Good chance that place was Chuckle Park, a button-cute little beer garden and bar space. Definitely a solid choice for the low-key, beer-and-tapas sort of date. Fairy lights are an easy win, too South Melbourne’s underground paella club. Mix up your date plans with a Sunday morning Spanish cooking class, led by the awesome Lola herself. You’ll wander the markets, pick up some ingredients, learn a little Spanish, and cook one hell of a paella.
I loved our time Not only is it a fantastic city to explore, it’s a fantastic base as there are many incredible places to visit near Melbourne that are less than three hours drive away.
As much as it pains me to say it being a New South Welshman, Victoria was the biggest surprise from our , so much so we ended up , especially to my mate Mick who we used to put shit on constantly. Victoria packs a punch, there’s plenty to do in a small state and our one month trip quickly turned into three! Table of Contents • • • • • • • • • • • 8 places to visit near Melbourne 1.
Wilsons Promontory National Park Surprisingly we knew almost nothing about Wilsons Promontory National Park before our road trip around , and had never heard of Squeaky Beach, which we now put up there with the It wasn’t until we arrived in Victoria and started talking with the locals, and a well-travelled friend from Melbourne who raved about the Prom being his favourite place in the country, that we paid it much attention.
After spending three nights in our little cabin at we can confirm that Wilsons Prom is Victoria’s best-kept-secret and at just a 3-hour drive from Melbourne, a great getaway! Be warned though this coastal wilderness area has limited accommodation and is so popular with Victorians that they have a ballot system to stay during peak season!
While we recommend spending a few days in Wilson’s Prom, if you don’t have time or your own vehicle, you can Read more – 2. Bright The charming town of Bright is our favourite town in Victoria and one of our period. We tell everyone we meet who are visiting Victoria, you MUST visit Bright! lt‘s one of those places that gets under your skin and we’ll return to over and over again. With the Owens River running through town and the alpine scenery, it reminds us of Colorado and the cafe scene is top notch too – we’re partial to the , Food Wine Friends, and the We LOVE the by the river which produces excellent craft beer, the best cider I have ever tasted, and delicious pizzas.
And your kids will love the big playground just across from the beer garden, win-win! Besides the food and drink, if you love exploring the great outdoors by foot or bicycle, Bright is your town too.
Just a three-hour drive from Melbourne makes it one of the best places to visit near Melbourne. Oh, and whilst you’re in Bright, take a detour to Beechworth and have lunch at , one of our faves in Oz! Read more – 3. Marysville There’s something about Marysville! This town was devastated by bushfires on what became known as Black Saturday back in 2009. Almost the entire town burned to the ground with many locals losing their lives.
But the way the town has recovered is remarkable. The spirit of the people is truly something to be admired! It’s only an hour north east of Melbourne and the drive into Marysville is beautiful and makes for a refreshing change from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Once there enjoy the serenity and the natural setting. Go hiking at Lake Mountain, take in Steavenson Falls, marvel at Bruno’s Sculpture Garden, go trout fishing at Buxton Trout Farm, taste wines at Buxton Ridge Winery, have breakfast at Fraggas Cafe, dinner at the Black Spur Inn, and let your kids burn off some energy playing at Gallipoli Park.
We stayed at the charming which were an easy stroll into town. Read more – 4. The Great Ocean Road You can’t visit Melbourne and Victoria without jumping behind the wheel of your car, or and drive one of the best road trips in the world. Beginning 90 minutes outside of Melbourne in Torquay, the Great Ocean Road stretches over 250 kilometres to Warrnambool and attracts tens of thousands of visitors every year. Explore seaside towns, walk through rainforests to waterfalls, spot koalas, swim at scenic beaches, and stand in awe as you take in the famous 12 Apostles.
Whatever you do, don’t do this drive in one day, slow down and appreciate all it has to offer. makes for a great central base, we stayed at the right on the beach.
