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Melbourne enjoys many monikers, including the distinction of being the cultural, culinary and sports capital of Australia. You can find information on where to eat and drink here, but what else is there to do during your conference downtime?

Galleries

Melbourne is blessed with world-class galleries. The National Gallery of Victoria on St Kilda Road is full of local and international masterpieces and is usually hosting a visiting selection. The building itself is an icon thanks to the famous water-feature.

The Ian Potter Centre in Federation Square is dedicated solely to Australian art. You’ll find some incredible portraits of significant Australians, work by local artists as well as important pieces of Indigenous art. The Australian Centre for Contemporary Art (ACCA) is located next to the Victorian College of the Arts, and as the name suggests, it is full of contemporary local and international art.

Theatre

Melburnians love their theatre, which is why you can find them all over the city. The Paris End of Collins Street is home to the famous and seminal Athenaeum, while Carlton hosts the fiercely independent La Mama.

The Malthouse is home to the finest plays that pass through this city, while Her Majesty’s hosts the big-ticket items, musicals, opera and ballet.

Sport

June and July mean the AFL season is in full swing and the entire city is focused on one thing – who will lift the Premiership Cup in September. Every Melburnian will harbour fierce allegiance to one team, and a trip to the Melbourne Cricket Ground in Richmond or Marvel Stadium in the Docklands is the best way to see Melbourne at its most vocal and passionate.

Other great sporting events include:

  • Watching the mighty Melbourne Storm at AAMI Park
  • Catching a Melbourne United or Melbourne Victory match at AAMI Park
  • Experiencing a VFL game at one of the suburban grounds
  • Cheering on Melbourne United at a National Basketball League match

Day Trips

Melbourne is located in a great spot for some day trips. Here are some tips to guide your planning:

  • Make the 1.45-hour journey to Phillip Island to take in some stunning beaches and watch the famous Fairy Penguin Parade.
  • Enjoy some of the most incredible coastal scenery in the world by taking a trip down to the Great Ocean Road.
  • Soak your troubles away at the Mornington Peninsula Hot Springs before testing your skills at one of the golf courses dotted around this beautiful spit of land.
  • Take a trip down to the Yarra Valley and go for a hot air balloon ride before spending the night at a winery.

This is just a sample of what you have to look forward to when you visit this wonderful city. You'll fall in love with the city, and you may find yourself extending your stay far beyond the conference.