In Australia, you can get a licence for just about anything thanks to the country's eight separate licencing jurisdictions. There is a wide selection of hotels, taverns, bars, off-licences, roadhouses, licenced restaurants, and club licences to choose from. It has been necessary to make determinations regarding the applicability of certain categories in order to collect data on "hotels" or "pubs" as we more commonly refer to them. We settled on a spot with a public bar that doubled as a restaurant or a hotel.
Total Hotel Pubs & Bars (6,033 Est.)
- By State:
- NSW 2052
- QLD 1251
- VIC 1092
- SA 658
- WA 595
- TAS 281
- NT 72
- ACT 32
- Note: * Numbers are updated every 12 months, so vary during each year with new openings and closures.
- Establishment Type:
- Hotel 4337
- Tavern 731
- In 261
- Bar 162
- Pub 75
- Others * 562
- Others *, E.g. Saloon (5), Morten's on Sussex, Vault, GPO Sydney, The Cuckoo's Perch etc.
- Capital Cities by Postcode:
- Sydney 2000 164
- Adelaide 5000 78
- Melbourne 3000 67
- Brisbane 4000 47
- Hobart 7000 45
- Perth 6000 30
- Darwin 0800 18
- Canberra 2601 13
- Outside Capital Cities:
- Newcastle 19
- Broken Hill 19
- Toowoomba 24
- Rockhampton 23
- Cairns 22
- Ballarat 33
- Bendigo 31
- Geelong 29
- Mt Gambier 10
- Gawler 9
- Fremantle 20
- Bunbury 11
- Geraldton 9
- Launceston 30
- Burnie 7
- Sandy Bay 5
- Alice Springs 9
- Tennant Creek 3
- Location Facts:
- 69% of hotels/pubs/taverns etc., are located on corner blocks.
- 52% of taverns are located next to or in suburban shopping centres.
- As a general rule, taverns are not required to provide accommodation.
- Most Northerly pub: Saibai Tavern, Torres Strait
- Most Northerly mainland pub: Bamaga Tavern, Bamaga, Qld
- Most Southerly pub: Far South Tavern, Tas
- Most Easterly pub: Beach Hotel, Byron Bay, NSW
- Most Westerly pub: Rumah Tinggi Tavern Christmas Isld
- Most Westerly mainland pub: Shark Bay Hotel, WA
- Most Central pub (geographical): Kulgera Roadhouse (Pub), NT
- Highest located pub: Thredbo Alpine Hotel, Thredbo, NSEvery Pub Has Its Name:
The city's downtown has much more to offer than seedy slot machine bars, touristy pubs, and a dozen similar post-work knockoff spots. It was the birthplace of taverns that occupied alleyways, such as Meyers Place and Gin Palace. Before 1994, a bar couldn't just sell drinks; they had to have food available for purchase as well. We also have the casino to thank for the repeal of that law, which paved the way for a renaissance of bars in Melbourne's Central Business District. This trend has since reached the suburbs (and other Australian cities), but the CBD still hosts the greatest number of watering holes. Different sizes and atmospheres characterise these bars. The vast majority of the best cocktail bars in the city can be found in the 3000 area code, and they are all within walking distance of one another.
List Of Bars In Melbourne
This walk-in, standing-room-only bar blends American hustle with European service.
Angel Music Bar is the brainchild of restaurateur Con Christopoulos, who combines a menu of bar bites with a side of sub-bass. It gets pretty rowdy and loud downstairs, but there are some great drinks and a few barstools to sit on if you want to enjoy them. On the dance floor, however, the music is turned up and the crowd gets out of hand.
In this scenario, the jukebox can only play classic rock, and the drinks must be pre-mixed.
This roof top is a prime illustration of the typical CBD rooftop. It's been featured in movies set in Melbourne and is known for its stunning views, tasty drinks, and groovy tunes. In addition, during the summer it becomes a rooftop cinema featuring both cult favourites and classics of the blockbuster genre.
In spite of its label as a wine bar, Embla's appeal goes far beyond its name. If you're looking for excellent food and a wine list with a personal touch served by people who really care, this is the place to go in town.
