If you live in Melbourne I have some advice for you, be a tourist in your own city! Discover areas of Melbourne that you don’t usually get to, plan a weekend like you would if you were travelling! If you are a tourist in Melbourne, here are some places you can enjoy!
High Tea @ The Hotel Windsor – Spring Street
If you are looking to do a high tea, go to the top! Afternoon Tea at The Hotel Windsor is the best of the best! The hotel is so elegant and beautiful and it only gets better with the high tea! Yes it is pricey, but so worth it.
Take your mum, your grandmother or your bestie! The chocolate fountain, all the array of desserts, the free champagne and all the sandwiches was all so amazing! You will definitely over eat because there are so many options, but make the most of all the beautiful food!
The service is amazing, the inside decor is so elegant you will feel so fancy – you already know!
Shrine of Remembrance – Botanical Gardens
In my summer blog I mentioned how amazing the Botanical Gardens are – which I absolutely love – and in winter I explored more of the gardens along with the Shrine of Remembrance. This is an amazing tribute and such a beautiful building with an incredible view of the city from the observation balcony at the top. Then head downstairs underground for an amazing exhibition on Australia war from the 1850s to now.
The gallery features artifacts, images, videos and so much information on all the wars in Australian history, so fascinating. They also have a gallery of medals donated by those who served, which was so colourful and a really great feature!
For a ton of Australian history and to get some culture, education and a sense of patriotism, visit the Shrine of Remembrance!
Markets in Melbourne
Melbourne is full of great markets. Some seasonal and others running every week, every fortnight or every month.
The St Kilda Esplanade Market runs from 10am every Sunday and has a great range of stalls to look at. Perfect in the summer months to get some unique Christmas presents or just a little something for yourself! I have been to this market a few times and love the atmosphere of the beach and the people are super friendly!
The Camberwell Sunday Market is super popular and runs every Sunday (obviously) in the big Carpark in front of Woolworths and Aldi. A huge vintage, trash and treasure market there is so much to look at and loads to buy. They do have amazing hot jam donuts at the food truck, which is there every week. So people sell new products but a lot of it is second hand good, definitely worth a look.
Queen Victoria Market is a Melbourne favourite. With fresh produce to gift ideas, the market is always full and packed with things to look at. In the summer and winter months, Vic Market hold a special Wednesday night market to showcase some amazing dishes served in Melbourne as well as local shop owners and live music. Recently at the Winter Market I had the best experience and tried so much food which included:
- Hot cider from Coldstream Brewery
- Four cheese pasta from a cheese wheel from That’s Amore Cheese
- Meatlovers pizza from 400 Gradi
- Chilli con carne from Pacos Tacos
- Meat and vegetarian arancini balls from Arancini Sicilani
- Strawberries and cream waffles from The Waffle Club
- A mix meat fondue platter from The Fondue Corner
- Tasting meat platter from Burn City Smokers
All the food was incredible, the vibes were relaxed and fun! Although it was cold outside, under the sheds was warm and cosy. They had a photo booth, silent disco and live/entertainment all night. A really great night out!
An annual market that is probably hands down my favourite is the Good Food, Night Noodle Market. Held in November, this market offers a taste of some of the best Asian cuisine restaurants/food trucks in Melbourne!
Yes I went twice and yes I ate a lot of amazing food, but it was all very much worth it. The second time I went I even got the full experience when it rained heavily. But was still over 25 degrees, it felt very tropical.
Menulog again sponsored the event and did things a little differently for 2017. They had their own sectioned off area where you could order from the different trucks and Menulog staff members would go get the food for you, how good is that? They didn’t have everything, but still it was a good way to try as many dishes as you could without lining up!
So what did I get over my two adventures to the beautiful Birrarung Marr? Well…
- Eat the Chicken (Flavours of Bangkok) pineapple rice – still to this day the best rice I’ve had
- Puffle’s bulgogi beef waffle – easily my favourite thing from the noodle market, these were super popular
- Strawberry Watermelon Cake from Black Star Pastry/N2 Gelato – wow this one was a popular one in 2016 and I know why
- The pork buns from Dum & Dumpling’s – a classic done right
- Oh-No-Giri (green tea gelato covered in white chocolate) and the mango gelato from Gelato Messina – there is a reason why this place is always busy, so yum
- Pork and chicken skewers from Hoy Pinoy – amazing but loved the chicken the most
- The charcoal infused BBQ pork buns from Lets Do Yum Cha – a traditional twist just for Melbournian’s and it was so yum
- Peking duck taco from Mr Miyagi – loved loved loved it
- Chilli potato twist – I was hesitant to get potato on a stick but it was amazing, better than I expected
- The Brulee Cart’s salted caramel and ginger creme – wow if you love brulee you will love this one
- The trio pork belly, fried chicken and eggplant bao buns from Wonderbao – the best and actually I liked the eggplant the most
- Bambu’s special unicorn bun – it was yum, but mainly got it for the photo
Yes I know I had a lot, but I did share! If you want to try as much as you can without spending a fortune, take someone who likes the same food as you! Add this market to your 2018 to do list!
Opened four days a week, the South Melbourne Market is an amazing place to get fresh food and to shop. I was blown away by the amazing stuff the South Melbourne Market has! The cake and pastry shops are amazing, people buy fresh oysters and they have tables with sauces for people to eat while they are there – it is incredible.
