Both stylish and artistic, Melbourne is an exciting cosmopolitan city, considered by many to be Australia’s sporting and cultural capital. The inner city has a lovely, distinctly European vibe, with the leafy eastern section of Collins Street that seems somehow reminiscent of ‘50s Paris, packed with bustling restaurants and bars and clothed in street art.
What to Do in Melbourne
- Take some time to stroll around the 94-acre Royal Botanic Gardens – a green lung giving oxygen to the city – with its dreamy Victorian-era landscaping, mini ecosystems and patches of indigenous rainforest.
- Melbourne Zoo is one of the oldest in Australia, with elegant landscaped gardens and a host of animals, including gorillas and tigers.
- Retrace history at the Royal Exhibition Building, with its ornate Victorian edifice – it was the first building to fly the Australian flag.
- Walk to St. Kilda Pier for a panoramic view of Melbourne’s skyline, perhaps best enjoyed at sunset.
Melbourne Travel Tips
If you want a quiet holiday, the best time to go would be either autumn or spring. The football finals take place from September to November and from December to February, while summer brings balmy nights, music festivals and grand-slam tennis. You can usually manage on a low daily budget of about $200 and, when it’s time to travel, be sure to book your Melbourne flights with Hainan Airlines.