10 Marvellous Melbourne Tourist Attractions to Add to Your Itinerary
Where can you find a seamless and unique blend of city excitement, world-class arts and culture, historic landmarks, and stunning beaches and parks? We’re talking, of course, about Melbourne, the tourist attraction capital of Australia.
With its vibrant streets, lush parks, and a thriving culinary scene, Melbourne offers something truly spectacular for every traveler. Venture down graffiti-adorned laneways and get lost in the intertwining cobbled streets that twist through the CBD.
Quench your cravings at any number of phenomenal restaurants and hole-in-the-wall cafés. Catch a dazzling live performance, get lost in the quiet spectacle of the city’s museums, or cheer with the larger-than-life crowds at your favourite sports match.
Whether you're a sports enthusiast, an art lover, or a foodie, Melbourne's tourist attractions are sure to captivate your heart. Let's dive into the top 10 must-visit places that should be on your Melbourne itinerary!
Federation Square: Melbourne's Iconic Meeting Place
Where: Swanston Street & Flinders Street, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 10-minute drive
There are few locations more synonymous with Melbourne City attractions than Federation Square. Dubbed ‘Fed Square’ by Melburnians, this communal quarter stands as the beating heart of Melbourne where locals and tourists converge daily.
Fed Square’s most striking feature is undoubtedly its distinctive architectural design, a blend of modernity and innovation that perfectly represents the city’s unique artistic flair. The square's centerpiece is the massive digital screen, a canvas for displaying everything from art projections to live sports events.
Federation Square is not just a static structure; it's a dynamic space that hosts a plethora of cultural events throughout the year. From live music concerts to art exhibitions, there's always something happening here to captivate the imagination of visitors.
Fed Square Attractions
What's more, Federation Square's strategic location places it within easy reach of other fascinating attractions. Just a stone's throw away, you'll find the Ian Potter Centre, a haven for art enthusiasts, and ACMI (Australian Centre for the Moving Image), a hub for film and digital culture.
Within the Square itself are also a range of delicious al fresco style restaurants and cafés like the very aptly named Time Out Fed Square.
Fed Square is also known for its countless pop-ups throughout the year. Upcoming events include the Victorian Disability Sport & Recreation Festival, a jam-packed day of activities and celebrations on the 1st of December 2023. Later in January 2024, you can catch the thrilling Australian Open on the big Fed screen – tickets sell fast, so book your spot in the sunshine now.
Whether you're sipping coffee in its open expanse, attending a captivating event, or exploring nearby cultural treasures, Federation Square is the perfect starting point for your Melbourne adventure.
Hosier Lane: A Street Art Sanctuary
Where: Between Flinders Street and Flinders Lane, opposite Federation Square
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 15-minute Tram Ride
We’re sure you’ve heard of this one; if not, you’re in for a treat. Hidden within Melbourne's labyrinthine streets, Hosier Lane is an urban art sanctuary that pulsates with creative energy.
This cobblestone laneway has earned a reputation as a living canvas, where graffiti and street art burst to life in a constantly evolving display of visual storytelling. Strolling through Hosier Lane is like stepping into an open-air art gallery where every corner surprises with new colors, shapes, and narratives. Even the commercial rubbish bins around the corner are adorned with beautifully painted tapestries – talk about grungy-chic!
Beyond its visual appeal, Hosier Lane serves as a platform for artists to express themselves freely and engage with the public. It's not uncommon to spot an artist at work, adding new layers to the tapestry of creativity and breathing new life into this most beloved of Melbourne tourist attractions.
Royal Botanic Gardens: A Picturesque Oasis in the City
Where: Entry via St Kilda Road, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 15-minute drive or 35-minute tram ride
Take a step away from the big city smoke to cross the picturesque Princess Bridge. Wander past the thriving Arts district (more on that later) and hop on a tram down the iconic St Kilda Road to the expansive Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria.
This enchanting oasis stands as one of the world's finest examples of a botanical garden, a testament to Melbourne's commitment to preserving nature's beauty and Australia’s historic roots.
As you enter the gardens, you're greeted by a serene landscape where lush greenery, vibrant blooms, and tranquil lakes transport you to a world of natural wonder.
One of the highlights of the Royal Botanic Gardens is the picturesque lake, where visitors can enjoy leisurely boat rides or simply bask in the beauty of the surroundings. For families, the dedicated children's garden is a delightful space where young explorers can connect with nature through interactive play.
This beautiful sanctuary is also one of the most accessible attractions in the city for all individuals to enjoy.
