Explore Melbourne and Victoria
Melbourne is the capital city of Victoria, the second largest city in Australia. However, compared to other states and territories, Victoria is the second-smallest state in Australia. Melbourne is set around the shores of Port Phillip Bay. The City of Melbourne sits beside the Yarra River, around 5 kilometres from the Bay.
Melbourne is home to 4.1 million people from a wide range of cultural backgrounds (at June 2011).
This is approximately 73 per cent of the Victorian population. Melbourne's metropolitan areas cover more than 8000 square kilometres. The City of Melbourne covers the city centre and a number of inner-city suburbs. Each suburb has its own personality and character. Parkville Campus is the main campus of The University of Melbourne, located in Carlton, 1.7 kilometres north of the City of Melbourne.
Melbourne has many precincts. Each precinct has its own unique character and offers different cultural experiences. For example, you can experience Greek culture from the Greek Quarter around Lonsdale Street, Vietnamese on Victoria Street, Italian on Lygon Street, Chinese in Chinatown and French on Collins Street.
Where is the University located?
Two commercial sites that provide online street maps for Melbourne are:
- WhereIs (WhereIs provides UBD maps and also a 'directions' application.)
- StreetDirectory - Starting at Melbourne University
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Melbourne's weather is highly unpredictable and is known to occasionally provide 'four seasons in one day'. A range of clothing for all conditions is recommended for anyone planning to live in Melbourne. The following table provides the lowest, average and highest temperatures in Melbourne.
|Month||Lowest C||Average C
Source: Web Climate, Data Services, National Climate Centre
The University of Melbourne's School of Earth Sciences also provides live weather reports.
Melbourne's trams and light rail service give the city a distinctive character and provide a scenic way to explore the city and inner suburbs like Richmond, St Kilda and South Yarra. Travelling along most of Melbourne's major thoroughfares, trams run down the centre of the road, stopping at every CBD intersection and then every two or three blocks once in the suburbs.
Services run regularly from 5am until midnight Monday to Saturday and from 8am to 11pm Sundays. On weekends and public holidays, services are reduced. Many tram services link up to bus and train routes, so you can negotiate your way to most places in Melbourne within a short walk from a train, tram or bus.
Passengers can board trams at sign-posted stops on the side of the road and from central islands in the CBD. These spots often have a map with route numbers and times, the route number is displayed at the front of the tram. To catch a tram, signal to the driver with a raised hand and climb on board, either through the front, middle or rear doors. Although motorists are prohibited from passing trams that are stationary at stops, always look left to see if there are any vehicles approaching.
Commuters will need a myki (Melbourne's ticketing system) to use Melbourne's public transport system. Fares are based on duration and distance, with metropolitan Melbourne divided into two zones. When travelling on all public transport, make sure you have a valid ticket as roving ticket inspectors can fine. Further information can be obtained from Public Transport Victoria.
Food & Shopping
Melbourne is well known for the variety of cuisines it can offer. There are many places where you can buy various types of food. This includes supermarkets, specialty grocers, butchers and open air markets. Cafes, restaurants, food courts and convenience stores also operate across Melbourne.
There are also a variety of top-end department stores and designer or branded stores, discount department stores, retail and factory outlets around Melbourne.
You will find fresh fruit and vegetables, grains and pulses, meat, fish and poultry in supermarkets, specialty stores and in many fresh produce markets in Melbourne. Queen Victoria Market is one of the large and centrally located fresh produce markets, locally known as the Vic Market. Food and goods in the Vic Market are very competitively priced. The Market is open on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. There are also many other markets in Melbourne.
At the University
From the dazzling Ian Potter Museum of Art to symposiums on "Buffy the Vampire Slayer", the University of Melbourne fosters the complete arts experience. Visit the Arts at Melbourne for more information.
"A university should always be a forum for the debate of ideas. That's why each year, the University of Melbourne hosts around 200 public lectures and every day of each semester, faculties and departments offer seminars, symposiums, colloquiums and forums which are open to the public."
--Professor Glyn Davis AC, Vice-Chancellor
The Music Faculty presents regular concerts on campus during the academic year. The Victorian College of the Arts is a part of the University and has extensive programs in the performing and plastic arts. Performances and exhibitions from all study areas are regular events.
The Parkville campus hosts the Ian Potter Museum of Art, a significant public institution, and the George Paton Gallery, a space showing student works.
- Australian Open Tennis
- Australian Grand Prix
- Melbourne Food and Wine Festival
- Melbourne International Comedy Festival
- Melbourne International Flower and Garden Show
- Melbourne Fringe Festival
- Melbourne International Arts Festival
- Melbourne Cup Carnival
The City of Melbourne website supplies specific information about living in Melbourne and the community services provided.
Hugging the tip of the Australian east coast, Victoria is Australia's second-smallest state, covering 227,600 square kilometres - roughly the size of the British Isles. Packed into such a compact area is a wealth of diverse regional areas and attractions, from national parks and forests teeming with wildlife to wineries, lakes and mountains offering skiing, climbing and hiking.
Learn more about Victoria at Visit Victoria.