Cocktails, shopping, food & more in Melbourne
Having recently returned from a jam packed week full of cocktails, shopping and great food, I’ve decided that although Melbourne is only a short plane ride away from New Zealand, in some corners of the city you can feel as if you were in Europe!
There are lots of events and unique things that draw people to Melbourne, and there's literally something for everyone - be it the upcoming Melbourne Cup, the Australian Tennis Open, the great theatre on offer, or the world-class restaurants!
Here are my recommendations for your next urban break:
- As soon as you arrive, purchase a MYKI - your reusable travel card for trains, trams and buses – and get used to the most easy-to-use public transit system ever. It’s FREE in the CBD, and you can even have dinner on a colonial tramcar.
- Explore the Royal Botanic Gardens and The National Gallery of Victoria (popularly known as the NGV), currently exhibiting The House of Dior, it’s also showcased Van Gogh & Andy Warhol in the past.
- If you’ll be sampling a show at the Regent, Princess or Palace Theatre, then you simply must try Chin Chin, Long Grain, Coda, Nobu or Rockpool for dinner first. Or, if you really want to treat yourself, head to Vue De Monde or Attica (with a Kiwi Chef and recently ranked 21st in the World).
- Sip wine in the Yarra Valley or travel to the Mornington Peninsula for a day trip or overnight if you include the famous Mornington Hot Springs as well!
- Do a walking tour of the incredible grid of 19th-century lanes and arcades - some of my favourites were Hozier Lane, Little Bourke and Little Collins as they have real stores and not chains. The Block Arcade is stunning and is home to the Hopetoun Tea rooms that opened in 1891 and boasts the most beautiful high tea.
- Sip cocktails on roof tops including Madame Brussels, famous for its famous Pimm’s Jugs and tennis clad waiters, or Naked for Satan for the perfect espresso martini and sunset views. Enjoy dessert at Om Nom Dessert Bar at the Adelphi Hotel & Yum Cha in China Town.
- And of course a trip to Melbourne would not be complete without a trip to the markets! The Queen Victoria Market has been the heart and soul of Melbourne for more than a century and is a place where the butchers and fishmongers shout as loud as possible & different languages overlap each other, all combined with some of the best food in the city! Don’t even think about leaving before you’ve tried a borek, a traditional Turkish pastry…. if you have trouble finding the stall, just look for the mob of people. I personally also prefer the smaller, quainter South Melbourne Market which is full of great produce, crafts, and flowers.