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Rebecca Russo

Rebecca Russo

Editor of Time Out Melbourne

Rebecca Russo is Time Out's former Editor of Time Out Melbourne.

Articles (161)

25 things to do for $25 or less in Sydney

25 things to do for $25 or less in Sydney

Sure, Sydney’s hella exy, but if you look hard enough, you’ll find some cheap as chips things to do that won’t leave a big hole in your bank balance. 1. Climb some boulders harness free (don't worry, the padded floors promise a soft landing) at 9 Degrees in Alexandria. For less than $25 you can nab a full week of climbing. $23  2. Connect to country with an Indigenous guided walking tour at Dharawal National Park in Campbelltown on a Saturday. $15 3. Go for a dip at the heritage-listed Wylie’s Baths that sit below the Coogee coastal walkway. $6  4. Nab purr-fect coffee and meow-nificent cookies with the Catstronauts at Surry Hills’ Catmosphere Cat CafĂ©. $24 for weekday entry to the Cat Lounge   Photograph: Robert PolmearCatmosphere 5. Slurp down some super mega ramen noodles at Gumshara (pictured below) in Chinatown’s Eating World. In case you bring a mate, a bowl should be big enough serve to satisfy two people. $25    6. Get a hit of the good feels that come with volunteering, by pitching in at Pocket City Farms for their Thursday Evening Volunteering – you'll be rewarded with dinner and drinks thanks to Young Henry's and their team of community chefs at the end. $0  7. LOL all night long at the Running Joke on Level One of the Potts Point Hotel every Tuesday night. From $20 8. See the beaches on two wheels with a Cruiser Bike from Manly Bike Tours. $22 for an hour 9. Tuck into a sweet and fluffy tower of soufflĂ©-pancakes at the Australian outpost of the widely popular

Opinion: Hot cross buns should be microwaved, not toasted

Opinion: Hot cross buns should be microwaved, not toasted

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Time Out Melbourne, Time Out Australia, Time Out Group or any of its affiliated entities. I don’t need to tell you that Easter is fast approaching. It’s the time of year to stuff your face with chocolate eggs and hot cross buns because we’re told those things don’t exist outside of this ordained period of time (it’s all lies, you know. Woolies sells hot cross buns as “spicy fruit buns” throughout the year, and Easter eggs are just regular chocolate in the shape of eggs). But here is the thing about Easter that really gets my goat. You, like the majority of people, are almost certainly eating hot cross buns wrong. Don’t toast the crossies; microwave them. Yes, microwave. And no, I don’t just mean defrost the bun. I mean blast those suckers on high for at least a minute to really get those fruity buns going. They’re better than anything that comes out of a crummy toaster. You know why? It’s because a microwaved hot cross bun is how a hot cross bun is truly meant to be enjoyed. You’re bringing the bun back to how the bakers originally intended it to be eaten – straight from the oven, warm and gooey on the inside. It’s like a brownie. Would you like your brownie burned, crisp and hard to chew? No, you like it gooey so that the chocolate melts in your mouth. By microwaving a hot cross bun, you get softer fruits, a tangier (but not harsh) hint o

The best jazz bars and clubs in Melbourne

The best jazz bars and clubs in Melbourne

The roaring '20s are here again, and naturally, that means jazz is due for a comeback. Here in Melbourne, jazz never really went out of style, with a healthy population of clubs dedicated to the city's hepcats. Whether you're after a full dinner show or just somewhere you can sit back and relax with a whisky and some Coltrane, these are the top places to listen to jazz music in Melbourne. Then take the music home with you at one of Melbourne's best record stores. Or drop into one of the city's slickest wine bars for a post-gig drink. Want more live music? Check out the best gigs happening in Melbourne this month.

The best waterfalls in Victoria

The best waterfalls in Victoria

Victoria is peppered with cascading rivers, some with plunge pools you can swim in and some dotted beside awe-inspiring bush walks. Forget what TLC said and go forth and chase down these magnificent waterfalls across our state. Be sure to pack a picnic so that you can sit back, relax and take in the views. Take a look at our favourites below then hop in the car and hunt down these majestic cascades.  Want something longer than a day trip? Here are our favourite weekend getaways.

The best swimming holes in Victoria

The best swimming holes in Victoria

Beaches are overrated. You get coated in sand that's as inescapable as glitter, and you could get stung by a jellyfish. Swimming holes, on the other hand, are very fun. They’re nature’s swimming pools, carved naturally out of rock and featuring some very refreshing waters that are ripe for splashing around in. Below are some of our favourites in Victoria. Would you rather look at gushing water? Here are Victoria’s best waterfalls. Keep driving and you’ll find some of the state’s best national parks, too. Time Out's 100 Days of Summer calendar is here to help you plan your entire summer in Melbourne.

