After a Melbourne bucket list of the top things to see and do? You’ve come to the right place! Don’t forget to download my checklist so you can tick everything off.
If you’ve got a visit to Melbourne on your travel bucket list, then I’ve got the Melbourne bucket list for you. This sophisticated, edgy and vibrant city is absolutely teeming with things to do and I can guarantee that you won’t get bored here.
From exploring our multicultural cuisine to spending time in our dazzling museums or checking out our famous street art scene, I’ve pulled together a list of absolutely everything you need to do in Australia’s capital of cool.
Who knows, even long-time Melbourne residents may find a few new things on this list of 101 things to experience in Melbourne!
I’m a Melbourne local and I’ve spent countless hours pounding the pavements of Melbourne in search of the must-dos.
I’ve even created a downloadable bucket list Melbourne checklist so you can tick off each item – just click here.
This blog post may contain affiliate links, meaning if you book or buy something through one of these links, I may earn a small commission (at no extra cost to you).
Melbourne bucket list: Sightseeing
1. Explore Melbourne’s famous maze of laneways
Full of hidden cafes, striking street art and cool boutiques, Melbourne’s laneways are a microcosm of our city’s vibrant culture. Guided tours can offer insider knowledge, but there’s also magic in aimless wandering.
2. Check out what’s happening at Federation Square
Always full of people, Fed Square is one of Melbourne’s most iconic locations. Whether it’s outdoor movies, cultural festivals or concerts, there’s always something happening here, rain or shine.
3. Take a train to Flinders Street Station
More than just a transit hub, Flinders Street Station is a Melbourne icon. Steeped in history, its grandiose façade and ticking clocks have been a meeting point for generations.
4. Take a self-guided walk through Melbourne’s CBD
There’s something special about Melbourne’s CBD. A self-guided walk through its laneways and arcades reveals history, our famous coffee culture and bustling laneways.
5. Ride one of Melbourne’s iconic trams
6. Join the crims at Old Melbourne Gaol
See where some of Australia’s most infamous criminals (including Ned Kelly) were housed at the Old Melbourne Gaol. Now a museum, you can wander the grounds or join a spooky night tour.
7. Take a cruise on the Yarra River
8. Admire the city’s 19th-century architecture
9. Wander through the gorgeous Block Arcade
The Block Arcade is a Victorian-era gem, modelled after Milan’s Galleria Vittorio Emanuele. Stroll under its glass canopy, marvel at the mosaic floors, stop in for high tea at the Hopetoun Tearooms. And don’t forget to treat yourself to a bag of chocolate frogs from Haigh’s Chocolates – my personal favourite!
10. See the sun rise across Melbourne from a hot air balloon
11. Visit the State Library’s La Trobe Reading Room
Gaze down at the interior of the State Library’s octagonal domed La Trobe Reading Room, or take one of the free tours of the library.
12. Take in the view from Melbourne Skydeck
Elevate yourself 88 stories high at the Melbourne Skydeck and take in the glittering cityscape. The gold-plated skyscraper offers a view like no other.
13. Wander along Southbank
Southbank rarely sleeps. Stroll along the riverside for a parade of buskers, tasty ice cream and endless snack options.
14. Snap a photo in front of the colourful Brighton bathing boxes
The Brighton bathing boxes are a colourful backdrop on Brighton beach. These vibrant huts are the perfect photo opp spot.
Melbourne bucket list: Culture and art
15. Check out the latest works at the NGV
As Australia’s oldest art gallery, the NGV hosts an impressive array of artworks, from historic pieces to contemporary marvels – there’s always something new to discover.
16. Hunt for cool street art
Melbourne’s street art scene is world-renowned. Laneways like ACDC Lane, Caledonian Lane, Union Lane, Cocker Lane and Hosier Lane are outdoor galleries, showcasing vibrant, ever-changing urban masterpieces.
17. Or take a street tour with artists
Get the inside scoop on Melbourne’s street art scene with a tour led by real street artists with Melbourne Street Tours.
