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Melbourne Museums Walking Tour (Self Guided), Melbourne

Melbourne is the capital of the state of Victoria, in Australia. It is the biggest city on this continent, after Sydney, and dates back to 1835. Melbourne being a center of culture, commerce, education and sport, has many very interesting museums. This self-guided tour will lead you through the most popular museums of Melbourne.
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Melbourne Museums Walking Tour Map

Guide Name: Melbourne Museums Walking Tour
Guide Location: Australia » Melbourne (See other walking tours in Melbourne)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 6
Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.4 Km or 4 Miles
Author: vickyc
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • National Sports Museum
  • City Museum of Old Treasury
  • Melbourne Museum
  • Chinese Museum
  • Immigration Museum
  • Polly Woodside – Melbourne's Tall Ship Story
National Sports Museum

1) National Sports Museum (must see)

Sport is like a religion in Australia and at the National Sports Museum you can learn all about the nation’s love affair with sport and some of its greatest athletic triumphs. The museum is located inside the Melbourne Cricket Ground, affectionately known as the MCG. Dedicated to Australian sport, there are displays and exhibitions relating chiefly to Australian football, cricket and the Summer Olympics. Other displays also reflect upon sporting achievements in tennis, netball, rugby union and league, golf, soccer and basketball. Since the Australian Racing Museum was absorbed into the National Sports Museum in 2010, there are also many displays that relate to horse racing.

There are plenty of interactive displays along with important sporting memorabilia, which fascinates kids and adults alike. The museum is located on two levels and has around 2500 pieces on display. Some of the best-known sporting memorabilia on display include the Waterford Crystal Ashes cricket trophy; baggy green caps of several Australian test cricketers and gold medals from several of Australia’s Olympians including Cathy Freeman and Edwin Flack – who was Australia’s first gold medal winner. Interactive displays give visitors the chance to try out their athletic prowess as well as become a sports journalist on the news desk.

Why You Should Visit:
Unashamedly Aussie-biased, this is nevertheless a fascinating collection of memorabilia and displays.

You can buy a ticket at Gate 3 where the entrance is (right by the escalators). For a deal/steal, you may purchase this ticket in conjunction with the MCG tour ticket (the tour lasts about 75 minutes).

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-5pm
City Museum of Old Treasury

2) City Museum of Old Treasury

Housed in what is widely regarded as one of the finest Gothic Revival 19th century buildings in Australia, the City Museum of Old Treasury is a great place to learn more about the history of the city of Melbourne. The building was completed in 1862 and used as one of the chief governmental buildings for 130 years and initially as a place to store much of Melbourne’s wealth from the gold rush. After completing its governmental role in 1992, the building was restored and opened as the City Museum of Old Treasury in 1994. Today there are several permanent exhibitions as well as temporary and visiting installations.

One of the permanent exhibitions is Victorian Archival Treasures, where you can learn about Ned Kelly, gold miners of the 1850s, indigenous Victorians, famous criminals and the settlement of Melbourne. Built On Gold chronicles the gold rush period of 1852 – 1862 and the exhibition is housed in the building’s former gold vaults. Growing Up In Old Treasury is the story of the Maynard family who lived in the basement of the building in the 1920s when the father was superintendent. It is open from 10am to 4pm Sunday to Friday and it is closed on Saturdays.
Melbourne Museum

3) Melbourne Museum (must see)

The Melbourne Museum is the largest museum in the southern hemisphere and has seven huge galleries where permanent and touring exhibitions are displayed. There is a vibrant calendar of events and visiting exhibitions planned all throughout the year. Past temporary installations have included Egyptian Mummies and Dinosaurs from China. Permanent exhibitions at the museum include: Dynamic Earth, where gold nuggets, gemstones and other geological wonders are on display; 600 Million Years – How Victoria Evolves; Sam the Koala – the story of the devastating Victorian bushfires and the little koala who survived it; Wild: Amazing Animals in a Changing World; Dinosaur Walk; The Melbourne Story, a look at Melbourne’s anthropological past and future; The Mind: Enter the Labyrinth; The Human Body; CSIRAC – Australia’s First Computer and many others.

On the lower level of the museum is an IMAX theatre where educational documentaries are shown. Make sure you set aside plenty of time to fully explore the museum and everything it has to offer. There is a museum shop and café for visitors to relax in and enjoy light meals. Children have free admission. Some visiting exhibitions may have entry fees.

Why You Should Visit:
To learn about aboriginal history, local history and ecology.
Also, the grounds surrounding the museum are lovely.

Free with a student ID, as well as for children under 16.
See museum and IMAX on a combined ticket and save $$.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-5pm
Chinese Museum

4) Chinese Museum (must see)

Melbourne’s Chinese Museum is located in the CBD’s China Town and chronicles the history of Chinese people in Victoria. Many Chinese came to Victoria during the gold rush of the 1850s and sent money back to their villages while panning for gold themselves, running market gardens or shops. Many of these immigrants came from poor areas of Southern China around Canton. At the Chinese Museum, you can learn all about the heritage and history of this significant minority group and their place in broader Australian heritage through the many artefacts, photographs and other memorabilia that is on display.

