Cheap Flights to Melbourne
- Area : 9,990.5 km² (3,875.4 sq mi)
- Calling Code : +61 3
- Currency : Australian Dollar (AU$)
- Population (2015) : 4,529,500
- Official Language : English
- Time Zone : AEST (UTC+10) / Summer AEDT (UTC+11)
- Airport’s : Melbourne Airport, Avalon Airport, Essendon Airport & Moorabbin Airport
Travellers visiting Melbourne have a number of great airlines to fly with, choosing either their favourite airline or opting for a great cheap flight with another carrier. Register for our newsletter and you will receive updates on cheap flights to Melbourne from South Africa as they are released to us.
Airlines landing at Melbourne International are:
- Air Mauritius
- Air New Zealand
- Cathay Pacific
- Air China
- Virgin Australia
Reasons to Visit Melbourne
- Capital to the state of Victoria, Melbourne is its most densely inhabited city and second most populated city in Australia and Oceania. The city is highly rated for education, health care, research and development, tourism, entertainment and sport affording it, for the fifth consecutive year in 2015, the ranking of the world’s most liveable city by the Economist Intelligence Unit. Additionally within the Asia-Pacific region, its’ a top financial centre and is listed among the top 30 cities globally in the Global Financial Centres Index. A primary centre for music, theatre and street art, Melbourne received recognition as a UNESCO City of Literature and is home to various cultural institutions, some the oldest and largest in Australia.
- Melbourne has it all, making it the perfect holiday destination with ideal weather, splendid beaches, arresting parks and gardens, rivers, mountains, wildlife and thrilling outdoor adventure sports. There’s a fabulous choice of museums, galleries, theatres, shopping malls, restaurants and nightclubs to take pleasure in. The city affords an extensive transport system and boasts the largest urban tram network in the world including the most widespread freeway network in Australia.
- Visitors have an abundance of accommodation in and around the city suitable for all budgets comprising affordable and luxury hotels, villas, apartments, guest houses, B&BS, backpacker establishments, resorts and scenic camping facilities.
Places to Visit Melbourne
- At the Victoria Police Museum visitors visualise some hair-raising exhibits that depict the history of policing and criminal actions including a great collection of artefacts, prisoner records, crime scene photographs and memorabilia going back to the 1800s. The museum boasts two original sets of armour that belonged to the Kelly Gang.
- Now a museum, the three-storied Old Melbourne Gaol opened in 1845 and was once home to some notorious prisoners. Visitors can take self or guided tours that include the watch-house and the spot where legendary Ned Kelly was hanged.
- To glean information on Victoria’s natural environment, history and culture is the Melbourne Museum. It affords visitors an enormous collection of permanent and temporary exhibitions that cover Victoria’s first indigenous colonists, dinosaurs, a blue whale skeleton, a living forest to stroll through and a gallery totally devoted to children.
- Located in St Kilda is the Jewish Museum of Australia, the only Jewish community museum in the country that divulges the Jewish experience in Australia.
- Formerly home to the Treasury Department of the Government of Victoria, the 1862 Old Treasury Building museum is considered as one of the finest 19th century structures in Australia.
- A must for aviation enthusiasts is the Australian National Aviation Museum. Located at Moorabbin Airport in Melbourne, it displays a great collection of military and commercial aircraft including a DC-2.
- Seafarers will appreciate the preserved 70 metre Polly Woodside, a three-mast Belfast built, iron-hulled barque that launched in 1885 and is now a central feature in the South Wharf precinct.
- The 26ha Fitzroy Gardens situated on the south-eastern rim of Melbourne’s CBD is one of the city’s most beautiful and historic gardens. With a Victorian-period design, the park features fountains, sculptures, a model Tudor village, pathways lined with majestic Elm trees, numerous flowers, shrubs and trees and stunning manicured lawns. The park houses The Conservatory built in traditional Spanish Mission style, that opened in 1930 and delights visitors with annual shows of marvellous floral displays. An important and great attraction to the park is Cooks Cottage, the oldest building in Australia, built in 1755 by Captain James Cooks parents. In 1934 the cottage was brought from Yorkshire, England to Melbourne, with every brick individually packed, by Sir Russell Grimwade.
- There are ample beaches for visitors to have fun in the sun (including four nudist beaches). St Kilda Beach, popular with locals and visitors is close to bars, restaurants, cafes and the city with the added benefit of windsurfing, waterskiing, kite boarding, rollerblading and international volleyball competitions besides swimming and fishing from St Kilda Pier. Parking is insufficient but its reachable by tram.