11 SoHo-style abbreviations for Melbourne we should all start using

11 SoHo-style abbreviations for Melbourne we should all start using

Here’s a shout out to the first person to call the Melbourne Cricket Ground the ‘G. Not content with just using the acronym MCG, this blessed soul decided to go one further and nickname it the ‘G.  Aussies love to shorten words; this isn’t news. It’s part of our ‘strayan DNA, like footy, Accadacca and chucking ueys. The reason? Who knows. We’re either too busy or too lazy for complete words. But let’s be real: who has time for complete words anymore? These days it’s all about the abbreves. That’s why we think other Melbourne landmarks and location names could use some shortening. Below is a list of Melbourne abbreviations we reckon need to catch on. We’ve modelled these on the NYC way of abbreviating locations (like how SoHo is south of Houston Street, NoLita is north of Little Italy and TriBeCa is an abbreviation for the ‘triangle below Canal Street’). Southern Cross Station = SoCroPort Melbourne = PoMeSouth Melbourne = SoMeWest Footscray = WeFoFitzroy North = FiNoNorth of Flinders Street = NoFliSwanston and Elizabeth Street corridor = SwElWest of Hoddle Street = WeHoEast of Chapel Street = EaChaSouth of Johnston Street, Fitzroy = SoJoSouth of LaTrobe = SoLa  Want to trick some gullible newcomers? Here are 19 Melbourne lies to tell tourists. Once you've had your fun, here are 32 ways not to be a dickhead on Melbourne public transport. And if you're making plans, consult our guide to the best things to do in Melbourne this week.

101 things to do in Melbourne at least once in your life

101 things to do in Melbourne at least once in your life

Whether you're a first-time visitor to Melbourne or have lived here all your life, there are some absolute must-do Melbourne bucket list items that just can't be missed. And yes, we may be slightly biased in saying that Melbourne might be the greatest city on Earth – but we have the stats to back us up, with Melbourne consistently ranked among the world's most livable cities. But we reckon if you give a few of these experiences a whirl, you'll agree with us.  Melbourne's food, drink, coffee, art, theatre and sport culture are among the best in the world, and we reckon you should try to experience every single one of them at least once before you die. So here is our ultimate bucket list: 101 amazing things to do in Melbourne right now, plus attractions, great restaurants, bars, fun festivals and everything in between. Enjoy, and thank us later. For a deeper look into two of our greatest pastimes – eating and drinking – browse our guides to Melbourne's best restaurants and best bars.

12 amazing natural wonders to visit near Melbourne

12 amazing natural wonders to visit near Melbourne

One of the many great things about Victoria is that it's a comparatively small state, meaning that most destinations are within a day's drive from the capital of Melbourne. And boy, are there a lot of amazing destinations to visit. From surreal pink salt lakes to misty rainforests and ancient mountain ranges, Victoria is replete in natural wonders worth travelling for – and we've rounded up some of the best. We've also got great ideas for day hikes close to Melbourne and these excellent scenic drives to take around Victoria.  RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in Melbourne

Cosy cabins you can stay in near Melbourne

Cosy cabins you can stay in near Melbourne

If you're not a fan of roughing it but love the outdoors, try staying in a cosy cabin near Melbourne. Perfect for getting off the beaten track without having to sacrifice access to indoor plumbing or needing to cook your food over an open flame, these cabins let you explore the bush while still enjoying creature comforts. On the road? Here are the best scenic drives to take in Victoria. Or make some bigger plans – here are ten Victorian national parks you should visit at least once in your life. RECOMMENDED: The best Airbnbs in Melbourne

The best Airbnbs in Melbourne

The best Airbnbs in Melbourne

Forget what Sydneysiders tell you: Melbourne is the cultural capital of Australia. Visitors flock from all over to visit the city for the endless supply of cutting-edge galleries, restaurants and events. And when you’re in a city this cool and hip, it seems like a mighty shame to be staying in a cookie-cutter hotel. Experience the city like a local in a unique and homely Airbnb. You might enjoy it so much that you reconsider moving and making the city your new home.  There are so many amazing Airbnbs in our city that are often more affordable than your standard hotel and provide a way cozier and more welcoming stay. Whether you're a local keen on a staycation or a visitor who wants to feel like a genuine Melburnian, these are the best Airbnbs you'll find in Melbourne.  RECOMMENDED: The best day hikes from Melbourne RECOMMENDED: The most quirky Airbnbs in VictoriaRECOMMENDED: The best hotels in Melbourne This article includes affiliate links. These links have no influence on our editorial content. For more information, click here.