This dimly-lit dive bar is one of Melbourne's most treasured and iconic rock'n'roll venues. Though it's moved out of its original ACDC Lane location, it's rocking just as hard as ever, with live music multiple nights a week. Expect anything from psych-rock to doom metal, sometimes followed by a DJ to close.
This low-key bar with low lighting is one of the most beloved and well-known rock-and-roll venues in Melbourne. It has moved from its previous location on ACDC Lane, but the live music and party atmosphere remain just as strong as ever. Playlists can range from psychedelic rock to doom metal, and a DJ might spin some tunes to wrap things up.
Gimlet All of the European-inspired dishes at Cavendish House bear the signature of Michelin-starred chef Andrew McConnell. We'll be the ones with Martinis in hand, huddled around the black and gold marble bar.
Nick And Nora's
A Show Like Nick and Nora
Enjoy champagne towers, ridiculously large 15-liter bottles of Mumm, and upscale canapés in any of the five rooms or on any of the three balconies while watching the show that includes cocktails that bubble with liquid nitrogen.
Whisky And Aliment
When it comes to whisky bars, this one is right up there with the best of them thanks to its extensive collection and well-informed staff.
Zombie cocktails, leopard print and tikis everywhere (obviously). Check your everyday life at the door – it's pure fantasy here.
A two-storey portal to another land that works as an opulent bar and your fairytale to get caught up in.
Elegant lounge on the first floor of a magical gateway to another world, where you can lose yourself in your own fairy tale.
In the bowels of this wooden cocoon of a bar, you'll find cocktails with theatrical touches like smoke, bubbles, and artwork. The entrance to the bar is located at the base of a mysterious spiral staircase.
Smoked-pear soda with bourbon and gin cocktails with plum and jasmine are just a couple of the alcoholic options on the menu. Pair it with some hibachi-grilled seafood and relax.
The focus at this long-standing, well-hidden rooftop bar is on both comfort and cocktails. In contrast to many similar establishments, the staff at this rooftop bar is content to take a backseat while patrons enjoy the drinks and the view. The retractable roof makes it a versatile option for use in any climate.
Above the Melbourne Supper Club, this rooftop bar offers great views of Spring Street and Parliament House. A cigar menu and humidor stocked with rare Cuban cigars set this establishment apart as a standout among Melbourne's eating and drinking establishments. You shouldn't miss out on the fantastic cocktails if that's not your thing.
The Grossi family's new venture will make sure that you can order spaghetti, a parfait made of duck liver, or tiramisu ice-cream pops after midnight without sacrificing your sense of style.
Loop Project Space & Bar
It's a bar, a movie theatre, and an art gallery all rolled into one downstairs. The rooftop, which is more like a balcony and is located on the upper level, provides excellent views of the neighbouring skyscrapers. Both the food and drink are uncomplicated but expertly executed.
Melbourne's most popular late-night watering hole is an old-world Shanghai-themed bar.
There aren't really words to describe this place. Is that a karaoke lounge? Is it a grill that serves food from Southeast Asia? Is the bar, if it has a rooftop, a great place to hang out? In response to your inquiries, the answers are yes. Either way, the chances are high that at some point during the evening, you'll be juggling a skewer of lamb and a microphone.
Garden State Hotel
This restaurant has four stories, a plethora of seating options, three menus, televisions, a bar, tapas, cocktails, and an indoor garden.
The stunning venue is located thirteen stories above ground, providing guests with unrivalled views of the city and a retractable roof that allows for year-round dining. A former chef at the Press Club, moved by the restaurant's legacy, is preparing a Greek-themed menu.
Seamstress has an intimately decorated interior and a lengthy cocktail list, making it everything you could want from a bar.
Pearl Diver Cocktails And Oysters
You can get your Martini with a spherified olive in a miniature oyster shell and enjoy oysters prepared at least eight different ways at this long-awaited CBD cocktail bar opened by two of the Speakeasy Group's best bartenders.
