Cookies help us to deliver our services. By using our website, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn more.

Best tours of Melbourne

Melbourne was chosen several times as one of the best cities to live in the world and is also one of the most interesting tourist destinations in Australia. Here I tell you what excursions you can do to discover this place.

Matías Rodríguez

Matías Rodríguez

10 min read

Best tours of Melbourne

Melbourne, VIC, Australia |©Pat Whelen

Melbourne is considered one of the most important cultural sites in Oceania, the most populated city in Australia and one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country. One of the best alternatives to visit it and get to know its beautiful landscapes, its rich gastronomy and the surrounding attractions, is to take an organized tour. Here I will tell you about the best options so you can plan your trip.

Among the best activities you can do in Melbourne during your visit are visiting the Great Ocean Road, taking a tour of the city's street art, taking a hot air balloon ride to discover the skyline from above, taking a food tour to explore the local delicacies, taking a cruise on the Yarra River and touring the hidden bars. I'll tell you all about each activity!

1. Great Ocean Road Tour

The Great Ocean Road|©Xavier Sebastian
The Great Ocean Road|©Xavier Sebastian

The Great Ocean Road is a scenic route that offers an exciting excursion full of natural beauty and unforgettable experiences. Connecting the coastal cities of Melbourne and Adelaide, this stunning route of more than 1,000 kilometers is a real gem for lovers of coastal scenery, especially if you plan to visit Melbourne during the summer.

The journey along the Great Ocean Road begins in Melbourne and winds its way through Victoria's famous wine region. During the tours you'll generally travel a little less than a quarter of the way, but you'll enjoy scenic views of vineyards, rolling hills and quaint villages offering tastings. There you can stop at wineries for wine tastings and gourmet pairings.

As you head away from wine country, the Great Ocean Road will delight you with its breathtaking coastal scenery. Along the way, you will have the opportunity to enjoy golden sand beaches, cliffs and spectacular rock formations. The Twelve Apostles National Park is one of the highlights of this tour, with its majestic limestone cliffs and famous rock formations emerging from the sea.

This road will also offer you the opportunity to observe wildlife in its natural habitat. Migrating whales can be spotted from strategically placed lookouts along the coast, as well as koalas and kangaroos in nearby national parks. Nature lovers will enjoy the rich diversity of flora and fauna found along this scenic route.

Details of interest

  • Price: approximately 80 euros.
  • Duration: between 10 and 13 hours, depending on the weather.
  • Advantages of this excursion: you will get to know one of the most famous roads in the world.
  • Disadvantages of this excursion: it is a full day tour, so it might not be compatible with a short stay in the city.

Book a tour along the Great Ocean Road

2. Melbourne Street Art Tour

graffiti, Melbourne|©duncan cumming
graffiti, Melbourne|©duncan cumming

A Melbourne street art tour is a unique experience that will immerse you in the vibrant world of urban artistic expression. The city has become a giant canvas where local and international artists have left their mark, turning streets, alleys and buildings into open-air galleries.

As you embark on this tour, you'll delve into Melbourne's most bohemian and colorful neighborhoods, such as Fitzroy and Brunswick. As you walk the streets, you'll discover stunning murals that tell stories, convey social messages and invite you to reflect. Every corner is an opportunity to marvel at the creativity and talent of street artists, who are featured on Melbourne's best tours.

Aside from the murals, Melbourne's street art tour will allow you to explore the famous graffiti-filled alleyways, such as Hosier Lane and AC/DC Lane. These narrow passages are filled with diverse colors, shapes and styles. Each piece of art is unique and conveys the energy and personality of the city. You can also opt to take a night tour, one of the best things to do at night in Melbourne.

During these tours you will also have the opportunity to meet some of the artists behind these incredible creations. Some of the creators offer guided tours where they share their inspirations, techniques and experiences. This direct interaction gives you a deeper insight into the creative process and the meaning behind each work.

Details of interest

  • Price: around 50 euros.
  • Duration: approximately 3 hours.
  • Advantages of this tour: you will see one of the main sites that contribute to Melbourne's status as the cultural capital of Australia.
  • Disadvantages of this tour: you will not have free time to explore the neighborhoods on your own.

