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Australia's second biggest city is a bustling hub of culture and coffee. Oozing personality, Melbourne has been voted the most liveable city in the world for the seventh year running, and it's easy to see why. Blanketed by street art, home to cultural institutions and the unofficial sporting capital of Australia, Melbourne is a fantastic city to explore.
There's something to see on every corner, so if you've got just 24 hours in Melbourne, you're in for a busy day. Here's our one-day itinerary to help you fit it all in.
Melbournians are known for their love of coffee so grab a cup and blend in with the locals at one of the hundreds of options scattered throughout the city. You will be spoilt for choice for good cafes in Melbourne, but kick off your day at trendy roastery Industry Beans, nestled in the lively suburb of Fitzroy. Serving well-made coffee for just shy of a decade, this popular cafe was started up in a small garage by two brothers. Now, they're changing the landscape of coffee right in the heart of the speciality coffee scene.
Now you're fully caffeinated, head over to the 1932 Cafe & Restaurant, located in one of Melbourne's most-loved architectural locations - the Manchester Unity Building. This art-deco-inspired establishment offers a package of breakfast and a one-hour organised tour of the Manchester Unity Building. Its soaring tower, opposite Melbourne Town Hall, was designed by Raymond Hood, who won an international competition in 1922.
Next, explore Melbourne's historic town hall. Situated on the corner of Swanston Street and Collins Street in the Central Business District (CBD), it is at the heart of the city's cultural and civic activity. Home to weddings, receptions and exhibitions, there have been many decisions made inside the walls of Melbourne Town Hall that have impacted and shaped the city. Join a tour to explore the heritage listed building.
Time to spend a spell outside. Head to Carlton Gardens to see the Melbourne Museum, the largest museum in the southern hemisphere. This popular area is home to stunning tree-lined paths, fountains, lakes and flowerbeds, as well as the gorgeous World-Heritage listed Royal Exhibition Building, which is one of the world's oldest remaining exhibition pavilions.
You're now close to the Queen Victoria Market - known locally as 'Vic market' - where you can explore the hundreds of stalls selling everything from Melbourne mementos to mid-morning snacks. The Queen Victoria Market has been running for over 140 years and is a must-visit when in the market city of Melbourne.
Time for lunch. You'll find many places to grab a bite to eat along the cobbled thoroughfares of the Melbourne Laneways. You could spend all day sampling the arcades, as each oozes charm and explodes with colour and culture, but one of the closest to Queen Victoria Market is Tattersall Lane. Melbourne is heavily influenced by Asian culture and flavours, so while you're here, pop into Shanghai Dumpling House for massive portions and small prices. There's also Gaylord Indian Restaurant, a city favourite for Indian cuisine for over 30 years. You could even get a takeaway and then walk for ten more minutes to Hosier Lane, famous for its extensive street art. It's an area that's quintessentially Melbournian.
Home to major cultural attractions, world-class events, tourism experiences and an exceptional array of restaurants, bars and speciality stores, this modern piazza has become the heart and soul of Melbourne. Be sure to visit, even if you just take a seat on one of the numerous benches and watch the world go by.
Situated at Federation Square, the Australian Centre for Moving Images (ACMI) is a hub of imagination and creativity, celebrating cultural richness in film, television, art and digital culture. In its second decade, ACMI is an established centre of arts that's being internationally recognised.
Staying on Federation Square, next up is the Ian Potter Centre. Known as the home of Australian art, presenting indigenous and non-indigenous art from the colonial period to the present day, the Ian Potter Centre hosts an extensive collection from around the world. General entry to this art museum is free and it has over 20,000 Australian artworks, including paintings, sculptures, prints and more.
Time to head outside and hope that Melbourne's 'four seasons in one day' are on your side as you stroll through the Royal Botanic Gardens for a tranquil afternoon break. Situated on the south side of the Yarra River, the Royal Botanical Gardens span 89 acres of land with an impressive range of plants, algae and fungi. Melbourne's botanic garden is considered to have the most comprehensive botanical library. Within this beautiful space is the Shrine of Remembrance, a memorial commemorating the First World War.
One view to rival that from the Melbourne Star is the Eureka Skydeck at Eureka Tower, offering an unprecedented 360-degree view of the city. It offers stunning sunsets - from the highest vantage point in not just Melbourne but the whole southern hemisphere. For extra adrenaline, you can also step out onto 'The Edge' - a glass cube suspended from the 88th floor, 300 meters above Southbank.
Melbourne is not short of great eateries and the hardest decision will be choosing where to dine. Italian restaurant Scopri is voted number one on TripAdvisor, with its extensive menu of foods and wines. It offers own-grown vegetables and herbs, cultivated by their experienced chefs from their market garden.
Digest your meal with a walk along the Yarra River and marvel at the Gas Brigades, which send fireballs into the sky each night on the hour. The iconic Yarra River is home to many famous events, including dragon boat festivals, the Melbourne Festival and rowing regattas. The picnic-lined banks of the river make this a central hangout point for many Melbournians and a stunning night-time stroll under the stars as you head towards some bars for a drink.
Unpredictable weather aside, the residents of Melbourne love a rooftop bar, and with a skyline as beautiful as they have, it's easy to see why. Aptly named, Rooftop Bar on Swanston Street offers breathtaking views of the CBD, but for views of Saint Patrick's Cathedral and Parliament House, pay a visit to Siglo Bar.
Melbourne's bar scene is like something out of a lucid dream. If jet lag hasn't hit just yet, there are plenty of late-night bars and clubs calling your name. The Everleigh in Fitzroy is ideal to round off the night with a civilised cocktail, but if you're looking for somewhere to sing along to a jukebox blaring out Queen and Fleetwood Mac, Heartbreaker is for you. As the self-certified home of late night rock 'n' roll, this Melbourne institution is the stomping ground of many visitors sipping on a classic old-fashioned and letting down their hair.
GMT+10 (Oct to Apr - GMT+11)
UK nationals can stay for up to three months but must apply for a free visa before travel.
Australian dollar (A$ - currently around A$1.50 to the GBP)
Summer (Dec to Feb) reaches late 30s, winter (Jun to Aug) is sunny but chilly.
Flights from London to Melbourne take approximately 22 hours, but could increase significantly with a stoppover.