- The 1km long Brighton Beach, accessible by all public transport is great for tanning, swimming, picnics and surfing. Its close to the well-known Middle Brighton Sea Baths, restaurants, cafes, shops and galleries. Take in wonderful views of Port Phillip Bay while strolling along the Middle Brighten Pier.
- Perfect for families with small children is the inner city Albert Park Beach thats fairly calm with shallow water. Additionally there are cycling and walking trails and loads of restaurants in the vicinity.
- Mountain bikers will find Lysterfield Lake with 20km of tracks the perfect location with trails suitable for novices and more fit and experienced riders.
- The Dandenong Ranges provide a kaleidoscope of colours all year through including marvellous walking trails like Sherbrooke Falls, a pleasant relaxed 2.4km return walk while Olinda Falls is a short but steep 1km return walk that can be expanded to a 14km hike. Attracting far too many people is the popular 1000 steps Kokoda Memorial Trail walk at Ferntree Gully.
- With so many beautiful, tranquil parks and gardens visitors need to plan carefully ensuring they see the best of everything. There’s the George Tindale Garden, Pirianda Garden, the National Rhododendron Garden and more.
- The Royal Melbourne Zoological Gardens that opened in 1862 has over 320 animal species and more than 5,000 animals from Australia and abroad. Sea Life Melbourne Aquarium located on the banks of the Yarra River has over 10,000 animals comprising 550 species including one of the biggest saltwater crocodiles in the world.
- Night revellers have difficult choices with numerous venues available. For a chic boudoir atmosphere the Chaise Lounge in Queen Street in the CBD entertains both weekend clubbers and the corporate world.
- Let your hair down at the Circus Bar in South Yarra at the main downstairs bar or go up to The Aviary rooftop bar and enjoy a signature cocktail.
- The Co Nightclub in Southbank affords patrons great DJs and fantastic lighting displays in an enormous room with two bars.
Getting Around Melbourne
The primary mode of transport in the city is by tram with buses and trains utilised for travelling into the suburbs. Melbourne’s electronic ticket system myki, is a reusable smart card that one simple tops up when the balance gets low. The electronic cards are purchasable at Flinders Street, Southern Cross stations or at the MetShop. Myki money doesn’t restrict commuters to zones as you pay for what you use. Pick up a free route map at the Melbourne Visitor Centre or the PTV Hub at Southern Cross station.
The worlds’ oldest tram network belongs to Melbourne. It’s an integral component of the city and a principal cultural symbol that provides a wonderful mode of inner city transport with a couple of hundred trams traversing 325 kilometres of track.
Visitors can travel around the city centre for free with the burgundy and cream City Circle Tram that undertakes a circular route between all main central attractions, arcades, shopping malls and along primary thoroughfares that include Flinders and Spencer Street. They run every 12 minutes in both directions from 10h00 to 18h00 and until 21h00 Thursday to Saturdays, excluding Good Friday and Christmas Day with their stop signs in burgundy.
Another freebie is the Melbourne City Tourist Shuttle buses that pick up and drop off at 13 stops in the city that include many interesting attractions of museums, gardens and more. Non-stop, an entire trip takes around an hour and a half and visitors have the advantage of a commentary. This bus runs every half an hour from 09h30 to 16h30 every day, except Christmas Day with limited services on certain public holidays.
Operated by Metro Trains Melbourne under the umbrella of the Government of Victoria, the Melbourne rail network focuses on peak period services and comprises 16 electrified lines (a total length of 372 kilometres), the central City Loop subway and 207 stations. The suburban network runs between around 05h00 to midnight.
Motor Vehicle Hire:
Hiring a rental vehicle for the first time visitor can be a challenge with roads and laws confusing and trams everywhere plus the lack of parking and hotel valet parking costly. When renting a vehicle, it’s advisable to pick up a copy of the Victorian Road Traffic handbook, either from bookshops or a Vic Roads office. Reputable rental companies based at Tullamarine Airport are Avis, Europcar, Budget, Hertz and Thrifty.
There are loads of taxis in the city centre that are only hard to hail late Friday and Saturday nights. Anywhere in Victoria, from 22h00 to 05h00, fares are prepaid with drivers providing an estimate (and receipt) when the journey starts, once the destination is reached the fare is adjusted with the meter reading and may include toll charges. Taxi companies include Silver Top, Embassy and Yellow Cabs.