Biased as I am as I live here, Brunswick has plenty to offer visitors to this vibrant neighbourhood. It's home to countless independent shops, a huge variety of restaurants and cafés and of course a wide selection of bars to keep those in need of a beverage happy. The Sydney Road is the hub of the suburb and where you'll find many of these outlets. Walk down this bustling street and it will undoubtedly take you a while; the lure of diverse and colourful shops lining both sides of the road is impossible to ignore. Yet wander off the beaten track down many of the side streets and you will find further treasures often in the form of cafés and pubs.
Cheaper than most areas of Melbourne, this is the place to be if you're strapped for cash. Various discount stores selling almost anything you can think of are located here, as well as Op shops and other cheap boutiques. Savers, the mother of all Melbourne Op Shops is found slap bang in the middle of Brunswick. Here you will find row after row of clothes to sift through, along with shoes, bags, furniture, jewellery, kitchen utensils - I could go on but I won't.
There really is so much choice you are almost guaranteed to find something you love, and with heaps of new stuff coming in daily the stock is constantly changing. While you're there, opposite Savers is Scavengers, a recycle shop well worth a visit, selling clothes, ornaments and various other goodies.
Thirsty? For drinkers and night owls the Penny Black on a Saturday night is always packed with patrons and has a great atmosphere along with a live DJ playing "old school tunes". The Brunswick Green is also a popular haunt. With an exotic beer garden, a lot of character and reasonable prices it's certainly a place to stop by and have a few.
Food-wise the list is endless; with almost every kind of cuisine you can think of available. Sammy's Trattoria Bar and Pizzeria on the Sydney Road is an excellent choice for those in need of a good meal. Open for lunch and dinner, 7 days a week come here for some delicious, fresh Italian food and friendly service. Sammy himself is always in, cooking up the dishes and making sure his valued customers are enjoying themselves.
For breakfast or brunch Lady Marmalade will serve you up a treat. A stroll down Union Street will take you to this fine little café providing great food and coffee. The banana and coconut bread with maple and pecan butter is a particular favourite of mine. Furthermore The Green Refectory, Albert St Food and Wine and The Flour Mill are all places to go and tickle your taste buds.
However, this really is just the tip of the iceberg. There's so much to discover in 'Brunswicked' that I can't possibly list it all. The best thing to do is hit the road and experience it yourself. Just not all in one go, that's practically impossible.