of Ned Kelly to the Hoddle Street shootings. Mezzanine Level, World Trade Centre, 637 Flinders St; (03) 9247 5214; open 10am–4pm Mon–Fri; admission free.

Grand Old Buildings

ANZ Gothic Bank

An incredible, gold-leafed interior and a banking museum. 380 Collins St.

Manchester Unity Building

Chicago-style building with stark vertical lines, once the city’s tallest skyscraper. Cnr Collins and Swanston sts.

Capitol Theatre

Designed by the architects of Canberra with a ceiling that will amaze you. 113 Swanston St.

St Patrick’s Cathedral

Victoria’s largest church building, built with tonnes of Footscray bluestone. Cnr Gisborne St and Cathedral Pl, East Melbourne.

Princess Theatre

The dramatic exterior culminates in three domes with cast-iron tiaras. 163 Spring St.

Forum Theatre

Moorish domes, and a starry night sky on the inner ceiling of the main theatre. Cnr Russell and Flinders sts.

St Paul’s Cathedral

Gothic cathedral made of sandstone. Cnr Flinders and Swanston sts.

Old Magistrates’ Court

The rough sandstone exterior and deeply set archways make for a grim atmosphere. Cnr Russell and Latrobe sts.

Olderfleet Building

An intricate Gotham City facade. Nearby is The Rialto, designed by the same architect. 477 Collins St.

Regent Theatre

Melbourne’s most glamorous theatre, with an interior of Spanish-style lattice and red carpet. 191 Collins St.

St James’ Old Cathedral

A humble relic of Melbourne’s founding years. Cnr King and Batman sts, West Melbourne.

University of Melbourne

More historic buildings than you can count. Parkville.

Hotel Windsor

Layered like a wedding cake and fit for a queen. 111 Spring St.

City Baths

A feast of domes on the skyline, this building dates back to the days when bathrooms were a luxury few could afford. Cnr Swanston and Victoria sts.


Other Suburbs


Kosher butchers mixed with an emerging cafe culture.

Black Rock

One of many bayside suburbs shifting from a sleepy village into sought-after real estate, fronting two of Melbourne’s best beaches.

Brunswick and Brunswick East

Sydney Road is the place to come to for bargain fabrics, authentic Turkish bread and a healthy dose of Middle Eastern culture. Lygon Street, parallel to Sydney Road, has more textiles and excellent cafes and food stores.

Camberwell and Canterbury

Melbourne’s eastern money belt, with fashion outlets lining Camberwell’s Burke Road, and the elegant Maling Road shopping precinct in Canterbury.


One of Melbourne's most diverse communities – with food stores galore and a vibrant market.


All native trees and mud-brick architecture, this suburb feels like a piece of the country only 30 min from the city.


A mini-Saigon, now with a growing African flavour. Jam-packed with cheap eateries and one of Melbourne’s best produce markets.


With a strong student culture from the nearby university, and a strip of shops on Glenferrie Road offering everything from Asian groceries to smart fashion.


A gem tucked away in a largely industrial sweep of suburbs, with cafes and a superb Art Deco cinema.

Parks & Gardens

Albert Park

A great spot for exercising around the lake, and the site for the Australian Formula One Grand Prix. Albert Park.

Birrarung Marr

Located on the north bank of the Yarra River, with sculptural displays, a colourful playground and a bike track leading up to Federation Square. City.

Brimbank Park

With wetlands, a children’s farm, a visitor centre with a cafe and walking trails along the Maribyrnong River. Keilor.

Eltham Lower Park

Featuring the Diamond Valley Miniature Railway, which offers rides for kids on Sun 11am–5pm. Eltham.

Gasworks Arts Park

Sculptures, native gardens, barbecues, a cafe and artist studios in the former South Melbourne Gasworks. Albert Park.

Jells Park

A haven for waterbirds and a great place for a stroll through the bush. Wheelers Hill.

Wattle Park

Native bush and birds, a nine-hole golf course and accessible by tram. Surrey Hills.

Westerfolds Park

On the Yarra and popular for canoeing and cycling, with the Mia Mia Aboriginal Art Gallery on top of the hill. Templestowe.

Yarra Bend Park

Bushland close to the city, with boats for hire, a golf course, great views and a strong Aboriginal heritage. Kew/Fairfield.


Bourke Street Mall, City

With department stores Myer and David Jones as well as the swish Melbourne GPO.

