Melbourne is what I would describe as hipster city. There is a laid back cafe culture here that reminds me of European cities such as Paris or Rome.
The city has 230 laneways which are lined with bars, street art and amazing restaurants so it’s a definite must stop for foodies and those that like a cocktail.
It’s not uncommon for buskers to be found throughout the laneways performing for passers-by and the city certainly boasts the best of both worlds with beaches within easy reach.
Melbourne has both an international and domestic airports making it very easy to connect to anywhere in the world.
The greyhound bus also operates within Australia and may be a cheaper option for those travelling within Australia.
I was travelling from Bangkok, so came into the international airport.
From there I was easily able to take the sky bus to the CBD (central business district) for $19. Tickets can be bought in advance or at the bus stop which is located just outside the airport. It doesn’t take long either, 20-30 minutes depending on traffic.
This hostel is very centrally located in the CBD on the same road as Flinders Street station making it an ideal base to explore the city.
The rooms are spacious with en suite shower rooms. There are social areas consisting of, a bar, chill room and kitchen. Though I didn’t actually find the hostel that social. They don’t do any free activities in the day, such as walking tours and the bar is arranged quite segregated making it hard to make friends. Not a problem if you are traveling with friends, but not ideal for solo travellers.
St Kilda beach
St Kilda beach is easily accessible from pretty much anywhere in Melbourne due to the extensive tram network. So when in Melbourne you have to take a trip to the beach.
When I was in Melbourne it was actually a heat wave and temperatures reached a very hot 43 degrees, so it was ideal to chill by the water (or more often in the water) to cool down.
There is an abundance of bars and restaurants near by so you can easily get refreshments. There is also an ice cream shop which is a must visit!
If you stay till after sunset on the pier you are able to see penguins too which is an added bonus!
On various streets in Melbourne people have legally graffitied the walls and it makes for a pleasant walk to browse the streets looking at the messages and images.
I loved walking around the botanical gardens in the city, they are beautiful and very peaceful. I took a blanket and a book and spent a couple of hours just laying and reading.
View over the city from the city from the 88th floor! Not a bad price either for $20.
Visit a roof top bar
Every one loves a roof top bar a couple I found whilst there are:
Naked for Satan
Naked in the sky
All were really fun with a young crowd and great atmosphere.
Explore the cafes
There are literally so many cafes and restaurants all over Melbourne so It’s hard to pick where to go. I ended up choosing the below:
The quarter – down one of the laneways near my hostel, they do a yummy breakfast and also a really food pita and dip platter.
Fathers office – a great place to stop after you have hit the shops which is exactly what I did. It’s set just above the street on the 2nd floor and has outdoor roof terrace seating area.
Il Tempo – a really cute place with an amazing brunch menu. I would definitely recommend the avo smash on sourdough bread.
Explore the streets in general
Just take a walk around Melbourne and see what you find!
Melbourne is a really cool city and I only managed the scrape the surface of what it has to offer.
United backpackers is a great hostel but I didn’t rate the social atmosphere for solo travellers.
St Kilda beach is a must, as is exploring the food scene.