Arguably one of the world's most livable cities, the coastal capital of Victoria, Melbourne is one of Australia's top travel destinations for culture, art, food and ambiance. Full of crazed sports fans, winding graffitied laneways, mouth-watering delicacies, top shopping spots, and a great bar scene, it's easy to stay longer than you intended, but if you only have 48 hours, here's how to fit in the most:
9 AM – BREAKFAST ON DEGRAVES
DEGRAVES ST. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
Start the day with some eggs and coffee on one of Melbourne’s most interesting side-streets. It’s a gritty, charming area with an abundance of cafe's, bakeries, and breakfast joints to choose from, both big or small to suit your fancy.
10 AM - BOURKE STREET AND GRAFFITI LANES
BOURKE ST. MELBOURNE, CBD 3000
Trounce down Bourke Street to get to the heart of the city center. If you like shopping, all your high street brands are here from Zara to David Jones.Take in the creative street performers from Welsh pianists to Peruvian flute players. Hosier Lane is within Bourke Street, which is where you'll find wall-to-wall street art. Walk a few blocks down though as best can be found at ACDC Lane, Melbourne’s most famous Graffiti Laneway.
2 PM - CATCH A SOCCER GAME
MELBOURNE CRICKET ARENA, BRUNTON AVE. MELBOURNE, VIC 3002
Melbournians are a crazy lot - but nothing makes them wilder than the Australian Football League (AFL). Actually held in a cricket stadium, the "G" is the largest stadium in Australia and the world’s largest stadium for playing cricket, making it a true sight to behold for sport's fans.
5 PM - SIGLO ROOFTOP BAR
2/161 SPRING ST. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
Kick back with a local brew or glass of wine overlooking the widespread grandeur of the Parliament House and St. Patrick’s Cathedral. A breathtaking look at old Melbourne, it is a classy establishment perfect for ushering in the evening hour.
8 PM - HARDWARE LANE
HARDWARE LN. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
One of Melbourne’s most famous pedestrian-only dinner destinations, this small historic alley is tucked into the labyrinth of city laneways. With 10 restaurant hosts fighting for your attention, you can either enjoy amazing Kangaroo at Grill Steak Seafood Restaurant or modern Mediterranean cuisine at the vibrant Café Max.
10 PM - CROWN CASINO
8 WHITEMAN ST. SOUTHBANK, VIC 3006
A sprawling riverside entertainment complex, Crown Casino feels like a mini city and has everything you need for evening thrills - from poker rooms to nightclubs and bars. Whether you prefer to catch a concert, show or hit the tables, it's one of the most vibrant venues in Melbourne.
10 AM - HARDWARE SOCIETE
120 HARDWARE ST. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
With lines starting at 10 am, you may be waiting up to an hour for breakfast at Hardware Societe any day of the week, but that's how you know it's worth it. A Parisan-style bistro cafe, pork belly and confit salmon are some of the favorites here.
11 AM - QUEEN VICTORIA MARKET
513 ELIZABETH ST. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
Breathe in the atmosphere. Take in the ambiance. One of largest open-air markets in the Southern Hemisphere, you'll find fresh produce, cheap clothes and a whole lot of everything else. You could spend hours people watching as the historic landmark spans more than two city blocks.
1 PM - EUREKA TOWER
BRIGHT ST. SOUTHBANK, VIC 3006
The tallest skyscraper in the southern hemisphere, the Eureka Tower offers grand views over Melbourne from the sky deck. If you dare, head out up to Edge, which extends out from the 88th floor like a glass cube. You'll get some great photos from the transparent floor below and there's no other experience like it in the world.
3 PM - ST KILDA BEACH, LUNA PARK, ACLAND STREET
ST. KILDA, VIC 3182
While Melbourne’s weather is certainly known for it's unpredictability, if it's nice out, head to St Kilda to enjoy the city's most vibrant beach. A backpacker favorite, ride the wooden rollercoasters at Luna Park or take a stroll down sleepy Acland Street for food and street vendors.
6 PM - DINNER ON LYGON STREET
LYGON ST. CARLTON, VIC 3057
Once Melbourne’s biggest hotspot, Lygon's popularity has somewhat faded but not completely. With tons of old school Italian joints to choose from, make sure you save room for a sweet treat from El Helado ice cream afterwards.
8 PM - BAR HOP AT BRUNSWICK STREET
BRUNSWICK ST. FITZROY NORTH, VIC 3068
A neighborhood known for cafés, live music and hip shops, Brunswick Street is a casual yet trendy place to grab a nightcap. Stop by Bimbos, a dive known for it's cheap beer and eclectic ambiance or Baxter's Lot for bands and bohemian clientele.
WHERE TO STAY: THE LANGHAM HOTEL
1 SOUTHGATE AVE. MELBOURNE, VIC 3000
Overlooking the Yarra River and nestled within Southbank Promenade, The Langham is a popular choice that's conveniently located within the central business district. Rooms are timelessly elegant yet understated.