Travelling teaches you to really appreciate what you have on your own doorstep. Melbourne is my home city, I grew up here and I am bringing up my own children here. The city has so much to offer, so I’m not surprised it keeps winning the title of the “World’s Most Liveable City”. Here are my tips for a great day out in Melbourne with kids.
- Transport: Avoid the gridlock and park just outside of the CBD. From there, use our world famous trams to get around. My kids love doing this, it’s such a novelty and it saves lots of money. We come from the south, so always park at the great value Arts Centre Melbourne carpark.
- National Gallery Victoria (NGV): Our first stop is usually the NGV in Melbourne’s Arts Precinct. Right from the outset my children are entertained, with the iconic water wall at the entrance exciting kids for generations. Once inside, there are always different kids’ exhibitions, but they get a kick out of looking up at the stained glass roof. The best part is it’s all free!
- Arts Centre Melbourne: Still in the Arts Precinct on St Kilda Road, the Arts Centre Melbourne often hosts fantastic children’s shows. It’s best to book in advance. Also at the Arts Centre is The Barre, a great bar with a fantastic outdoor area for kids to run around while the parents relax.
- Federation Square: We like to wander over the road to Fed Square as it’s always a hub of activity. This area hosts many festivals and events throughout the year, most of which have free entertainment and activities.
- Australian Centre for the Moving Images (ACMI): The ACMI is towards the back of Fed Square and has lots of free interactive displays to join in.
- Street Art: Over the road is Hosier Lane, home to Melbourne’s famous Street Art. Explore the ever-changing laneway, which is one of the most photographed locations in Melbourne. Other great locations nearby are AC/DC Lane, Duckboard Place and Rutledge Lane.
- Lunch outside: If the weather is agreeable, my kids love having a picnic lunch in the beautiful Royal Botanic Gardens or sitting at café along Southbank watching the buskers and boats on the Yarra River.
- Melbourne’s History: There are a couple of fantastic options to learn about Melbourne’s diverse history. A trip to the Immigration Museum is a great way to teach kids about their heritage and the many cultures that make up this amazing city. There is also the Old Melbourne Gaol that gives an interactive walk through the city’s darker side.
- Melbourne Aquarium: The Melbourne Aquarium is a great way to spend a few hours, especially if the weather isn’t suitable for outdoor activities. Melbourne often has four seasons in one day!
- City Circle Tram: I have only scratched the surface of what Melbourne has on offer. To take in a lot of the city sites without pushing or dragging your children along, you could jump on the free and iconic City Circle Tram. Note that the tram route will link up all of the locations on my list.
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