18. Learn about Melbourne’s Aboriginal history
19. Join an Indigenous guide on the Aboriginal Heritage Walk
Join an Indigenous guide in the Royal Botanic Gardens for the Aboriginal Heritage Walk. Experience a smoking ceremony and learn about the traditional uses of plants.
20. Check out the cool suburbs of Collingwood and Fitzroy
Packed with great food, pubs, and street art, the suburbs of Collingwood and Fitzroy offer a slice of Melbourne’s hippest culture.
21. See Australian artworks at the Ian Potter Centre
Right in Fed Square, the Ian Potter Centre proudly showcases Australian art. It’s a cultural treasure trove, reflecting the nation’s rich artistic heritage.
22. See who’s at the Wheeler Centre
The Wheeler Centre is a haven for book lovers and thinkers. Check out their schedule for thought-provoking talks and intimate author discussions.
23. Take a tour of Melbourne Town Hall
Discover the historical significance of the 19th-century Melbourne Town Hall. Its tours reveal the building’s fascinating past and architectural splendour.
24. Learn about Australia’s immigrant history at the Immigration Museum
One of the best museums in Melbourne, the Immigration Museum is a poignant reminder of Australia’s diverse roots. It offers a compelling look at the stories and struggles of those who helped shape Melbourne.
25. Pay your respects at the Shrine of Remembrance
The Shrine of Remembrance is a solemn yet beautiful place. Pay your respects, while also enjoying the gorgeous views of the city from the steps.
26. Visit the Islamic Museum of Australia
The Islamic Museum of Australia showcases Islamic art and culture. Join in cooking classes or presentations for a rich, cross-cultural experience.
27. Celebrate Melbourne’s architecture at Open House
Once a year, Melbourne’s architectural wonders open their doors during Open House. It’s a rare chance to peek inside buildings usually off-limits to the public.
28. Experience Lunar New Year
Experience the vibrant Lunar New Year celebrations in Chinatown. The air fills with the crackle of firecrackers and lion dances take over the streets.
29. Visit ACMI
ACMI (the Australian Centre for the Moving Image) is an fun exploration of film, video games and digital art. It’s interactive, engaging and always cutting-edge.
30. Browse for books at Readings
One of the best bookshops in the world, at Readings the written word reigns supreme.
31. Treat yourself in Collingwood
Take yourself out for a day of self-care and soak in the Finnish sauna at Sense of Self for a truly relaxing experience.
32. Explore what’s happening at Abbotsford Convent
This former convent is now home to studios, galleries, eateries and bars. Abbotsford Convent is an inner-city cultural hotspot with events held year-round.
33. Check out the wonderful Melbourne Museum
Always rotating, the exhibits at the Melbourne Museum are a fascinating journey through time, offering insights into the city’s history and culture.
34. Take a Neighbours tour
For fans of the iconic show Neighbours, a tour of Ramsay Street is a dream come true. It’s a fun and nostalgic addition to any Melbourne visit.
35. Visit a “trick art” exhibition
Get creative at ArtVo, an interactive art gallery where you become part of the artwork. It’s a fun, immersive experience that’s perfect for all ages.
36. Get hands-on at Scienceworks
Scienceworks is an interactive museum with plenty of science-y things to see and do – including a room that makes lightning!
37. Explore the night sky at the Planetarium
The Planetarium offers a mesmerising journey through the stars, day or night. It’s a cosmic adventure that’s both educational and awe-inspiring. It’s one of the best things to do in Melbourne with kids.
38. Immerse yourself in an interactive cinematic experience
Delve into the world of film in a whole new way with Underground Cinema. It’s a unique, immersive experience that goes beyond just watching a movie.
Melbourne bucket list: Entertainment and music
39. Laugh yourself silly at the annual Melbourne International Comedy Festival
Laugh out loud at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Every year, the city erupts in giggles and guffaws, as comedic talents from around the globe showcase their skills.