12 Melbourne hacks to make your life easier

12 Melbourne hacks to make your life easier

From scoring cheap movie tickets to knowing the best way to travel around this city, these Melbourne hacks will have you kicking goals all over this fabulous city. 1. Set up auto top-up on your Myki. Imagine never having to line up at a Myki machine ever again. This is the reality when you’ve got auto top-up installed on your Myki. No more cursing the slow person in front of you (who, without fail, can’t make up their mind about how much money to put on their card and always, always, insists on getting a receipt) or jumping on a tram and hearing the dreaded “negative balance” tone. All you need to do is register your Myki online, pick a card you’d like to debit from and the value you’d like to be topped up and voilà. Now, when your Myki money drops below your minimum balance, it will automatically top itself up. Read more of our public transport tips. Even better: If you have an Android phone, you can put your Myki on the Google Pay app and never carry around plastic cards again. You can set it to auto top-up, too – then just tap your phone and go. 2. Shop at Queen Vic Market at 3.40pm on a Saturday. Rock up 20 minutes before closing at the Queen Vic Market and you could score yourself a sweet deal, whether it’s fruits, veggies, freshly baked bread or even cheese if you’re lucky. Closing times on market days vary, so keep these open times handy: Tue, Thu and Fri 6am-3pm; Sat 6am-4pm and Sun 9am-4pm.   3. Dine at Melbourne’s fanciest restaurants on the cheap. Melbourne's bi

The best free things to do in Melbourne

The best free things to do in Melbourne

They say the best things in life are free. We're not 100 per cent on board with that sentiment (have you had a perfectly prepared cocktail? That ain't cheap), but not everything in Melbourne has to cost a bunch of money. From art shows to wine tastings, there are a bunch of things to do in this fine city that you can do for free. Yep, free. Zilch. Nada. Zero dollars.  Happy to spend a couple of bucks? Here are our favourite cheap eats for under $20, and here are our top picks for things to do in the city for $25 or less.

Listings and reviews (129)

Australian Open

Australian Open

Every year, thousands head to Melbourne Park to watch the superstars of tennis battle it out in the fierce summer heat. Despite the heatwaves that occur regularly during the event (temperatures of 35 degrees or higher are common) the Australian Open continues to attract the world's best tennis players and their fans to the southern hemisphere's only Grand Slam tournament. The 2023 tournament begins on Monday, Monday 16. Day and night sessions are available, and adult tickets start at $59. Best to book your tickets sooner rather than later. You can click the 'buy ticket' button above to get yours and learn more about session options at the website. Looking for more things to do? Check out our guide to the best things happening in Melbourne this week. Time Out's 100 Days of Summer calendar is here to help you plan your entire summer in Melbourne.

Pixar Putt

Pixar Putt

Kick some serious putt at Pixar Putt, a pop-up mini golf experience that’s back in Melbourne this December. The experience is inspired by some of Disney Pixar’s most famous films, with 18 different holes drawing on classics like Toy Story, The Incredibles, Finding Nemo, A Bug’s Life, Ratatouille, Monsters Inc and Wall-E.   Pixar Putt pops up for a limited season at the Frankston Waterfront from December 16 to January 29. After dark sessions for adults are also returning on Thursday to Saturday nights from 8pm to 10pm. You can choose between the nine-hole course or the full 18-hole course. Tickets will be $29.90 for adults, $19.90 for juniors (3-14 years old) or $79.90 for families doing the nine-hole course. Or, it's $39.90 for adults, $29.90 for juniors and $119.90 for families doing the 18-hole course.  Best to buy tickets in advance to secure your spot. Tickets are available now via the website.

Mitchelton Winery

Mitchelton Winery

It’s clear we’ve all been sleeping on Nagambie. This small town, located in the serene Goulburn Valley, is only 90-minutes drive north of Melbourne and has a lot to offer for Melburnians seeking a tree change. Maybe the biggest drawcard is the beautiful Mitchelton Winery estate which, natch, boasts a cellar door and primo wine varietals, but also a swish hotel, restaurant and Indigenous art gallery.  The winery has been around since the late '60s, having developed a reputation for its riesling and shiraz varietals and picking up a few dozen awards over the years. It was in 2017 that the Mitchelton estate was developed into what we see today: a sprawling property on the banks of the Goulburn River, surrounded by grapevines and distinguished by the 55-metre tall tower that features on Mitchelton’s wine bottles.  Mitchelton is known for its production of high-quality shiraz and riesling wines that show off the Heathcote grapes that wine lovers know well. Visit the cellar door and you’ll be able to try six wines of your choosing, making your way from a buttery smooth chardonnay towards a fun sparkling shiraz or even a more intense, oak-y shiraz. The property is also home to a daytime providore for great coffee and snacks, as well as a restaurant, the Muse. The Muse focuses heavily on sustainability, only using seasonal produce from around the region and cooks most of its food on the in-house wood-fired grill and roasting pit. Get amongst this great cooking style by ordering the r