Book a street art tour

3. Hot air balloon tour at sunrise in Melbourne

Balloon Melbourne|©Matt Clewlow
Balloon Melbourne|©Matt Clewlow

A sunrise hot air balloon tour in Melbourne is a magical experience that allows you to view the city from above as the sun slowly rises over the horizon. These tours usually start early in the morning, especially during the summer in Melbourne, which offers clear skies and pleasant weather.

From the heights you will be able to admire the city's iconic buildings and monuments, such as the Eureka Tower and St. Paul's Cathedral. You will also get a glimpse of other tourists by experiencing hot air balloon tours in Melbourne.

During these experiences you will also enjoy views of the natural landscapes surrounding Melbourne. From sprawling parklands to meandering rivers, you'll get a unique perspective of the natural beauty that complements the bustling urban life of the city. The contrast between the urban and the natural will leave you in awe.

These tours usually include a toast to celebrate the experience. You will also be able to take home some of the best photographs of your trip.

Details of interest

  • Price: around 282 euros.
  • Duration: approximately 4 hours.
  • Advantages of this tour: you will be able to live one of the most emblematic tourist experiences in Melbourne.
  • Disadvantages of this tour: it is not an economical experience and it is not recommended for people with reduced mobility.

Book a balloon flight at sunrise in Melbourne

4. Gastronomic tour of the delicacies of Melbourne

Queen Victoria Market|©Yun Huang Yong
Queen Victoria Market|©Yun Huang Yong

Melbourne, among other things, is considered the food capital of Australia and a culinary tour of the city's delicacies will help you understand why. These tours will prove to be a feast for the senses and immerse you in the cultural diversity reflected in the local cuisine, as Melbourne is a paradise for lovers of good food and gastronomic exploration.

During these tours you will embark on a journey through the different neighborhoods of the city, such as Fitzroy, Richmond and St. Kilda, to discover a wide range of flavors and culinary delights. From high-end restaurants to street stalls, each stop on the tour is an opportunity to indulge in unique and exquisite dishes that can't be missed on the best food tours in Melbourne.

Melbourne, too, is famous for its cafe scene, and the food tour would not be complete without a visit to some of the city's best cafes. There you can enjoy artisanal coffees, exquisite pastries and delicious brunches. Some of these excursions also include a tour of the popular Queen Victoria Market.

In addition to the food, the food tour of Melbourne also offers the opportunity to explore local markets, where you can sample fresh, artisanal produce. From cheeses and charcuterie to baked goods and organic produce, you'll find options for every palate.

Interesting details

  • Price: about 71 euros.
  • Duration: approximately 3 hours.
  • Advantages of this excursion: you will be able to discover the best alternatives of the local cuisine.
  • Disadvantages of this excursion: it is a very intense excursion with few rest stops.

Book a gastronomic tour in Melbourne

5. Cruise on the Yarra River

Along the Yarra River,Melbourne|©Ian Hill
Along the Yarra River,Melbourne|©Ian Hill

A cruise along the Yarra River in Melbourne is a delightful way to discover the beauty of the city from a unique perspective. On these tours and as the cruise takes in the river, you can witness the panoramic views, with its glittering skyscrapers and modern architecture reflected in the calm waters.

During the tour you can relax on the cruise deck and enjoy the changing scenery around you. From the famous Princess Bridge to the bustling Docklands district, each stretch of the Yarra River reveals a new aspect of the city. Your onboard guide will provide interesting commentary and historical facts, enriching your experience and giving you a deeper understanding of the city.

One of the highlights of the Yarra River cruise is the famous Southbank Promenade, where you'll find a variety of restaurants, cafes and bars overlooking the river. There you can indulge in delicious dishes and enjoy the lively atmosphere as you watch the city lights begin to illuminate the skyline. Some options are even available in the evening and include dinner.

The Yarra River cruise is also an opportunity to appreciate Melbourne's cultural attractions, such as the Melbourne Arts Centre and the National Gallery of Victoria, which are located on the banks of the river. These iconic landmarks add an artistic and cultural touch to the ride, giving you a more complete view of Melbourne's richness and diversity.