40. See a show at one of Melbourne’s beautiful theatres
41. Try to grab some bargain tickets
Keep an eye on Tix at 12 for bargain theatre tickets. Every Tuesday, it’s your chance to snag great deals on some of the city’s best shows.
42. Catch a band at The Espy
Catch a band at The Espy in St Kilda, freshly renovated and ready to rock. It’s a legendary Melbourne music venue.
43. Brave the rickety rollercoaster at Luna Park
Dare to ride the rickety rollercoaster at Luna Park. It’s a thrilling piece of Melbourne’s history, promising fun and screams in equal measure.
44. Snuggle up with your SO at the Coburg Drive-In
Snuggle up at the Coburg Drive-In for a retro movie night. It’s a nostalgic trip down memory lane.
45. Catch a comedy show at Spleen Bar
Get your comedy fix at Spleen Bar. Their free shows (gold coin donation appreciated) are a great way to discover new comedic talents in a laid-back setting.
46. See a show at The Corner Hotel
The Corner Hotel isn’t just a venue – it’s a Melbourne institution. Hosting an array of shows from rock to indie, this place showcases the city’s eclectic music vibe.
47. Watch a movie under the stars
48. See a show at RISING
Melbourne’s coolest new winter festival, RISING is Melbourne’s winter highlight, combining arts, music and culture in a festival like no other.
49. Grab a showbag at the Royal Melbourne Show
For me, the Royal Melbourne Show is so nostalgic – and the showbags are legendary! Held each September, it’s got animal exhibits, dodgem cars and carnival games.
50. Catch a concert at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl
The Sidney Myer Music Bowl is a Melbourne icon, hosting everything from rock concerts to classical music under the stars. Keep an eye out for the free concerts in summer.
51. Scare yourself silly on a ghost tour
You may learn some spooky stories – but these ghost tours of Melbourne are more about discovering the city’s creepy and criminal past. Ghost sightings not guaranteed!
52. Mix booze and history on a Drinking History Tour
Combine history and hops on a Drinking History Tour. It’s a unique way to learn about Melbourne’s past while enjoying some of its best brews – a fun one to add to any Melbourne bucket list!
53. Catch a stunning candlelight concert
Hear Mozart, Taylor Swift or Pink Floyd performed by an orchestra while surrounded by the warm glow of candlelight. These Candlelight Concerts are absolutely stunning.
Melbourne bucket list: Food and drink
54. Sample everything on an Ultimate Foodie Tour
Find delicious local produce and discover fascinating stories on the Ultimate Foodie Tour at Melbourne’s famous Queen Victoria Market, the largest open-air market in the southern hemisphere. It’s an absolute must-do on your Melbourne food bucket list and one of my favourite Melbourne food tours.
55. Become a coffee snob
Got coffee on your Melbourne must do list? Melbourne’s coffee scene is world-class. Check out some of the best coffee in Melbourne or join a coffee walking tour.
56. Nibble on a huge dim sim
The South Melbourne Market’s huge dim sims are a local legend. You can’t say you’ve been to Melbourne if you haven’t tried one.
57. Catch one of the Queen Vic Market’s night markets
Held throughout the year, the night markets at the Queen Vic Market are where you can try out local produce and the best of Melbourne’s food trucks. There’s music, dancing and a whole lot of fun.
58. Transport yourself to Vietnam
Victoria Street in Richmond is Melbourne’s slice of Vietnam, offering authentic pho and banh mi.
59. Grab a parma and chips at a pub
A must-do on any Melbourne bucket list is a pub meal at one of Melbourne’s many pubs. The Marquis of Lorne, the Standard Hotel and the Napier Hotel are some great choices, although you can walk into just about any pub in Melbourne and have a great time.
60. Explore native Australian ingredients
Big Esso showcases native Australian ingredients in a modern, exciting way. Think saltbush and pepperberry alongside exotic meats like crocodile and emu.
