Melbourne is a hip, dynamic metropolis, with an exciting city center, inner-city neighborhoods that is full of unique character, and lush green parks and mountain ranges where you can enjoy Australian nature at its finest. The city is known for its many laneways, its cultural diversity, excellent dining options for all budgets, and amazing street art. It’s also known for being the coffee capital of the world, and for being regularly voted as the world’s most livable city!
Let’s explore the best things to do in Melbourne:
Go skiing at Mt Hotham
What is it?
Mt Hotham is one of Australia’s highest ski resorts and offers 13 lifts and over 80 runs for budding snow bunnies.
Hotham has 320 hectares of ski terrain, its own airport, 18 restaurants and bars, and even a luxe day spa. Whatever your needs, it’s sorted here.
A soak in the mountaintop onsen. The Onsen Retreat and Spa have its own 38-degree Japanese onsen, plus an indoor pool, spa, sauna and treatment rooms. It’s exactly what you need after hurtling yourself down an icy mountain all day.
One of Australia’s highest ski resorts, Mt Hotham has 13 lifts and over 80 runs suited best to intermediate and advanced skiers and snowboarders. Hotham has 320 hectares of ski terrain, its own airport, 18 restaurants and bars, and even a luxe day spa, but it is furthest away from Melbourne compared to other alpine resorts.
Resort entry and parking: Cars and 4WD private vehicles start at $51 per vehicle per day (when purchased online) otherwise $56 on the spot.
Lift passes: Adult and children’s two-day lift passes start at $181 (price varies depending on the date of visit). Plus, tertiary students get 50 percent off single-day lift passes on Mondays and Fridays.
Adult ski or snowboard packages (which include skis, boots and poles or snowboard and boots) is $83 per person for a single day. For the kids, ski or snowboard packages are $52 per child for a single day. Check online for competitive pricing and deals depending on the retailer. Family packages and multi-day discounts also available from various retailers.
Where to stay
Hire your own apartment or chalet for great views of the sugar-coated mountaintops. You’ll even be close enough to watch fellow skiers and boarders from the comfort of your own lounge.
For those not fussed by particulars, budget and family-friendly options are varied and plentiful.
Ski clubs and lodges in the heart of Hotham village cost roughly $35 per person, per night (during off-peak periods) and include like ample heating and recreational space, a large shared kitchen, as well as comforting extras like shared home cinema, saunas, a billiards table and the occasional snow-brimmed outdoor spa.
One of the more spacious lodges, the Vagabond Ski Club starts at only $24 (midweek) and $28 (weekend) for a twin-share room, at off-peak times.
What to do in the offseason
Mt Hotham in summer is a world of its own. From road cycling, mountain bike riding, horse riding, bushwalking, fly fishing and even white water rafting along the Mitta Mitta River. Navigate the many trails (by foot or on wheels – including 4WD and motorbike trails) on your own, or join a guided tour.
You can even relax at the Onsen Retreat and Spa located in Dinner Plain. Limited resort restaurants and cafes are open and a welcome break from all the action.
Find out more at https://www.timeout.com/
St Kilda Beach
Summer in Melbourne seems quite incomplete until someone has spent a day sitting by the seaside at the St Kilda Beach. Located at a distance of 6 km from the main center of the city, St Kilda beach is considered to be the most famous place to visit in Melbourne.
Spread across an area of 700 m, this beach is known for its white-sand shorelines and a wide span of waterfront activities which happen between St Kilda Marina and St Kilda Harbour. The St Kilda Beach is surrounded by the St Kilda Esplanade which houses the famous Sunday Esplanade market, Luna Park Melbourne, Palais Theatre, and the St Kilda Sea Baths.
Alongside that, there is a hive of enthralling activities that attract walkers, joggers, kite surfers and swimmers. The place also gives a chance to encounter wildlife. Walking down to the St Kilda Pier, people can get a glimpse of the resident population of tiny penguins burrowing in the rocks.
In addition, there is a glut of restaurants, bars, and cafes lined up along the beach which gives an amazing experience to cherish. Know more about this beautiful beach in Melbourne which makes one of the finest attractions of the city.
How to Reach St Kilda Beach
St Kilda Beach is situated 27 kilometers from the Melbourne airport which can be accessed by taxi, car or shuttle bus.