Small Bars In Melbourne
There's something about hanging out in a friendly local bar that can put you at ease, even if you're not drinking. Melbourne is known for its many cosy dive bars, and we've compiled the definitive guide to them all.
Located in a quiet lane off of Melbourne's Collins Street, the cosy bar Chuckle Park has a quaint and friendly atmosphere perfect for a night out with friends. Although the word "park" might make you think that you're about to enter a sizable building, Chuckle Park is actually quite small. Time Out Melbourne describes the bar as "Cute-as-a-button," and we can't say that we disagree.
because of the magical atmosphere created by the flower arrangement, the disco balls, the hanging lanterns, and the fact that refreshments are served from a caravan. We can't get Chuckle Park out of our minds all day long! Order one of their world-famous pulled pork rolls and share a jug of their signature cocktail or try something new from their extensive list of craft beers. Drool! Melbourne's summer nights are hot, and we can't think of a better place to drink a cocktail than under the open roof of this bar.
Hope St Radio
Hope St. Radio, an internet radio station that has been around for a while and has broadcast from various spots around the city, has finally found a home at Collingwood Yards, which also features a wine bar that is seamlessly integrated into the space. A live radio programme will be broadcast in the venue, showcasing a wide range of local creatives, making for a treat that is both one-of-a-kind and infused with local culture. While there, they can sample a variety of regionally inspired dishes and drinks crafted from locally sourced ingredients.
This recently remodelled "listening bar" exudes a rare blend of extreme cool and welcoming all types of people as the people working behind the scenes have a strong interest in promoting local food, drink, music, and art. Hope Street Radio is still in its infancy as a boutique business, but if you want to do something cool and original while helping out your neighbourhood, you should definitely swing by for a drink or two.
Beneath Driver Lane
If you're looking for a great blues bar, look no further than Driver Lane's basement! The French-inspired bar food, cocktails, and wines are served until 3 a.m., and the entrance is hidden behind a false wall. Behind the well-known GPO building is where you'll find this establishment. With its faux leather booths, exposed brick, and low lighting, this bar has all the makings of a fun and fantastical environment. Visit this establishment for a unique Nitro Martini and enjoy a fun show as the bartenders chill your glass with liquid nitrogen. One of Melbourne's best-kept secrets is located under Driver Lane, and it's one that you should definitely look into and discover for yourself if you see a door with two lights on either side of it.
Good things come in small packages, as the old adage goes, and Bar Americano, a cocktail bar with room for only ten people, is just that and so much more. You won't have to spend much time in their bar to understand why it's consistently voted as one of the best in Melbourne. Even if you don't spend the whole night there, you'll have a great time because the bar is styled after Italian stand-up cafes but has an unmistakably American vibe. Get your daily dose of espresso at Bar Americano, and then switch gears for some creative cocktails after 5 o'clock. Because of this, it's the perfect spot to ease into nighttime. We really enjoy their design style.
Le Bar European, the tiniest bar in Victoria and one of the tiniest in the world, is a cosy favourite among locals and visitors alike. The bar is a proud 2.6 square metres in size, making it all the more charming that it can be found within Glow Golf; in this French and Italian-themed establishment, cosiness is the order of the day. Observant readers will notice that the bar only has two seated patrons, but space for about four more standing.
Visitors from all over the world flock to Europe specifically to experience the wide range of beers that can be found in this tiny continent. You have a hot date planned, but you need a place to stay. This bar has a special atmosphere that you won't find at any other watering hole. Remember that there are only two seats, so you'll need to get there early on the weekend if you want to get a good one.
A tequila and mezcal cocktail, anyone? For a wide selection of Mexican fare, including dishes like these, visit Bodega Underground, a bar located in the building's basement.
These are some of the most salient points that come to mind when contemplating the question of why anyone would like Bodega Underground if they were forced to choose only a few:
Because all of the items on the menu are gluten-free, we can satisfy even the most stringent of diet restrictions (and lots of vegan options too)
The price of two tacos is only $11, so your money will go a long way.
The store is open seven days a week, and they have a wide selection of tequila in different bottle sizes and flavours.
A constant stream of Mexican insanity occurs around the clock.
