Things to do in Australia | A Melbourne Vacation with All the Australia Highlights

How to see the best of Australia on a short vacation to Melbourne.

We are working on our Things to Do in Australia blog series where we outline how you can see all the major Australia Highlights in a short vacation, staying in just one or two Australian cities.

We’ve shown how you can see Beaches & Aquatic Life, Wildlife, Rainforest, Outback, Food & Wine, Modern City Culture & Art and Indigenous Culture in the city of Sydney. Today we look towards the world’s most livable city, Melbourne.

Here are things you can do in Melbourne to see major Australia highlights.

Beaches & Aquatic Life

Hang out on the coast of Port Phillip Bay with the peninsula’s iconic rainbow-colored bathing boxes providing a colorful backdrop.

A short tram ride from the heart of Melbourne, you’ll find St. Kilda Beach. It’s not only a great place for a swim, but a wonderful seaside community where you’ll find great bars, restaurants, shops and even some little penguins in the rocks.

Take a day trip out to Ninety Mile Beach, one of the most natural and unspoiled beaches in the world. It is ideal for a variety of activities, from beach fishing and swimming to walking, whale and dolphin-spotting or just relaxing in the sun…

…maybe you’ll even spot one of these little guys.

Head to Phillip Island for a variety of beaches, from family friendly bay beaches at Cowes and Ventnor Beach to break beaches for surfing at Cape Woolamai.

While on Phillip Island don’t miss your chance to see cute little Penguins waddle home to their burrows.

Victoria is also known for its sheer cliffs and rocky shores. You don’t want to miss these beautiful rugged shores. Philip Island,…

…The Twelve Apostles,…

…and London Bridge

Wildlife

Head to Healesville Sanctuary, a world-renowned spot to see Australian wildlife in their natural habitat. Located in the heart of the Yarra Valley, Healesville centers on local conservation and indigenous culture.

Just 45 minutes outside of Melbourne, see the wildlife in the wild. The national parks near Melbourne have a surprising diversity of wildlife: Kangaroos, Koalas, Emus, Swamp Wallabies, Cockatoos, Parrots, Galahs and more!

Rainforest

While Victoria isn’t the #1 destination for rainforest tourism, you can find rainforest just an hour outside Melbourne in the Yarra State Forest. Walk through myrtle beech rainforest to the Ada Tree, a giant mountain ash that is one of Victoria’s largest trees and also one of the largest known flowering trees in the world on the Ada Tree Rainforest Walk.

Outback

For a little outback adventure near Melbourne, head to the You Yangs, distinctive granite peaks that rise from the flat volcanic plains between Melbourne and Geelong.

Food & Wine

With a stay in Melbourne, you’ve hit the jackpot in amazing food & wine! Melbourne’s eclectic dining scene offers a wide array of the world’s great cuisines. Enjoy a wonderful dinner on the water with the Spirit of Melbourne.

Head to Coda for sleek Asian/French cuisine.

Dine high in the sky at Vue de Monde.

Grab a bite and some of that famous Melbourne brew at a local café.

Find a hidden gem in Melbourne’s Laneways. This tour is sure to unveil some local favorites.

Head to Yarra Valley on this amazing tour for Australian wine tasting.

Modern City Culture & Art

Melbourne is well known for its public art. All you have to do is walk through the city streets, laneways and squares to get a good dose of art. From guerrilla street art…

…to public installations.

Melbourne’s thriving art scene supports over 100 art galleries – both large and small. Head to Flinders Lane to see private galleries and public street art.

Speaking of Federation Square… this famous spot hosts over 2000 events each year! It buzzes with cultural festivals, exhibitions, event launches, performances, forums, films, concerts and fashion shows. There’s sure to be something hopping at Fed Square whenever you visit.

Wander around Swanston Street & St Kilda Road to find much of Melbourne’s notable architectural sites.

Indigenous Culture

You can find some very interesting Indigenous experiences right in the heart of Melbourne. Visit the Koorie Heritage Trust.

Stop by the multi-award-winning Bunjilaka at the Melbourne Museum.

For a real treat, take an Aboriginal Heritage Walk of the Royal Botanic Gardens.

Are you ready to start planning your trip to Australia? Whether you are traveling for 1 week or 3 months, we can help you make your trip worthwhile.

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