Bike, Hike, or Rollerblade St. Kilda Beach
Almost year round, you can enjoy St. Kilda Beach is a great place to take a walk or ride a bike. This beach sees over 70,000 visitors a year, but even in the wintertime there are plenty of people hiking, biking, and rollerblading!
They have separated the bike trails from the walking trails, so you do not even have to keep one eye peeled!
After that, you can head onto the pier and enjoy a walk for some spectacular views of the city!
Equipment: Walking shoes, bike, or blades!
Australia vs. Italy - Wallaby Rugby
If you are lucky enough to catch an International Rugby Test match here in Melbourne, it will most likely be played at Telstra Dome.
Australia won 69-21, although it was not really a fair match. The Wallabies were bigger, stronger and faster than Italy at every position.
It was however a great excuse to take some photos and drink some Carlton Draught.
Watch the Footy!
One of the most important things to do when you are in Melbourne is to enjoy a Victoria Born sport, Australian Rules Football. This used to be the VFL, or Victorian Football League, but it has recently incorporated the whole country and therefore needed to change its name.
Footy is a great game to watch, as the action is pretty continous, and the concept is simple! Kick the ball through the posts, while your opponents try to knock your head off!
Equipment: Just some warm clothes and a great attitude!
Australian Rules Football
Travelling in Melbourne a winter, it would be impossible not to encounter something to do with the Australian Football League or AFL. This sport is an obsession to Victorians along with many other Australians. Many would tell you a trip to Australia in winter would be incomplete without watching a game at the games home, the MCG so pick a team, buy a scarf and go for it! (taking somebody who knows the rules would help a great deal with understanding the game)
Also soccer is played in Down Under
Although Aussie rules and cricket are far more popular sports in Australia also European football is fighting for its positions in the sport crazy Australia. In top European series there are many Australian breed players. I`ve seen two matches in Australia and it is very easy to notice the roots of a home team. For example South Melbourne FCs roots are in Greek community. You hear more Greek than English in stands. All the same - I really enjoyed the match. So if you are a football fan take the opportunity to see "real" football also here in Australia.
- Arts and Culture
- Family Travel
Aussie Rules Maddness
Aussies are crazy about their football.. "Aussie Rules Football".
In fact Aussies are crazy about sport in general.. Football in winter, and cricket in summer.
Ohh, and there are lots of other sports in between.
I have never really been crazy about sport myself, but do have a favorite team.... The Pies.. (Collingwood)
Collingwood played its first game as a full-fledged member of the VFA on May 7, 1892 against Carlton and lost by two goals to three.
It was the beginning of one of Australian sport's longest running, and strongest, rivalries, which is still very much alive today.
The Magpies were the youngest of the clubs that formed the Victorian Football League in 1897, but have made a huge impact on the competition and the game in general.
Today... Still the best team!
- Adventure Travel
Melbourne Cup- The race that stops a nation
At 2:50pm on the first Tuesday in November, the whole country tunes in.
People that have no interest in horse racing have a bet.Belive me its true ( Speaking for myself) School children are allowed home early to watch it on TV.
The entire state of Victoria has a holiday. Flemington, where the race is held, is a heaving glut of champagne, funny hats, colourful dresses, jockeys, punters, beautiful people, ugly people, normal looking people and those who are sort of non-descript – aka everybody.
At least 150,000 people get to the track, and the same happens at every suburban and metropolitan race-track in the whole country.
Australians go mad for ‘The Cup’, everyone becomes an expert and sweepstakes are held in offices, pubs, clubs, classrooms and parliament houses around the country.
- Horse Riding
- Women's Travel
Check out a footy game at the "G"
Visiting Melbourne and not checking out a game of "Aussie Rules" at the MCG would be like going to Rome and not visiting the Colesium. Aussie Rules football is the closest thing to a home grown religion in Melbourne and going to a footy match at the MCG (affectionally referred to as the "G") is akin to making a pilgrimage to Mecca.
Australians in general are a sports crazy bunch, an especially so Melbournians.
- Historical Travel
Australian Formula One Grand Prix
I specifically went to Melbourne to see the Grand Prix, overall it was a pretty good event. Nothing beats actually being there next to the track where the cars are racing, you just can't really connect the same way watching it through the TV.
