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Melbourne: 6 things to do in 2 days

February 29, 20205 minute read

If you only have a couple of days in Melbourne, it’s possible to see lots to make you want to visit again. You’ll also have time to enjoy the things that make this such a liveable city. It can get very hot, even in the cooler months. It can get very cold in mid-summer. You may even have four seasons in a day. But if you come prepared, you’ll be well rewarded.

Melbourne – our top 6 quick picks

1. Get an overview

  • The Melbourne Star Observation Wheel
    • This is one of the first things you’ll see as you arrive in to Melbourne.
    • The wheel dominates the city skyline and is located in the Docklands area.
    • It’s close to the Marvel Stadium
      • Home to
        • Australian Football League (AFL),
        • A-league (Soccer)
        • Concerts
    • It’s easily accessible by tram.
  • Catch a free tram
    • All trams within the city’s Free Tram Zone are free, until you leave the zone.
    • The Free Tram Zone includes the perimeter and streets within
      • Queen Victoria Market to Docklands,
      • Spring Street,
      • Flinders Street Station
      • Federation Square.
    • Travel on the City Circle Tram is also free.
      • Hop on and off these historic trams as you like.
      • The City Circle Trams have a descriptive commentary so you’ll know where you are.

2. Get maps and directions

  • Look for the bright orange coats of the Visitor information volunteers.
  • They can be found on major street corners
    • Near Flinders St Station is a good place to look.
  • Their Information booth is located in Bourke St Mall, close to Royal Arcade.
  • They can even suggest a few places to get great coffee – Coffee Capital of the world!

3. Go shopping

You are spoilt for shopping choices in Melbourne. But for something a bit different, who not visit:

  • The Queen Victoria Market
    • Tuesday, Thursday, Friday
      • 6am – 3pm
    • Saturday & Sunday
      • 6 am – 4pm (opens 9am on Sunday)
    • Specialty stores open 9am.
    • The Wednesday night market opens late November/early March
    • The market offers a wide range of fresh food
      • Fruit & vegetables,
      • seafood (including sea cucumbers)
      • meat items (including kangaroo)
      • dairy products
    • Clothing and souvenirs
  • The Arcades
    • There are a number of interesting arcades and laneways in the Melbourne CBD.
    • Royal Arcade stretches from Bourke St Mall through to Little Collins St
      • There’s also a branch to Elizabeth St.
    • Enjoy the tearooms at The Block Arcade.
      • It’s L shaped with two frontages on Collins and Elizabeth Sts.
      • Find treasures like specialty chocolates or unusual and special gifts.
    • Enjoy the beautiful architecture and beautiful fittings as you walk.

4. Watch for special events

The city ‘dresses up’ for Christmas

  • The windows at the Myers store in Bourke St Mall are always worth a visit.
    • The theme changes every year
  • Federation Square, opposite Flinders St Station
    • Check out the decorated tree & colourful light show

Cross the river to the King’s Domain

  • The Moomba Festival is held annually in March. In 2020, it will be on 6th – 9th March
    • Enjoy the parade and join in the fun
  • Anzac Day at the Shrine of Remembrance
    • A commemoration of the Battle at Gallipoli on 25th April 1915
    • Get up early and join in the Dawn service, it’s very moving

5. Find free entertainment & pop-ups

Walking round the streets, especially in the Bourke St Mall area is a great way to spend a few hours in the evening or on weekends.

  • There’s usually a busker near the tram stop along Swanston St at the end of the Mall and more along the Mall itself
  • Many corners have little pop-up stalls selling also sorts of knick-knacks.
  • Look for the stall selling Cacti outside BigW on the corner Lonsdale and Swanston Streets.

6. Visit a Museum

Museums are always good ways to spend a bit of quiet time. They don’t have to cost a lot, many museums and galleries are either free, or have a section that is.

  • The Chinese Museum hides along a small laneway off Lonsdale St, on Cohen Place.
    • You can also approach by Little Bourke St, in the middle of Chinatown.
    • Check out the statue of Sun Yat Sen, father of the Republic of China in Cohen Pl.
    • The main exhibition Halls are paid entry, but you can browse for free in the entrance area.
  • Immigration Museum, along Flinders Street, towards Spencer St.
    • Discover the multicultural background of the people who came to Australia since 1888.
    • Open Daily from 10am to 5pm (except Good Friday and Christmas Day)
    • Admission is paid (except for concession car holders)
      • Tickets may be bought online
      • Group bookings are available

Or a Library

  • State Library Victoria is Australia’s oldest public library
    • One of the first free libraries in the world.
      • Library membership is free.
        • You can also sign up for membership online.
    • The library is not a lending library
      • (you cannot borrow books to take home)
        • You have access to read over five million books and other documents
    • Currently under renovation, (some material may be unavailable until mid June 2020)
      • Join a free library tour
        • Daily except for public holidays
        • Click here for dates & times
    • The Library is open daily
      • Except Christmas/ New Year (some dates) and Good Friday
      • Opening hours vary, depending on day and section of the library.
        • Check their website for the hours
  • The Library is only 3 min walk from Old Melbourne Gaol, so if you have time, that’s got some stories to tell as well
    • Psst – Ned Kelly! (see his armour at the State Library)

Have a wonderful stay! (And enjoy the coffee.)

# free entertainment, information, Melbourne, museum, shopping, special events, Things To Do, trams, transport, useful information
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