JOIN ME IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CATHY AND DANNI FROM MELBOURNE, VICTORIA !
Cathy has lived in inner city Melbourne most of her life; six kilometres from Melbourne CDB. One of her favourite things to do is catch the Number 96 Tram to the CBD and explore the city with her partner and friends. While working in the corporate world for over sixteen years Cathy managed to travel to over one hundred destinations. Then in her 60th year she decided to give up her corporate career and become a full time travel writer. So together with her friend and business partner Danni, travelling is now the focus or her work life and fun life. Together with her partner Stan she is continuously making plans on “where to next” but Melbourne holds a special place in her heart.
Which is the best month to visit Melbourne and why?
Melbourne is the capital of Victoria, Australia located on Port Phillip Bay. It is known for its gardens, galleries, restaurants, the Spring Racing Carnival and trams. Melbourne has a population of approximately 4.8 million.
Spring is a lovely time to visit the city of Melbourne with longer day light hours, flowers coming into blossom and warmer weather with sunny days. The average high temperature in October is 20 degrees Celsius (68 degrees Fahrenheit) and November 22 degrees celsius (72 degrees Fahrenheit). Daylight savings commences mid-October. This means more time to explore the city streets, major landmarks, bars and restaurants The Spring Racing Carnival starts on 20 October 2018 with the Melbourne Cup being the premier event and held on the first Tuesday in November each year. See more detail, question 4.
Which is the most convenient and favoured transport of Melbourne?
There is an extensive tram and train system throughout the Melbourne CBD continuing to many outer suburbs and beyond. In the CBD you can ride trams for free. If travelling beyond the CBD a Myki Card is required, before you get on any public transport. Cards can be purchased throughout the city. Trams are the favoured transport and by far my favourite. Beyond the CBD take the 96 Tram that weaves its way from St Kilda located on the bay, south of Melbourne, to East Brunswick, north. Click here to find out all you need about our Public Transport System including where you can purchase Myki cards.
Which are the top 3 must visit places in Melbourne?
Melbourne Museum, 11 Nicholson Street, Carlton -Take trams 86 or 96 along Bourke Street, Melbourne CBD. The tram will turn left into Spring Street. It is a natural and cultural history museum and the largest in the southern hemisphere. You can spend a whole day visiting the museum with its many exhibits throughout. It is open between 10.00am and 5.00pm daily. Located next to the Melbourne Museum are the Royal Exhibition Buildings, a World Heritage Site, completed in 1880. Tours can be taken when there are no exhibits. A walk around the exterior of this building and into the Carlton Gardens gives a sense of the history of Melbourne.
Victorian Parliament House – is at the corner of Bourke and Spring Streets. Parliament House is open to the public during week days. It is the area around Parliament House that is worth a visit at night for drinks in the many bars, eating in authentic Italian restaurants and experiencing the street art in the lanes of Melbourne. It is a short walk to the Fitzroy and Treasury Gardens.
National Gallery of Victoria, 180 St Kilda Road – Catch any of the trams along Swanston Street. The gallery is open daily between 10.00am and 5.00pm. It is free with many exhibits that can be viewed. There are some exhibits that require payment to attend.
Which is the most celebrated holiday in Melbourne?
The most famous horse race in Australia is the Melbourne Cup. It is part of the Spring Racing Carnival; on the first Tuesday of November it is a public holiday for those living in Melbourne. It is described as the race that stops the nation. Over 100,000 people attend the Melbourne Cup at Flemington Racecourse. The Spring Racing Carnival is a series of races including the Caulfield Cup, Cox Plate, Victoria Derby Day, Melbourne Cup Day, Crown Oaks Day and Emirates Stakes Day. Any of those events are great excuses to get dressed up and enjoy a day of celebrating with friends while having a flutter on the horses. Click here to find out all you need to know about the Melbourne Cup.
Which is the most happening area in Melbourne and why?
