West Melbourne

West Melbourne Photo by Ryk Neethling

Melbourne: The city

A lot of people go on holiday to Australia and Melbourne is a popular city break for those living in Austrlia as well: as a result there are always good sized crowds of fans from across Australia and the rest of the world at the Grand Prix.


There is a surprising amount of history in Melbourne for a city only established in 1835, as a farming community. It grew up during the 1850s gold rush and has been a major city since. Melbourne is in fact Australia’s former capital having been capital from 1901 when Australia bevcame independent until 1927 when the capital was moved to Canberra.


Melbourne has a mix of architecture including plenty of Victorian buildings alongside modern high rise glass covered office buildings. Melbourne has one of the highest standards of living in the world and this is certianly exemplified in its good public transport in the form of its world famous trams and in its many parks. This of course includes Albert Park but also Carlton Park and the Royal Exhibition buildings and the Royal Park which includes Melbourne Zoo.


Melbourne is a great city for sport and though Formula One is usually the cities biggest event of the year when Melbourne cricket ground is holding a major test match, especially an Ashes match against England, then this may exclipse the Grand Prix in Melbourne, usually this will be at a different time of year though and often a traditional Boxing Day test match.


Melbourne also hosts the famous Melbourne Cup in November and Australian Open in January, if you are a big sports fan you may need to take an extended trip therefore. For something uniquely Austraian though keep an eye out for Aussie Rules games held in the city that will often concide with the Grand Prix weekend.


Also well worth a visit are the Melbourne Museum (primarily housing Natural History Exhibits), the National Gallery of Victoria, and Chinatown, the World’s first, though Melbourne being a cosmopolitan city can offer a wide range of different cuisines from around the world.