Then they have loads of market stalls selling homemade items, clothes, food – it is a great place to do some Christmas shopping.
My first visit to the South Melbourne Market had me leaving very full! I tried as many free samples as I could – even managed to get more than one free sample from one stall – and had some cooked oysters, the original South Melbourne dim sim, dumplings and finished off with the best macaroons I have ever had – I know that is a huge call. The creme burlee macaroon was seriously incredible.
So if you’re looking for something to do on a weekend, head down to the South Melbourne Market! They have so much to look at and loads of amazing food to try, also a great place to go for seafood or if it is your turn to organise nibbles. Also they have events on at different times of the year, coming up is their night market – check it out!
Events in Melbourne
Melbourne offer a huge range of events and every week there is always something new on! The best way I find out is by following loads of different pages on Facebook or any social media! A personal favourite of mine is Urban List and Time Out. I’ve been to so many events in the last year and there is always something fun to do, so I’ve listed a few different topics that might take your interest.
Races – The Spring Carnival is always an amazing time of the year. It is all about fashion, drinks and gambling – my favourite things! Derby Day was my first racing event in Melbourne and although I was having a month of alcohol – I know silly right? – I had a still had a great time!
Flemington is such a beauitful venue, the flowers around the race track, the city view and even better the sun was shining! Hot tip: bring your own blanket and your own food and it will work out much cheaper.
Great atmosphere to meet new people and it is always good when you pick the Derby Day winner like I did! However, getting home was a nightmare and with drunk people everywhere it made it worse! Try and organise a lift home instead of Uber or taxis, or walk out of the venue to order an Uber.
Another hot tip for the girls, never ever take your shoes off! Even if you’re sitting on a picnic rug. Bring flats if you want to take your heels off please.
Runs – Melbourne is known for great running tracks and running events, you can look at all the different running events here. If you don’t want to run, walk! Some of these events raise funds for great charities and plus it is a great way to see different parts of Melbourne. I took part in my first charity run in November 2017 at City2Sea and I loved it! I started with the 5km and helped raise funds for BeyondBlue!
As part of the event they even have a free expo, which was great for freebies and learning about new products on the market. The City2Sea run is beautiful and in the end you finish in St Kilda where you can spend the day at the beach. Hot Tip: use the bag drop off or get someone to have your stuff so you don’t have to run with a backpack on!
My next run will be the Sunset Series Melbourne Zoo run, running laps of the Zoo – what an awesome track to run on.
Music – If you love music than concerts and festivals are definitely more your thing! I went to my first music festival this year and loved it! Listen Out was hosting Bryson Tiller, MAC Miller and Future as part of many acts at their St Kilda beach festival.
Although I thought I was going to get crushed to death in the mosh pit, it was still a lot of fun. Be warned though, festivals bring out the worst in people but you can also make a lot of friends when you get way too close to their personal space for a few hours. If you want to get closer to the front, complement people of their outfit or style, they will be sure to let you passed.
Listen Out had three stages, heaps of bars and food so the lines weren’t super long and they definitely picked a great spot by the water!
Melbourne have so many venues hosting so many great gigs and concerts you can often find yourself overwhelmed by the great acts! So far this year I’ve seen Justin Bieber (pretty average), Sia (amazing, a true artist with an incredible voice), Cool Boys and the Front Man (yeah Hamish and Andy’s last song was hilarious), Dean Ray (X-Factor runners up at a bandroom in Collingwood, he is seriously talented) and The Weeknd (who is incredible live and blew me away with how good he was).
To come I still have Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars, yes I am broke! But if you want to keep track of all the acts coming to Melbourne, sign up to Bands in Town! It is a great way to find out before tickets go on sale so you can prepare – that is a preparation is stressful.
Oktoberfest was another event I attended and I guess it is a festival! But it was a lot of fun, the silent disco was my favourite again, but you can’t really beat a live band! This year Oktoberfest by the Gardens was in Flemington, which was too far out and the venue wasn’t really set out great.
The lines to get drinks was really long, it took way too long and in my opinion it was better in the city like the years before, it was still fun though and I’ll still go again!
Melbourne continues to amazing and overwhelm me with the events they have on weekly and even daily, but I love it!
Travelling to Melbourne but want to see a little more of Victoria?
Yarra Valley Wine Tour – Wine Bus
If you want to head out of the city for a day or you are a tourist looking for a day trip, try a Yarra Valley wine tour! Yarra Valley is so beautiful so why not go and have a look while trying a wine or 10!
Wine Bus is a great tour company to go with! If you have a big group and fill the bus they will tailor the tour to what you want to do!
The wine tour I did went to four wineries and we got a beautiful lunch included! Ian the bus driver even drove us exactly where we wanted to go after without taking us directly back into the city.
You learn how to taste wine, the flavours to look for, how it is grown, when you know it is out of date wine and so much more!
So the wineries we visited were:
Seville Hill – good wines, great knowledge on all the different types of wine and amazing cider – like really amazing!
Killara Estate – beautiful views, this is where we stopped for lunch! We got a anti pesto plate, homemade pizza and homemade tortellini pasta! The food was so amazing.
Hanraham – amazing service! The ladies at this winery are so lovely and amazing views. Head up the hill for a stunning view of the hills!
Yering Farm – Nice dips and cheese, a nice country vibe winery but the wine and cider was really smokey.
All these venues were so beautiful! Who doesn’t love tasting wine all day and eating cheese?