The Music Gym

The Music Gym

Learning a new instrument as an adult is a hard task. For one, instruments are hella expensive, meaning you often have to shell out a small fortune for something you’re not even sure you’ll be that good at. Enter: the Music Gym. The Music Gym is an initiative created by music teacher Catherine Prifti, with the idea of letting adults learn new skills in a convenient location where you can squeeze in a class during your lunch break, before or after work. Keen participants can sign up for voice, piano and guitar lessons at the Music Gym. Here you'll be able to learn basic skills (or brush up on old skills) with state-of-the-art instruments and expert teachers at your side. Group classes can be purchased at a casual one-off rate, or choose a 10-pack, 20-pack, or even a private lesson. You’ll find the Music Gym at Melbourne’s Galleria, at the intersection of Bourke, Elizabeth and Little Collins streets.

Adelphi Hotel

Adelphi Hotel

Located within a hulking 1938 building on the busy CBD hotspot that is Flinders Lane, the Adelphi Hotel is a nice landing spot for those who value edgy design, location and first-rate service. The Adelphi is a gorgeously styled boutique hotel, from its signature zig-zagged floor right down to the ubiquitous lolly jars in every room. Redesigned in 2013 by Hachem, the hotel might not be as sophisticated as its neighbouring Westin Hotel, but that lack of stuffiness works to Adelphi’s advantage, especially considering you’re sharing walls with some of the city’s hottest restaurants. With only 34 rooms, the Adelphi can afford to be a little playful in design. Kitschy lamps, furry rugs and not-very-functional-but-still-cute couches line the corners of rooms, with the centrepiece king-sized bed a comfy standout. The brightly hued rooms also come with 40-inch flat screens (with unlimited movies), spacious bathrooms with rainfall showerheads and minibars full of free snacks and non-alcoholic drinks.  Peckish? You're in luck. Staying at the Adelphi means you're seconds from Japanese diner Supernormal, the French-Vietnamese Coda and arguably the city's busiest restaurant, Chin Chin (if you don't mind the queues!). Downstairs at the Adelphi is also a sweet tooth's paradise thanks to Om Nom Dessert Restaurant. We’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about the rooftop. The Adelphi’s rooftop pool is probably one of the most photographed pools in Melbourne, thanks to its cantilevering glass bott

Zagame’s House

Zagame’s House

It’s fair to say Zagame’s Downtowner, a plain, somewhat daggy city-fringe hotel that has been hanging around the corner of Lygon and Queensberry streets since 2003, has had quite the glow up. Opened in May 2019 after an $18 million renovation, Zagame’s House is a chic addition to Melbourne’s boutique hotel scene and features all the plusses that make a staycation worth it: plush king-sized beds, velour armchairs, a rainfall shower, a decked-out minibar and minimalist Scandi furnishings that seem straight out of a Pinterest collection. If you dig a little deeper, you’ll realise it’s the small touches that make this place A grade. Rooms feature organic bath products from UK brand Cowshed, Marshall speakers you can connect to via Bluetooth and custom-lit bathroom mirrors that have different illumination settings for the perfect selfie. The hotel is wheelchair-accessible, and the late-night room service menu is all fancy toasties (think truffle cheese, meatballs or harissa chicken).  Zagame’s has probably one of the best-stocked minibars in town, by the way. There’s Espresso Martini in a can, beers from locals like Moon Dog Brewery, sodas from Bickford and Sons and hand-selected Everleigh Bottling Co, cocktails. If you're hungry, you can buy a selection of house-made sweet and savoury treats like gummy bears, raspberry twists and chocolate pretzels. Bored? There’s a pack of Uno cards on the menu, too, as well as a “lover’s kit”, which has condoms, lube and even a battery-operated

Urbnsurf

Urbnsurf

If you've bemoaned the fact that inner-city Melbourne doesn't have proper surfing beaches, this is for you. Head along to Australia's first inland surf park, Urbnsurf, located within spitting distance of Melbourne Airport in Tullamarine.  This inland wave pool is the first full-sized surfing lagoon to use Wavegarden technology. If that all sounds like gibberish, let us explain: the pool uses technology to create long, man-made waves in a closed environment. According to Urbnsurf, it's able to pump out up to 1,000 perfect, two-metre-high ocean-like surfing waves every hour.   The two-hectare surfing lagoon has areas customisable for all ages and abilities – so if you're not Layne Beachley just yet, you'll do just fine. The modular wave generator means that there can be different kinds of waves in different sections of the pool. Beginners can attend surfing lessons in the whitewash with friendly and talented surfing coaches while the pros can stick to the back with consistent waves above two metres tall.  Pro surfers will be pretty content with the quality of wave barrels at Urbnsurf. And while the backdrop of an airport isn't as atmospheric as the shores of Byron Bay, the most jarring difference here is the lack of sand. The pool isn't that deep (especially in the whitewash) so falling off or tumbling means you might scratch yourself on the concrete floor. But being able to play God like this with the frequency of waves means Urbnsurf has the capability to stop the waves comp