In my opinion the Melbourne Grand Prix as an event wasn't as good as it's predecessor the Adelaide Grand Prix, the biggest difference being no after-race concert. The after-race entertainment consists of being able to walk along the track and check out pit lane through the wire fences. Also there aren't many parts of the track where the cars go slow. Albert Park is a picturesque setting though, with it's lake, palm trees and green grass.
A General Admission ticket on race day was $95, for the money it's probably better to invest in a grandstand ticket for around $350 which covers all four days and guarantees a decent view.
I recommend getting to the track at least three hours before the race starts. I got there an hour before and all the good spots I came across were jam-packed. If possible, find out from someone in the know where the best areas are.
If played right the Grand Prix can be a thoroughly enjoyable experience.
Equipment: Ear plugs, hat, beverage, sunglasses, emergency poncho (foldable plastic raincoat), and lightweight chair if going early.
- Family Travel
South Melbourne Soccer Club
(Unfortunately, I got word from my friend that South Melbourne will not be included in the new National Soccer League starting up later this year. It is a terrible situation and a slap in the face to all soccer fans in Melbourne. The team may go bankrupt because of this and may either dissolve or end up playing in the Victorian state leagues. I will update this tip as more news comes in.)
South Melbourne is one of the National Soccer League (NSL) clubs located in Melbourne. It was founded in 1959 as South Melbourne Hellas, which was backed by Greek immigrants. It joined the NSL in 1977 and has won 4 championships to date. The name Hellas was dropped in order to take away the ethnicity in the game.
South Melbourne plays home games at Bob Jane Stadium at Albert Park. Capacity is 14,000. The season lasts from September to February with playoffs after the season. Check the website for schedules. Ticket prices range from AU$5 to $20.
The race ended in a ferarri one-two; I thought there would be a large crowd around Mark Webers garage, but it turned out everyone wanted to get a look at the winner's garage.
Had to hold the camera above my head to get this shot.
- Adventure Travel
- Arts and Culture
- Family Travel
Australian Grand Prix
Melbourne is the venue of the Australian Grand Prix. The first of the Formula Ine Circuit events.
Melbourne gets race fever as result.
In the week before the race the city prepares with displays in federation square for the enthausist that wants to see the machines up close.
Equipment: Go in race made. Watch for crowds. And be prepared to face transport rage.
- Family Travel
Oz Open (Tennis)
The Australian Tennis Open Championship is held for 2 weeks every January in Melbourne. In 2005, it will be from 19th January to 1st February.
Ticketing and tournament information and details will be available from 1 September 2004.
Equipment: Hat, Sunscreen, Sunglasses.
- Budget Travel
- Business Travel
Formula 1 Grand Prix
Melbourne is the home of the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix. The track is located in Albert Park and runs close to the edge of the lake there.
The GP is held every March (the first weekend). The F1 cars are out on the Friday for pratice laps and the Saturday for qualifying and they race on the Sunday, when the F1 cars are not on the track there are other events such as celebrity races, V8 super cars, Formula Ford, etc. Get a grandstand seat if you can, because the standing views aren't great.
Equipment: Earplugs are highly recommended.
- Luxury Travel
Australian Football - Melbourne's Game
Australian Football, or "footy", was invented in 1853. It is a fast-paced, physical, and exciting sport and easily the most popular sport in Melbourne and all of Victoria. It may be confusing to first-timers, looking like "kill the man with the ball", but it is easy to catch on to the rules and understand the game and the passion felt by its fans. And to answer your question, no, the players do not wear pads.
The Victorian Football League (VFL) was formed in 1896 with 8 teams. By 1925, there were 12 teams, all located in Victoria, which remained unchanged until the 1980's, when the league began expanding and some of the original teams moved out of Victoria. The league is now called the Australian Football League (AFL), although it is still considered a Victorian game. There are now 16 teams that form the AFL, 10 of which call Victoria home.
With AFL venues MCG, Telstra Dome, and Optus Oval, you will easily find a match on a Friday, Saturday, or Sunday in Melbourne between late March and late August. The championship rounds are played in September, with the Grand Final being held at the MCG in late September.
A chance to see this unique game should not be missed if you are in Melbourne during the season. It is easy to get a ticket at the gate of the MCG or Telstra. If I had one chance to watch an AFL match while in Melbourne, I would choose the MCG.