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As the cultural capital of Australia, you can expect the hipster places in Melbourne to include a bit of everything. Melbourne hosts a myriad of cool cafés, rooftops and incredible places to hang out. From incredible street art to a crazy variety of brunch spots, it’s one of the most cosmopolitan cities I’ve visited. If looking to see Melbourne off the beaten track, where the cool locals thrive, then it is the hip Melbourne suburbs that you should visit. 

Every Melbourne neighborhood has a distinct personality, plus that special charm of towns by the ocean. There are endless hipster places in Melbourne to soak in the city’s vibe and power up that creativity. Read all about my top 12 things to in Melbourne beyond the crowds below! For the best Melbourne tours, check out all Get Your Guide Tours here, that I always use when traveling. So easy to book online! Can strongly recommend this PRIVATE TOUR!

things to do in melbourne
Put on your comfy but chic outfit and let’s go out explore Melbourne!

We enjoyed our time Down Under quite a bit! You can read all about our adventures on the Australia section of the site. Read all about Melbourne off the beaten track, below. 

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Tips Before Heading to the Coolest Hipster Places in Melbourne

  • Choose the right spot for your stay. Melbourne is huge, very varied, and each section of town has its vibe. Read up in advance to make sure you’re staying in the right area for you. If you’re looking for hipster places in Melbourne, I’d recommend staying around South Yarra, Richmond or Windsor. For a metropolis vibe, the Melbourne City Centre (CBD) is the place for you.
  • Getting around: You can quickly get around Melbourne through Uber, buses or the metro. Ensure a smooth arrival and book your airport transfer. SHARED or PRIVATE. All up to you:)!
  • Book in advance for the best foodie experience. To see Melbourne off the beaten track, eating should be one of the first steps – there are many fantastic restaurants! However, the best eateries tend to be full, so it’s best to book your place in advance and avoid disappointments.

The 12 Best Things to Do in Melbourne off the Beaten Track

Enjoy my picks for the ultimate hipster places in Melbourne, off the beaten tracks!

1. Enjoy the Vibe at Up-and-Coming South Yarra

Start your tour of Melbourne off the beaten track by visiting South Yarra: it’s a great area to eat, drink and shop! Among the coolest neighborhoods in town. You’ll find an overload of cute boutiques, restaurants, and cafés in its famous Chapel Street. Bars and nightclubs also abound in South Yarra!

Walk around the neighborhood to see all the small hidden gems and breathtaking street art. Come into the cute boutiques for some Aussie boho vibes and get lovely souvenirs for yourself and loved ones.

The Hip Eateries

Some of the cutest hipster places in Melbourne are around here. Lucky Penny, specializing in delicious, healthy breakfast and lunch is one of my favorites. Also loved the industrial chic Journeyman Café, which is almost in Windsor.

our lunch at lucky penny in melbourne
Healthy breakfast at Lucky Penny, great start of the day

Abacus Bar & Kitchen is a must visit for photography lovers, who will fall for the luxurious feel. Mr. Miyagi is excellent for those who can’t leave a city without trying its Japanese food. Hawker Hall, also near Windsor, was another favorite: a street food and beer bar, it’s a relaxed place to spend an evening.

Acabus restaurant in Melbourne - a gem among hipster places in Melbourne
Acabus – My Favorite Spot

Spend a couple of days in South Yarra and enjoy  Melbourne off the beaten track. There are plenty of Airbnb’s here, and you’ll always be a few steps away from everything. We stayed at a very contemporary apartment at the relatively newly built high-rise at Clara Street. It was super spacious and modern with gorgeous windows from floor to ceiling! Just the perfect location!

airbnb in melbourne
Our mordern Airbnb!

After walking around South Yarra, head to Richmond, the next neighborhood, for even more cool bars and clubs. Get to know the Melbourne foodie scene with this Melbourne: City & Market Food Tour!

2. Bask in the Fitzroy Street Art – The Gem of Hipster Places in Melbourne

The Fitzroy neighborhood also hosts some of the coolest things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track. This rougher and bohemian area is full of charm, with lots of vintage and second-hand stores. You’ll also find plenty of bars and cafés full of personality!

What makes Fitzroy stand out among hipster places in Melbourne is its street art. It’s the coolest area to explore the little streets and discover incredible pieces of urban art.

Melbourne off the beaten track: Fitzroy street art - one of the hipster places in melbourne
Be prepared to see a lot of this in Fitzroy. Here pink vibes at Moor Street!

Start your afternoon in Fitzroy with lunch or coffee at Faraday’s Cage, and then head to the the surrounding small streets full of street art. Do not miss chopper street lane. Lastly, see The Rose St. Artists’ Market and walk down Brunswick Street to see the cute vintage shops.
Enjoy this amazing Fitzroy Street Art Tour!