Jurassic World by Brickman

Jurassic World by Brickman

Maybe you’re a lifelong fan of Lego. Maybe you got hooked on Lego Masters. Maybe you’re a huge dinosaur fan and have a shrine to Jeff Goldblum and the original Jurassic Park movies. Whatever your fascination, this exhibition might be for you. Ryan ‘the Brickman’ McNaught, the only Australian Lego certified “professional”, has opened his next big Lego exhibition set to hit Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.  From now until January 30, you’ll be able to enter an immersive Lego experience set to be the largest Lego experience in Aussie history. Made in partnership with the Jurassic World franchise, this new event will have over 50 large-scale dinosaurs, props, scenes and activities made using over six million Lego bricks.  If you’re familiar with the franchise, you’ll be able to recognise Isla Nublar, the science labs of Jurassic Park, a petting zoo and maybe even pose with life-size Lego dinosaurs. Keep an eye out of the Brachiosaurus, which weighs over two tonnes.  Tickets are on sale now via this link. Prices start at $25, and there are discounts for concessions and family groups). 

Fortress

Fortress

Are you ready to play? Fortress Melbourne is the southern hemisphere's largest video gaming and esports entertainment venue. It's located on the lower ground floor of Emporium Melbourne, and it's massive. No, really. The venue encompasses 2,700 square metres of space over two levels.  Inside you'll be able to experience some of the coolest games and newest technology from around the world. There's a 200-seat esports arena, plus 160 Alienware PCs, VIP game booths, streamer pods and tabletop and board game areas. There are also function spaces, a restaurant and two bars so you won't go hungry or thirsty.  The space is designed for gamers of all ages – and it's not just for the Fortnite fans. There's a range of games on offer including Mario Kart, Dota 2, Rainbow 6 and heaps more. The venue runs special board game nights on Wednesdays (including food and drink specials and free play) and always-popular beginner-friendly Dungeons and Dragons games on Sundays.  Fortress Melbourne is open daily. Walk-ins are welcome, but it's recommended to book.

iFly

iFly

Want to enjoy all the thrills of skydiving without actually leaping out of a plane? An indoor skydiving experience called iFly might be for you. Imagine a specially designed wind tunnel that’s been turned upright so that the air travels upwards. Now picture yourself caught in that powerful updraft. This is indoor skydiving. It’s a concept used by the skydiving community to practice their free-fall technique. It really does feel like you’re suspended in mid-air, thanks to this giant propeller blasting air. It’s loud, as you can imagine, but also extremely safe, because you’re never more than a few metres from the ground. IFly has been around the world (including the US, UK, France, Dubai, Brazil, Canada, New Zealand and Singapore) for over 20 years now, and this is the brand’s second Australian outpost. Anyone aged three and up can try it and prices start at $79.95 per person. 

W Melbourne

W Melbourne

For a taste of inner-city luxury, you can’t go past W Melbourne. The hotel, which opened in February of 2021, packs 294 guest rooms, 29 suites, a secret bar, a premium restaurant and a sexy top-floor pool into its Flinders Lane digs – and still manages to feel boutique rather than behemoth.  Every detail at the W Melbourne has been carefully considered, meticulously placed and kept affectionately local. Its design takes inspiration from Melbourne’s laneway culture, with little nods to our city throughout the venue. From the wardrobes that look remarkably like Melbourne’s streetside kiosks to the street art-style artworks of a female affectionately called “Mel” that adorn many of the hotel’s walls, you can tell this is a hotel that likes to have a bit of fun.  And with the kind of rooms the W is offering, you'll probably have a bit of fun as well. Floor-to-ceiling windows feature in every room, as do colourful fixtures, Foxtel channels and king beds that lure you into a content slumber. But it’s the bathrooms that really impress: each room is fixed with a Japanese Toto toilet (yes, the ones with a bidet and heated seats!). The remainder of the bathroom is equally as fabulous, with luxe Davines bath amenities on hand to keep you smelling delightful.  There’s a fitness centre on level 14 alongside what might be the cherry on top of this entire hotel: a gorgeous, gold-roofed indoor pool with a poolside bar and a DJ booth. The pool is pleasantly warm and accessible 24/7 (just be w

Pinot Pilates

Pinot Pilates

If you’d have told us we’d be mixing our alcohol consumption with our exercise routines over the last 18 months, I would have thrown my yoga mat in your face. But here we are, in lockdown 6.0, and ready to mix some pinot and Pilates.  Pinot Pilates is hosted by Pilates instructor Laura Roodhouse and will be getting Melburnians stretching and winding down on Friday, August 27 at 6pm. The one-hour class is capped at 100 attendees so it's recommended you secure your spot ASAP. Tickets for Pinot Pilates are $10 and you can book in here. Note that only the Pilates session is included in the ticket price, so you'll have to BYO wine (or check out this list to get your booze delivered).