There are many shuttle buses that run from the beach to the Melbourne airport that has to be booked in advance.
There are also trams like No. 16 tram from Swanston Street, No. 96 from Bourke Street, No. 12 from Collins Street to reach St Kilda. It takes around 10 minutes to reach from Melbourne airport to St Kilda beach.
This is one of the most convenient ways to reach St Kilda beach from the Melbourne airport. It takes approximately 30 minutes to travel from the airport to the beach.
People can also rent a bicycle to ride around Melbourne city. There are designated cycle tracks alongside the foreshore of the St Kilda beach.
Best Time to Visit St Kilda Beach
The best time to visit the St Kilda beach is around October to April when the weather is quite pleasant to enjoy a beach vacation. Alongside that around this time, there are many festivals hosted at the beach which are worth experiencing.
The best time of the day to visit St Kilda beach is at night or before sunrise. During this time the beach is really quiet and offers pleasant surroundings to enjoy a peaceful time and admire the beauty of nature. Alongside this, one can also get to see the penguins roaming at the beach as there is less crowd.
What Not to Miss at St Kilda Beach
Day Out At Luna Park
Luna Park is a perfect place to spend a sunny day with kids, family or friends. Located at the surreal foreshore of Port Phillip Bay, the most amusing thing about the Luna Park is the iconic gigantic mouth which is also the entrance. The park boasts the Great Scenic Railway which is also the longest operating roller coaster and gives an entire round of the park.
Explore The Esplanade Market
This market is best for the people who want to explore the local markets of the city and enjoy an exciting shopping spree. While around the beach, people can enjoy a tour of this market which showcases the work of the local makers including artworks, unique accessories and handmade jewellery.
Visit To The St Kilda Pier
To get a picturesque view of the St Kilda beach, people can visit the St Kilda Pier. This is a long historic jetty from where people can enjoy an amazing sight of the city skyline and the beach view. For the locals, it is quite a hotspot to enjoy fishing and rollerblading while at the end of the Pier one can come across the local Fairy Penguin Colony.
Watch A Show At Palais Theatre
The Palais Concert is something which cannot be missed when visiting the St Kilda beach. Built in 1927, this historic theatre is one of the amazing places to explore in Melbourne which holds a rich history. It has hosted some of the best Australian and International superstars like Rolling Stones, John Farman, Chris Isaac and John Butler Trio.
Enjoy Sunset At St Kilda
After getting all the exciting things to do around St Kilda, a peaceful time by the beach watching the sun go down is a view which no one should miss. This is one of the best parts of visiting St Kilda beach while you’re sitting at the Pier.
St. Kilda Little Penguins
St Kilda Beach is famous for taking sight of penguins which reside around there all year-round. The best months when the penguins can be seen walking around the beach are around August and September. The best time of the day to visit and enjoy a relaxing time at the beach along with spotting some of the penguins is after sunset.
Throughout the evening these birds waddle around after hunting for fish at sea. To enjoy a peaceful time at the beach with the penguins, the time around 11 pm or in the early morning before sunrise is the best time to visit. Alongside that, the time after 11 pm is quiet as well except for Friday and Saturday nights.
The number of penguins may decrease in the late spring and winter months of May, June and July. And with the onset of the winter season, these birds go on their winter jaunt.
To take the best of the St Kilda penguin experience, stay one night at a nearby hotel and enjoy an amazing time watching the little creatures roaming around the beach.
Places to Stay at St Kilda Beach
Quest St Kilda Bayside
This is an apartment-style hotel which ensures that their guests feel at home and enjoy their stay at St Kilda. The Quest is located at the residential street which is just a few steps away from the main attractions of St Kilda. The rooms are spacious and make a good alternative to a hotel room.
Mantra St Kilda Road Melbourne
For people who are looking for comfortable and luxurious accommodation in Melbourne, the Mantra offers an ideal staycation. This keeps the visitors close to Melbourne’s main attractions which include the National Gallery of Victoria, Royal Botanic Gardens and the Crown Casino. Equipped with all the facilities, this apartment accommodation sounds perfect for a long stay plan at St Kilda.
The Cosmopolitan Hotel is known as the darling of St Kilda which has a vast range of accommodations to suit every kind of budget and need. Another highlight of this hotel is its location which keeps the visitors close to all the best attractions of St Kilda.
