The full wanderlust experience in Melbourne
As one of the world’s most liveable cities, Melbourne isn’t just a place to live, work and play - amongst the busy streets and moving crowds exist a city catered for visitors needing a relaxing respite. Thus, tourists can expect ease in accessibility whether they are looking to learn more about Victoria’s history and culture, spaces for relaxation or adventure, and even sceneries for photography and videography.
Get a to travel around Melbourne easily. It’s available in retailers all around the city, including 7-Eleven stores as well as myki machines located at all major train stations and bus interchanges. We recommend getting the if you’re a tourist - you’ll be able to get travel on Melbourne’s public transportation network and even regional Victoria.
With your myki card in hand, here are 22 things you can do in Victoria, proving that its the best state in Australia!
1. Be awed at Pink Salt Water Lake
No matter how you look at it, a pink lake is both ridiculous and marveling. Couldn’t believe such a ludicrously coloured lake exists in Melbourne when we first heard about it! Although it isn’t as big as the Pink Lake in Western Australia, Victoria’s very own pink lake is is as close as it can be to the one in WA, plus, it is located close to the city.
Note: It is a natural phenomenon as well as a rare sight. Its spectacular lipstick pink occurs during the summer months.
How to get there: It's in Westgate Park, right under the Westgate Bridge. Access is via Todd Rd or near the end of Lorimer Street, Port Melbourne.
2. Pick your own fruits at Naturipe Fruits
Unlike most farms where you’ll only purchase its fresh produce on shelves, Naturipe Fruits allows picking your own fresh and mouth-watering fruits. Entry is free since you’re paying based on the weight of your pick so all you have to do is grab a bucket and work your ass off.
Address: 638 Bacchus Marsh Rd, Bacchus Marsh VIC 3340
Opening hours: 9 am - 5 pm, daily
3. Take a stroll through Hosier Lane
Melbourne is home to hidden graffiti along the arcades and laneways, but at Hosier Lane, the mecca for street art enthusiasts, artists aren’t inconspicuous nor do they hold back. Situated in the Central Business District, this characterful alley is loud and proud, covered in colourful typography, inviting everyone to have a go at street art.
How to get there: Hosier Lane is within the Free Tram Zone and is a two-minute walk from Flinders Street Station and Federation Square.
4. Snap your next profile-worthy photo with colourful bathing boxes
Brighton Beach is one of Australia’s iconic beaches with its colourful bathing boxes. As a location with the best sunrise and sunset spots in Melbourne, it’s got opportunities to snap your next profile-worthy photo - whether it’s posing with the sun in the background or with the creatively decorated huts.
How to get there: Catch a train from Flinders Street Station towards Sandringham and get off at Brighton Beach Railway Station.
5. Watch penguins return to shore at St Kilda Pier
Instead of the zoo, you can watch penguins behave in their city-habitat as they return to shore at dusk. Alternatively, the popular day trip destination, Phillip Island, is home to penguins but you’ll have to dedicate a whole day for it. With St Kilda Pier, non-enthusiasts do not have to board a boat all the way to the offshore island!
How to get there: Hop onto Tram 96 (towards St Kilda Beach) from Southern Cross Station or Bourke Street. It is an approximately 20-minute tram journey.
6. Explore Melbourne like a local by bike
Instead of walking, boarding the public transport, or driving around Melbourne, rent a bicycle and have an adventure through the 23km Hobsons Bay Coastal Trail to discover the unusual attractions and hidden spots.
With signs clearly paving the way, the trail will navigate you through breathtaking views of the city skyline as well as the picturesque wetlands. Do say hello to other cyclists along the way - meet new people while you’re appreciating the sights and sounds before reaching the bay and beaches!
Photo taken at Jawbone Marine Sanctuary, Williamstown.
Photo taken at Altona Dog Beach.
Catch the train back from Altona to Flinders Street Station. Your bikes can be carried freely on the metropolitan trains.
Where to rent a bike: Rentabike @ Federation Square & Real Melbourne Bike Tours offer reasonable prices. They provide everything you need: bike, helmet, lock and a handy cycling tour map. Click for rates.