Melbourne off the beaten track: faradays cage in melbourne
Farady’s Cage – Loving the vibe here

3. Find Your Inner Hipster at Brunswick

When talking about hipster places in Melbourne, it’s impossible not to mention Brunswick. Another up-and-coming area, it feels a little Berliner, with lots of vegetarian and vegan eateries and it is supposed to be one of the trendiest areas at the moment. When you’re engaging in one of the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track, eating, this is a must!

Melbourne off the beaten track: Brunswick - one of the hipster places in melbourne
Brunswick – The trendy and upcoming area with such cool vibes!

My fave eatery here is Rice Queen, an Asian diner and bar with an eclectic look and fantastic food.

4. Treat Yourself to a Beach Day at Brighton

As a beach city, one of the top summer activities in Melbourne off the beaten track is enjoying the sand! For a chill day at hipster places in Melbourne, take a swim at the beach at either Brighton or Elwood.

brighton beach houses
This was my sweet spot, we took so many photos. You can’t blame me right?

While too famous to be among the hipster places in Melbourne, it’s still a must. The bathing boxes might be the most iconic spot in town – but you should get there early. Once you’ve taken pics, bring your bathing suit and blanket to the less crowded beach just 100 meters away. Chilling in the sun is one of the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track!

the colorful houses at brighton beach
I want one in my backyard. Which one is your favorite?

Combine these cute bathing boxes with a trip to Phillip Island in this SMALL GROUP ECO WILDLIFE TOUR!

5. Take a Long Walk Between Brighton and St. Kilda

I’d recommend taking a long walk on Brighton, from the famous bathing boxes to St. Kilda. It’s about an hour-long walk, with some of the most refreshing views in town, passing by beaches and harbors while also seeing the downtown skyscrapers.

Melbourne off the beaten track: walk between brighton beach and st kilda
Skyscrapers and the sea! Loved this walk!

6. Have a Relaxed Beachy Afternoon at St. Kilda

Head to Pontoon St. Kilda Beach and discover one of the top hipster places in Melbourne. Enjoying this beachside location is among the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track, with its great food and cool design and perfect location by the beach!

Melbourne off the beaten track: St Kilda restaurant
Yes, I already took a bite before taking the photo. I couldn’t resist.

Hang out at the outdoor terrace facing the sea and chill with a drink or two. It is the perfect place to relax after spending the day enjoying seeing Melbourne off the beaten track. Here, you can start the party mood and then continue the evening in the many St. Kilda spots!

7. See the Famous Downtown Street Art

Fitzroy is my personal favorite street art spot in town, but the CBD ones are much more iconic. Looking at the murals in the AC/DC graffiti walls is one of the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track, as they’re quite imposing.

For those looking for more hipster places in Melbourne downtown, ACMI Centre is the right spot. Especially great for modern art, cool vibes, and a nice café.

8. Feel Cosmopolitan at CBD

One of the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track, hands down, is soaking up the big city feel downtown. The area feels like a completely different world, as big and impressive skyscrapers built in glass surround you. CBD is full of shopping streets, where you can also find amazing contemporary restaurants attended by local business people.

dumplings at drumplings hipster places in Melbourne
Dumpling Paradise – Exactly what we needed for lunch!

One of my favorite hipster places in Melbourne CBD is Drumplings, an international take on the Asian classic. They put unusual ingredients like cheeseburger inside dumplings! Mamasita offers delish Mexican options, while Chin Chin has great contemporary Thai cuisine.

9. Have Yourself a Luxurious Downtown Melbourne Evening

Treat yourself to a luxurious evening with the downtown Melbourne off the beaten track. Head to one of the ultimate hipster places in Melbourne, Madame Brussels, and begin the evening right. It’s an incredible rooftop garden bar decorated in French romantic style!

Afterward, have dinner at Fatto, an Italian restaurant by the river and a view of the Melbourne skyline. While the food is just okay, the vibe is great, and you’ll feel magic walking there. End the evening with a flourish with some drinks at the rooftop of the QT Hotel.

hipster places in Melbourne view
It’s absolutely stunning during the day..
things to do in melbourne, discover the town during night, hipster places in Melbourne
…and even more beautiful at night

10. Stay at a Lovely CBD Boutique Hotel

On my list of the best things to do in Melbourne off the beaten track: staying at a boutique hotel! My favorite options are the eclectic QT Hotel and the artsy and decadent Adelphi Hotel

11. Connect with Nature at the Botanical Garden

For those trying to escape the hectic life of the big city, visiting the Botanical Garden is one of the essential on Melbourne off the beaten track activities. Head over to the lung of the town and one of the hippest and most peaceful places in Melbourne!

hipster places in Melbourne
Have a relaxing day outside the big city life here

There are lots of activities in the garden and you can easily spend a whole day here. Why not do it with this Melbourne Highlights and Punt in the Botanic Gardens tour?

