Are you planning to visit Melbourne? Melbourne was our home town for two years and we thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. We know you will too! Since living in Melbourne we have returned many times and have fallen in love with it over and over again. Why do we love it so much? We love the lanes, the coffee, the variety of cuisines, street art, Southbank, the Botanical Gardens and the beach at St. Kilda. There are so many things to do in Melbourne, our tip is to spend as much time as you can there.
So that you too can enjoy Melbourne to its fullest we have put together a 5 day Melbourne Trip Planner. This is the trip planner that we recommend to our friends and family.
There is a rivalry between Melbournians and Sydneysiders both believe they live in a better city for sport, architecture, coffee, cuisine and cost of living. Melbourne has won the award for the most liveable city 7 times between 2011 and 2017. Sydney also appears regularly in the top 10 list of cities. Do you have a favourite?
You can spend 2 days in Melbourne or even 3 days in Melbourne but you won’t be able to cover all the top Melbourne attractions that are worth seeing. Our 5 day Melbourne trip planner can be used if you can only spend 2, 3 or 4 days in Melbourne too! Just choose one of the days itineraries that suit where you are staying in Melbourne or what you want to do.
This post may contain affiliate links. Please see our disclosure for more information.
Transport from Melbourne’s Two Airports
Melbourne has two airports – Tullamarine Airport and Avalon Airport.
Avalon Airport is located 53.5 km from Melbourne’s CBD with an average driving time of 45 minutes.
Jetstar flys into Avalon Airport from Sydney, Adelaide and the Gold Coast.
You can pre-book a private transfer here from Avalon Airport to Melbourne’s CBD
You can pre-purchase online with Skybus their $24 tickets from Avalon Airport to Melbourne CBD here
Tullamarine Airport is located 23 km from Melbourne’s CBD with an average driving time of 20 – 35 minutes.
All Australian Domestic carriers e.g. Qantas, Virgin, Rex, Air North, Jetstar and Alliance Airlines fly into Tullamarine Airport.
Domestic Terminal 1 – Qantas
Domestic Terminal 3 – Virgin
Domestic Terminal 4 – Rex, Air North, Jetstar and Alliance Airlines
Transport from Tullamarine Airport to Melbourne’s CBD
Skybus tickets from Tullamarine Airport to City Centre – check here
Skybus tickets from Tullamarine Airport to Southbank or Docklands – check here
Skybus tickets from Tullamarine Airport to St Kilda – check here
Uber is available from both airports and can range between $45 – $100 depending on which airport, the time of day and whereabouts you are heading to.
You can pre-book an airport or hotel transfer to and from Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport.
Melbourne’s Free City tram
Click here for the map of Melbourne’s Free CBD City tram. You don’t need a myki card (Melbourne’s transport card) to use the Free City tram. You do not need to tap on and tap off if you stay within the travel limit of the card.
Melbourne’s MYKI Card
For full details on Melbourne’s myki card, the zones, prices, where to buy them from and more – click here
Melbourne Flexi Attraction Pass
- Choose from 25 Melbourne attractions
- Create your own itinerary
- SAVE with a single pass
- Pre-paid entry (no queues!)
- Visit Melbourne’s top attractions
- Melbourne Zoo, Melbourne Aquarium + more!
Melbourne in 5 days Itinerary
Day One – Melbourne’s CBD
Start Day 1 with breakfast and coffee in the Lane’s of Melbourne. Head to Centre Place, off Flinders Lane, a firm favourite of ours. Some of the other lanes to explore are AC/DC Lane – if you are thinking of the rock group you are correct, it was named after the band in 2004. Wander down Tattersalls Lane, Postal Lane and Market Lne.
Try Jungle Juice at 20 Centre Place for the freshest juices and yummy bagels and the best Vietnamese iced coffee.
If you can’t get into Jungle Juice try Cafe Vicolino at #17 Centre Place. Eggs Benedict is a firm favourite here as well as the Deluxe Toastie and the coffee.
After breakfast wander down the bluestone Hosier Lane for some of Melbourne’s best street art.
“This original street art tour takes you on a journey of Melbourne’s famous street art laneways as well as venturing off the beaten track to discover the CBD’s hidden treasures. Learn all about the artists and stories behind the artworks from artists directly involved in the scene. The tour finishes at the famous Blender Studios where you will be treated to an exclusive studio tour and be able to meet the artists and see them at work in our huge art studio warehouse. A gourmet selection of market-fresh produce, beer, wine and soft drinks are provided as you wander through this incredible space. The tour route will be modified and updated regularly, considering the ever-changing nature of Street Art.”
As your tour ends in Federation Square this is a good opportunity to enjoy its many cafes and bars and its galleries and local exhibitions
Check out what’s on at Federation Square here. You may have to swap some of our itinerary ideas around if there is an exhibition on that you want to see here.
Opposite Federation Square is Flinders Street Station. It is Australia’s oldest Railway Station that opened on the 12th of September 1854. It services Melbourne’s metropolitan train services and some country services to Eastern Victoria.
In the evening head to Melbourne’s Chinatown just a 12 minue walk from Flinders Street Station. Melbourne’s Chinatown dates back to the days of Victoria’s gold rush and it is reputed to be the Southern Hemisphere’s oldest Chinatown. Start your visit to Chinatown at Little Bourke Street.
Day Two – Melbourne’s CBD
Balloon Flight Over Melbourne at Sunrise
Imagine soaring over the Melbourne skyline at dawn for an hour. The highlights are the MCG, Shrine of Remembrance, Botanical Gardens, St Paul’s Cathedral and more.
Have you experienced a hot-air balloon ride yet?