There are several permanent displays and exhibitions within the museum including: Discovering Melbourne’s Chinatown: Our History and Heritage; Finding Gold, where you get to experience the gold rush through Chinese eyes; Melbourne’s Dragons, see processional dragons going back a century; Bridge of Memories, which charts the social and economic backdrop against which more than 500,000 Chinese have immigrated to Australia over the past 50 years; Chinese Australians, is the history of Chinese-Australians going back to convict times. The Chinese Museum is open daily from 10am to 4pm and is also home to the Chinatown Visitors Centre. Some exhibitions are free and others have an entry fee.

Why You Should Visit:
To see the Chinese contribution to the Australian way of life – you will need a couple of hours to get most out of it – very reasonably priced admission.
Perfectly situated in the heart of Melbourne and close to Chinatown itself.

There don't appear to be any regularly scheduled museum tours but they hardly seem needed and with your entry fee you'll get a double-sided sheet of paper with basic info about the museum and how to take yourself on a self-guided tour.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-4pm
Immigration Museum

5) Immigration Museum (must see)

Australia is one of the world’s most multicultural nations and Melbourne is a proud home to people from all corners of the globe. Located in the Old Customs House, right in the centre of the city, visiting the Immigration Museum is a powerful way to understand who Australians are and where they have come from. There are many permanent exhibitions as well as a fascinating range of visiting and temporary installations. Identity: Yours, Mine, Ours is a permanent exhibition, which explores how our own cultural heritage, language, family and beliefs shape our perceptions of ourselves and others. Immigration Stories and Timeline is an exhibit that highlights where Australians have come from over time. Journeys of a Lifetime explores how no matter who we are or where we have come from that we have all had a journey.

When you visit Getting In, you learn about the stories of the more than 9 million people who have immigrated to Australia since 1788. The Tribute Garden within the museum honours the 90+ nations from where Australia’s immigrants have come.

Why You Should Visit:
Good place to learn a thing or two about a topic not covered by most museums.
The facilities are clean and large and the educational benefits are very ample.
Knowledgeable/patient guides who explain enthusiastically and engage in discussion.

Free entry for students of any country or anyone over 60 years of age (bring ID).
Don't miss the mock immigration interviews!

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-5pm
Polly Woodside – Melbourne's Tall Ship Story

6) Polly Woodside – Melbourne's Tall Ship Story

One of only two original 19th-century sailing ships in Australia, the three-mast Polly Woodside was built in Belfast, Ireland in 1885 and was put to work transporting nitrate, coal and wheat between England and South America, Africa, Asia and Australia. Now restored, this cargo vessel resides in an original wooden-walled dry dock that was used for the repair and service of ships for over 100 years.

Guided or self-guided tours are available both on deck and below deck and serve as an initiation into the world of 19th-century seafaring. When not assisting the captain in looking after Polly, you will learn about her history through interactive displays, videos, photos and artifacts. The experience of learning about life as a sailor is especially memorable for children as staff conducting the crew get them actively involved and maintain their attention throughout the tour.

A souvenir shop and a picnic area complete the experience.

Look out for the Pirate Sundays on the first Sunday of each month.

Opening Hours:
Sat, Sun: 10am-4pm

Walking Tours in Melbourne, Australia

Create Your Own Walk in Melbourne

Create Your Own Walk in Melbourne

Creating your own self-guided walk in Melbourne is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Melbourne Introduction Walk

Melbourne Introduction Walk

Considered Australia's “cultural and sporting center”, Melbourne is the capitol and the largest city in Victoria region, Australia. It is notable for its distinct blend of Victorian and contemporary architecture, and also for being home to the World's largest Tram Network. Take this walk to explore the best attractions of Melbourne.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.2 Km or 3.2 Miles
St. Kilda District Walking Tour

St. Kilda District Walking Tour

St. Kilda district of Melbourne is situated along a fantastic beach of the Pacific Ocean. It is a cosmopolitan suburb near Port Phillip Bay. Its most popular attractions are situated not far from the beach. One of them is the huge and historical Luna Park. This self-guided tour will lead you through St. Kilda's main attractions.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.1 Km or 2.5 Miles
Landmarks of Melbourne Walking Tour

Landmarks of Melbourne Walking Tour

Melbourne is an amazing city with its beautiful parks and gardens, Victorian and modern architecture. This self-guided tour will lead you to some of the most remarkable landmarks in Melbourne.

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.3 Km or 3.3 Miles
Melbourne Art Galleries Walking Tour

Melbourne Art Galleries Walking Tour

Melbourne is a fascinating city and is the cultural center of the state of Victoria and the country. You can see aborigine art only in a handful of countries among which is Australia. This self-guided tour will lead you through the most popular art galleries and centers of contemporary Australian art.

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 Miles

Useful Travel Guides for Planning Your Trip

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Chocolate Indulgence Tour of Melbourne

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