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Laneway Guided Walking Tour with Lunch
- Laneway guided tour: See Melbourne's charming network of laneways, alleyways, and arcades with an entertaining, informative guide who will point out great art, architecture, shops, and restaurants.
- Melbourne attractions: Start your tour at Federation Square and pass by St. Paul's Cathedral, the grand State Library Victoria, and the city's arts scene at Hosier Lane, plus many others.
- Laneway a-la-carte lunch: Melbourne is known for its hidden gems. Mid-way through your tour, you'll enjoy a full a-la-carte lunch at one of these secluded hideaways.
About this Melbourne Tour
Melbourne's laneways weren't on the map in 1837 when surveyor Robert Hoddle came up with the grid plan for the city. Back then, Melbourne only had 4,000 people, but Hoddle designed a huge grid for the municipality, with 98-foot-widestreets and 24 main city blocks bordered by Lonsdale, Flinders, Spring, and Spencer Streets, that allowed room for growth.
But Hoddle was a surveyor, not a king. So he had to bow to the wishes of Governor Richard Bourke, who wanted little streets for service entrances added to the grid, the way mews were part of London. These small streets, known as laneways, grew in population during the Gold Rush of the 1850s. In many instances, they became sites for shenanigans and slums.
In the last few decades, as efforts to revitalize the city's Central Business District (CBD) took hold, the laneways have been gentrified. Today, as you walk these culturally significant little streets, you'll see impressive examples of street art as you pass by trendy shops and eateries. Be on the lookout for stencil graffiti. This art form, which uses stencils to reproduce elaborate images quickly, began in the 1960s and is now a worldwide subculture.
Your tour starts in Federation Square, Melbourne's modern piazza. Your guide will tell you about some of the 2,000 cultural events taking place there each year. Other attractions include St. Paul's Cathedral, which was where the first Christian service was conducted in Melbourne, and the impressive State Library. Your guide can give you the skinny on everything you see, from the history of the red light district to the political art at Hosier Lane. As you enjoy a delicious laneway lunch, raise a glass to Governor Bourke for his contribution to the city grid so many years ago.
It's a lane way to the top (if you wanna rock 'n' roll)
Melbourne's ACDC Lane, in the heart of the city's bar district, is one of the more popular lanes to visit. The lightning bolt in its sign and the posters on the street indicate what the lane is named for. Yes, it's for AC/DC, Australia's most popular band. AC/DC filmed the video for their song It's a Long Way to the Top on a flatbed truck on Swanston Street, and wrote most of their first album in Melbourne. Hell's bells!
Please make your own way to Federation Square
Take extra precautions to avoid too much exposure to the sun. Even on cloudy days, the UV is stronger than you may think.
This tour involves a moderate amount of physical activity. It is not wheelchair accessible. Travelers with limited mobility may not see all sites fully but can participate at their discretion.
Walking Tour, Scenic, Family Friendly, Cultural
Tour Participation Requirements
This experience is rated moderate. Full participation may require extended periods of walking over even and uneven surfaces, steep terrain and/or water activity in a slight current. There may be steps, inclines, cobblestone surfaces, and extended periods of standing. Participants with physical limitations should take this into account.
Suitable for all ages. All children must have their own safety seat.
Full refunds issued for cancellations made 7 full days prior to the date and time of requested services. Cancellations made within the 7-day and 72-hour window will receive a 50% refund of purchase total. Purchases are non-refundable inside of 72 hours.
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