Visit Queen Victoria Market, the largest open-air market in the Southern hemisphere which is spread over 7 hectares.
Address: Queen Street Melbourne
How to get to Queen Victoria Market:
Yarra trams 19, 57, 58 and 59 stop right outside the market.
Walk north along Elizabeth Street or William Street.
Parking is available at the Open Air Car Park accessible via Queen St, and our the Undercover Car Park accessible via Queen St.
Tuesday, Thursday and Friday – 06.00 to 15.00
Saturday: 06.00 to 16.00
Sunday 09.00 – 16.00
What to do at Queen Victora Market:
If you did not take the early morning hot air balloon ride have breakfast at Market Espresso on the corner of String Bean Alley and Queen Street.
Wander the meat and fish hall, the dairy produce hall, the fruit and vegetable halls, shop for gifts and homewares, fashion, jewellery and skincare, books, art and much much more. Allow at least 3 hours to see it all!
Queen Victoria Market Foodie Tour
Get a real taste of Melbourne on this 2-hour walking tour of the famous Queen Victoria Market, which dates back to the 19th-century. With a small group of no more than 12 people per guide, you’ll enjoy a personalised experience with your local guide, as you browse the myriad stalls and mingle with the locals.
Enjoy tastings of delicious seasonal delicacies (included). The tasting will depend on what is fresh on the day, but typically include Coffin Bay Oysters, grilled peppered kangaroo, pickled octopus, local goats’ milk cheese, fresh dolmades and Victorian olives. Your tour ends with a famous hot jam doughnut from the iconic American Doughnut Kitchen.
2-hour walking tour of Queen Victoria Market Learn about Melbourne’s historical market and meet some of its vendors with an experienced local guide Taste local favourites like the grilled peppered kangaroo, oysters, goat cheese, fresh dolmades and Victorian olives. Receive hints on selecting the best seasonal produce Food tastings, a Queen Victoria Market shopping bag and a glass of Victorian wine are included Small-group tour limited to 12 for a personalized experience
Old Melbourne Gaol
Address: 377 Russell Street Melbourne
You can visit the Old Melbourne Gaol with the iVenture card which saves you up to 40% off entry to 25 of Melbourne’s top attractions.
Old Melbourne Gaol was built during 1852 – 1854. It held one of Australia’s most famous bushranger – Ned Kelly, who was hung there on 11/11/1880. His amour and death mask is on display in the Gaol. 136 executions tooks place in the gaol. The first woman, Elizabeth Scott, was hung on 11/11/1863.
You can catch the free City tram to Old Melbourne Gaol – Tram 33 stop 7.
Open every day except Christmas Day and Good Friday from 9.30 am to 5.00 pm.
State Library of Victoria
Address: 328 Swanston Street Melbourne – a 3 minute walk from Old Melbourne Gaol
Open daily from 10.00 am to 6.00 pm.
It is Australia’s oldest public library constructed in 1854.
Parliament House Melbourne
Address: Spring Street Melbourne . 20-minute walk from State Library
There are free tours available when Parliament is not sitting. They run for 45 minutes and are at various times of the day.
Address: 2 – 18 Spring Street. 6-minute walk from Parliament House.
Treasury Gardens date back to the mid 19th century and is one of Victoria’s oldest public gardens.
The Gardens include a Robert Burns memorial; an ornamental pond with a monument to President John F Kennedy; a memorial statue of Sir William Clarke; and a large embankment dotted with statues of Victorian politicians.
Address: Wellington Parade, East Melbourne – a 4-minute walk from Treasury Gardens
Fitzroy Gardens is home to Captain Cooks Cottage which was built in 1755 and is Australia’s oldest building. The cottage was built by Captains Cook parents in Yorkshire England and was transported to Melbourne, brick by brick, in 1934.
St Pauls Cathedral
Address: Flinders Street Melbourne – a 12-minute walk from Fitzroy Gardens
St Paul’s Cathedral was built from 1880 to 1931 in early English and decorative Gothic style.
For dinner on Day 2 you can head back to the Lanes.
Some recommendations for dinner:
Down Hosier Lane you will find MoVida – Melbourne’s best Spanish restaurant
For modern Indian head to Tonka off Flinders Lane at Duckboard Place
For the best dumplings in town head to Shangdong Mama Mini at 5 Centre Place
Day 3 – Southbank and South Wharf
The best place for breakfast at Southbank is in The Bond Store at 1 Riverside Quay. The Bond Store opens at 7.00 am. Our favourite is the smashed avo with poached eggs.
The Bond Store is located close to the Skydeck which we recommend as your first thing to do on Day 3.
Highest Southern Hemisphere views in the centre of Melbourne. If you are game enough purchase the optional Edge Experience where you are projected 3 metres outside the building in a glass box.
The Skydeck takes you to one of the most scenic vantage points available in the country to gaze out over the scenery of Victoria’s culturally and historically rich capital, with an impressive panorama visible in every direction.
The Skydeck is closed on Monday and Tuesdays. From Wednesday to Sunday it is open from 12.00 pm to 10.00pm, last entry 9.30pm.
The best time to visit is jut before sunset!
Address: 7 Riverside Quay Melbourne
Take a Cruise on Melbourne’s Yarra River
Cruise Melbourne’s Yarra River for 2 hours viewing some of Melbourne’s major attractions such as:
- Southgate Leisure precinct
- Polly Woodside 19th century sailing ship
- Shipping channels and dock area
- Westgate Bridge
- Royal Botanic Gardens
- Melbourne Olympic Park
- and more
Departure Point: Southbank Promenade Berth 2
Departure timings: Choose your departure time when bookings as times vary depending on tidal and weather conditions