Bridge Road, Richmond

Back-to-back factory outlets and designer warehouses.

Brunswick Street and Gertrude Street, Fitzroy

Design and fashion stores.

Chapel Street, South Yarra

Where shopping is an event to dress up for.

Collins Street, City

Glamorous shopping strip with the big names in high-end fashion. Check out the boutique-style shopping on adjacent Flinders Lane and Little Collins Street too.

DFO, South Wharf

Shopping mall of factory outlets for bargain hunters.

Melbourne Central and QV Melbourne, City

These two nearby precincts are a shopper’s paradise.

Southgate, Southbank

A classy range of clothing, art and gifts.

Walks & Tours

Aboriginal Heritage Walk

With an Aboriginal guide and a gum leaf for a ticket, stroll through the Royal Botanic Gardens and learn about the bushfoods, medicines and traditional lore of the Boonerwrung and Woiwurrung people, whose traditional lands meet here. Bookings on (03) 9252 2429; 11am Tues–Fri and 1st Sun each month.

Carlton United Brewery Tours

Free tastings of CUB draught beers are preceded by a tour around Abbotsford Brewery, the home of Fosters. Bookings on (03) 9420 6800; 10am, 12pm and 2pm Mon–Fri, evening tours also available Wed and Sat.

Chocoholic Tours

A range of tours to get you drooling, taking in Melbourne’s best chocolatiers, candy-makers, ice-creameries and cafes. Bookings on (03) 9686 4655.

Foodies Dream Tours

Get tips on picking the best fresh produce, meet the specialist traders and taste samples from the deli at Queen Victoria Market. Bookings on (03) 9320 5835; 10am Tues and Thurs–Sat.

Golden Mile Heritage Trail

Walk with a guide or navigate this trail on your own. It leads from the Immigration Museum to Melbourne Museum, taking in historic buildings and heritage attractions along the way (walkers gain discounted entry to various places). Bookings 1300 780 045, or get a self-guide brochure from the Melbourne Visitor Information Centre at Federation Square. 10am Mon–Sun.

Harley Rides

Take the Introduction to Melbourne tour, exploring the bay and over the West Gate Bridge with the wind whistling through your hair. Bookings on 1800 182 282; tours daily.

Melbourne Ghost Tour

Get the adrenalin pumping as you traipse down dark alleys and enter city buildings that the ghosts of early Melbourne are known to haunt. Bookings on (03) 9670 2585; 8.30pm Sat.

Hidden Secrets Tours

Various tours focusing on the city’s laneways, innovative fashion, design, architecture and food culture. Bookings on (03) 9663 3358.

River Cruises

A trip down the Yarra or the Maribyrnong or across to Williamstown will give you new views of Melbourne. Melbourne River Cruises (03) 8610 2600, City River Cruises (03) 9650 2214, Williamstown Ferry (03) 9517 9444, Maribyrnong River Cruises (03) 9689 6431.


Melbourne is possibly Australia’s most sporting city, with hardly a gap in the calendar for the true sports enthusiast. AFL (Australian Football League) is indisputably at the top of the list. The season begins at the end of March and, as it nears the finals in September, footy madness eclipses the city. Victoria has ten teams in the league, and the blockbuster matches are played at the MCG and Etihad Stadium.

After the football comes the Spring Racing Carnival, as much a social event as a horseracing one. October and November are packed with events at racetracks across the state, with the city events held at Caulfield, Moonee Valley, Sandown and Flemington racetracks. The Melbourne Cup, ‘the race that stops the nation’, is held at Flemington on the first Tuesday in November, and is a local public holiday.

Cricket takes Melbourne through the heat of summer. One Day International and Test matches are usually played at the MCG, and the popular Boxing Day Test gives Christmas in Melbourne a sporting twist.

In January Melbourne hosts the Australian Open, one of the world’s four major tennis Grand Slams. The venue is Melbourne Park, home to the Rod Laver Arena and the Hisense Arena, both of which host other sporting events and concerts throughout the year.

Come March and the Australian Formula One Grand Prix comes to town, attracting a large international crowd. The cars race around Albert Park Lake, which for the rest of the year is the setting for rather more low-key sporting pursuits such as jogging and rollerblading. See also Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and National Sports Museum, p. 134, and Melbourne and Olympic parks, p. 133.


