Melbourne Budget Holiday Guide

Melbourne is a fun city to visit and explore even if you wear pants with the shallowest of pockets. For a start a bohemian atmosphere, there are often street performers to watch and street art to look at, but wait there’s more…

Day 1: Take a stroll, sniff out a bargain and enjoy a few experiences money can’t buy:

  • Melbourne’s market obsession means bargains in clothes, souvenirs, toys and more. Try out the Queen Victoria Market in the city and the Mediterranean feel of the Preston Market. Grab some breakfast down there and be ready to pounce on a deal.
  • Take a tram down to St Kilda Beach. Grab a tan on the sand and a dip in the sea, wander along the esplanade before ducking into The Espy for beer, wine and lunch with a view.
  • If the killjoy Romans hadn’t outlawed gladiators, they’d be playing every weekend at the MCG – Australia’s shrine to AFL and cricket. You can tour the stadium for $20 and even run out on the hallowed turf basking in the raucous applause of 100,000 vacant seats.
  • At the four-legged friendly Moroccan Soup Bar in Fitzroy North, feast on ridiculously large vegetarian main courses for under $15 or gorge on a bloating $17-per-person banquet

Day 2: No theme for the day, just a taste of eclectic Melbourne’s finest and cheapest:

  • Do a tour of the Old Melbourne Gaol. Amongst the macabre and historic see where Ned Kelly pondered, “Such is life” before dropping through the floor. Or wait until after dark and do a Hangman’s Night or Ghostseekers Tour.
  • Sandwiches and symphony makes wonderful music at the Melba Hall Free Lunch concert series each week during semester where staff, students and veterans unleash some bowed strings, woodwind, brass and percussion magic.
  • Amongst the fun at Melbourne Planetarium and Lightning Room are interactive rooms and special effects shows where boffin looking people do really cool and normally illegal things with over 2 million volts of electricity (Adults $8, kids free entry).
  • Share a plate of economic and delicious dumplings at the Shanghai Dumpling House in Chinatown. If you're stumbling around the city after midnight, head to the Supper Inn for a Cantonese late night feast.

Day 3: Jump on a tram and discover what all this Melbourne culture malarkey is about:

  • At the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Federation Square you can see uber cool retro films and changing exhibitions, try hands-on activities and even join in nerdy image discussions.
  • Right next door is the National Gallery of Art, hording some of Australia’s best-known artworks. And you can wander the hallways for free.
  • Have dinner at the famed Pelligrini’s Espresso Bar on Bourke Street, where you can dig into huge servings of mains such as spaghetti and lasagne for around $15.
  • And if you happen to be around Bourke St on a Monday night you’ll find chickens, Irishmen and blondes crossing the road to Spleen Bar’s free comedy night.

Recommended Melbourne Budget Hotels:

  • Save money for the waking hours by saving on the sleepy time at the funky Victoria Hall Accommodation where you can shack up in a dorm room or family room near CBD hotspots such as Chinatown and the Princess Theatre.
  • Stay near the stylish shopping of Chapel Street , South Yarra at the Claremont Guesthouse, with shared and private rooms available and breakfast always included.

See the list below for more Melbourne Budget Hotels.


4 star
353 Little Collins Street Melbourne 3000 Australia

Located on Little Collins Street in Melbourne CBD, Causeway 353 Hotel offers stylish modern rooms with LCD TV, en suite bathroom and air conditioning. Facilities include a fitness centre, a steam room...more

3.5 star
2-8 Carlisle Street St. Kilda 3182 Australia

When you stay at Cosmopolitan Hotel in St. Kilda, you'll be in a shopping district and minutes from Acland Street and Luna Park. This 4-star hotel is within close proximity of Palais Theatre and St Ki...more

3 star
196 A'beckett St Melbourne 3000 Australia

Located in Melbourne CBD, just 2 minutes’ walk from Queen Victoria Market, Nomads Backpackers features a rooftop sun deck and cinema lounge. The property offers a 24-hour reception desk and free WiFi...more

3 self rated
380 Russell Street Melbourne 3000 Australia

Space Hotel features a rooftop terrace, fully equipped fitness centre, a bar with a happy hour and a private cinema for movie nights. Some rooms have a private bathroom, flat-screen TV and iPod dockin...more

2 self rated
22 Little Collins Street Melbourne 3000 Australia

Offering free Wi-Fi and a sunny rooftop terrace, City Centre Budget Hotel is just 2 minutes’ walk from Parliament Train Station. There is a TV, refrigerator and electric kettle in every room. Located...more

3 self rated
45 Dudley Street Melbourne 3000 Australia

Flagstaff City Inn is located a 2-minute walk from beautiful Flagstaff Garden. It is only 700 metres from the interstate Spencer Street train and bus terminal, with direct airport transfers available....more

3 self rated
333 St Kilda Road Melbourne 3182 Australia

Featuring free WiFi, a barbecue area, bar and a sunny terrace, Habitat HQ Hostel is just 15 minutes’ walk from St. Kilda Beach. This hostel has a 24-hour front desk, a guest lounge and a communal kitc...more

3 self rated
189 Toorak Road Melbourne 3141 Australia

Built in 1886, the tastefully restored Hotel Claremont Guest House is a 1-minute walk from the South Yarra Rail Station and a 2-minute walk from the popular Chapel Street. It features free continental...more

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