What To Do When Visiting Melbourne, Australia
Originally posted March 2016
From the U.S., it takes about 14+ hours to get to Melbourne from the U.S. West coast.
Despite its distance though, its not in the top 10 longest trips around the globe.
To get down there, you cross the International Date Line. This is pretty weird, in the sense that you arrive two days after you left and on your way back you arrive before you left on the same day. It’s a great way to celebrate your birthday on the way back :-).
Be mindful of the time changes as its necessary to know this when booking accommodations.
Use the flight schedule on Passrider.com in order to see the carriers that are flying on your requested dates. Below I’ve added the airlines serving the city. An alternate airport is not really close by in terms of international access. Sydney is perhaps the closest that has international service from major cities around the world.
Here are some initial facts about Melbourne, Australia that you may find useful:
Airlines Serving Melbourne Airport (MEL)
Air Asia X (D7), Air China (CA), Air India (AI), Air New Zealand (NZ), Air Vanuatu (NF), Alliance Airlines (QQ), Bamboo Airways (QH), Batik Air (ID), Beijing Capital Airlines (JD), Bonza Air (AB), Cathay Pacific Airways (CX), Cebu Pacific Air (5J), China Airlines (CI), China Eastern Airlines (MU), China Southern Airlines (CZ), Emirates (EK), Etihad Airways (EY), Fiji Airways (FJ), Garuda Indonesia (GA), Hainan Airlines (HU), Japan Airlines (JL), Jetstar Airways (JQ), LATAM (LA), Malaysia Airlines (MH), Philippine Airlines (PR), Qantas (QF), Qatar Airways (QR), Regional Express Airlines (ZL), Royal Brunei Airlines (BI), Sichuan Airlines (3U), Singapore Airlines (SQ), SriLankan (UL), TOR Air (OD), Thai Air Asia X (XJ), Thai Airways (TG), Tiger Airways (TR), United Airlines (Star Alliance) (UA), VietJet Air (VJ), Vietnam Airlines (VN), Virgin Australia (VA) and Xiamen Air (MF).
From the U.S., you have Qantas and United Airlines. If you’re stuck, you can always head over to Sydney and take American, Delta, Qantas or United. You can also head up to Brisbane and take Hawaiian, Qantas or United.
Airport Web site
Melbourne International Airport Airport (SYD) http://www.melbourneairport.com.au/.
Book your tickets using https://www.passrider.com/skyscanner.
Airport To The City
There are Smart Bus 901 serves the airport and will take you to the Broadmeadows train station. From there you can get to the City Center. You can find additional info at http://ptv.vic.gov.au/getting-around/airport-buses/. The local bus stop is located at the bus depot at Terminal 4.
If you don’t want to do the local bus thing, the most popular and fast option is the SkyBus. It’s an express bus that takes you directly to the City Center (Southern Cross station). It runs 24/7 every ten minutes.
Of course you can always take a taxi from the taxi rank. Don’t take a taxi from anyone who walks up to you and offer you one.
Follow the signs for Rideshare pickup once you arrive at the airport. You can find details here.
There are plenty of hotels at the airport and they prices do vary. I suggest using the hotel search map below to help you locate a suitable property.
Australian dollar (AUD). Remember that they don’t have pennies and will round up or down when you make purchases.
English with an Australian accent. It sounds a little British, but just listen carefully.
An electronic travel authorization is required for most non-Australian visitors. You can get it online for a select number of citizenships and is required for stays less than 90 days. The authorization is valid for a year. Everyone else has to apply in person at the local consulate. Alternatively, you can use the IATA Web site for visa/health requirements to see what are the requirements for your citizenship.
Remember that Australia is quite strict agriculturally so ensure you don’t bring in any agricultural good. Listen to the announcements that are made onboard the flight as they will give you great directions; follow them.
Melbourne has a pretty good transit system. The Southern Cross station is the hub of it all. It’s a combination of buses, rail and trains. You can get pretty much everywhere around Melbourne from here. You can find more information about the Melbourne Metro here.
Of course, you can always walk; which is what I usually do since the city is so beautiful and has a lot to see and do.
Things to See/Do
I love this city primarily because I’ve been a few times to see the Australian Tennis Open at the Rod Laver Arena. One thing/place you must see is the Flinders Station. Its this bright yellow building in the city. See it at day and at night as its fantastic to see.
There is also a free tourist shuttle from which you can hop on and hop off to see the city. You can find additional information and a map of the course here.
While on a walk, I came across this church; the St Augustine’s Church which is a gothic design.
The team at Visit Melbourne has really good information here on what you can do around Melbourne. Plus, you can use my partner Viator to find a place to visit below.
Hotels In The Region
Accommodations in Melbourne is not exactly cheap, so be prepared. There are also a number of hostels that you can check if this is your mode of accommodation. If you don’t want a shared room ask for single rooms. Usually, they come with their own showers and toilets. Use the Hotel Map below to search for hotels. I also earn a small commission if you use the box to make your bookings. Thanks for your support.
Whenever I’m in Australia, I usually have Indian food; maybe it’s cause there are a lot of Indian restaurants around the city. I always ensure that I have a Victoria Bitters (beer).
But of course you can find local food like fish and chips everywhere and many other types of food.
Social Media Information
Have you been to this region? If so please leave a comment below about your recommendations and experiences. If you’ve not, then leave a comment if you need additional information about taking the trip.