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A mushrooming of individuality coupled with an endless number of hotspots has inked Melbourne in the must-experience history books. Allow sleek cultural happenings, cobbled laneways, striking cityscapes and innovative design to allure in this pulsing metropolis of creativity and multiculturism. With enough cafés to host an international convention, heritage architecture, and a never-ending supply of art galleries, this open-armed city will give you a real cultural fix.
On the southern shores of Yarra River are the Royal Botanic Gardens—89 acres of leafy plants and pop up pools of water that feed irreplaceable species that are today protected. Education is also a central theme, with a belief that life can be sustained through plant life. With over 8,500 individual species and firm favorite tours such as the Aboriginal Heritage Walk, it’s a no-brainer why these gardens are so popular.
Don’t let the colorful, graffiti riddled walls distract you—Melbourne’s laneways provide far more than urban art and hip-vibes when you walk these pedestrianized cobblestone streets. Each lane has a life of its own and contains a trove of jazzing bars, cafes, and funky retailers. Laneway Tours present an opportunity to get to the heart of this full-blooded cultural place of happenings.
Look up to see one of Melbourne’s edgier attractions, Eureka Skydeck 88. Hanging 1,000 feet above the city, enter The Edge, a glass cube that exits the building as you stand on its encased surface provides a 360-degree view of the city.
The heart of Melbourne, the river is the focus for numerous, outstanding events including the famous Moomba festival, the Melbourne Festival, several rowing regattas as well as Dragon Boat Festivals. Board one of the many river boats to get a special view of Melbourne and to easily visit attractions such as Melbourne Olympic Park, the Royal Botanical Gardens and Herring Island Park. Of course, one can also simply relax along the riverfront or enjoy the many trails and pathways catering for cyclists, walkers and joggers.
A beachside playground with a palm-lined boardwalk, St. Kilda Beach offers everything from good pub grub to lively cocktail bars with entrée. As well as providing a great nightlife scene there are plenty of sunshine activities up for grabs. This neighborhood is Melbourne’s best-known and loved beach, and it delivers with a louche charm and hipster feel unlike any other.
Completed in 1909, Flinders train station is a cultural icon of Melbourne. The art nouveau style with its prominent dome, arched entrance, tower and clocks is one of the city's most recognisable landmarks. The Melburnian saying "I'll meet you under the clocks" refers to the row of clocks above the main entrance. Guided tours of the breathtakingly beautiful, disused, ballroom of the station are rare but definitely recommended when possible.
Breeze by to one of the most valued stadiums in Australia: the Melbourne Cricket Ground. The history of the stadium dates back to 1853, the interactive and integrated National Sports Museum is rich with well-presented sporting history. Take some time to learn about Australia’s love affair with sports such as cricket (cup of tea?) and Ozzy rules football.
Enjoy an interactive ocean adventure by the waters of Yarra River. State-of-the-art displays give this aquarium a modern touch engaging for people of all ages. Enter an underwater exhibit and be blown sideways by themed zones that bring you closer to sharks, penguins, and the setting of shipwrecked explorers on the search for lost treasures.
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