61. Grab a drink at a rooftop bar
Melbourne’s rooftop bars offer drinks with a view. There’s nothing like enjoying a cocktail or two while soaking up the city’s skyline. Some of my faves are Rooftop, Loop and Good Heavens.
62. Have high tea
Dating back to 1892, high tea at the Hopetoun Tea Rooms in the beautiful Block Arcade is a Melbourne must-do.
63. Eat your way around the world
You don’t have leave Melbourne to taste the world – in this city, you can try everything from Australian food to Zimbabwean dishes.
64. Dine in the dark
Use all your senses at Dining in the Dark. Locations change, but you can always guarantee that you’ll be served delicious food and see (pardon the pun) how your other senses take over when your eyes are covered.
65. Line up for croissants
Lune Croissanterie’s croissants are a worldwide sensation, and for good reason. Light, flaky and utterly delicious – they’re a must-try for any pastry afficionado.
66. See how many dumplings you can eat
67. Stroll through Little Italy
Carlton is a slice of Italy. Enjoy a classic Italian meal, sip on a perfectly brewed coffee or eat Italian cakes in this inner-city suburb.
68. Eat fish and chips on the beach
Fish and chips and beaches go together like yin and yang. From St Kilda to Williamstown, there are great spots around Melbourne where you can enjoy traditional fish and chips with a view of the ocean.
69. Splurge on a meal at Attica
Dining at Attica is undoubtedly a splurge, but it’s an unforgettable experience at a restaurant that’s earned its place among the world’s best.
70. Head out for yum cha
Gather your friends and indulge in a variety of dumplings and traditional Chinese dishes. Some of the best yum cha in Melbourne can be found at David’s in Prahran, and Shark Fin Inn and Secret Kitchen in the CBD.
71. Grab brunch
Melbourne’s brunch scene is legendary. From classic avo on toast to inventive cuisine, it’s an essential part of the city’s food culture.
72. Eat your way through the food trucks at Welcome to Thornbury
Food truck heaven, Welcome to Thornbury has seating for 1,500 people. Make your way through the food stalls, hang out in the beer garden and try your luck on the retro arcade games.
73. Sample Melbourne’s craft beer scene
74. Have a drink in the middle of the Yarra River
75. Dine at a Cat Café
Melbourne’s Cashmere Cat Café is a haven for cat lovers. Enjoy a coffee and some kitty cuddles in a cosy, feline-friendly setting – it’s a purr-fect way to relax!
76. Experience Melbourne’s best restaurants during the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival
The Melbourne Food and Wine Festival is a foodie’s dream come true. It’s your ticket to experiencing some of Melbourne’s finest dining at bargain prices – a real treat for your taste buds without breaking the bank.
Shopping and markets
77. Shop artisan goods at the Rose Street Artists Market
Open every weekend, the Rose Street Artists Market is a creative space where you can find unique, handmade items and support local artists.
78. Give your credit card a workout
Melbourne is a shopper’s paradise and you can find huge malls like the Emporium in the CBD or funky streets like Greville St in Prahran and Brunswick and Smith Streets in Fitzroy.
79. Catch the monthly market at the Heide Museum of Modern Art
Combine combing for unique local finds with exploring the beauty of modern art at the monthly market at the Heide Museum of Modern Art.
80. See the Myer Christmas windows
81. Search for unique buys at the Camberwell Sunday Market
More of a locals’ market, the Camberwell Sunday Market is a haven for unique finds. From vintage treasures to artisan crafts, it’s a must-visit for anyone looking for something a little different.
82. Window shop the “Paris end” of Collins St
The “Paris end” of Collins St is the section towards Spring St, and it’s lined with designer stores. It’s a luxury shopping experience, whether you’re just window shopping or ready to max out your credit card.
Melbourne bucket list: Outdoors and green spaces
83. Go for a romantic punt on the lake
Not many people know that you can go for a punt on the lake in the Botanic Gardens – complete with your own punter!