The Shrine of Remembrance
Towards the top of the gardens, your eye will undoubtedly be drawn to the impressive Shrine of Remembrance. Heavy with memories and a beautiful preservation of Australia’s soldiers, this landmark is a must-visit.
If you have the opportunity to visit in April, you may have the chance to witness the poignant ANZAC Day parade in Melbourne, which gracefully winds its way through the city and concludes at the Shrine.
Bourke Street: The Shopaholic’s Paradise
Where: Bourke Street, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 9-minute walk or 8-minute tram ride
For those with a penchant for shopping, Melbourne's Bourke Street is a paradise waiting to be explored. This bustling thoroughfare is synonymous with retail therapy, offering a shopping experience that rivals some of the world's most renowned fashion districts.
As you stroll along Bourke Street, one of Melbourne’s best tourist places, you'll find yourself amidst a dynamic blend of high-end boutiques, department stores, and charming boutiques. Some must-visits include:
Emporium Melbourne: A luxury shopping precinct featuring a wide range of designer labels and high-end brands.
Melbourne's GPO (General Post Office): An historic building converted into a shopping precinct, this stunning building is worth a visit purely for the architectural delights it offers – as well, of course, to visit one of the biggest and best H&M stores in the country.
Myer Melbourne: Australia’s flagship Myer Centre, this department store is unlike any other. Drink in the dazzling lights, stunning installations, and extensive selection of designer wear.
Plus, if you’re visiting during December, you’ll be treated to the spectacle of Myer’s Christmas window displays – but be sure to allow extra time for the always-busy line-up of fellow shoppers!
David Jones: If you’re after a touch of elegance, David Jones in the heart of Myer is a must for your next shopping trip. Occupying three beautiful buildings on Bourke Street, this designer-brand-filled mecca is as sparkling in its decorations as it is with its premium service.
Bourke Street Mall: A pedestrian-only shopping area with a mix of local and international brands, making it a central hub for shoppers.
Melbourne Central: Located nearby, it houses a variety of shops, including fashion, electronics, and a wide range of dining options. Be sure to look up and snap a photo of the impressive clock tower inside the centre.
Spencer Street Outlet: Sitting at the bottom of Bourke Street and with a door-to-door tram direct from Dorsett Melbourne, Spencer Street Outlet is your go-to venue for the biggest brands and the juiciest savings. With everything from fashion and footwear to electronics and accessories, Spencer Street has you covered for a shop-till-you-drop day.
Plan your Melbourne shopping adventure in more detail with our oh-so-trendy guide to the best shopping hotspots in the city.
Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG): Mecca for Sports Enthusiasts
Where: Brunton Avenue, Richmond
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 25-minute drive or 17-minute train ride
The Melbourne Cricket Ground, affectionately known as the MCG, stands as a revered icon in the world of sports. For sports enthusiasts, it's more than just a stadium; it's a hallowed ground that has witnessed countless historic moments and hosted some of the most exhilarating sporting events on the planet.
Cricket fans from around the globe dream of witnessing a Test match, a One-Day International, or most especially, the Boxing Day Test Match at the MCG (hint: Australia vs Pakistan is fast approaching this December 26th!).
The stadium's vast expanse and meticulously maintained pitch create an unparalleled cricketing experience. The crowd's roar, the tension in the air, and the anticipation of every delivery make the MCG a cricket lover's paradise. Plus, when you stay at Dorsett Melbourne, you can be at the MCG in two stops from Southern Cross Station near the hotel!
Whether you're a cricket aficionado or a fervent follower of Australian rules football, who also frequent the venue, the MCG is the epicenter of sporting history in Melbourne. If you’re looking for the ultimate Melbourne city attractions experience, this pilgrimage site for those who revere the spirit of competition is a must-visit.
National Gallery of Victoria (NGV): Art Lover's Paradise
Where: 180 St Kilda Road, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 12-minute car ride or 5-minute train ride with a 10-minute walk
For those with a deep appreciation for the arts, the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) stands as an unparalleled haven in the heart of Melbourne. Even if you’re not much of a museum connoisseur, we’re sure you’ll enjoy wandering through one of the most stunning Melbourne tourist attractions and witnessing its incredible architecture and exhibits.
Right from the outset, you’ll be greeted with the iconic NGV waterfall wall that marks the entry to the gallery. The ground floor is often reserved for touring exhibitions, which take over large portions of the building with astounding displays of immersive art, inspiring decor, and see-it-to-believe-it installations.
Celebrating Diversity in the Arts
One of the most striking aspects of the NGV is the sheer diversity of its art collection. It spans centuries and encompasses an astonishing range of styles, from timeless classics that have transcended generations to cutting-edge contemporary masterpieces that challenge conventional boundaries.
