Whether you’re looking to dance the night away or find the best coffee roasters in Melbourne, the city has something for everyone. That’s why the Economist Intelligence Unit has consistently ranked Melbourne the most livable city on earth. It’s got a vibrant culture, a gorgeous landscape, and plenty of things to do.
Here are five reasons we think it’s the perfect spot to live.
1. World-class art
Melbourne is internationally-known for its street art traditions. Hosier Lane in the city center is famous for large wall-sized portraits and smaller pieces of stencil street art. Everyone from Shepard Fairey to Banksy has stopped by at one time or another to decorate the streets.
It’s also a city that supports its local artists. The weekly Rose Street Market is a meeting spot where you can buy homemade pieces from the area’s best designers and artists. Additionally, Melbourne’s landscape and calendar are dotted with elegant art museums and underground art festivals.
2. The culinary traditions
Melbourne has a huge immigrant population, which has made its culinary scene exceptionally diverse. The adventurous eater can find everything from Ethiopian injera (a kind of pancake) to Chinese dumplings to Greek souvlaki.
On top of that, there’s a huge Vietnamese population, so plenty of pho (or noodle) restaurants can be found. Mix that in with Middle Eastern cuisine, vegan and vegetarian restaurants, kosher food, and more, and it’s no wonder that Melbourne is a global culinary hotspot. You’ll never go hungry here.
3. The bars and live music
Melbourne is a great place to have a few drinks with friends. There are hundreds of rooftop bars or underground dives where you can enjoy a brew while admiring the skyline or soaking up the vibe. The amount of decor diversity is staggering. You can choose from bars with secret entrances (bookcases and fridge doors) to hipster breweries and cocktail lounges.
If you’d prefer some live music, there are plenty of rock venues and dance clubs in which to dance the night away. The Corner Hotel is well-known for hosting everyone from international acts like Mick Jagger to local legends like Saskwatch. If you’d prefer something more subdued, there are also plenty of acoustic and jazz clubs throughout the city.
4. The local tram system
It’s easy to get around Melbourne because the city center is laid out in a grid pattern and the public transport is top-notch. The tram system is the largest in the world, and loved by locals and travelers alike. In line with its street-art ethos, the city commissioned local artists to spruce up the trams.
On top of that, the trams are free to ride if you’re within the city center. If you’re not in the city center, they’re affordable and reach many of the outer suburbs, or connect with top-notch train and bus services.
5. The sports culture
Melbourne is the undisputed home of Australian sport. The city boasts world class venues such as the famous Melbourne Cricket Ground, a coliseum dedicated to cricket and football. It also hosts the Melbourne Park for tennis, basketball and cycling, and the AAMI Park Stadium for soccer and rugby.
In terms of annual sporting events, Melbourne hosts the Australian Open Tennis tournament, the Australian Grand Prix, and the AFL Grand Final. Just outside Melbourne is the Rip Curl Pro, the longest running surfing competition in the world. In short, sports fans always have somewhere to go or some favorite team to cheer for.
For the five reasons above (and many more we couldn’t cover), Melbourne is our pick for the greatest place to live.
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