Touring Melbourne: Federation Square

Explore the heart of metropolitan Melbourne, the world’s most liveable city of 2017 and Victoria’s melting pot of culture, arts, and commerce.

On the corner of Flinders and Swanston Streets sits Federation Square, a 7.9-acre complex that is home to Australia’s major arts and cultural attractions and host to world-class events.

Federation Square has a wide array of shops, boutiques, restaurants, bars, and cafes that it becomes a favourite meeting place of Melburnians. People from different walks of life, with different ideas, and different culture converge at Fed Square to have a glimpse of Australia’s latest cultural scenes, tourist attractions, and food and wine.

The square is a maze-like complex of buildings in a U-shape oriented towards the west around an open-air main square that provides a feel of Australia’s outback. It has received more than 10 million visitors annually since it opened in 2002.

Housing the National Gallery of Victoria’s The Ian Potter Centre and the Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI), the square also hosts over 2,000 cultural and commercial events every year.

Visit Fed Square for the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival in March. Taste the flavour of Victoria and gently swill a glass of wine. A month later, check out the Melbourne International Comedy Festival which is held in April. Throughout the year, there is plenty of events such as performances, exhibits, and workshops.

At ACMI, one of the world’s leading centres of moving pictures including film, TV, gaming, and digital arts, watch some great movies at film festivals. Or visit the Ian Potter Centre to see an exceptional collection of Australian artworks including paintings, drawings, photography, prints, textiles, decorative arts, and Aboriginal creations.

Catch the weekly Fed Square Book Market where book lovers flock to The Atrium to sift through piles of over 5,000 titles spanning from literature to history, from travel to children’s stories. You can also have a chance to get the autograph of some authors.

Drift down the laneways of Fed Square dotted with shops and boutiques, restaurants and cafes, and bars and bistros where you can have a shot of booze while enjoying the views of the riverfront areas.

With its location at the heart of Melbourne’s CBD, Fed Square can easily be accessed through the city’s public transportation system. Just across the road is Flinders Street Station. You can reach the square by bus, train, tram, boat, car, and bike. If you travel by tram, your ride is free.

From the square, you can stroll down the streets to the city’s other major attractions like the Botanical Gardens, Crown Casino, Melbourne Aquarium, Melbourne Cricket Ground, Eureka Tower, and the National Gallery of Victoria.

I suggest you take a tour around Melbourne’s CBD by tram, and hop off to see some important landmarks on foot. Sometimes, it is better to get lost in the city so you will have the chance to talk to local folks and make some friends along the way.

At Fed Square you don’t get lost, you simply explore.

By Kelvene Requiroso, content writer and member of the SEO team of the Melbourne-based Get Lost Travel Group.