News (594)

You can get clothing that looks like Melbourne’s trams and trains

You can get clothing that looks like Melbourne’s trams and trains

If you’re the type of Melburnian who’s thought, “Gee, that seat pattern is not at all obnoxiously colourful and feels like an ancient velour carpet,” then boy have we got something for you. We’ve stumbled upon a series of clothing options for the Melburnian who likes to prove to everyone around them that they are, in fact, a public transport lover.  There are these green socks that resemble the seat pattern on a Yarra Trams vehicle. You can pick yours up when you purchase this card game about Melbourne public transport, Touched On.  There’s also the Yarra Trams T-shirt which, thankfully, is made of cotton and not that horrific soiled fabric we know and...er
 love. Our personal favourite is this Connex T-shirt that looks like the pattern found on many Melbourne trams. Wear it onboard and you might even blend into the surroundings. Who says all Melburnians have to wear black?  But, actually, all Melburnians do wear black – we found out why.

These are the oldest recorded photos of Melbourne

These are the oldest recorded photos of Melbourne

Melbourne sure has come a long way. Back before settlers arrived in the 19th century, Indigenous Australians had already lived on Naarm for around 31,000 to 40,000 years. Where our city centre now lies was an important meeting place for the five groups of the Kulin nation, including the Woiwurrung, Boonwurrung and Wathaurong people. Thanks to the central Yarra River, or Birrarung, it was an important place for groups to meet and source food and water. These days, Melbourne is still a hub for food, drink and entertainment – albeit a little more built up. With the help of the team at the State Library of Victoria, we managed to track down some of the earliest recorded photographs of Melbourne. Photograph: State Library of VictoriaView of Swanston Street looking north from Collins Street. This first one shows Swanston Street looking north from Collins Street. It was taken in 1858, but not much else is known about the photograph or who took it. Photograph: State Library of VictoriaBourke Street looking west from Spring Street. This one shows a much less crowded Bourke Street with a view west from Spring Street. It was also taken in 1858. Photograph: State Library of VictoriaThe Yarra River below the Falls. The last one is of the Yarra River in 1858. Its title is “The Yarra below the Falls”, which refers to an area near where the Old Customs House was beside the Yarra. It once had a set of cascades where saltwater from the ocean met the freshwater of the river. It had rock

Fireball is now selling a 3.5-litre “firebox” goon bag of whisky

Fireball is now selling a 3.5-litre “firebox” goon bag of whisky

We’re all familiar with Fireball Whisky, the cinnamon-flavoured party starter. Well, you’re about to become even more intimately familiar with the classic whisky brand. This festive season Fireball has released a 3.5-litre firebox cask, which is essentially two 1.75-litre Fireball goon bags. If we break the numbers down, that’s over 100 30-millilitre shots (with two taps to dispense). Good lord.  These limited-edition boxes are available online through Booze Bud and in select alcohol retailers. It’ll set you back $224.99.  Looking for more booze? Here are the best boozy advent calendars to try.

You can now play Cluedo at the Old Melbourne Gaol

You can now play Cluedo at the Old Melbourne Gaol

If being in lockdown for months has taught us anything, it’s that people love a conspiracy. Now, Melburnians can put their sleuthing skills to the test. For a limited time, the Old Melbourne Gaol is hosting a real-life game of Cluedo which gets visitors to explore the venue and investigate a story using QR codes and physical evidence. You’ll study the alibis of criminals, scan weapons for DNA and hopefully catch the culprit. Photograph: James Thomas/Supplied Ready to immerse yourself in a good old-fashioned game of whodunnit? The Cluedo booklet is $5, in addition to the general admission cost $30 per adult or $17 per child. The game runs from 10am to 5m Wednesday to Sundays. Learn more at Old Melbourne Gaol's website. Galleries are reopening in Melbourne and here’s what they’re showing.

So what is considered metropolitan Melbourne?

So what is considered metropolitan Melbourne?

