calendar-grid-61 copy Created with Sketch. chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up close envelope facebook info instagram location menu phone search-sml search star-half star-o star twitter

Shop 'til you Drop

11 Oct 2018

Take tram route 86 from Docklands to Northcote for a retail adventure

Stop D11, District Docklands

Start your day at one of the city’s newest shopping precincts, District Docklands. Stock up on some essentials – think Bonds, Canterbury and Forever New – before strapping on your skates and taking to the full-size ice rink at O’Brien Group Arena [105 Pear River Road, Docklands].

Experience the world in a completely different way at one of Melbourne’s latest attractions, Dialogue in The Dark [Harbour Town, Level 1, 29-31 Star Crescent, Docklands]. A sensory journey created in partnership with Guide Dogs Australia, it gives you the opportunity to take on a simulated city in complete darkness.

Another reason to visit District Docklands is to snap yourself at ArtVo [26 Star Crescent, Docklands]. It’s unlike any other gallery in the city; you play a character in the giant artworks on display. The interactivity of the spaces allows plenty of creativity, making it a hoot for all ages.

Stop 5, Bourke Street Mall / Bourke Street

Think Melbourne, think Bourke Street Mall. Any time of day, any time of year, the pedestrian and tram-friendly thoroughfare is the heart of the city and as such is always a popular place to be.

Bourke Street is, of course, one of the best spots in Melbourne to fill your shopping bags. Try your luck at the city’s two biggest department stores, Myer [314-336 Bourke Street] and David Jones [310 Bourke Street], as well as other major retailers on the strip such as H&M [Melbourne GPO, 350 Bourke Street], Zara [284-292 Bourke Street] and General Pants Co. [G1-G7/283-297 Bourke Street].

Of course, if you’re feeling adventurous, you can try your luck down one of the nearby lanes or alleyways. Spy some of the city’s most creative street art in Union Lane or go for a better-than-average Melbourne memento at The Melbourne Shop by Lumbi [Royal Arcade, 23/335 Bourke Street] in the gorgeous Royal Arcade.

Stop 12, Melbourne Museum / Nicholson Street

Gertrude Street is one of the hippest addresses in all of Greater Melbourne, so hop off at Stop 12 and make your own way on foot. Depending on what time of day you’re strolling along, you might fancy a casual crêpe at Brezioz French Crêperie [2/49 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy], a pint and a pub lunch at The Workers Club [51 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy] or an upmarket meal at Cutler & Co [55-57 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy] – all before you hit the first intersection!

Simply window shop or poke your head in and check out some of the latest fashion trends at retailers such as Sunday Social Shop [158 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy], Megan Park [164 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy] or Edgeley [220 Gertrude Street Fitzroy].

For something completely different, visit what is surely one of Melbourne’s most esteemed billiards stores, Harry Evans & Sons [206 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy]. Custom-designed tables, accessories (think lighting, racks and cues) and more are on display and for purchase, meaning that even if you’re not in the market for a new pool table you can spend some time browsing.

Stop 27, Westgarth Street / High Street

Take some time out from all that shopping at the inner north’s most-loved cinema, Palace Westgarth [89 High Street, Northcote]. Nestled in one of the most sought-after pockets of Melbourne, the near-century-old cinema is an architectural marvel, with traces of Art Deco, modernist and geometric decorative styles amid its classical features. Catch an arthouse film on one of the three screens in the complex, put your feet up and munch your way through a choc top.

If you’re looking for a meal nearby, Bar Nonno [83 High Street, Northcote] has you covered. The pizzas and other Italian fare not only look stunning but taste as authentic as if sourced direct from Italy. Plus, the wine menu is brimming with nearly 120 different options from four continents. Make sure you pre-purchase your cinema ticket, otherwise you could end up staying here for hours and miss your film.

Stop 35, Dennis Street / High Street

Much of Northcote’s popularity has come on the back of thriving High Street, and as you climb Ruckers Hill from Westgarth through the main part of town, the designers and fashion stores that line both sides of the street make this a shopper’s paradise. Towards the northern end of the suburb, before you cross into the equally as charming Thornbury, you’ll find Welcome to Thornbury [520 High Street, Northcote].

The fact that it’s technically located in Northcote might be somewhat confusing, but what’s not confusing is the excellent array of beers on tap and the revolving selection of Melbourne’s food trucks that call it home every night of the week (also, they’re open from 11am on weekends). On any night, there might be up to seven food trucks from which to choose. Tuck into Korean street food or Uruguayan steak sandwiches, mouth-watering burgers or jerk chicken, plus much more.

Stop 43, Raglan Street, Plenty Road

As Northcote’s urban cool has continued up High Street through Thornbury, it has now reached pockets of Preston. A sprawling suburb, Preston is home to Preston Market [corner Cramer and Mary Streets, Preston] and possibly the world’s best-named furniture store in Back to the Futon [120 High Street, Preston], but it’s also seen plenty of trendy bars and breweries open in recent years.

Tallboy and Moose: knees-up of epic proportions. There are 10 beers on tap, with most brewed on the premises. The owners here share the love, though, with guest taps pouring offerings from other local craft brewers, including ciders and other liquid treats.

You can keep riding the number 86 tram further north with the La Trobe University students to visit Stray Neighbour [463-467 Plenty Road, Preston, right near Stop 50, Sylvester Street / Plenty Road], another great restaurant that sprung up in an old garage a few years ago. Otherwise walk to Bell Station and hop a train back into the city.

getting around

Need some help getting from A to B so you can discover Melbourne?

Just pop your starting point and where you want to go into the PTV Journey Planner, as well as your ideal departure or arrival time.

The Planner will find the easiest way for you to get where you want to go, plus give you easy-to-follow instructions on how to get there.

For more information, visit