6 Must-See Melbourne Neighborhoods & How to Visit
From the CBD’s lanes to Docklands’ sleek architecture, from St Kilda’s golden sands to Fitzroy’s bohemian edge, a wealth of individual neighborhoods (suburbs) give Australia’s second city its diverse charm. Here are six Melbourne districts every traveler needs to know.
Melbourne’s Central Business District (CBD) is the city center. It runs roughly between Flinders Street and Victoria Market, bordered by Spring Street and Spencer Street. Besides architectural landmarks such as modernist Federation Square and art nouveau Flinders Street Station, head here for Melbourne’s famous lanes, including Hosier Lane and AC/DC Lane. Many Melbourne food tours and walking tours center on the CBD.
An enclave within the CBD, Melbourne’s Chinatown has a history dating back to the 1850s, when a gold rush brought settlers from around the world. Besides vintage architecture, shops, and a museum, food is the focus here.
Like London’s South Bank, Melbourne’s Southbank lies south of the river from the CBD. Hotels, the Eureka Skydeck skyscraper, and art galleries, including the National Gallery of Victoria, adorn the sculpted skyline here.
A hip, bohemian central suburb, Fitzroy sits northeast of the CBD. Head here for boutiques, cafés, street art, restaurants, indie galleries, and cool cocktail bars, attractively intermingled with heritage terrace houses.
Following a touch-up, Melbourne’s old port area, west of the CBD, is home to public art, waterfront dining, and the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel, not to mention cruises and kayaking.
Just 4 miles (6 kilometers) south of the CBD, the beachfront suburb of St Kilda is where Melbourne goes to chill. Besides laid-back pubs and water sports including stand-up paddleboarding, it’s home to historic amusement center Luna Park.