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Budget Melbourne

Destination(s): Melbourne

There is a cheap yet fun (not to mention delicious) way to experience Melbourne. You might have to give taxis and five star accommodation the flick, but there’s no better way to really get a feel for a city than by exploring on foot, bike and public transport. Lucky for the frugal amongst us that Melbourne’s best culinary experiences aren’t necessarily to be found in the glitz of a table cloth and fine china. Family run bakeries and hole-in-the-wall kitchens are where the real flavors of this city mix it up. Same goes for the contemporary art scene; local hipsters with less money than you run a plethora of free galleries all over the city for your cultural fix. So put your wallet away and get yourself a tram ticket, Melbourne is an easy place to be with your short on cash. read more about Budget Melbourne

City Circle Tram

City Circle Tram

  • Various Locations
  • tel:+61 (03) 9619 2727
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000

The free city circle tram is a hop on hop off service that runs every twelve minutes past tourist attractions from the old (Parliament House) to the new (Docklands prescient) within Melbourne's CBD. There is an audio description of attractions as people past them, offering a better understanding. The W-Class trams themselves are historic and culturally iconic to Melbourne derived from the 1920's era. They rattle and a quiet bumpy but that is all part of the experience. Many locals also choose to go on it as a cost effective way of getting around the city. read more about City Circle Tram

Main Yarra Trail Bike Path

Main Yarra Trail Bike Path

  • Mullum Mullum Creek
  • tel:+61 3 9533 8030
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
St Kilda Esplanade Market

St Kilda Esplanade Market

  • The Esplanade
  • (St Kilda)
  • tel:+61 (0) 39 534 0066
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3182
Met Shop (The)

Met Shop (The)

  • 103 Elizabeth Street
  • tel:13 16 38 (Local calls only: Met Transport Information Centre)
  • Melbourne, 3000
Yarra River

Yarra River

Bala's

Bala's

  • 1E Shakespeare Grove
  • St Kilda
  • tel:61 3 9534 6116
  • Melbourne, 3182
State Library of Victoria

State Library of Victoria

  • 328 Swanston Street
  • tel:+61 (0)3 9669 9888 / +61 (0)3 9669 9810
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000

Sitting proudly in the heart of Melbourne's Central Business District (CBD), the State Library of Victoria maintains a grandeur presence. Sprawling green lawn leads up to the grand example of 19th-century civic architecture, the mighty pillars and steps demanding a sense of knowledge and authority.

As the primary reference and research library in Victoria, the State Library is one of the oldest cultural institutions in Melbourne. With a focus on life-long learning, the State Library offers a wide range of educational lectures, seminars and exhibitions to keep the community engaged.

Don't fancy studying on your holiday? The design is worth the visit alone, the stunning La Trobe Reading Room will get you smarter by osmosis. The octagonal room houses balconies of journals, books and reference materials climbing the white walls to the glass ceiling.

Don't forget to pop into Mr Tulk Café on the La Trobe side of the building. This place makes books seem cool, and the café fare is so delectable locals come just for the coffee. Sleek and modern, the refurbished design bridges the gap between old and new, the massive arched windows permitting daylong sunshine to poor into the dark interior. read more about State Library of Victoria

Collingwood Children's Farm

Collingwood Children's Farm

  • St Helliers Street
  • Abbotsford
  • tel:+61 3 9417 5806
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3067
St. Kilda Beach

St. Kilda Beach

  • Jacka Boulevard
  • St. Kilda
  • tel:+61 3 9658 9658 (Melbourne Visitor Centre)
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3182
RMIT Gallery

RMIT Gallery

  • 344 Swanston Street
  • RMIT Storey Hall
  • tel:+61 3 9925 1717
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Royal Botanic Gardens (Melbourne)

Royal Botanic Gardens (Melbourne)

  • Birdwood Avenue
  • South Yarra
  • tel:+61 3 9252 2300
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3141
The Lucky Coq

The Lucky Coq

  • 179 Chapel Street
  • Windsor
  • tel:61 3 9525 1288
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3181
West Space

West Space

  • Level 1
  • 15 - 19 Anthony Street
  • tel:+61 3 9328 8712
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000

One of Melbourne's most prolific artist run initiatives, West Space exhibits challenging and innovative contemporary art on par with the Big Boys. Founded in 1993, West Space epitomises the throb of Melbourne's underground art scene, encouraging dialogue between the public and artists, and of course, free booze at exhibition openings.