As of right now, only metropolitan Melbourne and Mildura are in lockdown, with the rest of regional Victoria under much less strict restrictions. Those in the regions can leave home for any reason and visit hospitality venues, while metropolitan Melbourne and Mildura remain locked down. Those in metro Melbourne will be permitted to travel to the regions once we hit 80 per cent vaccination, expected to be around November 1. But the term “metropolitan Melbourne” is a pretty broad term, what exactly does it cover?According to the government, metropolitan Melbourne “is the geographical area that defines Melbourne as a city and the capital of the state of Victoria”. There are 4.9 million people who live in the 9,990 square kilometres that metro Melbourne covers.  Metropolitan Melbourne is divided into 31 local government areas (LGAs). Those LGAs are: Banyule, Hume, Moreland, Bayside, Kingston, Mornington Peninsula, Boroondara, Knox, Nillumbik, Brimbank, Manningham, Port Phillip, Cardinia, Maribyrnong, Stonnington, Casey, Maroondah, Whitehorse, Darebin, Melbourne, Whittlesea, Frankston, Melton, Wyndham, Glen Eira, Monash, Yarra, Greater Dandenong, Moonee Valley, Yarra Ranges and Hobsons Bay.  All other LGAs in Victoria are classified as regional and are not under lockdown orders. The exception is the LGA of Mildura Shire, which continues under the same lockdown rules as Melbourne due to the outbreak there. If you’re confused as to what LGA you fall under, head to this website where

Use this handy map to see Melbourne exposure sites near you

Use this handy map to see Melbourne exposure sites near you

If you're looking for a location-based breakdown of coronavirus cases in Melbourne and Victoria, this handy app should help you. Covid19nearme is an unofficial website based on data available on the Victorian government website. While your first look should be at the government's website, which is updated according to health department information and contact tracers, covid19nearme does give users a visual aid for current exposure sites. Using the map's functions, you can search for suburbs, postcodes or alert locations near you. The results will indicate whether an exposure site is tier 1, 2 or 3 and let you know what government advice is if you've been to a site during the exposure period.  Click through here for access to the Victorian map, and read up about the latest information from the Victorian government here. Confused? Have a read of Melbourne's current rules and restrictions.

This handy website shows where you and your friend’s 15km bubbles overlap

This handy website shows where you and your friend’s 15km bubbles overlap

We have certainly become acquainted with the five-kilometre radius around our homes, as Melburnians have been stuck in their 5km bubbles since lockdown 6.0 began. But once 80 per cent of Victorians had received at least one dose of a Covid-19 vaccine on September 28, Melbourne is now restricted to 15km bubbles. Having a limited amount of space to travel within meant we were all hankering to know where our bubbles intersected with friends. And while Melbourne experiences ebbs and flows of restrictions, it's always handy to know where you can meet up with your mates. The Covid Lockdown Overlap Finder website helps you find where you can meet up with friends for exercise or outdoor recreation. It’s super easy to use – just input your suburb and the suburb of your pal and find where you can meet up within a 15km bubble. If you need a little reminder about the rules right now, read this handy explainer. Here's what you can and can't do in Melbourne right now.

Picnics are back: Melbourne will welcome new freedoms from this weekend

Picnics are back: Melbourne will welcome new freedoms from this weekend

It’s looking like Victoria will hit its 70 per cent first dose vaccine threshold within the next 24 hours. So, as promised back in early September, Victorian premier Dan Andrews has announced a few modest changes to the current restrictions to those in metropolitan Melbourne and greater Ballarat.   The five reasons to leave the home will remain. These are ​​to ​​get the food and supplies you need; to exercise; to receive care or for caregiving purposes; for authorised work or education; and to get vaccinated. However, from 11.59pm on Friday, September 17, there is now a sixth reason to leave your home: for outdoor social interaction. Here's what's changing: One person may meet another person from another household for a picnic, a walk or another outdoor activity, regardless of vaccination status; Up to five adults (plus their dependents) from two households will be able to gather outdoors if all adults present have received both doses of the Covid-19 vaccine; The time permitted to exercise (and for outdoor social interaction) will increase from two hours a day to four hours a day; The distance you can leave your home for shopping (for necessary good and services), exercise and outdoor social interaction will increase from five kilometres to ten kilometres; Two people can also train outdoors with a personal trainer; and Skate parks and outdoor communal exercise equipment will reopen. For the full list of rules, check with the government website.  For regional Victoria (everw

'We haven't peaked': Victoria's caseload to get worse before it gets better

'We haven't peaked': Victoria's caseload to get worse before it gets better

Victoria's daily Covid-19 caseload has been bouncing around between 400 and 500 for about a week, but chief health officer Brett Sutton has warned that those numbers are expected to increase.  "We haven't peaked, unfortunately," Sutton told a media conference today. "The Burnett modelling and everything we know in relation to our current vaccination coverage would suggest that cases will continue to increase. The fact that they're being held in the 400s again ... it's a very hard number to keep under wraps. Vaccination alone won't mean that there's a peak at the 400s." There is now evidence that our northern neighbours have flattened the curve, with daily new case numbers in NSW levelling off around the 1,200 mark. The CHO indicated Victoria could be headed for such scary numbers in the coming weeks, with our numbers increasing faster than NSW's.  "It's very hard to know," Sutton said. "We've had a higher growth trajectory in the previous week. It seems to have stabilised a little bit in the last few days, but we don't know where that true number is. The risk of it getting to 1,000 is real, so we have to press on with vaccinations at the fastest possible rate for that reason alone." Want to protect yourself and your community from Covid-19? Here's how to get a vaccination right now.