The major cinemas in the city are Hoyts in Melbourne Central and Greater Union in Russell Street. For arthouse films, try Kino Cinemas in Collins Place. Standout cinemas in the inner-city area include: Cinema Nova in Carlton for a great range of popular and arthouse films; Village Jam Factory in South Yarra or Village in the Crown Entertainment Complex for a Hollywood-style experience; the Rivoli in Camberwell for an old-world cinema experience; and the Astor in St Kilda East, where they play re-runs of the classics and recent releases. See daily newspapers or online for details.

Day Tours

Bellarine Peninsula

The Bellarine Peninsula separates the waters of Port Phillip from the famously rugged coastline of Victoria’s south-west. Beyond the historic buildings, streets and Geelong’s waterfront are quaint coastal villages, excellent beaches, golf courses and wineries.

The Dandenongs

These scenic hills at the edge of Melbourne’s eastern suburbs are a popular daytrip. Native rainforests of mountain ash and giant ferns, cool-climate gardens, the popular steam train Puffing Billy, which runs through Emerald, and galleries, craft shops and cafes, many serving Devonshire tea, are among the many attractions.

Mornington Peninsula

This holiday centre, including Portsea and Sorrento, features fine-food producers, around 40 cool-climate vineyards, historic holiday villages, quiet coastal national parks, superb golf courses and many attractions for children.

Mount Macedon and Hanging Rock

Country mansions and superb 19th- and 20th-century European-style gardens sit comfortably in the native bushland. Here you’ll find wineries, cafes, nurseries, galleries and the mysteriously beautiful Hanging Rock near Woodend.

Phillip Island

The nightly Penguin Parade on Phillip Island is one of Victoria’s signature attractions. For the avid wildlife-watcher, seals and koalas are the other stars of the show, though the island also boasts magnificent coastal scenery from Cowes and great surf breaks.

Sovereign Hill

Ballarat’s award-winning re-creation of a 19th-century goldmining village conjures up the detail and drama of life during one of the nation’s most exciting periods of history. You can even stay the night at accommodation within the village, with full period costume thrown in!

Spa country

For a few hours of health-giving indulgence, visit the historic spa complex at Hepburn Springs. Explore Daylesford, enjoy a meal at one of the region’s excellent eateries, or take a peaceful forest drive.

Yarra Valley and Healesville

High-quality pinot noir and sparkling wines are produced across one of Australia’s best known wine areas. Pick up a brochure from the visitor centre in Healesville and map out your wine-tasting tour. Worthy of its own daytrip is Healesville Sanctuary, featuring around 200 species of native animals in a bushland setting.

Eco-friendly activities

Cycling around Melbourne

Melbourne has an active cycling community that has helped develop and establish some great routes and a network of cycle paths. One of the best sources of information is Bicycle Victoria. One option is to hop on the Main Yarra Trail at Southbank and follow the Yarra River for 35 kilometres, through tranquil bushland and open paddocks, until it meets up with the Mullum Mullum Creek Trail in Templestowe. Hire A Bicycle in the city centre is one of many companies that will get you twirling the pedals. Bike Now is located in South Melbourne near bike paths linking with the Royal Botanic Gardens and Albert Park Lake.

St Kilda is another popular spot for a cycle. You can just take a short ride along the waterfront trail or travel the 30 kilometres to Brighton and back. St Kilda Cycles will set you up and get you on your way. The company also offers guided bike tours along the beaches or the Yarra Trail.

Dandenong Ranges National Park

About an hour’s drive out of Melbourne, some 35 kilometres east of the city, this park has forests of towering mountain ash and lush, damp fern gullies. Around 300 kilometres of walking tracks crisscross the park, including several great short and medium walks such as the popular Fern Gully trail and the Sherbrooke Forest loop. There are also plenty of pleasant picnic spots, including Grants and Valley picnic areas. The best access is from Mount Dandenong Tourist Road.

Echidna Walkabout wildlife tour

On a full day trip, with great opportunities to see koalas, kangaroos and other wildlife, the eco-accredited Echidna Walkabout will take you to two locations on the Werribee Plains – Serendip Sanctuary (see also Melbourne to Cape Otway/Birdwatching), and either You Yangs Regional Park (see also Melbourne to Cape Otway/Mountain-biking) or Brisbane Ranges National Park (see The Goldfields/Activities) – and explain the great significance of the plains region for the local Indigenous people. The company runs other longer wildlife-focused trips as well, including a three-day Fur and Feathers tour from Melbourne.

