Gayle is an accountant. Shh – don’t tell. She thinks she’s a writer.
Published August 29th 2015
Laugh, Cheer, Walk, Ride, or Play your Way through Spring
Discover Melbourne this spring and enjoy the sensational activities this city has on offer. The season's clear skies and temperate days make it a great time to be out and about. So hook up with a friend or gather the family together and take in a walking tour, go to the zoo, play a round of golf, cheer on the horses at the Spring Racing Carnival, or laugh it up at a fun park. Whatever your choice have a wonderful time.
1. Take a Walking Tour You might think you know Melbourne well but a glance at the list of city walking tours could make you change your mind. There is the well-known Chocolate Walking Tour, you've probably heard of that. But what about the Street Art and Graffiti Tour, the Unsolved Crimes Tour, the Dunny Lanes Tour, Marvellous Melbourne and the Squizzy Taylor Tour to name but a few of over 50 on offer.
The delights of a Chocolate Walking Tour (Image from foodi Facebook Page)
Farmers and growers are the real fresh food people. Meander past trestle tables and boxes of fruit and vegetables. Chat with people direct from the paddock or orchard and take home some fresh picked produce for your family. Beware the fakes, find an accredited market in this directory.
3. Take a Boat Ride on the Yarra
How often have you walked by the Yarra River and given it only a cursory glance? Stop, hop on a boat and unlock the wonders of the river. Take the Port and Docklands Cruise past the Polly Woodside and out to the shipping lanes and dock area. What ships will be docked when you visit? View the Royal Botanic Gardens and Herring Island from the water on the River Gardens Tour. For these and many others check out Melbourne River Cruises or City River Cruises.
A lovely day for a cruise on the Yarra. (Image from Melbourne River Cruises Facebook Page)
4. Visit a Garden They don't call Victoria the Garden State for nothing and Melbourne does it proud. From formal gardens to native bushland, Melburnians are spoilt for choice. For more than 150 years the Royal Botanic Gardens and Williamstown Botanic Gardens have showcased thousands of plants in tranquil settings. Australia Garden showcases the diversity of our native landscapes and the plants that thrive there. Alowyn Gardens are reminiscent of the grounds of European castles. Click here for details of ten of Melbourne's best gardens.
5. Play a Round of Golf Casual golf players can pull their clubs out of the wardrobe and dust them off. Spring brings with it ideal golfing weather, clear days and moderate temperatures. Of course if you're a dedicated player and you've been out in the rain all winter you will at least be able to pack away your umbrellas. If you haven't played before, sign up for some lessons. Find a course in this directory.
The 9th Hole at 'The Heath' (Image from Kingston Heath Golf Club Facebook Page)
6. Visit One of Melbourne's Three Zoos Visit one of Melbourne's three zoos while the animals are at their friskiest. At Melbourne Zoo see the King of Beasts at Lion Gorge, follow the Trail of the Elephants or wander through the Butterfly House. Take the Safari Tour bus at Werribee Open Range Zoo and drive amongst the grassland animals. Watch the Spirits of the Sky bird show or meet a platypus at Healesville Sanctuary.
7. Go to the Spring Racing Carnival Every spring tens of thousands of Melburnians dress up in their finery (or their foolery), chill the champagne, and head for the racecourse. Whether you go to cheer on the horses, for the fashions on the field, to witness the race that stops the nation or just for a great day out how could you go past the Spring Racing Carnival.
A spring day at Flemington Racecourse (Image from Spring Racing Carnival Facebook Page)
8. Play at a Fun Park School holidays are coming up and with them cries of "I'm bored Mum." That's not something you'll hear from the kids at any of Melbourne's fun parks. Ride the climbs and plunging dips of the Great Scenic Railway at Luna Park with its beautiful views of Port Phillip Bay. See cute native animals and ride the paddle boats on the lake at Gumbuya Park. Find your way through the maze, be astonished in the Illusion Rooms or play Mini Golf at A Maze'N Things. Ride the Alpine Toboggan Slide or Blackbeard's Fury at Funfields.
An Illusion Room (Image from A Maze'n Things Facebook Page)
9. Visit a children's animal farm Introduce your city children to farm animals at one of Melbourne's many children's animal farms. Try to milk a cow, take a ride on a tractor, cuddle a guinea pig, watch a sheepdog working and see the baby animals. What about a pony ride for the children and a picnic for lunch? For details of the children's farms see Natasha Stewart's article 'Where's Melbourne's Best Children's Farm.'
Children love a pony ride (Image from Bundoora Park Farm Facebook Page)
10. Spend a Day at the Sea Life Aquarium
Walk through the tunnel while huge sting rays and sharks swim overhead. See Fiddler Rays and Elephant Sharks at the Bay of Rays. The family can get their hands wet at the Mangroves or Rock Pools where you can touch sea stars and shark eggs. Search for the poisonous stone fish and lionfish amongst the wreckage at the Shipwreck Explorer. These are but a few of the attractions, at Melbourne Sea Life Aquarium.