Read more – 5. The Mornington Peninsula We camped for a week on the Mornington Peninsula and whilst it’s only an hours drive from Melbourne, we felt like we were a million miles away from the city. I vividly remember the sunset on Dromana Beach being as impressive as anywhere in Victoria, and our pub lunch at the had as good a view as anywhere for a beer garden. Other things we recommend include the coastal headland walk around Sorento (Millionaires row), takeaway fish & chips on the waterfront of Sorrento, the community playground on the , and the quickly replaced the High Tea at the in Melbourne as being the best mummy/daughter date ever.
6. Phillip Island We thought Phillip Island was all about the penguins and motorcycle racing. After spending a relaxing eight days on the island we can assure you it offers so much more. The main town of is a good place to base yourself and has decent cafe and restaurant scene.
The beach here is family friendly as is scenic Smiths Beach. When you take in the experience get there early and explore The Nobbies which has spectacular views over Bass Strait – it will be windy though! Other things I recommend is a visit to The Koala Conservation Centre, the Chocolate Factory, Amaz’N Things, and the Grand Prix circuit.
Phillip Island is a 90-minute drive from Melbourne, and has a list of 54 properties to choose from! Read More: 7. The Bellarine Peninsula Another place we’d never heard of in Victoria is the Bellarine Peninsula. Again surprising, considering it’s only one hour south of Melbourne and close to the starting line for the It’s a great addition to our best places near Melbourne list.
Thanks to a recommendation from another Melbourne friend we jumped on the car ferry from Sorrento and headed for Queenscliff. Three weeks later we finally left the in what had become one of our favourite caravan parks and a great base for exploring the Bellarine. The town of Queenscliff is a historic seaside village with a good cafe scene – I had the best ever chai latte at Raw Ingredients.
We also loved the slow pace of life in Barwon Heads and exploring the cafe and restaurant scene there, check out and the Other nice towns on the Bellarine include Point Lonsdale and Ocean Grove – the largest town on the Bellarine and the closest surfing beach to Melbourne!
If you find yourself heading south from Melbourne towards Geelong and Great Ocean Road, consider exploring the Bellarine Peninsula. Read more – 8. The Grampians One of the best walking and hiking destinations in Victoria is merely three hours from Melbourne. The Grampians National Park is a rugged mountain range and is renowned for its breathtaking rocky views, rich culture and stunning wildflower displays.
The first we’d heard of the Grampians was from a Swedish backpacker in Thailand who said it was his favourite place in the world to rock climb. Just another beautiful place in Victoria that rarely gets talked about. We conquered the summit of the 4km Pinnacle’s Walk with our girls, aged 6 and 2 at the time, and it was one of my favourite days of our Australia road trip.
Halls Gap is a great town to base yourself in the heart of the Grampians, we stayed at the which was family friendly and an eco-retreat. Plan Your Trip to Melbourne We’ve been traveling consistently for 17 years and have come to rely on a few trusted websites that save us money and time when booking accommodation, flights and car rental. Below are our preferred partners: Accommodation • has 7,000+ properties worldwide including hotels, apartments and hostels.
You get free cancellation on most rooms and a best price guarantee. Flights • is a comparison website that searches millions of flights. Once you find your best deal, book directly through the airline (no extra fees).
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He's been traveling and living around the world since 2002 and believes that life is all about accumulating memories and moments with his family, not just possessions. He's a travel addict, sports fanatic, beach lover, and passionate craft beer drinker!
best date places melbourne - Top Places to Meet Men in Melbourne
Brunch may not have been invented in Melbourne, but it’s definitely a Melbourne thing. And with less pressure than a traditional dinner date, it’s the perfect first date meal. However, with the city full of brunch places, it can be hard to know what are truly the best brunch places Melbourne has to offer. To help you ace the all-important first meeting (and leave your stomach as satisfied as your heart) we’ve compiled a list of the best cafes in Melbourne and even given you hints on scenarios we think they’re especially appropriate for.
Bon appétit! 1. Good for city dwellers: Captains of Industry Tucked away within the CBD, is a hidden gem that allows you to escape the bustle of the city and enjoy some delicious food and coffee. The perfect spot for a weekday breakfast meetup, or a more leisurely weekend brunch date, it’s the ideal date spot for those who work or live centrally. Not only can you rely on Captains of Industry for a great meal, but this quirky, industrial eatery also has plenty of other bits and pieces that might pique your interest, including an in-house barber, jeweller and bootmaker.