Indigenous tours - Melbourne

To grasp what Melbourne was like before the skyscrapers arrived you can take a two-hour Koori Heritage Trust walking tour. You will gain an insight into Indigenous history and the natural and cultural landscape of the area. A one-and-a-half-hour guided Aboriginal Heritage Walk also goes through the Royal Botanic Gardens, and includes a traditional smoking ceremony and information about traditional uses of plants. Bookings are essential for the tour and walk.

Kayaking and canoeing around Melbourne

With everything from short, gentle kayak tours of the Docklands area and the Yarra to multi-day adventures further afield, including Wilsons Promontory, Seakayak Australia is bound to have something to catch your interest. The company will also hire out all gear if you want to head out on your own.

Adventure Canoeing runs popular canoeing and kayaking tours and hires gear on the upper Yarra River at Warrandyte, on Melbourne’s north-eastern outskirts. If you go for a two-hour paddle or an overnight excursion you are likely to spot koalas, kangaroos and plenty of birds as you travel through Warrandyte State Park. The company also offers whitewater canoeing and whitewater rafting. You can do a one-day trip on the King River, a two-day trip on the Mitta Mitta or join a group expedition to the Mitchell or Snowy rivers in the east of the state.

Melbourne Zoo

Melbourne has a choice of two excellent zoos: Melbourne Zoo, with more than 320 species on display; and the 225-hectare open range zoo at Werribee, about 30 minutes drive from the city centre (access from the Princes Highway). Werribee offers a Slumber Safari, staying overnight in an eco-friendly camp, with up-close animal encounters. Both zoos are involved in breeding programs for endangered species such as the eastern barred bandicoot.

Mountain-biking around Melbourne

With 20 kilometres of tracks developed by the Mountain Bike Association of Australia, Lysterfield Lake Park has something for all standard of mountain-biker, including family-friendly loops and exciting single-track descents. The park is also a good spot for a picnic and a swim and has a bird hide. All About Mountain Bike Tours can set you up for a day’s mountain-biking here – either as a guided tour or on your own.

Picnicking in Melbourne

With some 10 000 recorded plant species on 38 hectares of beautiful parklands along the Yarra, the Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne is a special spot in a bustling city for a stroll and a picnic. If you want to head slightly out of town, Warrandyte State Park has some excellent picnic and barbecue facilities, and swimming and bushwalking.

Cafes & restaurants around town


Owner/chef Abla Amad has been pleasing diners with her simple yet superb, authentic Lebanese cuisine in this unpretentious terrace house for 30 years. Regulars know to start with traditional dips such as creamy hummus... Find out more

Babka 2 km

If the queues that regularly spill from Babka’s front door aren’t hint enough of something special at this Brunswick Street bakery and cafe, then the aroma of freshly baked loaves, pies and cakes should have... Find out more


For more than a decade this big-hearted and soulful Italian eatery has captivated its loyal clientele of diners and wine lovers. The bar serves a clever concoction of options, including fantastic cocktails, but the... Find out more

Brunetti 2 km

A bustling piece of loud, swirling Roman chaos in the midst of Melbourne’s Little Italy, Brunetti is one of the city’s quintessential cafe experiences. Multiple shopfronts, a large outdoor seating area and a... Find out more

Cafe Di Stasio

At this iconic Latin restaurant on St Kilda’s colourful Fitzroy Street, waiters with attitude serve fine authentic dishes. Tables are close, adding to the intimacy, and the feeling is one of pure theatre – from the... Find out more


This ultra-casual seafood specialist does a roaring trade, despite not taking bookings – so come early. In summer, head for a shared table in the taverna-style pebbled courtyard at the rear. The fish is bought... Find out more

Cumulus Inc 1 km

Housed in a beautifully designed former gallery space on the CBD’s hippest small thoroughfare, Cumulus Inc could rest on its good-looking laurels and still attract a crowd. But whether you are sitting at one of the... Find out more

Degraves Espresso

If there could ever be one cafe that perfectly characterises Melbourne's cafe culture, it would have to be Degraves Espresso. First, you'll need to locate it – like so many of the city's... Find out more


Summer or winter, this basement venue has a good feel – cool and sleek when the mercury rises, cosy and welcoming in the cooler months. Chef and co-owner Teage Ezard’s individual style of contemporary... Find out more

Flower Drum 1 km

Flower Drum is Melbourne’s iconic Cantonese restaurant, the kind of place where visiting dignitaries reserve a table when they are in town and locals book for a special occasion. Impeccable produce, cooking... Find out more

