Welcome to Melbourne
Modern architecture and design is juxtaposed with heritage buildings, reflecting Australia's cultural history, making Melbourne a wonderful city to explore. Beneath the city's impressive facade, lies its true heart and soul; laneways wend their way through the city grid to reveal cafes and bars, fashion houses, boutiques, innovative cuisine, galleries, theatres and museums.
Your host city
Located on the east coast of Australia, Melbourne is the second largest city in Australia with an estimated 4.1 million people living in the greater metropolitan area.
Melbourne offers a cosmopolitan lifestyle, wonderful shopping and world class entertainment. It has a lively passion for social eating and drinking, which is reflected in the thousands of restaurants serving up gastronomic experiences from around the world. Renowned as the coffee capital of Australia, everywhere you look you will uncover a vast array of fashionable cafes where you can enjoy the cafe culture to the fullest.
Click on the photograph below to fly high above the University of Melbourne’s beautiful Parkville campus.
By: Lensaloft Aerial Photography. Australian photographer Andrew Griffiths and a team of dedicated pilots specialising in aerial photography.
Before you arrive
Download a range of brochures and maps
Visit the City of Melbourne's website for more information.
View travel tips for visiting Melbourne
Once you are here
The main Visitor Information Centre is located at:
Melbourne Town Hall, Swanston Street
Phone: 1800 637 763 or visit www.visitvictoria.com
Climate and clothing
With its variable climate, Melbourne is cool in winter (June to August), with temperatures averaging 16C during the day and 5C at night. It is recommended that visitors bring clothing suitable for cool days and cold nights. See the Australian Bureau of Meteorology website (www.bom.gov.au) for further information.
Melbourne is a multi-cultural city and has a wide range of cuisine available throughout its many restaurants.
Most shops in Melbourne are generally open from 0900 to 1700, Saturday to Wednesday and 0900 to 2100 Thursday and Friday. In all stores and shopping centres major credit cards are accepted and tax-free shopping is possible within the city. Walking is the best way to shop, especially along Melbourne's arcades and laneways.
Outside the city centre, visit shopping precincts such as Chapel Street in South Yarra, Acland Street in St Kilda and Brunswick Street in Fitzroy, especially on weekends. Here you'll find everything from retro home wares to funky shops selling cult-in-the-making jewellery. These strips also have many street cafes. Travelling between Melbournes suburbs is best done by public transport.
Decimal currency is used in Australia (AUD) and currency units are dollars and cents. Current exchange rates can be obtained from your bank. All major credit cards are widely accepted in Australia
Banks in Australia are open from 0930 to 1600 Monday to Thursday and 0930 to 1700 on Fridays. Most banks are closed on weekends; however, some banks in major cities open for limited hours on Saturday. Currency exchange facilities are available at the airport and most major hotels and city banks and bureaux de change. Automatic teller machines (ATMs) are available at a wide variety of outlets, including the Congress site, and in most city streets.
Electrical current is 240/250V, AC 50Hz. The Australian flat three-pin power outlet is different from that in many countries, so you will need an adaptor. If your appliances are 110V, check if there is a 110/240V switch. If not, you will need a voltage converter. Universal outlets for 240V or 110V shavers are usually found in leading hotels.
Australia is free from many plant and animal diseases prevalent in other countries. Very strict quarantine rules apply to the importation of animals and plant products and many cannot be brought into the country without prior application.
To have a smooth transition through quarantine and to enjoy your visit in Australia, it is important that you understand Australia’s quarantine regulations.
Visit https://www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/passports-and-travel/customs-and-quarantine for more information.
Smoking of tobacco products is banned on public transport and in all publicly accessible buildings, including hotels, restaurants, and theatres.
A Goods and Services Tax (GST) of 10% applies to all consumer goods, and is included in retail prices. The rate of tax that applies to taxable products and services is 10%. Tax is already included in the advertised prices. Non-Australian visitors may be eligible for a refund of GST via the Tourist Refund Scheme.
Service charges are not added to accounts by hotels and restaurants. You may tip taxi drivers, hotel porters and restaurant wait-staff (up to 10% of the bill) if you wish to acknowledge exceptional service. At any time, tipping is your choice.
Travel and health insurance
We strongly recommend that you take out insurance policies to cover medical and travel expenses. If necessary, consult your travel agent.