Things to do in Melbourne

Itineraries for Your Trip to Melbourne

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3 Days in Melbourne for Foodies

Curated by David Johnstonborn and raised in Melbourne and thus cursed with high coffee expectations.

When traveling, I’m often asked about Australian food. It’s hard to describe because ultimately Australian cuisine is a mix of influences from the country’s migrant communities and its colonial background. When I was growing up in Melbourne, Chinese, Italian, and Greek cuisines were prominent. Naturally, that has changed over the years with the city.

There’s good news and bad news for travelers, then, when it comes to exploring restaurants in Melbourne. The bad news is that there’s really no strict list of must-eat Australian dishes. The good news is that this gives you the freedom to explore Melbourne’s inscrutable food culture however you like, using this Melbourne foodie itinerary to nudge you in the right direction.

Prepare for anything with Melbourne weather, as it famously changes throughout the day.

If you only have time for one thing, make it coffee or brunch at an inner suburbs café.

Day 1

Melburnians love their coffee, so it’s only right to start by exploring the city’s café scene. The central business district of Melbourne offers an easy introduction into Melbourne’s coffee culture thanks to the volume of options found along the city’s laneways, particularly along Little Collins Street.

From there, it’s time to hit up the Queen Victoria Market, the largest market in Australia. This sprawling historic market features countless food stalls that reflect Australia’s broad multicultural culinary influences. However, dim sims—a dumpling-like snack with meat and vegetables inside—are a not-to-miss Melbourne snack.

Day 2

A surefire way to see Melbourne like a local is to explore beyond the CBD and visit the inner suburbs of Fitzroy, Cartlon, and North Melbourne. Head out by tram to a local café for a flat white and some “smashed avo” on toast—my personal favorites are Fitz Cafe and Auction Rooms.

Before an evening exploring the CBD’s laneway bars and nightlife precincts of Fitzroy and Prahran, fill up in Chinatown. Occupying Little Bourke Street in the CBD, Melbourne’s Chinatown is almost as old as the city. Empress of China is a no-frills pick when you want dumplings.

Day 3

Chapel Street may be best known as a Melbourne shopping street lined with boutiques, but it’s also heaven for foodies thanks to its wealth of options. In particular, don’t miss the Prahran Market (just off Chapel Street), with its trendy eateries and specialty foods.

While the Yarra Valley may put Melbourne on the map in the world of wine, waves of micro breweries have been popping up in the suburbs to create a booming beer scene. Journey out by train or tram to Collingwood and Richmond, and you’ll have your pick of craft breweries to try.

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