Sarah and I first arrived in Melbourne just before May last year, which was definitely the middle of Autumn here. The leaves were falling, and the wind started blowing a little more. After two weeks in Manly up near Sydney, we thought we might be freezing by the time winter came!
If you are headed to Melbourne in May, my tip to you is to layer as much as possible. The weather can literally move through all four seasons in one day, and within a couple hours. Bring a wind jacket, a light jacket, and a heavy jacket. Long pants are definitely recommended as well.
Luggage and bags:
I tend to have short stays in Melbourne so I take the absolute minimum. My luggage is small enough to fit in the cabin so I don't have to wait for luggage at the other end.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Melbourne is a bit notorious for its weather. It can get extremely hot one day and rather indifferent the next. Take a showerproof jacket just in case you need it otherwise plan your clothing for the time of year you are travelling. In summer its shorts and tee shirt though I usually wear trousers (cargo style for the handy pockets) on the plane for a better evening option. Good walking shoes are a must as there are a variety of walking surfaces. In Melbourne there are lots of shops so what you don't bring you can buy!!
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Basics only - toothbrush & deodorant. What more do you need? Smellies for night time maybe - buy those at duty free as you come into the country.
Photo Equipment: This is very much personal preference. I take a very small camera so it's easy to pop in my pocket. I've got a big memory card in it so can take lots of high quality shots - 600 on a 2Gb SD card. At duty free you can get a 4Gb card for around $AUS90 so maybe I'll upgrade next time.
Miscellaneous: Melbourne has lots of good shops so travel light inwards and buy a sports bag and fill it up with whatever takes your fancy.
The climate in Melbourne can be variable throughout the year, and you might need a jacket even if it’s supposed to be warm but for the most part the seasons are as follows:
(Dec-Feb) Pretty warm to very hot so you'll need light clothes. Cotton is an ideal material for warm weather.
(Mar-May) This is fall so it's pretty mild. You might want a jacket to put on if you get chilly.
(Jun-Aug)Winter is usually very damp, so cotton can be one of the worst materials to wear as it retains moisture well. Dress warm
(Sept-Nov)This is a cool period so you should bring a warm jacket.
Melbourne is colder than most of Australia and it rains a lot more than in Sydney. Also, the seasons are opposite in the southern hemisphere, so winter in Europe and the States is summer in Australia.
Photo Equipment: There are many beautiful places to photograph around the area. Some older buildings look great in black and white film.
Summer in Melbourne is quite warm, yet not so inviting. On New Year's Day this year, the weather was 45 degrees (C) in the CBD. If you are travelling for pleasure, I would highly recommend short sleeves and shorts, or for women sundresses. Bring your "sunnies" and your sun-block. As the ads say, "slather" it on.
Back one small coat in your bag just in case of wind or the occassional mini rain burst, but most of all bring very warm weather clothes!
Close to your trip, check out weather.com for more accurate weather predictions.
All internet information says that there are lockers at Melbourne Central and Spencer Street station, however 'in this post 11/9 climate" this is apparently not so (at least at melbourne central).
Even if this were the case you'd have to pay... pffft!
Myer (major department store) will hold your bags from open til close for free. We check 2 carryon size suitcases with no questions asked.
Enter via Lonsdale Street (Myer foodcourt)
Apparently the State library will also check smaller items for free but I'm not sure of the hours
Make sure you bring clothes for all seasons to Melbourne.
It can start off with a beautifully warm and sunny day and turn freezing by mid afternoon.
So in summer, make sure you always have something warm out with you in case a cool change comes in the afternoon...or you'll freeze - Australian cold of course :o)
Luggage and bags:
My wife and I usually travel light on long haul trips; a rollaboard a piece.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: I always look ahead at the weather forecasts in order to be prepared for whatever hot or cold come sour way. I think it is best to pack clothing you can layer and that can be worn either day time or evening. Hats are always a must in Melbourne as the sun is strong. A travel umbrella is always tucked in my back just in case of rain.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: The usual: shampoo, razor, shaving gel, deodorant, toothbrush & paste, sunscreen, showel gel and my medications.
Photo Equipment: I always travel with my T21, under water camera and video camera. I have plenty of memory cards and readers along with my tablet and laptop.
When coming to Melbourne, always make sure you bring a jacket or jumper, just in case. Even in the summer months.
The weather in Melbourne has a tendency to change frequently. It may be hot, sunny, clear blue skies one minute. But before you know it, there could be rain, wind, and clouds.
But it probably occurs less in summer.
However, Melbourne is renowned for the possibility of 4 seasons in one day.
Luggage and bags:
Make sure you have a big enough bag to accommodate cold weather clothing (even if you are coming in the warmer months bring some warm clothes - see below).