Do you like brunches where there's an abundance of food? You're in luck, because Bodega Underground offers a five-course taco spread and bottomless cocktails as part of their unlimited maxi brunch.
Be sure to stop by Romeo Lane and soak up the ambience, which is just as ethereal as the street's name suggests. A young couple who are both experts at making cocktails own and run this establishment. It's obvious that the couple put a lot of thought and care into decorating this bar. Romeo Lane is the kind of place where you can't help but feel a little bit lovey-dovey because of the intimate setting, the creative cocktails served in beautifully crafted glasses, and the general atmosphere. Their speciality negroni, made with orange juice and celery whipped in a Nutri bullet, is the kind of cocktail that your significant other deserves. Romeo Lane is where you go when you want to feel the love.
The friendly staff at Union Electric Bar bill themselves as "A casual little bar in Melbourne City" on their website. We think they're understating things a little bit with this description, though. If gin is more your speed, you can find out about their famous gin garden that sits atop the building. Note: Union Electric Bar is a popular hangout amongst Melbourne's bartenders. If the industry professionals recommend it, you can rest assured that it is worth checking out.
Little Lon Distilling Co
Spirits produced by Little Lon Distilling Co. Located in what was once Melbourne's red light district, the current home of Little Lon Distilling is a quaint heritage-listed cottage that was once a bustling brothel. Now, you can find Little Lon Distilling in Melbourne's notorious red-light district. However, they have incorporated and highlighted regionally traditional ingredients and aromatics like rosemary, oranges, and lemons. These two brothers are responsible for the weekly copper production of 220 500-milliliter bottles of gin. True, you can find the best selection of craft gins here. Crime bosses from the region's heydey provide inspiration for the individual characters of the collections brewed. Thus, drop by for a historical lesson and stay for a few drinks.
Our third pick is Troika, another dive bar in Melbourne that absolutely kills it. Come to this unpretentious and welcoming bar on Little Lonsdale Street and prepare to have a great time. The excellent music and the many cosy nooks and crannies at Troika create an inviting atmosphere. Beers, cocktails, wines, and infused vodkas are all available, along with a few different types of snacks that are added to the menu on a regular basis. Don't miss out on a break at this establishment, which exudes warmth and character in equal measure. In any case, we assure you that you won't be sorry.
Many bars and pubs can be found in the central business district of Melbourne. The 3000 zip code is home to the majority of the city's top cocktail lounges. Con Christopoulos, the restaurateur behind Angel Music Bar, created the concept of serving bar snacks along with bass music. Cavendish House's Michelin-starred chef Andrew McConnell is renowned for serving up European-inspired fare. It's no secret that The Icing on the Cake is one of the most popular and well-known rock clubs in Melbourne.
A trip to Storyville is like entering your own personal fairy tale. Seamstress's Bar's rooftop offers breathtaking views of Melbourne's skyline. In Melbourne's Project Area, you'll find Heroes', a late-night watering hole decorated in the style of an old Shanghai. We've rounded up a few of Melbourne's finest dive bars, for which the city is famous. Chuckle Park is home to world-famous pulled pork rolls and cocktails.
Collingwood Yards is home to Hope St. Radio and a wine bar. Downstairs at Driver Lane is where you'll find a fantastic blues bar. A hidden gem of Melbourne can be found beneath Driver Lane. As one of Melbourne's best bars, despite its small size (the bar only seats ten people), Bar Americano consistently receives high praise from locals. It's safe to say that Le Bar European is one of the tiniest bars in the world.
Only two chairs are available, but there is standing room for four more. The unlimited maxi brunch at Bodega Underground features a five-course taco spread and bottomless cocktails. Bartenders in Melbourne frequently congregate at Café de l'Union Électrique, also known as Union Electric Bar. Their orange juice and celery whipped in a Nutri bullet negroni is the kind of cocktail you should be serving your significant other. Little Lon Distilling calls its current home in the heart of Melbourne's red light district, in a charming heritage-listed cottage that was once a bustling brothel. The copper in 220 500-milliliter bottles of gin was produced by these two brothers.
