Explore this leafy neighbourhood on the cusp of the city and discover quaint wine bars, locally-loved cafes, garden oases and more.  

KereKere Green

On the hunt for a cosy garden cafe with top-notch coffee and food? Make your way to KereKere Green in Fitzroy Gardens. This socially-minded cafe serves up gourmet toasties, cakes, sandwiches, quality brews and more. You can also pick up a well-stocked picnic basket to take to the gardens. It comes with crockery, blankets and cushions so you can enjoy your alfresco feast in one of Melbourne’s most beautiful parks.

A woman is ordering coffee at a cafe window. The wall is covered in green vines.
KereKere Green

Life's Too Short Bar

Every neighbourhood needs a good local wine bar and this one housed in a 160-year-old building is the ticket. A little bit European and with a rather large wine list, Life’s Too Short Bar is the perfect place to sit back with a glass of vino and a bite to eat. Keen to extend your wine knowledge? Join one of the regular wine tastings or classes to upskill on your pinot, merlot and chardonnay.  

The Johnston Collection

Multi-award-winning, critically acclaimed and held at an undisclosed East Melbourne location. The Johnston Collection is quite the hidden gem. The home’s maze of rooms are filled top to bottom with all that’s gilded and antique. Think chequerboard floors, glittering chandeliers and portraits of ruffle-necked figures. The special house museum hosts exhibitions and events year-round.  

A yellow room inside a historic house with antique furniture there are two paintings of people on the wall.
The Johnston Collection

East Melbourne General Store

It's a milk bar, nursery, news agency and cafe all rolled into one. The East Melbourne General Store is where the locals go for their daily essentials. Stop by this old-school gem and grab a freshly-made sanga for lunch. Or sit back and enjoy a lovely latte and house-made muffin. Short on pantry essentials? Fill your basket with quality sourdough, fresh pasta, fruit and veg and more.  

The Tippler & Co 

From the cosy restaurant to the lush courtyard and leafy window nook. There's not a bad seat in the house at this plant-lined gem. Visit during ‘Tipple Time’ for $12 cocktails every Tuesday to Saturday. There's also pizza Tuesdays and half-priced gnocchi or pasta on Wednesdays. Local wines, grazing boards, thrice-cooked fries and share plates round out the menu.

A woman sitting at a window bar seat in a leafy bar.
The Tippler & Co

Melbourne Cricket Club Library

Sport and literature make an unlikely pair beneath the MCG, where a light-filled ‘members-only’ library is stacked with books. This must-visit facility is included as part of the MCG tour which you can book here. It's home to a 400-year old French dictionary containing the first ever reference to cricket. Plus one of the best views of the city.

Roccella

Pizza, pasta and tiramisu are the ultimate crowd pleasures so book into all-day Italian joint Roccella. The star of the show is a fancy take on a Hawaiian pizza set to convert even the most orthodox Italians. It's topped with charred pineapple, aged prosciutto and creamy fior di latte. If you're feeling extra famished, go for the non-stop pizza menu for $40 or the all-you-can-eat feed me option for $70. Plus there are lots of gluten free and vegan options.

A Hawaiian pizza and a glass of white wine
Roccella

Powlett Reserve Tennis Centre

Channel your inner Serena Williams and smash out a game or two at the Powlett Reserve Tennis Centre. It’s home to the most centrally-located tennis courts in Melbourne, open every day of the week. Keen to improve your serve? Book a Victorian Tennis Academy coach for pro tips and tricks. Hot tip: book a court online for a discounted rate.  

The Conservatory

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and take refuge at The Conservatory in Fitzroy Gardens. With its Spanish-style architecture and 93-year-old history, this peaceful oasis is the ideal spot to sit and enjoy some peace and quiet. The flower and plant displays change every few months – from stunning hydrangeas in the summer to a tropical paradise in autumn.   

A mother and child are walking through a garden conservatory
The Conservatory

Beddgood

We’ve found the perfect little brunch spot in East Melbourne to cater to your smashed avocado needs, and then some. Bedggood on Wellington Parade offers up all the classics with a twist. Think peach and citrus hotcakes, eggs benne with house made apple cider hollandaise and bircher with  pineapple and lime labna. Stopping by for lunch? Don’t go past the fried chicken sandwich with chilli aioli on a fluffy milk bun. Served with chips of course.  

Fairies’ Tree and Model Tudor Village

Did you know that Fitzroy Gardens has its very own fairy sanctuary and miniature village? Take your little mates to these magical hidden gems starting with the Fairies’ Tree by Artist Ola Cohn. Look closely at the beautiful carvings on this red gum to discover Australian animals and other cute characters. Then take a peek at the teeny tiny historic village. This idyllic scene includes everything from a church and school to Shakespeare’s home. 

A miniature Tudor village in a garden.
Model Tudor Village

Hemingway's Wine Room

Cosy up on the leafy side of town at Hemingway's. Bar shelves lined with bottles and books lend a bohemian vibe, while the brasserie’s red leather banquettes are pure Paris. The wine list is indulgent and extensive, with drops from Japan, France, Spain and Italy. Closer to home you'll find the best of the Clare Valley, Mornington Peninsula and Gippsland. All which pair well with delights from the roaming cheese trolley.

Discover more in East Melbourne

Cooks' Cottage

Cooks' Cottage

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Grocery Bar East Melbourne

Grocery Bar East Melbourne

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East Melbourne Library

East Melbourne Library

Australia's most ecologically sustainable public library.

Fire Services Museum of Victoria

Fire Services Museum of Victoria

Australia's largest collection of fire-fighting memorabilia.

Last updated on Mon 18 Mar 2024

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