Australia tourist information on accommodation, tours, cheap flights and car hire. Accommodation | International Flights | Domestic Flights | Tours | Travel Insurance | Car Hire | Visas | Shopping | Dating | Humour
follow Amazing Australia on Facebook

About Melbourne - Accommodation - Tours & what to do - Transport & car hire - Photos - Street map

Melbournemelbourne tourist information

Melbourne city centre and the Yarra river.

Melbourne is Australia's second largest city populated by nearly 4 million Melburnians and it is the capital of the state of Victoria which is also known as the Garden State because of its many parks.
Melbourne is known for its gardens, parks, Victorian buildings, culture and museums, its multicultural population, great shopping and thriving cafe scene.
Although Melbourne does not have such world famous landmarks as Sydney with its bridge and Operahouse, Melbourne has a similar layout as it is also built around a harbour, Port Philip Bay, with the Yarra river further dividing the city in two halves.
The centre of the city, also known as the Central Business District or CBD, sits on the north bank of the river.
The city is named after Lord Melbourne who was the British Prime Minister at the time the city was established.

Melbourne is a vibrant modern city which has attractions for everyone, a thriving art and theatre scene with many galleries and museums, great shopping, cultural activities, world class restaurant and big sporting events such as cricket, football, tennis, Grand Prix and the annual Melbourne Cup that stops the entire country.

Melbourne is a very cosmopolitan city and has the largest Italian community outside Italy and the third largest Greek community outside Greece so you can be assured you can find a decent cup of coffee here ( which can be near impossible in some of the more remote parts of Australia).
In the city centre there are lanes full of groovy cafes where tourists mingle with office workers and enjoy an amazing array of excelent food and drinks.
Being a place for arts and rich culture, Melbourne is also a home for casino lovers who want to try their luck on casino games. Here you can find a hotel casino or Crown Casino where you can enjoy it's relaxing ambiance.

eating and drinking at melbourne cafes
Groovy cafes with excellent food in Melbourne's city centre.

In Melbourne the old and new world live side by side, historic sandstone Victorian era buildings stand next to glass and steel highrises.
The city is well endowed with museums and you can learn lots about Australia and its history here.
There are also over a hundred galleries showing off Melbourne's thriving art scene.
But Melbourne does not only have attractions in the city, the area around Melbourne also has many sights worth exploring!
The Dandenongs on the east side are a beautiful forested area only a short drive from Melbourne city centre with lovely villages, charming B&B accommodations, art galleries and William Rickett's Sanctuary.
Only a little bit furher out is Marysville where you find Bruno's Art and Sculpture Garden.
On the north east side of Melbourne lies Hanging Rock, an eerie place famous from Peter Weir's book and movie.
To the south of Melbourne is the Mornington Peninsula with beautiful coastal drives, art galleries, wineries and beaches.
To the west of Melbourne lies the Great Ocean Road, a spectacular stretch of coastline with towering limestone cliff and nice coastal towns with some great accommodation.

While having a bit of a reputation for not always real glorious weather, Melbourne consistently rates as one of the most livable cities inthe world!
Melbourne was rated as the best city in the world to call home in the London based Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU)'s survey in 2002. In 2005 it still ranked nr. 2, and in the latest 2010 results it still had a number 3 position out of 130 cities surveyed worldwide! In 2012 it ranked nr. 1 again as the world's most liveable city!
Also, despite Sydney being the home of the annual Gay Mardi Gras, the website declared Melbourne the No. 2 place to visit on a list of top 10 international destinations beause of the city's bars, theatres, cuisine, parks, skyline and gay-friendly attitude.

melbourne beaches
Ride your bike along Melbourne's beaches and enjoy the sunset

Melbourne has 11 km. of coastline with beaches right near the city centre, the shoreline of Port Phillip Bay includes the suburbs of Port Melbourne, Albert Park, Middle Park and the most famous of all, St. Kilda, which has cafes and pubs such as The Esplanade Hotel, fondly known locally as The Espy.
There are numerous walks to be enjoyed in this area and it is an ideal area for cycling with many good bicycle paths. Rollerblading and jogging along the Esplanade are also popular activities.
From Port Melbourne you can catch the ferry to Tasmania or watch the big cruise ships come in. Piers, pubs and people watching is one of the tourism industry slogans that sums up the area pretty good. It is easy to find your way around Melbourne as the city is laid out in a grid system but if you're driving watch out for the trams.
The centre of the city is the Bourke Street Mall which is situated between Swanston Street and Elizabeth Street, running in a north south direction, Bourke Street and Collins Street are the main roads running west to east.
There is a free tram that does a loop around the central city area and stops at all the major tourist attractions such as museums and Victoria's Markets.