Get a sense of Melbourne and all it has to offer by beginning at the corner of Flinders and Swanston Streets and make your way by foot across Princes Bridge over the famous Yarra River. There is so much to do during the day and at night; all within walking distance.
- Flinders Street Railway Station is on the corner of Flinders and Swanston Streets and is the central rail system for metropolitan Melbourne. A famous landmark to meet friends is under the clocks at the main entrance to the Station.
- Federation Square is one of the newest destinations in Melbourne CBD described as a modern piazza. Daily tours from 11.00am.
- State Theatre for opera, theatre productions and the occasional musical
- National Gallery with free exhibitions
- South Bank on the Yarra River with many restaurants, bars and river cruise.
- Botanic Gardens opposite the National Gallery of Victoria.
Where can one find amazing street food in Melbourne?
Click here for a great selection of ‘The Best Street Food Markets in Melbourne’. The Night Noodle Market and the Thornbury Food Trucks are those I would highly recommend especially on a hot summer Melbourne night.
Where to head for affordable shopping?
You can find great factory outlets at DFO South Wharf (20 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf). Click here to find out more information. But the shopping doesn’t need to stop there by any means. If you love a good shop there is also:
Bourke St Mall – one of the most popular shopping hubs in the city with access by trams and pedestrians only. You’ll find Myer, David Jones and Zara’s amongst many other shops. You’ll also find the Melbourne’s GPO. This was a former post office turned into a shopping hub.
The Block Arcade (282 Collins St Melbourne) – one of the most iconic shopping destinations and one of my favourite shopping destinations. The Block Arcade is a heritage listed building located in the CBD. The Arcade itself is something to admire with mosaic tile flooring and a glass canopy, its 19th century design and decoration is impressive. In terms of shops it’s not what I’d call affordable shopping but a must visit.
Melbourne Central (211 Latrobe St Melbourne) – this is a well- known busy train station and is a shopping and food mecca with a number of popular stores under the one roof.
Queen Victoria Market (513 Elizabeth St Melbourne) – it is said that this is the largest open-air market in the Southern Hemisphere. You really need to do yourself a favour and check out their night markets.
Which is the most loved local food in Melbourne?
All of these food precincts, where your taste buds are sure to be pleased, are easily accessible by tram.
Lygon St, Carlton – you can stroll along this leafy street also known as Little Italy to find a wide range of eating venues from pasticceria’s to fancy restaurants to casual pizza restaurants and more. Italian Food is loved by Melbournians with many quality restaurants in Melbourne CBD. It also happens to be my favourite after travelling to Italy seven times.
Brunswick Street, Fitzroy – one of Melbourne’s colourful streets with a distinct bohemian edge. You’ll find ‘hot’ dining spots and swish cocktail bars to choose from. This strip is great for a cheap meal, a relaxed drink or a spot of shopping.
High St, Northcote – one of Melbourne’s most dynamic and creative locations with a history spanning 15 years. High Street is home to retailers, bars, pubs, cafes and restaurants.
Acland Street, St Kilda – known for cake and coffee. It’s hard to make a decision with enticing displays in each of the cafes. This location is also famous for icons such as Luna Park, the Palais Theatre and the stunning St Kilda Beach.
Which side of the road does your city drive on? Is it a cycle friendly city?
The left hand side of the road. If you are planning to drive in the CBD at many of the corners you must take a right-hand turn from the left hand lane. Confusing, yes!
Work has been done to make Melbourne safe but see app below for more info.
The City of Yarra (Melbourne) is part of Melbourne’s Bike Share with 3 sites operating within the area. Click here to learn more about bike share.
Would you recommend any popular local apps to tourists for transport, food and hidden gems in Melbourne?
Getting around – free apps are Tramtracker, Public Transport Victoria, Melbourne offline map and travel guide, Melbiker, Rome2Rio and The Culture Trip.
Whatever your interest is you are sure to find something to enjoy in our beautiful Melbourne. We held the title for seven years in a row for world’s most liveable city so we must be doing something right.