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Top 10 Things to Do in Melbourne

Explore 10 of the best experiences you can have in Melbourne to help you plan your trip.

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Exploring Melbourne's laneways is just one aspect of this diverse city. Get a cricket or football fix. Soak up art and culture. Go high-end dining or grab the best pub burger. Shop for local designer fashion or cycle the bayside. Whatever you fancy, Melbourne is a city of choices.

Cumulus Inc., Flinders Lane, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Cumulus Inc., Flinders Lane, Melbourne, VIC

Dine at Melbourne’s Best Restaurants 

Melbourne prides itself on its food and the city's dizzying array of dining options is testimony to its culinary reputation. Book ahead for award-winning fine-dining restaurants - consider critically acclaimed Melbourne dining institutions Attica, one of the world’s 50 best restaurants and delve into Ben Shewry’s unique menu. Dine at Flower Drum, Vue de Monde or taste knock-out tapas at the original MoVida in Hosier Lane. Nearby, George Calombaris’s Press Room produces a clever Greek menu. Whatever you do, come to town with an appetite. A table at Melbourne's most notable restaurants is well worth the wait. 

Rooftop Bar & Cinema, Curtin House, Melbourne, VIC

Rooftop Bar & Cinema, Curtin House, Melbourne, VIC

Drink at Melbourne’s Rooftop Bars

Follow the stairs upwards and reward yourself with a view at Melbourne's finest rooftop bars and have a drink or two. Discover rooftop bars tucked away in city laneways, sprawling over majestic buildings or decked out by the beach. Join the legendary Emerson Sunday sessions in South Yarra, hunt creative cocktails at its Brunswick Street neighbour, Black Pearl, or sip wines at Bellota in South Melbourne and the CBD’s Cumulus Up in Flinders Lane. It is no wonder that Melbourne invented the rooftop bar scene!

MCG, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

MCG, Melbourne, VIC

Cheer at World-Famous Sporting Events 

Melbourne is sport crazy and its venues legendary. Join the fun at the iconic Melbourne Cricket Ground for the Australian Football League in winter or international cricket in the summer. Go trackside at Flemington for the excitement of the Spring Racing Carnival and Melbourne Cup. Be exhilarated by the Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix and see international soccer stars at Hisense Arena. With so much entertainment, gourmet food and culture to absorb at a Victorian sports event, you'll soon be booking your ticket to the next big game.

Hansom, Gertrude Street, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Hansom, Gertrude Street, Melbourne, VIC

Shop at Melbourne’s Designer Boutiques and Cool Local Labels

Shopping in Melbourne always comes with added extras, with laneway discoveries and cafe culture as much a part of the experience as the loot from local designers and the best of international brands. Venture down laneways and into pop-ups and sleek boutiques of the city's most original and creative designers to no-nonsense basics and more intrepid pieces in boutiques in Fitzroy, Collingwood, Northcote, Armadale, Prahran and St Kilda. From Melbourne-based luxury designers to established identities and up and coming names, the output of the city's fashion stars is taking the world by storm. If you’re a bargain hunter, hold onto your tote and prepare to shop at DFO South Wharf’s 120-plus stores offering major brands at discounted prices, just stone's throw from the city centre.

MoVida, Melbourne, VIC

MoVida, Melbourne, VIC

Laneways and Architecture 

Melbourne’s historic urban environment is full of life. Spend hours exploring the city’s beautiful arcades, one-off boutiques, eclectic laneways and graffiti art. Visit the Melbourne Museum and the World Heritage-listed Royal Exhibition Building. Admire Victorian landmarks such as St Patrick’s Cathedral, St Paul’s Cathedral and Flinders Street Station and discover Art Deco with the beautiful Manchester Unity Building. 

Stones of the Yarra Valley, Yarra Valley, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Stones of the Yarra Valley, Yarra Valley, VIC

Wineries, Forests and Surf Beaches  

Taste world-class wines, artisan cheeses and handmade chocolate in the Yarra Valley, 90-minutes' drive east. Cuddle a koala at Healesville Sanctuary or head into the nearby Dandenong Ranges for cute villages and towering forests. For more wines and surf beaches, drive 90 minutes south-east to the stunning Mornington Peninsula, or west to the Bellarine Peninsula. 

St Kilda, VIC

St Kilda, VIC

St Kilda Esplanade  

Enjoy the tram ride to bohemian St Kilda and check out live pub music at the Espy. Go for great burgers at Barney Allen’s or the best pizza at Mr Wolf. Eat fish’n’chips on the beach, taste sublime coffee and cake on Acland Street and ride the rollercoaster at historic Luna Park. 

Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Queen Victoria Market, Melbourne, VIC

Melbourne’s Markets  

Get among the hustle and bustle of the Queen Victoria Markets in the heart of the city, and pick up some fresh produce or fashion. Take the tram to the South Melbourne Market and enjoy dim sims under its historic awnings. For bric-a-brac and vintage bargains, catch an early train to the Sunday Camberwell Market, 10 kilometres east of the CBD. 

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, VIC

Museums and Galleries  

The National Gallery of Victoria spearheads a range of galleries, museums and other art sites. See the NGV’s impressive international and Australian exhibitions. Head over to the Heide Museum of Modern Art at Bulleen for insight into the famed Heide Circle. Visit the Australian Centre for the Moving Image to immerse yourself in the world of film, television and digital culture. There are many more galleries and plenty of sculpture parks to discover in Melbourne. 

Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne, VIC

Parks and Gardens  

Run, cycle, walk or just relax in the stunning green spaces of Melbourne. Jog the tan track around the Royal Botanic Gardens and Kings Domain along the banks of the Yarra River, seeing Government House along the way. In Royal Park, find Melbourne Zoo. Picnic in Fitzroy Gardens in the CBD after visiting Captain Cook’s Cottage. 

Zoos Victoria, Melbourne, VIC. © Tourism Victoria

Zoos Victoria, Melbourne, VIC