Rydges St Kilda
This hotel stands different from all the places to stay in Melbourne because of its modern and contemporary style. Staying at this hotel gives a feeling of beach town and offers a wide array of features and amenities which completes this boutique Melbourne hotel.
Reflecting the local artwork, the Tolarno Hotel is considered one of the best places to stay. People can enjoy the stylish guest rooms and also a vast variety of facilities which makes the stay comfortable. Alongside that, the hotel is located in an ideal place that keeps the visitors close to some of the major attractions near the beach which includes the Acland street galleries and the Esplanade market.
Places to Eat at St Kilda Beach
This is the ideal snack-driven food space that offers a wide array of northern-Chinese style food. People can find some of the familiar menu headings like the dumpling and bao, prawn, and also scallion-minced chili & soy sauce. Alongside that, there are some of Hong Kong’s classic cuisine which one can relish sitting in Australia.
Stokehouse is known for serving the best steaks which are served with a decent oyster blade and watercress salad. Alongside that, there is a simple twist given to the dishes like the honey and native pepper which is served as a sidekick with charred broccolini and nutmeg.
Cafe Di Stasio
This place gives all the best reasons to dine and enjoy a lavish three-course meal served along with a glass of champagne. Not just good food, but the courteous staff and the beautiful interiors are also a reason to come to this place.
Claypots is located at the old St Kilda town which is known for its lantern-strewn courtyard. The restaurant boasts dark and mysterious interiors and enormous seafood platters which are worth a try.
St Kilda Burger Bar
Grab the best burger in town at this takeaway joint located at the St Kilda East drive. Sharing walls with the Grosvenor Hotel pub, the burger bar serves some of the best classic burgers along with streaky bacon, melty cheese and pickles.
Uncle St Kilda
This restaurant has delicious Vietnamese cuisine and boasts a triple-threat venue which combines a cocktail bar, restaurant and a rooftop garden that is ringed with bamboo. Their famous dish that does wonders is the beef pho glazed in a bowl of firm flat noodles.
Find out more at https://www.thrillophilia.com/
Helicopter Flight over Victoria
- 7-minute scenic helicopter flight taking in Victoria’s spectacular coastline
- Pilot commentary and photo opportunities
- Safety briefing
Take a helicopter flight over the beautiful Barwon Heads, Ocean Grove and the mouth of the Barwon River on Victoria’s spectacular southern coastline. Amazing views of the local surf beaches, the Bellarine Peninsula and Torquay – the start of the Great Ocean Road.
- 7-minute helicopter flight
- Pilot commentary
- Photo opportunities
This is the perfect way to experience the southern coast from a different perspective. No other helicopter flight offers such great value for money.
- This flight has a flight time of 7 minutes
- Please arrive at the airport in plenty of time for your safety briefing
- Please allow a total of 30 minutes for this experience
- Available Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday (not available on public holidays)
- Available at 9.30am – 5pm (last flight)
- The maximum seat weight for any flight is 130 kg
- People who are suffering from cold/flu or vertigo are not permitted on the flight
- Overall weight for all passengers is 245 kg
- Once this experience has been confirmed, changes are at the discretion of the experience provider and arranged directly with them according to their policy.
- This experience is non-refundable – if the flight is canceled due to weather, you can reschedule your flight within 3 months. Please contact the experience provider directly to book a new date and time.
- Once booked, please ensure you read the experience providers’ terms and conditions, located on your flight confirmation.
- No-Shows forfeit their tickets and are not entitled to a refund
Find out more at https://www.redballoon.com.au/
See a gig at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl
What is it?
Located in the Kings Domain Gardens, just a short walk from Flinders Street, the Sidney Myer Music Bowl is one of Melbourne’s best outdoor music venues.
It’s been around since 1959, holds around 30,000 people, is registered on the Victorian Heritage Register and hosts some of Melbourne’s best live music performances, including the annual Carols by Candlelight.
Every summer, the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra put on a series of free classical concerts for the public. They’re first in best dressed, so pack a picnic rug and enjoy a balmy summer night under the stars.
Set in the Kings Domain Gardens, this popular summertime venue hosts everything from Summadayze to Carols by Candlelight and free summertime concerts.
Find out more at https://www.timeout.com/