Melbourne: A Backpackers Weekend Guide

Melbourne: A Backpackers Weekend Guide

16 November 2018

 

If you're reading this, then you're probably a traveller who's lucky enough to be in the beautiful city of Melbourne! As the second largest city in all of Australia, there is certainly no shortage of exciting things to do in one of the world's most liveable cities.

From coffee shops, to (tasteful) graffiti alleys, Melbourne is arguably the most culturally diverse city in all of Australia. 

We've rounded up the perfect weekend guide for all backpackers spending a few days in Melbourne, so that you can make the most of this truly incredible city. Checkout the must-do activities, and must-see attractions, below:

 

The Gas Brigades

Image thanks to Ilya Genkin

The Gas Brigades are large towers just outside South Banks’ Crown Casino that shoot the world’s largest fireballs into the nights sky (8-10 meters). The display is beautiful and actually pretty hot if you’re close enough. While you’re in the area we recommend going for a walk along the river which is made even more beautiful by the orange glow given off by the Gas Brigades. 

- From December 1st – First show at 21:00

- From March 1st – First show at 20:00

- From April 1st – First show at 18:00

- From October 1st – First show at 20:00

 Cost: Absolutely free!

 

Hosier Lane

 

Image thanks to Victorian Socialists

A charming little alley way in the heart of the city, Hosier lane is one of the signature attractions that perfectly punctuates Melbourne's creative flair.

Walk down the famous bluestone laneway and admire the street art that's made the Melbourne urban art scene known across the globe. Take in the dizzying array of colours, characters and shapes created by local and international artists alike. Pick out everything from stencils and paste-ups to murals and installations. If you’re looking for more information on the art you can take a free tour which explores Hosier Lane as well as a pretty large portion of the rest of melbourne.

 

St. Kilda

 

Image thanks to Visit Melbourne

Prepare to play in St Kilda, where you can kick up your heels by the seashore, along with live music or on the whirligigs at Luna Park.

Often referred to as 'Melbourne's Bondi', St. Kilda is the trendy seaside area of Melbourne. From penguins to theme parks, community gardens to fantastic eats and sleeps, and only 6km from the city, there’s a reason why St Kilda is still Melbourne’s favourite beachside playground. The shore is home to all kinds of sport, whether you're a beach cricket, volleyball or frisbee enthusiast and the water is safe for swimming and watersports. 

St Kilda is also well known for its slew of bars along Fitzroy St. One of our favourites is 29th apartment which is famous for its $20 all you can eat wings, although they’re so big we’ve only ever finished one plate. If you’re looking for some live music, the Prince Hotel is a local hotspot that hosts regular gigs of both local and international artists. 

 

Eureka Skydeck

Image thanks to Visit Melbourne

Nothing you have ever experienced will prepare you for the awe inspiring views from the highest viewing platform in the Southern Hemisphere at Melbourne's Eureka Skydeck. Two dedicated lifts propel visitors to level 88 in under 40 seconds. It’s so quick that it feels like taking off in an airplane.

The views you get from the top are truly awe inspiring, with all of Melbourne visible from the top. You can even spot the distant Dandenong Ranges in the distance. If you’re feeling a little brave you can also go on The Edge which is a glass bottomed room that extends out of the tower itself. Go up late afternoon or early evening, so you can experience the city views in the evening glow. Stay past sunset for a phenomenal view of the city lights at night. 

 

The Melbourne Cricket Ground - aka The MCG

Image thanks to the AFL

If you are lucky enough to be in Melbourne during the Australian Football (AFL) season, then you absolutely have to go and see a game at the mighty MCG stadium. With a capacity of just over 100,000 people, the MCG is the largest stadium in the Southern Hemisphere. 

The atmosphere is never more electrifying than when the stadium plays host to one of the infamous AFL games. You can use the AFL website to check fixtures and if you're in Melbourne over a weekend when a game is being played at the MCG, do yourself a favour and go along. You won't regret it.

 

The Dandenong Ranges

Image thanks to Visit Melbourne

If you’re tired of wandering around the concrete jungle of Melbourne’s city, why not get in touch with nature in the Dandenong Ranges. Just under 2 hours out of the city via public transport the Dandenong Ranges are filled with stunning rainforests, tiny towns, local cafes, boutique craft breweries and more. The area also has lots to do, so much in fact that you could probably spend a week here. 

But if you’ve only got a day we recommend trekking up the Kokoda Memorial Track. The track  is a local favourite and features 1000 steps to the top of a very large hill all surrounded by ferns, gum trees and even the odd lyrebird. If you’ve still got the energy, from there you can finish out the day at SkyHigh Mt Dandenong which looks out over the city and makes for a spectacular place to see the sun set. 

Tip: Dandenong and the Dandenong Ranges are different places in opposite directions. Do not mix these up.

 

Melbourne really is the amazing multicultural city that it sells itself to be. From towering skyscrapers lining its concrete jungle to beautiful natural environments that are only an hour or so away, the variety in what Melbourne has to offer is part of what makes it one of the world’s most liveable cities. If you’re only planning on spending the weekend, we recommend staying a while and giving yourself more time to explore. Trust us. You won’t regret it.