84. See the penguins waddle up each night at St Kilda beach
One of the cutest things you’ll ever see in Melbourne, every night Little Penguins waddle up to St Kilda Beach to their nests. You can catch a glimpse from the St Kilda Pier. (Update: Currently closed while the redevelopment of the pier is underway.)
85. Go for a stroll along Merri Creek
Wandering along Merri Creek, it’s easy to forget that you’re in a city of 5 million people.
86. Pat farm animals at the Collingwood Children’s Farm
87. Hire a GoBoat
Hire one of the electric boats from GoBoat and head down the river for a boating adventure. BYO picnic, drinks and captain’s hat!
88. Hit the beach in St Kilda
Melbourne’s most famous beach, St Kilda Beach is great for sunbathing, swimming or just people-watching.
89. Hire a kayak
90. Have a picnic in the Royal Botanic Gardens
With 36 hectares of lush green lawns, gardens, lakes and ponds, you can find your own peaceful spot for a bite outdoors in the Royal Botanic Gardens. I’m a fan of these Mystery Picnic Dates, which make organising a picnic super fun and easy. (Read my Mystery Picnic Melbourne review for all the details.)
91. Go for a run or a walk around the Tan
The 3.8-kilometre track around the Royal Botanic Gardens is known to locals as the Tan and it’s perfect for a run or a stroll. Every Melburnian has done the Tan at least some point in their life.
92. Attend an event at the majestic Royal Exhibition Building
Carlton’s Royal Exhibition Building is a stunning example of 19th-century architecture. Designed by Joseph Reed and built in 1880 for the Melbourne International Exhibition, it’s now a space for huge events and exhibitions.
93. Explore the Fitzroy Gardens
The Fitzroy Gardens are within walking distance of the CBD and it’s a great spot for a picnic, finding the Fairies Tree or admiring the gardens.
94. Instagram the pink lake
Each summer, a pink lake appears in Westgate Park – a phenomenon caused by algae. Get your camera and snap the surreal hues.
95. Take a dip at the St Kilda Sea Baths
The iconic St Kilda Sea Baths is a historical building where you can go for a swim and then enjoy a bite to eat and a drink or two.
96. Stay the night at Melbourne Zoo
Wake up with the animals on an overnight safari at Melbourne Zoo. Experience the zoo after hours when all the other visitors have left for the day.
97. Watch an AFL match at the MCG
Watching an AFL game at the MCG is an absolute must for any visit to Melbourne when it’s footy season.
98. See tennis greats in action at the Australian Open
Held each January, the Australian Open brings the best of the best in tennis. It’s the first Grand Slam tournament of the season, and players from all over the world compete for a chance at glory.
99. Place a bet in the “race that stops a nation”
Melbourne is the only city in the world that has a public holiday for a horse race. While the Melbourne Cup is often more about the fashion than the horses, it’s a big event for the city.
100. Take a tour of the MCG
The 10th largest stadium in the world, the MCG – or The ‘G as it’s more commonly called – is a Melbourne landmark. There are regular tours of the grounds.
101. Go sports mad at the National Sports Museum
The National Sports Museum celebrates Melbourne’s sports culture. It’s a must-visit for anyone passionate about sports, offering a comprehensive look at Australia’s sporting achievements.
Have fun ticking off this Melbourne bucket list! How many of these 101 things to do in Melbourne have you done?
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What else is on your Melbourne bucket list? Leave me your tips in the comments below!
Before you go… you might like these other Melbourne travel blogs:
- The absolute best things to do in Melbourne
- The best time to visit Melbourne
- How to spend 3 days in Melbourne
Best Melbourne resources
- Check out my Melbourne travel guide for everything you need to know about planning a trip to Melbourne
- Look for flights to Melbourne on Skyscanner.
- Book accommodation on Booking.com or Expedia for your Melbourne trip. The Ovolo Laneways Hotel is a good choice in the CBD.
- You won’t really need a car in Melbourne, but if you do want to get out of the city, then rent a car through DiscoverCars.
- Pick up a copy of the Lonely Planet Pocket Melbourne to help plan your trip.
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