When you think of Australian cities, your mind may be drawn to the iconic silhouettes of the Harbour Bridge and the Sydney Opera House, but the country’s second largest city Melbourne has an understated charm that captures the heart of anybody who visits.
Sydney’s cool younger sister has a distinct European vibe, with cobbled alleyways, hidden cafes and brunch spots, and numerous galleries. Best explored on foot or by bike, you can weave your way through the graffitied streets and make your way along the winding Yarra River in the CBD (Central Business District), or hop on a tram to visit the suburbs.
Whether you’re after a vibrant beach setting in St Kilda and a coastal cycle around Brighton on your Melbourne holiday; or to immerse yourself in the hipster vibes of Collingwood and Fitzroy, this city has something for everybody. The food scene here is the best in Australia (a mean feat considering the incredible gastronomy on offer across the country), and there’s also sensational wine from the nearby Yarra Valley and Mornington Peninsula.
If all of this wasn’t enough, Melbourne is also Australia’s sporting capital, with the Formula 1, Australian Open and Melbourne Cup all held here.
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