old and new buildings in melbourne
Old and new stand side by side in Melbourne, the contrast of old stone buildings and churches, and the modern Federation Square building

Melbourne is an international cultural centre, with cultural endeavours spanning major events and festivals, drama, musicals, comedy, music, art, architecture, literature, film and television.
It was the second city after Edinburgh to be named a UNESCO City of Literature.
The city celebrates a wide variety of annual cultural events and festivals of all types, including the Melbourne International Arts Festival, Melbourne International Film Festival, Melbourne International Comedy Festival and the Melbourne Fringe Festival.
The Australian Ballet is based in Melbourne, as is the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. Melbourne is the second home of Opera Australia after it merged with 'Victoria State Opera' in 1996. The Victorian Opera had its inaugural season in 2006 and operates out of various venues in Melbourne.
Notable theatres and performance venues include: The Victorian Arts Centre (which includes the State Theatre, Hamer Hall, the Playhouse and the fairfax Studio), Melbourne Recital Centre, Sidney Myer Music Bowl, Princess Theatre, Regent Theatre, Forum Theatre, Palace Theatre, Comedy Theatre, Athenaeum Theatre, Her Majesty's Theatre, Capitol Theatre, Palais Theatre and the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art.
There are more than 100 galleries in Melbourne, including Australia’s oldest and largest art gallery, the National Gallery of Victoria.

Sports fans can find plenty of excitement here.
Melbourne hosted the 1956 Summer Olympics games which were the first Olympic Games ever held in the southern hemisphere, and also the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
Melbourne is home to three major annual international sporting events: the Australian Open (one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments), the Melbourne Cup (horse racing), and the Australian Grand Prix (Formula One).
The city is home to the National Sports Museum.
Australian rules football and cricket are the most popular sports in Melbourne and also the spiritual home of these two sports in Australia and both are mostly played in the same stadia in the city and its suburbs. The first ever official cricket Test match was played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in March 1877 and the Melbourne Cricket Ground is the largest cricket ground in the world. The first Australian rules football matches were played in Melbourne in 1859 and the Australian Football League is headquartered at Docklands Stadium. Nine of its teams are based in the Melbourne metropolitan area and the five Melbourne AFL matches per week attract an average 40,000 people per game. Additionally, the city annually hosts the AFL Grand Final.

A short history of Melbourne:

Melbourne started out in 1835 as a large plot of land bought from local Aborigines of the Dutigalla tribe in exchange for flour, tools and clothing by John Batman ( no relation to the lifesaver in the movies).
This was the second attempt at settlement, it had been abandoned by the first settlers who had arrived in 1803 and then departed to Tasmania after staying for less than one year.

By 1851 the population had already increased to 80 000 people and six million sheep were grazing the surrounding country, and the place that had so far been considered part of New South Wales, was now officially declared as the British colony Victoria. It became the largest and richest settlement in Australia as a result of its proximity to the vast goldfields of Ballarat and Bendigo and a large number of gracious homes and commercial buildings were built that can stil be admired today. In 2004 the Royal Exhibitions Buildings and Carlton Gardens were placed under World Heritage listing in recognicition of European settlement as part of Australia's cultura heritage.

The discovery of gold in November 1851 made the town boom and by 1854 the colony's population had grown from 80 000 to 300 000, in 1856 more than 86 tonnes of gold was mined. This established Melbourne as Australia's main financial centre. It was a very prosperous city until the Great Depression in the late 1880s.

At the time of Australia's federation on 1 January 1901, Melbourne became the temporary seat of government of the federation. The first federal parliament was convened on 9 May 1901 in the Royal Exhibition Building, where it was located until 1927, when it was moved to Canberra.
Melbourne and Sydney both wanted to be the seat of Government and after years of arguing about it the solution was to build a new city in the middle of nowhere, which became Canberra.
The Governor-General of Australia resided at Government House in Melbourne until 1930 and many major national institutions remained in Melbourne well into the twentieth century.
Flinders Street Station was the world's busiest passenger station in 1927 and Melbourne's tram network overtook Sydney's to become the world's largest in the 1940s.


Click for Melbourne, Victoria Forecast  

About Melbourne - Accommodation - Tours & what to do - Transport & car hire - Photos - Street map

melbourne hotels

Use of this website constitutes acceptance of the User Agreement for this website
Contact us | Advertise on this site | Link to this site |Add your photos or stories to this site | Webmasters | Affiliates