Details of interest

  • Price: about 35 euros.
  • Duration: approximately 2 hours.
  • Advantages of this tour: you will discover a different profile of the city from the largest river in Australia.
  • Disadvantages of this excursion: if you choose the dinner option, the tour will be more limited than the daytime excursions.

Book a cruise in Melbourne

6. Melbourne's hidden bars tour

Gogo Bar, Melbourne|©Michelle 'Secrets' Matthews
Gogo Bar, Melbourne|©Michelle 'Secrets' Matthews

A tour of Melbourne's hidden bars is an exciting adventure that will immerse you in the city's vibrant nightlife scene. Melbourne is famous for its secret bars, hidden behind unmarked doors or in narrow alleyways, and this tour will take you to discover some of the most unique and fascinating places.

During the tour, you'll delve into the city's most bohemian and alternative neighborhoods, where the hidden bars find their home. Following the clues and tips from local experts, you will enter intimate places with an exclusive atmosphere. Each bar has its own personality, from speakeasy speakeasies to unique themed bars.

The experience of visiting Melbourne's hidden bars goes beyond simply enjoying a drink. These venues are thoughtfully designed, with meticulous attention to detail, and will transport you to another world. The craft cocktails, live music and intimate atmosphere create a unique and memorable experience that you won't want to miss, even if you have a 3-day stay in Melbourne or even less.

During the tour, you will have the opportunity to meet the talented bartenders working behind the bar, who will guide you through a personalized tasting experience. You'll be amazed by the innovative creations and unique flavors these experts have to offer.

Details of interest

  • Price: around 56 euros.
  • Duration: approximately 3 hours.
  • Advantages of this tour: it is one of the most picturesque tours in Melbourne and will help you understand the local culture as well.
  • Disadvantages of this tour: it is not an option available for children, if you plan to visit the city as a family.

Join the hidden pub crawl tour in Melbourne

How to book a tour in Melbourne?

two women smiling in front of the phone|©Andrea Piacquadio
two women smiling in front of the phone|©Andrea Piacquadio

You can choose to book in advance online or book some of these tours once you are in the city, although if you plan to visit Melbourne in the summer or during the high season months, I advise you to book before your visit to secure your spot and get better prices.

In addition, by booking in advance you can also plan a detailed itinerary for your trip, which will help you get the most out of each of your tours and combine more than one activity, which will be ideal if you plan to visit the city with children or in a large group.

What will I see on this type of excursion?

Street art in Fitzroy, Melbourne|©Ruth Ellison
Street art in Fitzroy, Melbourne|©Ruth Ellison

On these tours you can explore the city's bohemian neighborhoods, such as Fitzroy, St. Kilda and Brunswick. These places are full of cafes, restaurants, vintage stores and art galleries, so they will help you immerse yourself in the local culture to enjoy the vibrant art scene.

In addition, you will also have some free time to wander around these places, especially on tours around Melbourne, such as the Great Ocean Road and Yarra Valley tours.

Tips for an excursion in Melbourne

Colorful houses in Colorado|©Julia Foroni
Colorful houses in Colorado|©Julia Foroni

Melbourne is one of the most visited cities in Australia at any time of the year, but if you are planning to visit this destination during Christmas, summer or during other festive dates, you should be aware that prices may increase and places on tours may sell out. Therefore, I advise you to book in advance if your trip coincides with those times.

I also advise you to take the time to plan the itinerary of your tour, as this way you will be able to get the most out of your visit to each of the sites and make the most of your stay in the city.

What are the advantages of taking a guided tour vs. visiting Melbourne on my own?

Tall buildings in Melbourne|©Bart Walus
Tall buildings in Melbourne|©Bart Walus

If you opt for an organized tour instead of doing the tour on your own you can count on the assistance of a local guide, which will serve you to get better tips and also to save time and money, especially in gastronomic tours or tours around Melbourne.

By joining a guided tour, you will also be relieved of the responsibility of navigation and logistics. You don't have to worry about finding the right transportation or wasting time looking for directions. The guides take care of arranging transportation and ensuring your safety throughout the tour. Plus, you can enjoy the convenience of having someone to take care of the details so you can relax and enjoy your visit.