Melbourne's city and suburban areas are serviced by an efficient railway network. Metro services operate across the metropolitan area, which run from around 5am (7am Sunday) until midnight seven days a week. Later services also operate out of the city on Friday and Saturday nights.
Flinders Street Station, located alongside the city's main shopping precinct, serves as the hub for the rail network and is over the road from Melbourne s visitors centre in the Federation Square complex. Southern Cross Station, the next station down the line, serves as the hub for interstate and intra-state rail and coach transport; airport buses and interstate coaches terminate here. Many major hotels and much of Melbourne's backpacker accommodation is located in the vicinity of Southern Cross Station.
Explore Melbourne By Train
V/Line is the public transport provider for regional Victoria. Visit their website or call 131 196 for ticket and timetable information. Viclink also provides helpful information on public transport services for regional Victoria.
Melbourne has the largest network of trams in the world, which ply the congested streets of Melbourne's older suburbs. The tram network has 28 routes radiating out from the major streets of the city centre to mainly the older suburbs. The trams are somewhat of a tourist attraction, but can be quite slow, particularly through the gridlocked streets of many inner suburbs.
Metropolitan tram services normally operate between 5am and midnight, Monday to Saturday, and 7am to 11pm Sunday. Later services also depart the city on Friday and Saturday nights. Check timetables at Metlink.
Trams travel along most of Melbourne's major thoroughfares and tram stops are signposted with a map, tram route numbers and timetables. The route number is also displayed at the front of the tram. Travellers who haven't pre-purchased their tickets should remember to carry coins, as on-board ticket machines do not accept notes.
Free City Circle trams travel the perimeter of the central business district every day between 10am and 6pm, except for Christmas Day and Good Friday. Hours of operation are extended to 9pm on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays during daylight saving time.
Explore Melbourne By Tram
Buses serve the middle to outer suburbs, usually from terminals at major suburban railway stations.
Airport Shuttle Bus: This service leaves from the International and Domestic Airports Terminals every 10 to 15 minutes during the day and half hourly at other times. The singular drop-off point in the city is Southern Cross Station Bus Interchange. A return service from Southern Cross Station Bus Interchange to the International and Domestic Airports Terminals also operates every 10 to 15 minutes.
Skybus Metcards are available at Skybus outlets at Melbourne Airport Tullamarine, Spencer Street Station, Metshop. They can also be purchased on-line. Booking travel on the Airport Shuttle Bus is not required.
Melbourne has an extensive network of off-road bicycle paths and some on-road bicycle lanes. Otherwise, cyclists must share the road with other users. Outside Melbourne many disused railway lines have been converted into rail trails in scenic areas like the Yarra Valley and Dandenong Ranges, Phillip Island, Gippsland and the Goldfields.
Throughout Australia, wearing helmets on a motor cycle or a bicycle is compulsory, and all cyclists must follow the road rules. Helmets are available for just $5 at many retail outlets or vending machines at Southern Cross Station and Melbourne University.
Taking a bike on a Melbourne train is permitted during off-peak periods at no extra cost, during peak periods a concession fare for the bike must be paid.
Melbourne Bike Share stations: Melbourne Bike Share is a relatively new form of public transport, designed for short trips across the city. Simply purchase a subscription that suits you, take a bike when you need it and then return it to one of the 50 bike stations throughout the city. Before hiring, remember that wearing helmets on a motor cycle or a bicycle is compulsory, and all cyclists must follow the road rules. Helmets are available for just $5 at many retail outlets or vending machines at Southern Cross Station and Melbourne University.