If you’ve got a visit to Melbourne on your travel bucket list, well, 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 to experience!
Read on for this list of 101 things to do in Melbourne. And you can even download a copy so you can check off each item by clicking 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 the maze of famous laneways that crisscross the Melbourne CBD (there are also plenty of guided laneway tours like this one or this one)
2. Check out what’s happening at Federation Square – there’s always an event on here, rain or shine!
3. Take a train to Flinders Street Station, one of the most iconic buildings in the city
4. Take a self-guided walk through Melbourne’s CBD
5. Ride one of Melbourne’s iconic trams – the City Circle Tram is always free and hits up some of Melbourne’s best tourist attractions, with commentary to match (check out more free things to do in Melbourne)
6. See where some of Australia’s most infamous criminals (including Ned Kelly) were housed at the Old Melbourne Gaol
7. Take a cruise on the Yarra River which winds its way through the heart of Melbourne (book this day cruise or this bottomless brunch cruise)
8. Ride the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel and see all the way across the city Now closed
9. Wander through the gorgeous Block Arcade, with its mosaic tiled floor, glass ceiling and boutique shops – I highly recommend picking up some chocolate frogs from Haigh’s Chocolates (they’re my faves!)
10. See the sun rise across Melbourne from a hot air balloon (book online here)
11. Gaze up 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 of Melbourne city from the Eureka Skydeck, 88 stories up a gold-plated skyscrape
13. Wander along Southbank, where you’ll always see buskers and street performers, and be able to stop for ice cream and snacks
14. Snap a photo in front of the colourful Brighton Bay bathing boxes
Melbourne bucket list: Culture and art
15. Check out the latest works at the National Gallery of Victoria, the oldest art gallery in Australia
16. Hunt for cool street art in the CBD laneways – ACDC Lane, Caledonian Lane, Union Lane, Cocker Lane and Hosier Lane feature some of the best street art in Melbourne, if not the world
17. Or, have actual street artists guide you around the coolest areas on a tour with Melbourne Street Tours
18. Learn about Melbourne’s Aboriginal history and culture at the Koorie Heritage Trust (check out my guide to Indigenous Melbourne for even more experiences)
19. Join an Indigenous guide on the Aboriginal Heritage Walk through the Royal Botanic Gardens and experience a smoking ceremony and learn about the traditional uses of plants
20. Check out the cool suburbs of Collingwood and Fitzroy, home to great food, pubs and street art
21. See Australian artworks at the Ian Potter Centre in Fed Square
22. See who’s presenting at the Wheeler Centre for Books, Writing and Ideas, known for its topical conversations and intimate discussions with visiting and local authors
23. Take a tour of Melbourne Town Hall to learn more about this 19th century building
24. Learn about Australia’s immigrant history at the Immigration Museum
25. Pay your respects at the Shrine of Remembrance
26. Visit the Islamic Museum of Australia to view Islamic art or join a cooking class or presentation aimed at fostering cross-cultural understanding
27. Celebrate Melbourne’s architecture and take a peek inside many buildings usually closed to the public during the annual Open House
28. Experience Lunar New Year in Chinatown each February, with firecrackers, music and a traditional lion dance
29. Visit ACMI, a museum about film, video games, digital culture and art
30. Check out Readings in Carlton, one of the best bookshops in the world
31. Enjoy an authentic onsen experience in Collingwood at The Japanese Bath House or enjoy the Finnish sauna at Sense of Self
32. Explore what’s happening at Abbotsford Convent, a former convent now home to studios and galleries
33. Learn about the history of Melbourne at the wonderful Melbourne Museum
34. For lovers of Ramsay Street, take a Neighbours tour
35. Visit ArtVo, an immersive, “trick art” exhibition
36. Get hands-on at Scienceworks, an interactive museum with plenty of science-y things to see and do – including a room that makes lightning!
37. Explore the night sky – even during the day – at the Planetarium (this is a great activity for kids, and I have more ideas for things to do in Melbourne with kids)
38. Immerse yourself in a interactive cinematic experience with Underground Cinema
39. Learn about the “who’s who” of the permanent residents at the Melbourne General Cemetery on a night tour
Melbourne bucket list: Entertainment and music
40. Laugh yourself silly at the annual Melbourne International Comedy Festival, held every year in late March / early April
41. Get tickets to a Broadway show at one of Melbourne’s beautiful theatres – see what’s on at the Princess Theatre, Regent Theatre or Her Majesty’s Theatre
42. Try to grab some bargain tickets for shows at Tixatsix – line up at 6 p.m. (or earlier!) to nab $30 tickets to shows around Melbourne
43. Catch a band at The Espy in St Kilda, which has recently undergone a major renovation
44. Brave the rickety rollercoaster at Luna Park
45. Snuggle up with your SO at the Coburg Drive-In
46. Catch a free comedy show at Spleen Bar (gold coin donation appreciated)
47. See a show at The Corner Hotel, one of Melbourne’s many iconic music venues
48. Watch a movie at the Rooftop Cinema (as its name suggests, on a rooftop bar) or under the stars at the Moonlight Cinema – both have screenings throughout summer
49. See a show at RISING, Melbourne’s coolest new festival
50. Grab a showbag at the Royal Melbourne Show, held each September
51. Catch a concert at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl, including a whole lot of free concerts
52. Scare yourself silly on a ghost tour of Melbourne
53. Learn about Melbourne’s history with a pint or two on a Drinking History Tour – this is a fun one to add to any Melbourne bucket list!