7. Wander through towering trees at East Warburton Redwood Forest
Redwood Forest is a hidden gem situated in East Warburton, where unbelievably tall California Redwood trees are planted in rows. It is a short and relaxing walk in the rainforest that makes you feel like a dwarf wandering through the towering trees. Also, it makes for a great photoshoot destination or even a set for a film scene.
How to get there: Follow the Warburton Highway until you reach Woods Point Road. Look for Cement Creek Road on the left after approximately 7km. It is an unsealed and rough dirt road leading you to a small parking area.
8. Make full use of the Free Tourist Tram
The City Circle Tram is guided by an audio announcer, operating daily along the city circuit that covers a majority of the main attractions in Melbourne CBD. Hop on and hop off whenever and wherever you want. Refer for more information.
Highlights along this free city circle tram’s route:
(i) Take a moment to admire Flinders Street Station
Flinders Street Station is Melbourne’s iconic landmark, with its famous row of clocks. Spend some time exploring Federation Square, where it buzzes with major events or the banks of Yarra River where a great selection of bars and restaurants are located.
(ii) Shop till you drop at DFO South Wharf Outlet
DFO South Wharf Outlet is where you get all the massive fashion bargains! Situated in the CBD, just a short and pleasant walk from Docklands, the mall features stores from brands like Adidas, 2XU, Puma, Nike and Billabong. Definitely a place to burn a hole in your pocket.
Photo taken at Docklands.
Once done shopping, head over to the docks and appreciate life at sea by hanging out at the jetty. It’s the perfect place to enjoy the company of silence after a noisy bout of shopping. Alternatively, ride the Melbourne Star that’s part of the global giant ferris wheel phenomenon, alongside Singapore Flyer, London Eye, Las Vegas’ High Roller and Tianjin’s Observation Wheel.
(iii) Learn about Victorian history at State Library of Victoria
State Library of Victoria is the oldest public library in Australia and it holds a wide range of research resources. Take a moment to appreciate and learn about Victorian history here. For photography enthusiasts, the Pantheon-like entrance and grand interior makes for excellent pictures to document your trip in Victoria - it’s a novelty destination that shouldn’t be missed.
(iv) Get heaps of photo opportunities at Royal Exhibition Building & Carlton Gardens
Royal Exhibition Building is surrounded by the picturesque Carlton Gardens. Couples are often spotted here, using this heritage building as the backdrop of their wedding photos.
(v) Stroll through Fitzroy Gardens & explore Captain Cook’s Cottage
Cook’s Cottage is the oldest building in Australia, located in the Fitzroy Gardens. It was built in England by the parents of well-known navigator, Captain James Cook, back in 1755. It was later transported to Melbourne in crates and barrels, rebuilt and opened to public in 1934. You’ll get an insight into English life during the 18th century here!
To catch the city-circle tram, simply wait at any of the tram stops on the following street:
- Flinders Street
- Harbour Esplanade
- Docklands Drive
- La Trobe Street
- Victoria Street
- Nicholson Street
- Spring Street
9. Discover hidden gems at the Royal Arcade
This Parisian-style arcade is a heritage shopping mall in the Central Business District, with a wide range of shops, trendy cafes and restaurants, connecting Little Collins Street to the Bourke Street Mall. Stop by to get a quick brunch and admire its beautiful architecture before heading to the next destination.
How to get there: Royal Arcade is within the Free Tram Zone, located within the heart of the city with entrances on Bourke Street Mall, Little Collins and Elizabeth Street.
10. Pay your respects at the Shrine of Remembrance
Shrine of Remembrance is built as a memorial for Victorians who served in World War I. Located in Kings Domain on St Kilda Road in the Royal Botanical Gardens, the shrine reminds us to be grateful for those who fought for our freedom. Its peaceful atmosphere is almost spiritual and the great view of the city from the balcony adds to its calming nature.
Opening hours: 10am - 5pm, daily | Closed Good Friday and Christmas Day
Admission: Free, but donations are welcome and appreciated.
Address: Birdwood Ave, Melbourne VIC 3001, Australia
11. Pamper yourself at Peninsula Hot Springs
Peninsula Hot Springs is Victoria’s first natural hot springs and day spa centre. The hilltop pool is a best kept secret at the hot spring - a fascinating open-air experience with a 360-degree view over the region. It’s a good destination to splurge on yourself!