As you explore the galleries, you'll encounter works that evoke profound emotions, ignite your imagination, and leave an indelible impression.Check out what events, exhibits, and galleries are on show at the NGV during your visit.
Queen Victoria Market: Historic Landmark with Vibrant Flavours
Where: Queen Street, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 13-minute walk or 11-minute tram ride
As rich in history as it is in boutique wares and delicious food, the Queen Victoria Market is one of the most iconic Melbourne City attractions. The market has been cherished for generations and is steeped in both old-world charm and vibrant new life.
As you wander through its labyrinthine lanes and bustling shoppers, you'll find yourself transported to a bygone era. The market's heritage-listed sheds and cobblestone pathways evoke a sense of nostalgia, inviting visitors to take a leisurely stroll through time.
This is where the essence of Melbourne's market culture comes to life, where the stories of traders and shoppers from generations past seem to linger in the air.
Europa Night Market
Visiting Melbourne during spring? This is perhaps the best time to visit the Queen Victoria Market, as every Wednesday from 5pm till 10pm during October, the premises is transformed into the stunning Europa Night Market.
Indulge in European-inspired street eats and cocktails as you browse the boutique wares after dark, all while enjoying live music and entertainment. Themes are also a major aspect of the Europa Night Market, with extra-special treats added according to various locales, such as:
French Provincial Night
Melbourne Skydeck: Marvel at Melbourne from the Sky
Where: 7 Riverside Quay, Southbank
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 10-minute drive or 19-minute tram ride
When planning your Melbourne tourist attractions itinerary, we highly recommend visiting the iconic Melbourne Skydeck. Perched atop the Eureka Tower, this remarkable attraction offers an awe-inspiring experience that allows you to see the city from a perspective like no other.
As you ascend to the Southern Hemisphere's highest viewing platform, prepare to be enchanted by breathtaking panoramic views through floor-to-ceiling windows. The sprawling metropolis, with its iconic landmarks, winding Yarra River, and lush parks, unveils itself in all its glory. It's a view that captures the essence of Melbourne – a city that seamlessly combines architectural marvels with natural beauty.
Melbourne Zoo: Get Up Close with Wildlife from Around the World
Where: Elliott Avenue, Parkville
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 15-minute drive or 17-minute train ride
Tucked away in the heart of Melbourne is a sanctuary that offers a magical journey into the fascinating world of wildlife. The Melbourne Zoo is a cherished family-friendly destination and one of the ultimate Melbourne visiting places. Get up close and personal with creatures from across the globe and treat yourself in a variety of fun activities and immersive experiences.
One of the most endearing aspects of the Melbourne Zoo is its deep commitment to conservation efforts. Beyond providing a home to a diverse array of animals, the zoo actively helps to prevent species extinction through global programs, sustainability initiatives, ongoing research ventures, and customer-focused efforts.
St Kilda: Beachside Bliss and Sweet Delights
Where: St Kilda, Melbourne
Distance from Dorsett Melbourne: 20-minute drive or 34-minute tram ride
Escape the city life for a day and head out to the oceanview oasis of St Kilda. One of the most popular Melbourne tourist attractions and an absolutely stunning beachside venue, St Kilda promises everything from delicious food and drinks to raucous theme park fun.
St Kilda Beach
When we think of Melbourne’s best tourist places, we usually go straight to CBD-based attractions. Just outside the city, however, a waterside paradise awaits. Stretch out on St Kilda Beach for the day and enjoy sand-side cafés and bars.
Depending on which time of year you visit, you might also be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the adorable Little Penguins who call the beach home.
Travelling with little ones? Or perhaps you’d like to unleash your own inner child. Whatever the reason, St Kilda’s Luna Park promises an unforgettable day of delicious street food, rowdy carnival games, and exhilarating rides. Located right next to the beach, this is a ready-made day out for the whole family.
Stay Close to Melbourne’s Best Tourist Places
Make your Melbourne adventure even more memorable by staying at Dorsett Melbourne. Enjoy the convenience of being near the city's best tourist attractions while experiencing our exceptional hospitality.
Enjoy our plush rooms and first-class amenities as you indulge in a well-deserved wine or nibble at Jin Bar. For an even more fabulous Melbourne tourist experience, upgrade to an Executive Room and gain access to our exclusive Club Lounge for classic Melbourne laneway views, delicious canapés, and sumptuous breakfasts.Book your stay with us and immerse yourself in your own marvellous Melbourne experience. Cheers to that!