Many Europeans feel immediately at home in Melbourne. It has a European feel with its river, cobbled laneways, markets, cafes and boutiques. See Degraves Street or Collins Street for the shopping arcades then head to the massive open-air Queen Victoria Markets for a real local experience. The South Melbourne Market is a great place to go and watch people as you eat.
The city is considered to be Australia’s sporting capital and you should take the opportunity to join the crowds at Melbourne Cricket Ground, catch a match in the Australian Football League (March-September), or cheer at the Melbourne Cup. The Grand Prix also comes here if you like to watch cars go round and round.
Arts and culture are big in Melbourne. The National Gallery of Victoria is the country’s oldest gallery (1861) and has a collection of 70,000 works. At the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, you can discover the secrets of cinema and TV, while the Heide Museum of Modern Art at Bulleen showcases Australian art. More culture? Try the many theatres or live music venues, such as Bird's Basement jazz club.
It’s also worth remembering that Melbourne is a staging post for the Great Ocean Road: one of the world’s most spectacular coastal drives and a journey you’ll remember forever. See some shows, watch some sports, eat some good food . . . then hit the open road for adventure.