The 10 Most Instagrammable Spots In Melbourne
This feature is brought to you in partnership with 5 Seeds Cider.
Melbourne is a particularly photogenic city; even the public transport looks enviable under a filter. One of the fun things to do in Melbourne is hitting up the best spots for those Instagrammable opportunities. Here are some of Melbourne’s best photo spots – from the best inner-city street art to a secret “island” bar, an unexpectedly quaint laneway to some historic bathing boxes along the beach. Hunt down these beautiful places in Melbourne and watch those Instagram ‘likes’ climb.
#1 St Kilda Pier
St Kilda is very Instagrammable – it’s home to Luna Park, St Kilda beach and the Palais Theatre. But St Kilda Pier is the best photo of the lot – stretching out into the bay it ends in the heritage-listed Pavillion building, and continues with a breakwater which is home to a colony of little penguins. Obviously they are super cute and make for adorable Instagram photos, but there are signs warning against flash photography, and there is a concern that selfie sticks could break eggs or alarm the birds. Keep your distance, or go with an Earthcare Penguin Guide to get the best photo, safely.
#2 Naked For Satan
Naked For Satan on Fitzroy’s Brunswick Street is a pintxos bar specialising in infused vodkas. Downstairs the food is cheap – pintxos are $2, and even less expensive during generous happy hours. But upstairs, at Naked in the Sky, is where the magic really happens and you can get a great photo of Melbourne and surrounds. The Melbourne restaurant and bar was designed to celebrate the view, as the building is the lone high-rise in that area. The city skyline is right there to the south, while Melbourne’s suburbs sprawl away to the north, and tall glass barriers protect you from the wind. Go at sunset to get the best photos at this highly Instagrammable restaurant.
#3 Footscray Community Arts Centre
The problem with a spectacular skyline is it’s hard to appreciate it while you’re standing in it. A good vantage point is a little elevated, and far enough from the city that you can see all the contours of the buildings, the whole panorama. There are a lot of beautiful places in Melbourne to get that perfect view, and they each have their charms; Williamstown is great, or a rooftop in Northcote.
But the best Melbourne skyline photo by far is the view from the Footscray Community Arts Centre. Next to a rail bridge, on a hill that leads down to the Maribyrnong River, the city-scape is on full display here, and just far enough into the distance to look truly spectacular in your Instagram timeline. Footscray Community Arts Centre hosts St Jeromes Laneway Festival every February, but they have their own awesome program of events all year around if you’re looking for an excuse to take the train out west.
#4 Queen Victoria Market
While Melbourne has its fair share of Instagrammable cafes, there’s nothing like a tray full of fresh fruit and veg to make a photo look really colourful. Vic Market is full of awesome Melbourne photo opportunities – weird mushrooms, sacks of tea, stacks of capsicums, avocados and oranges. It’s also full of awesome buskers, a famous churro cart, and great sangria. The Deli Hall’s high ceilings and old fittings also make it a charming place for photos and you can snag a bunch of free tastings while you’re there at the wine shop, cheese stands, and bakeries. Vic Market is open every day except Mondays and Wednesdays. Wednesday evenings in summer you can catch the Night Market, which is a whole different Instagrammable opportunity – the cavernous sheds are full of smoke and delicious food stalls, fairy lights, music, drinks, and dancing.
#5 The Abbotsford Convent
Melbourne’s Abbotsford Convent has lived many lives – as a convent, a university, and now home to artists, events, a cinema, performance space, restaurants and markets. Everything about this beautiful building looks good in a photo, from the dark bricks against a grey sky to the white washed studio walls, to the colourful stalls at the Makers Market, on the third Sunday of every month.
If you’re looking for things to do in Melbourne there are a lot of reasons to visit the convent, but one is Shadow Electric, a walk-in bar housed in the industrial school’s courtyard and band room. It’s open November to March, with an outdoor cinema showing new films and cult hits, as well as a constant program of bands year-round.
#6 Centre Place
Degraves may get the most credit for Melbourne’s laneway culture, but the most Instagrammable Melbourne laneway is Centre Place, right across the road. It looks the most like Diagon Alley from Harry Potter and it’s usually bursting with buskers. Stores sort of topple in against each other, with spindly lights looming over-head. The black pavement and many nooks of the lane make it a favourite – it’s dark and mysterious and changes every time you visit, with shops moving in and out, performers changing all the time, and street art fading and regenerating constantly.
But there’s another reason Centre Place looks the most bustling, exciting laneway in pictures – it has the best vantage point to get a photo from. If you enter from Collins St via Centre Way Arcade, you emerge at the top of a short staircase, above all the activity and in the perfect spot to get a photo for your Instagram.
#7 The Stained Glass Ceiling at the National Gallery of Victoria
Melbourne is home to one of the largest suspended stained glass windows in the world – and it takes a very cool photo. Look up when you’re in the Great Hall at the National Gallery of Victoria and you’ll be showered in the reds, purples and blues of the artwork, designed by Melbourne artist Leonard French.
Stand underneath, point straight up and you’re sure to get a magical combination of colour and light, different depending on where you are in the room and the time of day you visit. The NGV is a great spot for other photos as well. Artworks move around frequently, and occasionally there is a exhibition so Instagrammable that it’s not even funny, like Paola Pivi’s giant, coloured, featured bears, or Melbourne Now.
#8 Brighton Beach boxes
Melbourne’s not really known for it’s photogenic beaches, but Brighton Beach has something that beats a picture of the ocean. The historic bathing boxes along the edge of the sea are colourful and weird and lying in front of them on a nice day is exactly what you imagine going to the beach should be like. The 82 bathing boxes are structurally the same as they were over 100 years ago, but their colours and designs change all the time to the whims of their licensees. Some are stripped, or covered in a flag, but most are bright and candy-coloured. It’s because of the boxes that photos of Brighton Beach look like a day at the beach from an old picture book. Put on your highest-waisted bathers and big sunglasses and snap away.
#9 Street Art In Fitzroy
Street art in Fitzroy is hard to miss, and delivers some of the most Instagrammable walls in Melbourne. When you’re walking down Brunswick Street keep an eye on the walls shooting off to side streets like Argyle and Rose. The wall murals there change from time to time, and are always incredible. The backstreets between Brunswick Street and Smith Street are like an open air gallery, with paste-ups and murals from artists AWOL, Ghostpatrol and Miso, as well as a two-walled tribute to Adventure Time. If you’re looking for Instagrammable walls, Melbourne’s Fitztroy is the place to go.
#10 Ponyfish Island
Ponyfish Island isn’t really an island – it’s a bar and cafe floating around the Southbank Pedestrian Bridge, which crosses the Yarra River near Flinders Street Station. You get to this Instagrammable cafe by descending the stairs from the bridge, and it wraps around one of the pylons holding the bridge up.
Because of a few things, every picture Instagrammed at Ponyfish Island cafe looks like you’re having an idyllic time. On the water? Check. Drinking mint-filled cocktails? Check. City-scape behind you? Check. There are plenty of bars that would fit some of these things, but Ponyfish is a safe bet when you’re wanting to brag about getting let out of work early on a Friday afternoon, or Instagram some avocado smash on a Saturday morning.
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(Lead mage: Linda Xu)