2. Good for herbivores: Monk Bodhi Dharma If you or your date prefer leafy greens over meat, has got you covered. Don’t be fooled by its unassuming exterior; inside, stylish exposed brick walls, chic wooden furnishings and delicious food await.
Monk Bodhi Dharma prides itself on providing “sustainable and healing food”, offering tasty (and beautiful) vegetarian, vegan and raw fare. Meanwhile, for those looking for some of the best coffee in Melbourne, the cafe also doubles as a micro-roastery, selling seasonal coffees sure to impress even the most discerning coffee lover.
Read more: 3. Good for being spoiled for choice: Bowery to Williamsburg Worried that a small menu might be too restrictive? Head to . An homage to NYC’s Bowery subway station, the cafe is known for its extensive menu of American diner-inspired chow, though fair warning - making a choice will be difficult! With its upbeat staff and warm atmosphere, Bowery to Williamsburg will get any first date off to a great start. However, if the idea of a stranger overhearing your date at the large communal table sends you into a mild panic, be sure to wrangle one of their cosier, smaller tables instead 4.
Good for adventurous eaters: Miss Jackson Looking to sideline your usual brekkie order and give your palate a real taste sensation? is the place to do it. With its innovative and creative kitchen, this cafe will serve you up a seriously sophisticated brunch using some surprising ingredients.
Located in St Kilda, Miss Jackson is just a 10-minute walk from the Catani Gardens and St Kilda pier, so if the weather cooperates why not finish your date with a takeaway coffee and a seaside stroll.
Read more: 5. Good for friendly atmosphere: Seddon Deadly Sins A brunch institution long before brunch was Melbourne’s main industry, is a well-loved Seddon fixture and has earned a dedicated fan base over the years. Food-wise this brunch spot boasts an all-day breakfast sure to satisfy, and its cosy size means you won’t feel forgotten in the rush whether you’re sitting inside or out. On top of a delicious meal, Seddon Deadly Sins’ friendly staff will make your experience unforgettable - the ideal scenario when you want the perfect first date.
6. Good for chilled vibes: Kanteen If you’re after a relaxed first date that’s slightly removed from the hustle and bustle of the city, is a good bet. Situated on the Yarra River Reserve opposite Herring Island, this brunch place offers plenty of outdoor seating out the front of its cool, unassuming building. While Kanteen is a worthy destination in itself, it also makes for a great stop if your date involves a walk or bike along the Yarra trail.
Catering to plenty of passersby, the staff are chatty and knowledgeable, the food is a winner and the setting can’t be beat. Read more: 7. Good for something different: Babajan If you’re looking for brunch with a more international flavour, delicious Turkish and Middle Eastern dishes will definitely do the trick. Based in Carlton, this brunch place is a great choice if you want to suggest a brunch date that’s different from the rest.
The conversation has no chance of stalling when you’re busy discussing the merits of ordering Menemen over a crab and halloumi omelette. And with bottomless Turkish tea on offer, you and your date can stay and chat through to dinner service. 8. Good for conversation: Darling St Espresso Found in Moonee Ponds, Darling St Espresso is a hidden suburban secret boasting a bold menu made with local ingredients.
Located inside a renovated corner store, the cafe is incredibly charming with seating spilling out into its beautiful courtyard garden (four-legged friends welcome!). With a seasonal all-day breakfast menu catering to all diets, you and your date will have no trouble finding something to eat, though the choice may be hard!
And in case you want to build anticipation leading up to your date, why not send your match some of the pictures from Darling St Espresso’s amazing - absolutely mouthwatering!
So you swiped right and got a match. The next step is harder: finding somewhere both of you can feel at ease and focus on getting to know each other. We're not into quiet, romantic spots – not early on, anyway. At these fun, energetic restaurants and bars there's rarely a chance for an awkward silence. Good luck. Related pages:
50 Cheap Things to Do in Melbourne Australia