Melbourne Travel Guide (VIC, 3000)

The world's most livable city

Melbourne, the capital of the state of Victoria, is set around the shores of Victoria's Port Phillip Bay and boasts a lively and cosmopolitan pulse, with chic boutiques, buzzing cafés and bars, immaculate gardens and festivals and popular sporting events. The city sits on the Yarra River, about five kilometres from the bay.

One glance at a map and it's obvious Melbourne is a planned city: a tidy, balanced grid of neatly angled streets. But beneath this sense of restraint lies a restless creative energy. Discover the work of talented local artists, architects and designers in stylish fashion boutiques, buzzing laneway cafés, hidden galleries and trendy bars.

Melbourne is a city of style and sophistication, with an inviting cosmopolitan atmosphere. It is a melting pot of cultures reflected in its microcosm of restaurants, cafés, bistros and bars. Melbourne's dining offers a dizzying spread of great cuisines, serving meals from the substantial and classic to the truly exotic.

From locally designed originals to the best of international fashion brands you'll be spoilt for choice in Melbourne's shopping precincts. Explore the inner city shopping centres and the city's myriad of arcades and laneways.

The CBD is made up of many precincts – enclaves with their own distinct flavour and charm. Some are just a lane or two, while others cover a suburb or a busy CBD street. Spend time experiencing the richness of Melbourne’s different cultures from the Greek Quarter around Lonsdale Street, Italian in Lygon street, Vietnamese in Victoria Street to the Chinese culture in Chinatown and the upmarket Paris End of Collins Street.

Fitzroy Gardens, Collins St., Melbourne | Melbourne

The Gardens have a long history of over 150 years, few other capital cities can boast such a significant garden so close to the centre of their commercial district. Valued for their historic, aesthetic, architectural and horticultural significance, Fitzroy Gardens were classified by the National Trust in 1974 and placed on the Victorian Heritage Register in 1999. Fitzroy Gardens and the adjacent...

Flagstaff Gardens, King Street | Melbourne

Melbourne's oldest public gardens were laid out in the 1840s. A plaque marks the site of the old signal which announced the arrival of ships at Williamstown.

Royal Botanic Gardens, Victoria | Melbourne

The distinguished botanist, Baron Von Mueller, arranged the first planting of the extensive variety of native and exotic trees and plants that now form the basis of Melbourne's spectacular Royal Botanic Gardens. William Guilfoyle took over work on the gardens in 1873 introducing beautiful water moor lake areas to create a sense of infinite space in an area of only 35 hectares in the centre of Melb...