12. Great Ocean Road Trip

After seeing Melbourne off the beaten track and the top hipster places in Melbourne, you deserve a trip out of town. My recommendation? A big road trip through the Great Ocean Road!

We spent three days on this lovely road on the Aussie coast. We ran into gorgeous and isolated beaches, beautiful sights and tiny towns. Meet the koalas and kangaroos! Read all about our Great Ocean Road trip on my travel guide!

If you do not want to drive alone then check out this MELBOURNE TO GREAT OCEAN ROAD TOUR where you avoid the crowds.

hipster places in Melbourne
Hi there – the 12 apostles – quite a sight!

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  1. Hipster Melbourne is over-rated – you can pay $25-$30 for some food and a coffee by sitting on a plastic crate on a busy street or an average laneway.
    Instead you can find some excellent family-run businesses that offer real quality for much less. Eg I went to an Italian cafe the other day in Rathdowne St which had everything and decent coffee too. Friendly service as well – hipster coffee is 50-50 at best.
    I recommend East Melbourne as a place to wander for its gardens and mansions; in fact the best part of the city is to leave the hipsters behind and discover all the parks and gardens.
    Eg Check out Williamstown – you can even go for a nice trip on the river from Southgate to Williamstown when it’s nice n sunny.
    In short, Green Melbourne beats the try-hard hipsters!

    • Linda Reply

      Thanks for your input! I guess it all depends on what you like:)! Did not have time to check out Williamstown this time but will for sure put it on my list for the next visit!

  2. We are planning a week trip to Melbourne this fall. We have beed looking for ideas. We will definitely check out some of the places you mentioned.

    • Linda Reply

      Oh that is great to hear! Good timing then! I am sure you will get a great idea!

  3. Melbourne looks like a dream place! I have never been there but it looks like an awesome place to visit. I wish it wasn’t so far away from the United States.

    • Linda Reply

      Yeah, I know it is so far away but Australia is for sure worth a visit!

  4. Your photos are gorgeous! I loved my trip to Melbourne a few years ago, especially once my husband and I got away from the tourist traps. I’m sure I’ll be back one day and I’d love to check out so many places you have on your list. It seems Melbourne always has the most delicious food!

    • Linda Reply

      Thanks a lot!!! Happy you liked it and I hope both of us get back then:)!

  5. I for one have never been out of the United States, but Melborne looks like a location that needs to be on my bucket list of places to visit! It looks like you found a ton of places off the beaten path!

    • Linda Reply

      Oh, then I hope you go one day! Yes, so much to see in this city!

  6. Dalene Ekirapa Reply

    Everything is so beautiful in Melbourne. I’d love to be at South Yarra and take as much photos at Acabus! That place is just photo-worthy! And also, the street art is so beautiful….
    I loved how you dressed up for the time out too.

    • Linda Reply

      Happy to hear you liked it! You choose some great favorites and thanks a lot!

  7. It looks like you had a great time visit Melbourne. I am a foodie so it’s good to know that there are so many spots where you can have delicious food. Also, the street art is pretty cool!

    • Linda Reply

      Oh then you would love Melbourne. The food here was amazing!

  8. These are fantastic ideas. When I travel, I like to do things off the tourist path to get a feel for the local culture. I’ll look into the whenever I visit Melbourne.

  9. I love these posts where people show what to do somewhere that isn’t touristy. The best things are often the ones no one has discovered.

  10. Those murals are so cool! They remind me of downtown Austin, which is a few hours away from me.

    • Linda Reply

      Yeah, the street art in Melbourne is great! Cool, have to visit one day!

  11. I’ve always believed that it’s okay to stick to the touristy places but also step off the beaten path and explore other areas.

    • Linda Reply

      Of course, it is all up to everyone to do what they like! I also like a mix!

  12. I haven’t been to Melbourne, it looks like a really nice place. Your pictures are great..! The bathing boxes are so cute. I love the orange and violet colors..!

  13. Alexandra Cook Reply

    Wow, this place looks incredible. There’s so much to do and see there! Looks like a brilliant place to take the whole family

  14. Such a wonderful place to take a wonderful vacation. It’s so really nice ambiance to spend with family and loved ones.

  15. Geraline Batarra Reply

    Melbourne really looks great..! Thanks for the wonderful tips. I will definitely do this once I get to have a vacation in Melbourne.. ?

  16. Thank you for sharing details for hipster places in Melbourne, It will definitely help the new visitors of Melbourne.

  17. Nina Cochingco Reply

    I bet all this activities and spots are great. Thanks for enlisting all of them. Such a great content.

  18. Gervin Khan Reply

    I have never been in that place and you’ve showed us a lot of beautiful and interesting places to see in this place. So, for me, it is a great place to visit and explore with my family.

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