- Australia's eight different licencing jurisdictions mean that the country issues licences for practically everything imaginable.
- The casino is also responsible for the abolition of the ban, which allowed for a new wave of nightlife establishments to open up in Melbourne's CBD.
- All of the city's top cocktail lounges are conveniently clustered in the 3000 zip code, and you can easily visit them on foot.
- Naturally, Bar Americano would be included among Melbourne's finest watering holes.
- Stunning views, tasty drinks, and groovy tunes have made it a popular spot in movies set in Melbourne.
- Embla is primarily known as a wine bar, but its popularity extends far beyond its oenophile clientele.
- This dimly lit dive bar is one of Melbourne's most popular places to hear live rock and roll.
- This long-running, discreet rooftop bar prioritises relaxation and cocktails.
- A rooftop bar located above the Melbourne Supper Club, overlooking Spring Street and Parliament House.
- As a Golden Ape That Enjoys Snacks
- A Shanghai-themed bar set in the old world is Melbourne's most frequented late night spot.
- Distinctive Melbourne Bars and Taverns
- Even if you're not in the mood to imbibe, just spending some time in a cosy neighbourhood bar can help you relax.
- We've put together the ultimate guide to all of Melbourne's quaint dive bars.
- It's located in the Park of Joy.
- The cosy bar is tucked away on a side street off Collins Street in Melbourne. Nights out with friends are made better by Chuckle Park's cosy and welcoming vibe.
- The bar is "Cute-as-a-button," as Time Out Melbourne puts it, and we have to agree.
- because of the flower arrangement, disco balls, hanging lanterns, and the fact that refreshments are served from a caravan, all of which contribute to the enchanted ambience.
- According to Radio Hope Street
- Collingwood Yards is home to the long-running internet radio station Hope St. Radio, which previously broadcast from a number of different locations around the city. The space also includes a wine bar that fits in nicely with the atmosphere.
- The boutique that is Hope Street Radio is still in its infancy, but if you're looking to do something fun and different while supporting your local community, you should stop by for a drink or two.
- You won't find a better blues bar than the one in the cellar of Driver Lane.
- Under Driver Lane, you will find one of Melbourne's best-kept secrets, and if you happen to come across a door with two lights on either side of it, you owe it to yourself to investigate further.
- Like the old adage says, "good things come in small packages," and the intimate cocktail bar, Bar Americano, which can fit no more than ten people, certainly fits that bill.
- At Bar Americano, you can get your morning espresso fix and then, after 5 o'clock, switch gears and enjoy some of the bar's inventive cocktail creations.
- The smallest bar in Victoria, and possibly the smallest bar in the world, Le Bar European is a cosy favourite of locals and tourists alike.
- Bodega Underground, a bar in the building's basement, serves authentic Mexican food, including these tacos.
- Here, on Romeo Lane, the 'Romeo of the Streets.'
- Romeo Lane has an atmosphere as ethereal as its name suggests, so don't miss out on a trip there.
- If you're in the mood for romance, head to Romeo Lane.
- Union Electric Bar is a cosy establishment that bills itself as "A casual little bar in Melbourne City" on its website.
- As a side note, Union Electric Bar is a favourite among Melbourne's bartender community.
- Little Lon Distilling calls its current home in the heart of Melbourne's red light district, in a charming heritage-listed cottage that was once a bustling brothel.
- You can now find Little Lon Distilling in Melbourne's seedy inner city.
- A third Melbourne dive bar that makes the cut is Troika.
FAQs About Melbourne
According to the most recent tally, there are 2,840 bars currently operating in Melbourne.
Officially the oldest pub in Melbourne, The Duke has been standing on this spot since 1850 and serving beers since 1853.
1 - Scarborough: 640 People per Pub
Taking the top spot on the rankings is the seaside resort of Scarborough in North Yorkshire, with 640 people per pub.
There are 6,743 Pubs, Bars and Nightclubs businesses in Australia as of 2022, an increase of 1.5% from 2021.
The Surveyor General Inn – Australia's Oldest Continuously Licensed Inn.