Address: 30 Springs Lane, Fingal
Opening hours: 7.30 am - 10 pm, daily | Closed Christmas Day
12. Enjoy a stroll on Cape Schanck Boardwalk
You can go on a tour of the lighthouse to check out its interior at a price. Or, head out of the cramped lighthouse and lay your mat on the expansive plains of Mornington Peninsula National Park for a short picnic. Thereafter, walk its various trail routes or head down to its boardwalk to enjoy the Australia's southern coast.
How to get there: Cape Schanck Lighthouse is at Mornington Peninsula National Park. Type ‘420 Cape Schanck Rd’ in your Google Maps destination. It’s about 1.5hours drive from Melbourne City.
13. Get up close with nature at The Prom
Wilsons Promontory National Park, commonly known as “The Prom”, is situated at the southernmost point of Australian Mainland. It has a number of pristine, accessible beaches and a range of bushwalking opportunities for you to get up close with nature.
(i) Take a hike up to the top of Mount Oberon Summit
Access from: Telegraph Saddle Carpark
Distance: 6.8km return
Hiking duration: 2 hours
Note: Be prepared for unpredictable weather changes - a calm, cloudy day can turn stormy at any time and the summit is cold and windy every day during summer months
(ii) Watch the gorgeous sunset over Whisky Bay
Like the orange lichen-encrusted rocks in Tasmania’s Bay of Fires, - read more about it here - Whisky Bay's rock formation has similar beautiful coloured markings that contrast the crystal blue waters and is worth a visit for its perfect sunset observation points.
How to get there: A pleasant 5-minute walk from Whisky Bay Carpark.
14. Explore Mount Dandenong Ranges
There is a range of activities to do in Dandenong Ranges, from going on a nature walk along its beautiful trail to dining in its lovely vintage-decor cafes with a cozy atmosphere. There is no doubt that it is a great place to spend mindful time to catch up with nature and be awed at the towering mountain ash trees.
(i) Take a walk in the woods
How to get there: There is no fixed address for Dandenong Ranges National Park, as there are several access points. Obtain a detailed map before entering, to decide which areas to explore.
(ii) Try the best scones at Miss Marple’s Tearoom
Their scones are to die for, served with Miss Marple’s own homemade raspberry jam and freshly whipped cream.
Recommended: Devonshire Scones with Teapot of Taylors
Address: 382 Mount Dandenong Tourist Rd, Sassafras VIC 3787
Opening hours: Mon - Fri, 11 am - 4 pm | Weekends, 11 am - 4.30 pm
(iii) Head to Mount Dandenong Observatory Lookout for a scenic view of the city
At the lookout, you’ll find a 360-degree panoramic view of Victoria that extends far into the horizon!
Address: 26 Observatory Rd, Mount Dandenong VIC 3767
15. Experience wildlife at Healesville Sanctuary
Located just an hour drive from Melbourne, Healesville Sanctuary (formerly known as Sir Colin MacKenzie Sanctuary) is a zoo for you to enjoy a close up experience with Australian animals, i.e. kangaroos, koalas etc.
Address: Badger Creek Rd, Healesville VIC 3777
Opening hours: 9 am - 5 pm, daily
Book your ticket
16. Relax by the water at picturesque Lake Daylesford
Lake Daylesford is a peaceful, swamp-like lake with a view reminiscing an old English countryside, complete with cabins that rests by the shores - a bucket list for those who’ve always dreamt of English cottages and the likes. It is an easy and pleasant walk around the lake, with peaceful surrounds. Highly recommended if you’re visiting Daylesford.
Address: Leggatt Street, Daylesford, Victoria, 3460
17. Challenge yourself with a day-hike at Grampians National Park
Grampians National Park is a massive national park spanning 1,672 km² of small towns and natural beauty - a pity if you give up an opportunity to visit. Thus, it’s no surprise that there are a few lookouts that offer amazing views. Here are five easy hiking trails in Grampians you don’t want to miss:
(i) Boroka Lookout
Access from: Boroka Lookout Carpark
Distance: 90m (start to end)
Duration: 15 minutes
(ii) The Balconies (Formerly known as Jaws of Death)
Access from: Reed Lookout Carpark
Distance: 2km (with return trip)
Duration: 30 minutes
(iii) Mackenzie Falls
Access from: Mackenzie Falls Carpark
Distance: 2km (with return trip)
Duration: 1 hour
(iv) Mount William
Access from: Mt William Carpark
Distance: 3.6km (with return trip)
Duration: 1.5 hour
(v) Boronia Peak
Access from: Tandara Road Carpark
Distance: 6.6km (with return trip)
Duration: 3 hours
Read more about picturesque bushwalks here.
