To visit Melbourne or not to include it

Nov 8th, 2009, 07:10 AM
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To visit Melbourne or not to include it

We are planning a trip to Australia & New Zealand & are trying to decide whether to include a stop in Melbourne. We very rarely see Melbourne as a destination on many tours we have looked at. Is it worth a stop & if so, would 3 days be the right amount of time.
donnap is offline  
Nov 8th, 2009, 07:45 AM
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More info, please. What time of year are you going? How long will you be in Australia? What are your interests?
longhorn55 is offline  
Nov 8th, 2009, 12:20 PM
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Agree your interests are an important consideration. We recently returned from a whirlwind 4 day Sydney, 4 day Melbourne and preferrred Melbourne over Sydney.
Neuman605 is offline  
Nov 10th, 2009, 05:14 AM
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Melbourne is a fantastic city--I definitely recommend a visit. Lots of neat neighborhoods, good museums, and it is really fun to watch an Australian Rules Football match there if you get the chance! We also went to Sydney and agree that Melbourne was more fun. More info and pics at
katrinab is offline  
Nov 10th, 2009, 09:07 AM
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I just returned from a week in Melbourne & I too prefer it to Sydney. W/ the river, parks, museums, restaurants, there's much to see & do. The city is very tourist friendly which makes it easy to get around. I will be back sooner than later!
LABruin is offline  
Dec 17th, 2009, 03:39 AM
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I think if you looking for a city with a good atmosphere then Melbourne is the go, i live in Melbourne and the city is so lively and is both the sporting capitol and food capitol of Aus
rhettski999 is offline  
Dec 17th, 2009, 04:51 PM
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Yes definitely include Melbourne. It is the happening city in Australia.
DownUnder is offline  
Dec 19th, 2009, 06:13 AM
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I will add a somewhat different opinion. To me, what makes Australia special is not the cities, but what's outside and in-between. With limited time, I'd stick with one major city and leave it at that. As it is truly one of the worlds most beautiful cities, Sydney usually tops the list for overseas travelers. If you are a connoisseur of city life, by all means visit Melbourne, otherwise I'd leave it out, particularly if time is limited.
RalphR is offline  
Dec 24th, 2009, 12:30 AM
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I live in Melbourne. We have great rivalry with our other great city Sydney and of course i will say Melbourne is the better., and that is because it, is not because I am biased.
Melbourne is very tourist friendly and so easy to get around. three days would give you only enough time to do the centre of the city such as Southbank and maybe two day trips say to the Dandenongs and Yarra Valley wineries as one and then another to the South western surf beaches and the great ocean road as the other.
jamesexton_1 is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 12:53 AM
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Where you stay in Melbourne will make or break the trip! If you stay in a suburb like South Yarra for example, you'll be surrounded by more cafes and restaurants than you can imagine. Whereas is you stay in another part of the city you'll be wondering why on earth you bothered with Melbourne.

The actually city part of Melbourne is pretty dead and ugly ( I am from Melbourne ) but the suburbs surrounding the city are where all the atmosphere is.

People say it's more European than Sydney. You can get delicious coffee in Melbourne whereas in Sydney they'd simply direct you to the nearest Gloria Jeans.

Sydney has the instant gratification like the Opera House and The Bridge , but Melbourne has the culture.

There are not as many big ticket tourist attractions in Melbourne, its more for people who love the cafe / arts lifestyle.

If you are into sport, Melbourne is the Mecca. Austalian Open Tennis, Formula One Grand Prix, The Melbourne Cricket Ground etc etc....

Melbourne is also a bit cheaper than Sydney too.
tony8028 is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 02:18 PM
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You're hanging out with the wrong Sydney crowd, Tony.

... and I think you're selling your own city centre short, too.
What about the interesting architecture, Yarra beside Federation Square & Southbank; beguiling little laneways with coffee & wine bars; Chinatown,the NGV & Ian Potter galleries, Princess Theatre and even Bourke Street Mall isn't THAT bad
Bokhara2 is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 05:47 PM
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A bit too much special pleading going on here, I think. Out of Sydney and Melbourne there is no "best" (or to be pedantic "better"), and the views of their respective residents and boosters are not the most reliable of guides.

Melbourne is a pleasant city that has a lot going for it, but Sydney's sheer physical beauty, attractions and energy cannot be discounted.

Statements like "Melbourne has the culture" may play well to established Melburnian mythology. But to dismiss Sydney, the home of such world-class institutions as the Australian Opera, the Australian Ballet, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Australian Brandenburg Orchestra, the Bell Shakespeare Company, not to mention the National Institute of Dramatic Art in such terms flies in the face of reality.

It's a bit like drawing comparisons between New York City and Boston; both are worth visiting, but if you can only see one, there's no contest.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 05:55 PM
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For the record, the Australian Ballet Centre is at Southbank Melbourne!
DownUnder is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 09:28 PM
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My mistake, DownUnder - sorry.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Dec 25th, 2009, 11:02 PM
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Neil_Oz, it depends what you are looking for I guess. I'd rather see a game of AFL at the MCG than Swan Lake at the Opera House so I guess there is no right or wrong here.

The only thing I will absolutely fight you tooth and nail over is that it's impossible to find a decent coffee in Sydney

I agree, Sydney has the postcard photo opportunities. It's a stunning city.
tony8028 is offline  
Dec 26th, 2009, 01:06 PM
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tony, I agree it's a case of horses for courses, and who am I to exclude a footie game from someone's definition of culture, but the perspectives of residents often won't align with those of visitors.

I might say that as a Canberran of 25 years' standing I'm an expert in having my home town slagged off, and I know there's little point in protesting that in livability terms we're a country mile ahead of most cities.
Neil_Oz is offline  
Dec 26th, 2009, 01:37 PM
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Hi Tony, I'm in Melbourne today - what's your top tip for a great coffee? CBD this morning, Brighton, Toorak Rd & Armadale later.

Better Christmas weather than Sydney this time
Bokhara2 is offline  
Dec 26th, 2009, 01:50 PM
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I think Ralph had the best "tip", apart from Sydney which is great get out and see what is between the cities. Personally I find Melbourne about as boring as a city can get, I find their brand of "culture" not to my taste and have only found a Simulcast from the Metropolitian Opera NYC anything to want to go and see. The weather is mostly dreadful, either too darn hot in summer or as cold as in winter. I like the people though and have many friends in Melbourne but prefer that they come and stay with me than the other way around. Sitting outside cafe's, drinking latte's and breathing in car exhaust fumes is not my ideal way to spend a day and I would rather be out and about in the countryside and making my way through Nature's treatures and cultures than trying to hear myself think on some pavement in some " now trendy" but what was once " a shitty suburb's" shopping precinct.
ivenotbeeneverywhere is offline  
Dec 26th, 2009, 02:00 PM
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Hi Bokhara2

This would be my first suggestion!

581 Chapel St
South Yarra VIC 3141
(03) 9827 4139

I have not been there for a few years but they are famous for their great coffee and amazing Italian Food.

You'll find great cafes all along that Chapel Street.

Have fun!
tony8028 is offline  
Dec 26th, 2009, 02:03 PM
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ivenotbeeneverywhere, there weather here in Sydney today is dreadful while they are enjoying perfect Sunshine in Melbourne today. FYI.
tony8028 is offline  

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