Ballarat to head back into lockdown as cases in region rise

Ballarat to head back into lockdown as cases in region rise

Premier Dan Andrews has announced that the city of greater Ballarat will be entering into lockdown from midnight tonight, September 15, as cases in the region have increased over the past few days.  The people of Ballarat will be under the same restrictions as metropolitan Melbourne, with only five reasons to leave their homes: to ​​get the food and supplies you need; to exercise for up to two hours per day; to receive care or for caregiving purposes; for authorised work or education; and to get vaccinated. The premier also noted there would be additional vaccines sent to the Ballarat region to help support the region during this outbreak.  Victoria’s chief health officer, Brett Sutton, has flagged that Ballarat’s lockdown could be lifted in a week if the community manages to contain the spread of the current outbreak.   While the area of greater Ballarat enters lockdown, it’s been confirmed that the area of greater Shepparton will exit from lockdown and live under the restrictions that the rest of regional Victoria are under.  Today, Victoria recorded 423 new locally acquired cases with only 149 of these cases are linked to current outbreaks. Yesterday there were 41,856 doses of the vaccine administered, which led to Victoria smashing its 1 million jabs in five weeks target.  If you have any symptoms, please get tested immediately. Want to get vaccinated? Here’s where to book your shot. For more details on the rules, head to the government website. Here’s how to book a Pfize

Melbourne’s food and drink scene has been voted one of the best in the world

Melbourne’s food and drink scene has been voted one of the best in the world

It’s safe to say we all know Melbourne’s food and drink scene is outstanding, so it’s always great when we get the accolades to prove it.  Each year Time Out launches the City Index, a poll of 27,000 city-dwellers from Melbourne to Madrid, Chicago to Copenhagen and Tel Aviv to Tokyo. This year, we wanted to find out which cities really stepped up and pulled together. So we asked you not just about food and culture, as we always do, but also community projects, green space and sustainability.  The results are in, and while Melbourne has slipped from its high spot in previous years down to 15th, there is still much to celebrate about our city – in lockdown or out of lockdown.   Firstly – food and drink. A whopping 94 per cent of respondents ranked Melbourne highly for its food and drink scene, helping it come in sixth on this list of the world’s best cities for eating and drinking. Everything from parmas to dim sims, banh mis to kebabs can be found on every corner of our city – and thankfully many of these things can be delivered right to our doorsteps during lockdown.  Similarly, Melbourne was voted highly for its cultural offerings. Ninety-one per cent of City Index respondents gave Melbourne four or five stars for culture, making its plethora of art exhibitions, festivals, events and gigs some of the most exciting in the world. Of course, we have to mention the elephant in the room – lockdown. Many of the other cities on the best cities list are out of lockdown while Melbour

Victoria has smashed its 40 per cent vaccination target

Victoria has smashed its 40 per cent vaccination target

Vax and the City: Every public health official in Australia agrees that mass vaccination is the only way out of this crisis. We at Time Out recommend that you get vaccinated as soon as you can if that is appropriate for your own health. Please speak to a medical professional about what is right for you.  Some good news on the vaccination front: just over 40 per cent of Victoria’s eligible population (those aged 16 or over) are now fully vaccinated against the Covid-19 virus. According to the Department of Health, 40.76 per cent of Victorians have received their second dose of the vaccine, and 66.22 per cent have received one dose of the vaccine.  On September 1, Victorian premier Dan Andrews indicated that there would be some easing of restrictions when Victoria hit a 70 per cent first-dose vaccine threshold. It was anticipated that this would occur on September 23, though thanks to high vaccination numbers, it’s looking like this could happen in just four days, on Friday, September 17.  As the state recorded this exciting target over the weekend, there was additional news about extra vaccines arriving in our state. Prime minister Scott Morrison announced an extra 400,000 Pfizer and Moderna vaccines would be arriving in Victoria this month, with a plan to focus those extra doses on hotspots in Victoria’s north and west.  To keep an eye on Victoria and Australia’s vaccine rollout, we recommend keeping an eye on CovidLive.com.au which has up-to-date information on case and vacc

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