18. Drive along the scenic Great Ocean Road
Photo taken at Twelve Apostles
As one of Australia’s coastal routes well-known for its beauty, a Victoria road trip would not be complete without Great Ocean Road. Drive along the picturesque route that’ll bring you to the iconic Twelve Apostles, Loch Ard Gorge, London Arch (formerly known as London Bridge), and The Grotto.
19. Uncover the fuss about Doughnut Time
You may be struggling to understand what the fuss about Doughnut Time is and why everyone is talking about it. Nonetheless, if you have a sweet tooth, this is a must-try. A variety of doughnuts are available for you to choose from, but Love At First Bite is their signature doughnut filled with Nutella then dusted with cinnamon sugar - a lip-smacking recipe!
How to get there: There are many branches but those located in Topshop in Emporium Shopping Centre and Melbourne Central Shopping Centre are within the Free Tram Zone!
- Topshop @ Emporium Shopping Centre: 287 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne CBD, VIC 3000
- Melbourne Central Shopping Centre: Corner of Swanston & La Trobe Street
20. Sample the best brunches in Melbourne’s Laneway
Melbourne is known for its coffee and laneway cafes - there are countless food places worth-mentioning, but let’s highlight a few that’s worth waking up early for and restaurants great for a catch-up with your mates.
(i) The Hardware Societe
Must-try: Lobster Benedict
Address: 120 Hardware St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Opening hours: Mon - Fri, 7.30 am - 3pm | Weekends, 8 am - 3 pm
(ii) Hash Specialty Coffee & Roaster
Must try: Grilled Banana & Pecan Loaf, coupled with their signature Hot Chocolate
Address: 113 Hardware St, Melbourne VIC 300
Opening hours: Mon to Fri, 7 am - 4 pm | Weekend, 8 am - 4 pm
(iii) Operator 25
Must try: BBQ Pork Benedict, Balinese Pork Burger
Address: 25 Wills St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Opening hours: Mon to Fri, 7 am - 4 pm | Weekends, 9 am - 4 pm
(iv) The Grain Store
Must try: Pink Lady Apples, Buckwheat & Ricotta Pancakes
Address: 517 Flinders Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000
Opening hours: Mon - Fri, 7 am - 4 pm | Weekends, 8 am - 4 pm
(v) Manchester Press
Must try: Texas BBQ Pulled Pork
Address: 8 Rankins Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000
Opening hours: Mon - Fri, 7 am - 5 pm | Weekends, 9 am - 5 pm
21. Indulge in freshly shucked $1 oyster
Aptus Seafood, located at the South Melbourne Market, offers only $1 for the freshest oyster straight from the surrounding Australian ocean! The store has even been voted as Melbourne’s best seafood by Melbourne Market Awards 2015.
Address: South Melbourne Market, 322-326 Coventry Street, South Melbourne
Opening hours: Closed on Monday, Tuesday & Thursday | Wednesday & Weekends, 8 am - 4 pm | Friday 8 am - 5 pm
22. Dine at Melbourne’s Little Italy
Lygon Street, also known as Melbourne’s Little Italy, features heaps of eateries that specialises in Italian cuisine - wood oven pizzas, pastas, and gelatos aplenty! Here’s a tip from the pro: get your dose of gelato from Il Dolce Freddo (weirdly, they even have durian flavour)!
Address: 116 Lygon St, Carlton VIC 3053
Opening hours: Tues - Sun, 11 am - 10 pm | Closed on Mondays
A perfect Victoria holiday in 10 days
From graffiti-filled alleyways and scenic roadtrips to unique laneway bistros and restaurants, Victoria has long been known for its charming city as well as its beautiful outdoors. The best thing about this list of things to do in Victoria in 10 days is that they won’t force you into a travelling pauper!
Travelling in Victoria is not just limited to the famous Great Ocean Road. Explore Melbourne like a local by getting out of your comfort zone and grab every chance you get to turn your trip into an adventure.