France Soir

It’s best to book at a place like this – they turned Mick Jagger away because they didn’t have a table free. France Soir has been serving reliably great French food with flair and panache for more than... Find out more

Giuseppe Arnaldo & Sons 1 km

Walk into the riverside Giuseppe Arnaldo & Sons and you are immediately transported to a little slice of modern-day Rome. This eatery can be everything to everybody – a bar or trattoria, perfect for an intimate... Find out more

Il Fornaio

A constant stream of food lovers is attracted throughout the day to this smart Italian bakery-cum-bistro. The polished concrete floor and backstage ambience lure colourful locals and the odd celebrity for early breakfast... Find out more

Jacques Reymond

Distinguished French chef Jacques Reymond transports guests from fine to grand dining. This award-winning restaurant, graciously housed in an elegant, beautifully restored 19th-century mansion overlooking a courtyard... Find out more

Journal Canteen

Not to be confused with the much-loved Journal Cafe downstairs, Journal Canteen is a bright and cheery lunch-only joint with a daily changing menu of simple, rustic and unfailingly delicious Sicilian-inspired food. With... Find out more

Kanteen 4 km

Kanteen is the perfect place for hardcore city slickers to get a small, civilised dose of the great outdoors. Nestled in a leafy bend of the Yarra River, this was once an amenities block but a simple, very effective... Find out more


Madrid meets Melbourne in this always-packed Spanish restaurant tucked down a graffitied cobblestone laneway. The terracotta-toned dining area is a flatteringly lit place for roaming through a rich, big-flavoured... Find out more

The Press Club

Melbourne has one of the biggest Greek populations outside of Greece, but before The Press Club came along, the city had to be content with the jolly but basic tavernas dotted throughout the suburbs. Big and bustling... Find out more


With its wonderful views of the bay, superb upstairs deck and an ongoing reputation for consistently pumping out some of the best food in Melbourne, Stokehouse should be on the must-do list for visitors and locals alike.... Find out more

Taxi Dining Room 1 km

The views from Taxi Dining Room over the Yarra River, arts precinct and CBD are worth a visit in themselves, as is the dining area that channels 1960s airport glamour and a cinematically futuristic metal mesh and glass... Find out more

Vue de Monde

This Melbourne restaurant has received some of the industry’s highest accolades. Chef Shannon Bennett’s modern French menu is strictly degustation in the evening, when diners pay upwards of $150 (sometimes a... Find out more

Nearby breweries

Foster's Group (Abbotsford Brewery) 4 km

Re-branded as the Foster’s Group in the 21st century, Carlton & United Breweries was formed in 1907 through an amalgamation of the city’s six largest beer-makers: McCrackens City Brewery, Victoria... Find out more

Mountain Goat Brewery 4 km

Kicking off in 1997, home-brewer Dave Bonighton and music industry booking agent Cam Hines proved that two good mates can start a successful microbrewery with no money, but with unlimited enthusiasm, dogged perseverance... Find out more

3 Ravens Brewing Company 9 km

This microbrewery began operating from the basement of the successful Thornbury-based engineering company Zetkin and has proved to be an interesting diversion or sideline for the principal business. Some of the company... Find out more

2 Brothers Brewery 17 km

A microbrewery is not exactly what you might expect to find tucked away among panel-beaters and sheet-metal fabricators in the industrial estates of Moorabbin, 20 minutes south-east of Melbourne. While the location may... Find out more

Matilda Bay Garage Brewery 32 km

Previously operating as the Stockade Brewery, this South Dandenong-based microbrewery was acquired by the Foster’s-owned Matilda Bay Brewing in 2004 and re-badged as their ‘garage’ brewery. Then head... Find out more

Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company 40 km

Craft brewers come from all sorts of different backgrounds but classical pianist Simon Walkenhorst and his opera singer wife Beth Williams are among the more exotic. Together, they started Hargreaves Hill Brewing Company... Find out more

Holgate Brewhouse 64 km

Paul and Natasha Holgate have travelled a decidedly different path to most other craft-brewery operators over the past decade or so. They started brewing ales from a shed adjacent to their family home in Woodend in the... Find out more

Red Hill Brewery 64 km

Becoming hop farmers wasn’t part of their business plan when David and Karen Golding first applied to develop a microbrewery and cafe from their Mornington Peninsula property. Ultimately, though, they were advised... Find out more