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: An umbrella is required on and off all year round. The weather here is incredibly unstable and you should make sure you have plenty of warm clothes as even in the hottest months of summer the weather can dramatically change from one day to the next. Even if it's sunny and the forecast is for warm weather ALWAYS take a warm coat or jacket with you if you intend to be out for the day. It can be a pain to carry around but boy do you appreciate it once it turns cold! Alternatively if you don't have the packing space you can of course buy umbrellas, parkas, warm jumpers, jackets etc here!
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: All available here, make sure you have prescriptions for any regular medication you may be on. Otherwise most things are readily available.
Photo Equipment: Great photo oppurtunities around the city so of course bring your camera!!
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: As needed depending on your holiday requirements. There are great beaches about an hour or so out of Melbourne and plenty of great places to camp.
If you're visitng Melbourne take some of everything...it can be VERY hot one day and pouring rain the next. When I was there it was 44°C on the Saturday then the next day it was cool and rained...go figure!
Photo Equipment: Take a tripod to take some night photos along the river!
Miscellaneous: You can buy anything and everything that you could want while you're in Melbourne...
It can get rather rainy and cold during Melbourne's winter so pack a jumper and coat. On the other hand, the summers can get extremely hot, like 40 degrees c, so allow for that too.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: You can easily buy all sorts of medicine and toiletries in Melbourne, except if you are coming from o/s and have a different sort of medicine you should bring the prescription or just lots of it!
Photo Equipment: You can buy film and batteries all over the city and surrounds, so don't panic! If you are going up to the Grampians or out of Melb, you can also buy these things, but if you have a particularly special sort of film or battery, bring your own supplies.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: The rivers and beaches around the country can be dangerous - don't let me scare you, but it is true. If you are swimming in a deserted area, you MUST check with the locals first about the safety of the river or sea, due to the danger of rips and strong currents. Just for your own safety.
Miscellaneous: The Australian sun is particularly harsh, so make sure you wear a hat and sunscreen!! If you are fair you will get burnt very easily, especially if you are from a country that does not have strong sun. The Ozone Layer has been depleted over Australia so the sun's rays are very dangerous.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: Take a bit of everything. Melbourne is renowned for being the city that experiences all four seasons in one day. It can get quite cold, by comparison to other Australia states. My tip, be prepared, wear jeans and a t-shirt but take a jacket/jumper and an umbrella, wearing your bathers underneath!
Luggage and bags:
PHOTO: WATSON'S BAY SYDNEY. A HAT, LONGSLEEVE SWEATSHIRT, SUNGLASSES AND BACKPACK ARE ESSENTIAL ITEMS, BUT DON'T BRING THEM BUY THEM IN AUSTRALIA AND YOU HAVE SOUVENIRS AS WELL.
Like every place you visit, pack for the trip then cut in half and then take at least 10% more out. Remember with the good valve of the british pound and US dollar in Australia you may want to buy items here from jackets to shoes to gloves and hats
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: . Wear one color and wear it every day. Dress for comfort. I don't like sneakers, prefer walking shoes or walking boots (helps the ankles) but if the drought continues you could probably get away with sandals. Sneakers do label you as a tourist but what the heck. It's a great way to get an Australian to say, "Righto, can I help you mate?" Then not just point to where you need to go, but take you there as well. "No worry mate!" My main suggestion: ALWAYS WEAR A HAT AND LONG SLEEVE SHIRTS AND/OR THE HIGHEST RATED SUN SCREEN.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: SUNSCREEN, SUNGLASSES, SUNSCREEN. Buy what you need when you get here in the way of Toiletries.
Photo Equipment: There is a photo developing shop in almost every block and they are reasonable. Buy your film here too and have it developed as you travel along (never get double prints). Then send the prints home with other things you buy and take the negatives home with you.
Camping/Beach/Outdoor Gear: All can be bought or rented here.
Miscellaneous: ALL THROUGH AUSTRALIA THERE ARE INTERNET SHOPS IN EVERY CITY, TOWN & VILLAGE AND CHEAP TOO, ABOUT $5-6 per Hour AU.
For other helpful advise check out the web sites and handbooks of all the major companies such as Lonely Planet, Fodor's, Frommers, etc.
Luggage and bags:
Leave space in your luggage - you will undoubtably buy something to take home.
Clothing/Shoes/Weather Gear: A compact umbrella or poncho that easily fits in your handbags or backpack is ideal. You will not be using it all the time so having to hand carry it will be a nuisance, but undoubtably you will encounter some rain during your stay and quite frequently, there will be odd 5 minute showers.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: Melbourne has plenty of all night chemists and supermarkets.
Photo Equipment: Plenty of net cafes to upload your photos to some storage website!
Miscellaneous: A Cheap Eats book is published each year and is available at tourist shops and newsagents.
When visiting Melbourne bring shorts, t-shirt, long pants, jumper and an umbrella cause anything can happen in a day.
Toiletries and Medical Supplies: bring insect repellant in the summer months (December to March) because the mozzies and flies are shocking.
Sunscreen is a MUST as you can get burnt on a 15 degree day and feel it for the rest of the trip.