Melbourne is one of the greatest cities in the world (at least in my very humble opinion), and I truly believe that everybody should visit at least once if they get the chance. There’s always something going on, the architecture and views are stunning, and the weather is incredible. If you’re lucky enough to get down to Australia for a holiday post-COVID, Melbourne is an essential stop, so below you’ll find a list of some incredible spots to check out while you’re there!
Melbourne International Comedy Festival
In March/April every year, comedians from all over Australia and the world land in Melbourne to perform at the International Comedy Festival. This is one of the three largest comedy festivals in the world, and always boasts an enormous selection of stand-up comedy, cabaret, theatre, street performance, film, television, radio and visual arts for you to enjoy. Buy tickets online to your favourite performers in advance, or wander up to the box office on the night and see who’s on – there’s always something happening!
National Gallery of Victoria
Founded in 1861, the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) is the oldest, largest, and most visited art gallery in Australia, and for very good reason. More than 70,000 works are exhibited by both international and local artists spanning thousands of years of creation, and the best part? Entry to the NGV is free! It is only too easy to spend hours getting lost in the incredible exhibitions and galleries on display, so make sure you set aside at least a day. The NGV also hosts events from time to time – you can see what’s on by checking their website before you go.
The iconic bathing boxes of Brighton Beach make this an essential day out in Melbourne, even if it’s just for the killer Instagram photos. The boxes are mainly used by their owners to store towels and beach clothes during summer, but they are far more known for being a bright and colourful addition to the beachside. Plan a day out to enjoy the stunning views of Brighton Beach, and make sure you bring your bikini – it’s a wonderful spot to go for a swim, or just lie out in the sun and enjoy that famous Australian weather.
Old Melbourne Gaol
Interested in spending a day learning about Australia’s criminal history? Located on the edge of the city, Old Melbourne Gaol was home to some of Australia’s most infamous convicts. Originally built in the mid-1800s, the goal was the scene of 133 hangings before its closure in 1929, including that of bushranger Ned Kelly. The site has now been turned into a museum exploring Australian convict history, making it an extremely interesting way to spend an afternoon. You can buy tickets online to jump on a tour!
Yarra Valley Wine Tour
If you’re looking for a day trip outside of the city, joining a wine tour to the Yarra Valley is an incredible option. Located just under an hour’s drive from Melbourne, the Yarra Valley boasts a stunning range of vineyards, tasting centres, cafes and restaurants for you to explore. There are a range of companies offering tours for you to choose from, often including bus transfers between three or four wineries in the day. Other options include cycling between vineyards, driving yourselves (with a designated driver, of course), or even a hot air balloon if you’re feeling particularly adventurous. No matter how you tour, I’m sure you’ll be tasting a famous south coast Pinot Noir or Chardonnay before you know it!
Melbourne is one of the street art capitals of the world, with Hosier Lane always being changed and updated by local graffiti artists throughout the year. The city is famous for its laneways, but the art in the cobbled pedestrian alley of Hosier Lane shows why it has continued international acclaim. Located close to Flinders Street Station in the heart of Melbourne, make sure you spend a day exploring the incredible street art of this area (plus taking some awesome photos).