The Melbourne Visitor Shuttle is the best way to get around Melbourne City. It’s basically a hop on hop off bus that will take you to major tourist attractions in the city for the entire day for only $5. My friend who is based in Melbourne said it used to be free but for a value of $5 it is surely an inexpensive and a great way to explore the city which doesn’t limit you from the city circle that the Free Tram is only accessible. There are 13 stops where you can hop on hop off, these stops are usually a short distance to the cities best attractions. The clever way to do this is you can combine this bus with the free city circle #35 tram and wanders off the entire city.
There are tourist brochures available on the bus and you can choose whatever stops that interest you the most. The interval is 30 minutes and you can get on and off as many times as you want.
The bus is comfortable, on-board commentary driver and not as crowded compare to the free city trams.
We started at Flinders Street without tickets on hand however, the driver was so friendly he took us to the next stop which is at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and purchase the $5 ticket at a small ticket dispensing machine.
Our first stop: Sports precinct @ Stop 3
Next Stop: Chinatown precinct @ Stop 4
The Chinatown is located at Little Bourke Street. A melting pot of Asian cultures, cheap foods, shops, and even museum. Unfortunately, the museum was closed when we visited. I noticed the lane dominates with an interesting asian restaurants. We walked along the collins street and strolled around Bourke Street Mall,Melbourne Central and QV Melbourne. Nearby was the Her Majesty’ Theatre known as the Melbourne’s home to the world greatest musicals where you can watch Les Miserables on a classic 19th century theatre.
Next: Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens
We skipped Lygon Street precinct at stop 6 because most of the shops there were closed due to Holy week Holiday. It’s just too bad to missed La Dolce Vita and La Mama. We also skipped stop 7 university of Melbourne because we were really hungry.
We headed to our next destination which is the Queen Victoria Market (Stop 8). My eyes feasted to almost everything. It’s a shoppers paradise! They have cheap souvenirs compare to Sydney. I like the fact that it’s not only the place to shop clothes, fruits and veggies but also a foodie heaven too. The line at Bratwurst Shop was quiet intriguing. We queued for the sake of curiousity. Although the queue was long, the service was pretty quick. I had spicy bratwurst and ginger beer. There is something about the sausage that is so fulfulling. I really love it. No wonder why people line up. If i live there, I will have it every weekend. No pun intended.
Stop 9 Harbour Town & Stop 10 Victoria Harbour
Habour town was very quiet perhaps it was Holy week, Only a couple of shops were open. It’s like a mall near the dock, We’re not really shoppers so we just walked around with nothing much to see. We skipped William Street as we’re not really into Museums and Aquarium.
We headed to Stop 12 Southbank and Yarra River. This area is just overwhelming. Lot of people, shops, cafes, restaurants, bars and even some holy week events. In the streets artists, live music and tons of entertainment. You just have to walk and then there’s a lot of activities. It’s like people make the most of their lives to be happy. Love the buskers.
There were still some love locks attached to the sides of Southgate footbridge. Southbank is such a cool place. I love the views of the fabulous city skyline and the iconic Flinders street station. Despite the crowd, I really like the walk along the Yarra river.
Southbank is one thing I would love to see again. Truly vibrant. Full of life. Love the vibe. What a stroll!
Because the walk was so pleasant, we walked all the way to the Royal Botanic Gardens. Yes, as in walk! Good thing there is map in the Brochure. It’s a bit of a long walk. If you dont want to do this that’s fine, you can go back and take the shuttle bus and get off at stop 13.
The garden is such a great find. Good place to relax a bit. Not far from the garden lies the Shrine of Remembrance, a memorial to Australian soldiers from all kinds of war. The building architecture is pretty impressive. Wonderfully kept and maintained. The panoramic view of the city here is also superb however you must go all the way to the top to see this incredible views. Dont worry they won’t charge you anything.
Well guess what, we walked back all the way to Flinders, our home in Melbourne.
Flinders Street Station is one of Melbourne’s famous landmark. I love its classic monolithic architecture. Not only that its a train station, its a great meeting place too. I met an old friend under the clock and admired its majestic yellow facade. It’s in the heart of city surrounded with quaint shops and pubs. I love its busy streets. The area is so charming along with the federation Square and St. Paul’s cathedral.
We meandered to Hosier Lane – Melbourne’s coolest street art. I’m not a graffiti lover but I was really amazed how talented the street artists were. It’s interesting how they change it all the time. It’s such a great artwork. I haven’t seen anything like it. It makes me appreciate art. Vandalism or not, it’s still incredible and worth a look.
Another laneway that I find really fascinating is the Centre Place in Degraves St. I’m in love with this cool, quirky yet classy laneway. I’ve been ignoring this area the whole time I was in Melbourne. I’m glad I booked my hostel near here. It is absolutely not a tourist trap. I recommend to go here when you’re hungry. You’ll be surprised how lovely it is, I’m sure you’ll have a hard time to choose where to eat like I did. Issus was delightful though, I had Lamb Souvlaki and watched the world go by. The food choices here is endless!
And oh, we ended our day sitting at kronenbourg over a bottle of coopers.