In Transit 24 Hours in Melbourne (Part 2)
By Glen Smith
Posted 22 Jun 2015
With its hole in wall cafes, hidden street art, cobblestone laneways and clandestine restaurant entrances, there’s more to the cultural and sporting capital of Australia than meets the eye.
Take a 10 minute walk to St Kilda Road where you will find the National Gallery of Victoria. Art plays a big role in Melbourne's overall culture and there are few better places to take in some of Australia’s greatest offerings than the NGV. Part gallery, part museum, part garden and all cultural hub, it's a truly expansive facility featuring an eclectic mix of art and exhibits ranging from ancient Egypt all the way to post-modern impressionism. General entry is free.
The second art gallery is in the Ian Potter Centre that you can visit while you are still at Federation Square.
Walk and laneways
Continue to walk along St Kilda Rd to the Shrine of Remembrance and return to the city through parklands that include the Royal Botanic Gardens.
When back in the city don’t miss out on the arty laneways including Hosier and Rutlege Lane opposite Federation Square, Centre Place between Collins Street and Flinders Lane and Degraves Street.
Take a short walk to the Emporium on Melbourne Central, Bourke Street Mall and tree-lined Collins Street, the ultimate shopping strip and business centre.
Don’t miss the fine dining experience in the Chinatown district in Little Bourke Street. There’s souvenir shopping down that way, too.
South Wharf & Docklands
Catch the City Circle from Spring Street yet more top shopping at South Wharf’s Direct Factory Outlet. Stroll the street or have dinner and soak up views of the city, Southern Observation Wheel, Bolte Bridge and Westgate Bridge at night.
What not to miss?
Watching the sunset at South Bank followed by dinner on the waterfront. The restaurants along the South Bank precinct are high-end French, Italian, Japanese and Seafood establishments. Dinner cruises are also popular as a way to combine good food and an enjoyable spectacle.
Have a bit more time? Here some tips if you are not time conscious.
- Stroll around Melbourne's spectacular Royal Botanic Gardens and enjoy a Devonshire tea by the lake.
- Cross the Westgate Bridge for amazing views of the city skyline as well as scenic suburbs and Albert Park, site of the Melbourne Grand Prix.
- Walk along leafy Lygon St in Carlton for an authentic Italian meal, it’s the place where Melbourne’s famous café culture was born.
- Take a tram to the bayside suburb of St Kilda for a swim, meal or walk along the waterfront promenade to Luna Park. Take a ride on the world's longest running 'human operated' Scenic Railway (Big Dipper).
- Visit Queen Victoria Market for a cheap meal, to pick up a souvenir and enjoy the atmosphere.
Melbourne Food and Wine Festival: 27 February to 15 March
The world’s largest food and wine festival takes place in Melbourne in every year in various venues around the city. Now in its 23rd year, the festival highlights why Melbourne is a world-class gastronomic destination, attracting visitors from across Australia and around the globe. From famous dining spots to unexpected places, rooftop bars to hidden cellars, each year the festival puts up a remarkable show.
For more info: melbournefoodandwine.com.au
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