Jamieson Brewery 119 km

Looking for a drawcard to attract tourists to their Victorian High Country pub, owners Jeff and Jeanette Whyte installed a microbrewery into the Jamieson Hotel and started knocking out house beers in 2001. The equipment... Find out more

Grand Ridge Brewery 124 km

One of the country’s longest-running craft breweries began life as the Strzelecki Brewery in 1988, but operated for only a brief period before being re-branded as Grand Ridge under new ownership. Over the ensuing... Find out more

Otway Estate Brewery 141 km

Located 12 kilometres from Colac, Otway Estate Winery was established in 1983, specialising in cool-climate wines; a microbrewery was added in 2007. Head brewer Luke Scott oversees the production of up to 15 different... Find out more

Purrumbete Brewing Company (Red Duck) 161 km

Scott and Vanessa Wilson-Browne are another couple of ‘ale changers’ who swapped busy Melbourne careers to move to the country, bring up their young family, and brew and market craft ales. Along the way, they... Find out more

Bright Brewery 214 km

The original Bright Brewery shut down in 1916 and this modern incarnation was started by a quartet of ‘ale changers’ – couples David and Julie Cocks, and Scott Brandon and Fiona Reddaway – some 90... Find out more

Flying Horse Brewery 222 km

Whales and ales are now the twin attractions for the pretty seaside Victorian city of Warrnambool, following the development of the sprawling Flying Horse Bar & Brewery complex by joint owners Matt Monk, Matt Stewart... Find out more

Bridge Road Brewers 222 km

Ben Kraus originally trained as a winemaker but his head was turned in the direction of craft brewing during a stint working in Western Australia’s Margaret River region. The cluster of microbreweries in this... Find out more

Bell's Hotel and Brewery 2 km

Melbourne’s longest-running brewpub has been producing house beers since the late 1980s; admittedly playing second fiddle to the wide range of more commercial beers on tap at this South Melbourne institution. Bill... Find out more

Coldstream Brewery 38 km

Yarra Valley wine- and cider-maker Phil Kelly (Kellybrook Wines) and four of his mates are behind the Coldstream Brewery, which came on-line during 2008. Due to various planning approval delays, the bar and restaurant... Find out more

Buckley's Beers 51 km

This Yarra Valley microbrewery has seen various changes in ownerships and partners since first starting up back in 2002. The original partners had a lot of trouble deciding on a suitable brand name. ‘We’ve... Find out more

White Rabbit Brewery 52 km

Opened in early 2009, the White Rabbit Brewery is located in the main street of Healesville in the Yarra Valley, and is an off-shoot of the successful WA-based Little Creatures Brewing. Utilising a pair of... Find out more

Hotels, motels & B&Bs around town

Adelphi Hotel

For inner-city luxury, the thoroughly modern Adelphi Hotel is an architectural darling of Melbourne. Adelphi’s visionary style has transformed a former warehouse into a cocoon of tranquillity, with exceptional attention... Find out more

Apartment 401

Located right in the heart of Melbourne’s cafe scene overlooking Degraves Street, this chic one-bedroom apartment is housed on the fourth floor of the Art Deco–era Majorca House. It boasts a light-filled lounge-dining... Find out more


There are just two rooms of accommodation in this gracious art-filled terrace house in leafy Toorak. The owners are great cooks and will provide meals by arrangement, but more than that they’ll make you feel part of the... Find out more

Crown Promenade Hotel

Built in 2003, this multi-award-winning hotel is conveniently located for work and pleasure and features 465 contemporary rooms, including 18 studios and three suites. Functional and stylish, all rooms have spectacular... Find out more

28 Mary Street Bed & Breakfast

Just off bustling cosmopolitan Fitzroy Street, the heartbeat of colourful St Kilda, is this beautifully restored 1880s Victorian home in a leafy residential street. 28 Mary Street offers luxury B&B accommodation... Find out more

Grand Hotel Melbourne

Housed in heritage-listed former railway administrative offices, this hotel is within easy walking distance of Southern Cross Station, perfect for guests who might arrive in Melbourne by train. Many of the 100 spacious... Find out more

Grand Mercure Flinders Lane Apartments

This very central, welcoming business or leisure hotel has a peaceful central courtyard for summer enjoyment and has been a city favourite for years. It might belong to a major chain, but the intimate hotel with just 59... Find out more