54. Play a round of mini-golf at Holey Moley – with a stop or two along the way for cocktails, of course
Melbourne bucket list: Food and drink
55. Find delicious local produce discover fascinating stories on the Ultimate Foodie Tour at Melbourne’s famous Queen Victoria Market, the largest open-air market in the southern hemisphere
56. Become a coffee snob after experiencing Melbourne’s world-class coffee scene – this list of the best coffee in Melbourne is a starting point, or join a coffee walking tour
57. Nibble on a huge dim sim from the South Melbourne Market
58. Catch one of the Queen Vic Market’s seasonal night markets, held throughout the year, where you can try out local produce and the best of Melbourne’s food trucks
59. Transport yourself to Vietnam on Victoria Street in Richmond, and eat all the pho and banh mi you can fit in your belly
60. Grab a parma and chips and a beer at one of Melbourne’s many pubs, a must-do on any Melbourne bucket list – 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
61. Explore native Australian ingredients at Charcoal Lane, a restaurant that fuses food with social good through its program of training Indigenous and at-risk youth – I got married here (oh, and then Harry and Meghan decided to drop by…)! Now closed 🙁
62. Grab a drink at one of Melbourne’s many rooftop bars
63. Stop in at the Hopetoun Tea Rooms in the Block Arcade for high tea
64. Eat your way around the world without leaving Melbourne – in this city, you can try everything from Australian food to Zimbabwean dishes
65. Use all your senses when you dine in the dark at Dans Le Noir Now closed
66. Line up for delicious, airy croissants at Lune Croissanterie (named the best croissants in the world by one New York Times writer!)
67. See how many dumplings you can eat in Chinatown – join a dumpling walking tour to hit up the best spots
68. Stroll through Little Italy in Carlton, stopping for a delicious lunch or sampling Italian coffee
69. Eat fish and chips on one of the many beaches in and around Melbourne
70. Splurge on a meal at Attica, which highlights Australian produce and was recently on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list
71. Grab a group of mates and head out for yum cha
72. Grab brunch – there’s nothing like the food we serve up in Melbourne
73. Eat your way through the food trucks at Welcome to Thornbury
74. Sample Melbourne’s burgeoning craft beer scene – Stomping Ground, Bodriggy Brewing, Moon Dog and Mountain Goat Beer are all worth an afternoon
75. Have a drink in the middle of the Yarra River at Ponyfish Island
76. Enjoy a unique dining experience – enter a surburban home via the laundry for dinner with foodies at EnterViaLaundry
77. Cat lovers rejoice! Melbourne is home to the country’s first Cat Café, where you can sip a coffee while cuddling a cute, purring kitty
78. Grab the chance to dine at some of Melbourne’s best restaurants for bargain prices during the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival
Shopping and markets
79. Check out local art and handmade goods at the Rose Street Artists Market, held every Saturday and Sunday in Fitzroy
80. 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 (Smith Street was even recently voted the coolest street in the world!)
81. Catch the monthly market at the Heide Museum of Modern Art
82. See the extravagant displays at the Myer Christmas windows each year
83. Search for unique finds every week at the Camberwell Sunday Market
84. Window shop (or max out your credit card) at the designer stores that line the “Paris end” of Collins St
Melbourne bucket list: Outdoors and green spaces
85. See the penguins waddle up each night at St Kilda beach
86. Go for a stroll along Merri Creek, where you’ll forget you’re in a city of almost 5 million people
87. Pat cute farm animals at the Collingwood Children’s Farm – grab breakfast or a coffee at the Farm Café while you’re there
88. Hit the beach in St Kilda, Melbourne’s most famous beach
89. Hire a kayak for a paddle down the Yarra River (or even go on a moonlit kayak!)
90. Have a picnic in the Royal Botanic Gardens, 36 hectares of lush green lawns, gardens and lakes and ponds (these Mystery Picnic Dates 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, a 3.8-kilometre track around the Royal Botanic Gardens
92. Pack a picnic for the Carlton Gardens or see an exhibition at the grand Royal Exhibition Building
93. Explore Fitzroy Gardens
94. Instagram the pink lake that appears each summer in Westgate Park
95. Take a dip in the St Kilda Sea Baths and end with some yummy food and a drink or two
96. Stay the night at Melbourne Zoo and wake up with the animals
97. Watch an AFL match at the MCG, 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
99. Place a bet on a horse in the “race that stops a nation”, the Melbourne Cup – or dress up in your finest and get involved in the Spring Racing Carnival
100. Take a tour of the MCG, the 10th largest stadium in the world (this tour includes a visit to the MCG and the National Sports Museum)
101. Go sports mad at the National Sports Museum
And if this list isn’t enough, check out my guide to the 25 essential things to do in Melbourne.
What else would you add to this Melbourne bucket list? Leave me your tips in the comments below!
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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 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 Discover Cars or Rental Cars. I usually check both sites to compare prices and vehicle options.
- Pick up a copy of the Lonely Planet guide to Melbourne and Victoria to help plan your trip.
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