Hidden in the Central Business District (CBD), West Space is well worth seeking out. The engaging program covers all things contemporary with collaborations that blur boundaries of traditional art practice. read more about West Space

Cookie

Cookie

  • 252 Swanston St
  • CBD
  • tel:03 9663 7660
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Horse Bazaar

Horse Bazaar

  • 397 Little Lonsdale Street
  • Between Queen Street and Elizabeth Street near the corner of Hardware Street
  • tel:61 3 9670 2329
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Blindside

Blindside

  • 37 Swanston Street
  • Room 14, Level 7, Nicholas Building
  • tel:+61 3 9650 0093
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Pellegrini's

Pellegrini's

  • 66 Bourke St
  • Melbourne CBD
  • tel:61 03 9662 1885
  • Melboune, 3000
Chinatown

Chinatown

  • Little Bourke Street
  • (Between Swanston and Russell streets)
  • tel:+61 (0)39 658 9658 (Visitor Information Centre)
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000

For something that's Chinese, there's nothing foreign about Melbourne's Chinatown.

Carving the centre of Melbourne's Central Business District (CBD) in the top end of Little Bourke Street, Chinatown is a bustle with restaurants, shops and a mixture of delicious aromas with at times, rather unsavoury wafts from back alleys. But we're talking Melbourne where smelly alleyways boast some of the coolest hole-in-the-wall bars, so best look for the giant dragon gates and jump on board the orient express.

Whether its Yum-Cha at the Shark Fin Inn or some Placenta face-cream from one of the many beauty shops, Chinatown is mostly hit up by Melbourne's hipsters for cheap and fast dumplings. David and Camy is an institution on Thursday nights for bright young things in tight denim, flannel and neon lipstick, fresh from the latest exhibition opening and hungry for some pork dumplings at below reasonable prices.

A maze of shops of things you didn't know you needed awaits and you'll feel strange air of shopper's delight and remorse when you leave with a giant cat shaped lamp under your arm.

Look up from street level windows of slightly depressed crayfish to reveal a plethora of karaoke joints ready to take advantage of one too many Tsingtao.

Visit on Thursday nights to see Melbourne's Movers & Shakers play, or any night on the weekend when the pretty waitresses attempt to lure you in by screaming the menu as you pass by, but always with a smile. read more about Chinatown

Shark Fin House

Shark Fin House

  • 131-135 Little Bourke Street
  • tel:61 03 9663 1555
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3000
Meyers Place Bar

Meyers Place Bar

  • 20 Meyers Place
  • tel:61 3 9650 8609
  • Melbourne, 3000
Gaylord Indian Restaurant

Gaylord Indian Restaurant

  • 4 Tattersalls Lane (off Little Bourke Street)
  • tel:61 03 9663 3980
  • Melbourne, 3000
Nunnery (The)

Nunnery (The)

  • 116 Nicholson Street
  • Fitzroy
  • tel:+61 (0)3 9419 8637
  • Visit website
  • Melbourne, 3065

This former boarding house which was once operated by nuns to house catholic ladies, is now one of the most popular hostels in the bohemian suburb of Fitzroy. Due to its incredible location, directly opposite the Carlton Gardens, Exhibition Building and Melbourne Museum, it is also popular with tourists, who want to be in the thick of the action. There are two sections of the Nunnery, the budget area which has dorms and simple doubles on offer, and the guesthouse which resembles the standard of an elegant bed and breakfast. There is a comfy communal lounge room that is ideal for meeting other travelers on your stay. read more about Nunnery (The)