When my husband and I started planning our Australian adventure, we reached out to all of our friends who traveled there seeking insider information. Melbourne was mentioned by our friends over and over again. To be honest, I really wasn’t interested in Melbourne; I was interested in Sydney. As I was researching, I came across an art festival that happens once a year that draws crowds similar to NYE. This immediately grabbed my attention. It seemed to make sense for us to start our Australian journey in Melbourne to attend this fest and then work our way up the coast. As it turns out, we fell in love with Melbourne just like our friends said we would.
First things first… you pronounce Melbourne – Mel burn. I got called out by a bartender who said… “And how long have you been here? You’re still calling it Melbourne.” Haha. Can we say embarrassing?! OMG. Ok, so now that we are all saying it correctly I can proceed with my post. 🙂
Where to Stay
Sheraton Melbourne Hotel – Remember my post on why you should get the Marriott Credit Card? I finally booked an SPG hotel! We have equivalent SPG status to our Marriott Platinum status now. (Link your accounts!!) This hotel did not have an executive lounge. In lieu of this, we were offered 500 SPG points or complimentary breakfast for two daily. We opted for the breakfast. The value of the breakfast we received was $80 AUD/day or $320 total! I’d say that’s pretty good for just simply linking our accounts! The location of our hotel was perfect too. We seemed to be within walking distance of everything!
What to Do
There are SO many fun things to do in this city. Typically, I list them in this section and write a little blurp. I’m not going to do that this time. I’m going to write a dedicated blog post to each activity because they were really that incredible and deserve full write-ups. Get excited to hear posts about:
- White Night Melbourne (only happens once a year!)
- Phillip Island Penguin Parade and Wine Tasting Day Trip
- Tour of Melbourne City
- Great Ocean Road Tour
We also gambled a little bit at the Crown Melbourne, which is the largest casino complex in the Southern Hemisphere.
Funny story: I love to play blackjack. My husband and I sat down to play a game at this casino and all the sudden random people flocked to our table and started backing our bets! It was literally the most bizarre thing ever. Obviously, I started sweating because now I’m responsible for other people’s money?!?! What the heck?! No one was playing any hands! They were all just betting on our two hands. THEN, there were these funky side bets that they would place on our cards too. If we got two of a kind, they would win 5 to 1. It was honestly pure insanity and way too stressful for my liking.
Where to Eat
Melbourne is LOADED with amazing places to eat. There isn’t even any point to me making suggestions because there are that many. However, there was this one restaurant that stood out a little more and was suggested to me by my high school friend. (Thanks, Kristin!)
Kristin up and moved to Melbourne and is writing a blog about being an Aussie for a Year. I’d say she’s kind of a local now.
Chin Chin & GoGo – This is a trendy Asian restaurant that doesn’t take reservations, so be prepared to wait. We decided to do the Feed Me option for $69.50 AUD pp. We were served seven items off of their menu and estimate the value being about $100 AUD pp. It was a pretty good deal. We loved every dish that came out, but my personal favorite was the Corn & Coriander Fritters.
I absolutely cannot wait to write about all the fun things we did during our stay in Melbourne. Get excited!!! And don’t hate me if you end up booking a flight to Australia… you’ll probably want to after you see my photos.