Hotel Lindrum

Located in the heart of cosmopolitan Melbourne and a stone’s throw from the famous MCG, Hotel Lindrum is full of elegant, old-world charm. The former venue where the famous Walter Lindrum demonstrated his mastery of... Find out more

Langham Hotel 1 km

Supreme comfort and style await guests at the Langham Hotel on the famous Southbank promenade. Enjoying spectacular views of the city and the Yarra River, the five-star Langham has 387 guest rooms lavishly decorated with... Find out more

Quay West Suites 

This riverside complex comprises just 97 suites and is discreetly tucked away alongside Southgate on the bustling Southbank promenade, with spectacular views over the Yarra River and the city lights. With a choice of... Find out more

The Albany

Nestled in one of the city’s most desirable residential pockets, this former modest 1960s motel has morphed into a cheeky, colourful boutique hotel with great style and flair. A recent renovation has seen the hotel... Find out more

The Como 4 km

Intimate and discreet, this contemporary hotel is regarded by visiting celebrities as a ‘home away from home’. On the corner of Chapel Street and Toorak Road, it is conveniently located in the heart of trendy... Find out more

The Cullen

The first in a series of art hotels to grace Melbourne’s inner suburbs, this 115-room boutique accommodation is a welcome addition to cosmopolitan Prahran. Filled with more than 450 ‘grunge’ works by artist Adam Cullen,... Find out more

The Hatton

This stylish boutique hotel is housed in an elegant 1902-built mansion in a residential pocket of trendy South Yarra. Its 20 rooms are well equipped, each with its own charm and appeal, and there is a rooftop garden with... Find out more

The Hotel Charsfield

Located in one of St Kilda Road’s gracious old original mansions, this 41-room boutique hotel with its elegant architecture is classified by the National Trust. It is close enough to the CBD for work, yet far... Find out more

The Lyall Hotel 4 km

With just 40 suites, this is arguably Melbourne’s most chic small hotel, located in fashionable South Yarra, just metres from boutique- and restaurant-lined Toorak Road. At the Lyall, it is the little things that... Find out more

The Prince 5 km

The Prince, in the bayside suburb of St Kilda, is modern, glamorous and playful, with dazzling shots of hot pink. No two of the 40 rooms are the same, and there is an indoor pool as well as the Aurora Spa Retreat for... Find out more

The Sebel Melbourne

This stylish hotel is housed in a historic and elegant 1876-built former bank in fashionable Collins Street, in the heart of Melbourne’s CBD. The heritage sandstone building has been lovingly restored to retain its... Find out more

The Westin Melbourne

Situated on central City Square, the Westin is literally on the doorstep of Melbourne’s best boutiques, theatres, galleries and Federation Square. Many of the 262 rooms have terrific views. After a day in the city,... Find out more

Tolarno Hotel

Housed in an original Victorian mansion, this boutique hotel offers 36 stylish colour- and art-filled single rooms and two-bedroom apartments. Some have kitchen facilities for self-catering; others boast small balconies... Find out more

Villa Donati

This lovely Italianate villa has had a chequered life over the years, from being home to a former mayor of Richmond and an Anglican archbishop, to housing a massage parlour. Today, it is run as a small boutique hotel... Find out more

Eco-friendly places around town

Alto Hotel on Bourke

Although it is not doing anything radical, this plush hotel on Bourke Street is one of the most ecologically aware in Melbourne, and should be commended for its power-saving measures, garbage sorting, supply of... Find out more

Popular events around town

Australian Open

One of the world’s four major tennis Grand Slams. January.... Find out more

Australian Grand Prix

Elite motor racing and plenty of off-track entertainment. March.... Find out more

Melbourne Food and Wine Festival

Eat your way through Melbourne and regional Victoria. March.... Find out more

Melbourne International Comedy Festival

Just as many laughs as in Edinburgh and Montreal. March–April.... Find out more

Melbourne International Film Festival

Features, shorts and experimental pieces from around the world. July–August.... Find out more

AFL Grand Final

The whole city goes footy-mad. September.... Find out more

Melbourne Festival

Visual arts, theatre, dance and music in indoor and outdoor venues. The alternative Melbourne Fringe Festival usually overlaps. October.... Find out more

Melbourne Cup

The pinnacle of the Spring Racing Carnival. November.... Find out more

Boxing Day Test

Boxing Day in Melbourne wouldn’t be the same without this cricket match. December.... Find out more

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