16 Best Things To Do In St Kilda, Melbourne For The Ultimate Time

Thinking of visiting St Kilda but wondering what exactly to do there. Then no worries, I will let you know the best things to do in St Kilda for all types of travelers! I want you to have the ultimate time in this beautiful suburb so get ready for some relaxed vibes. 


If you are visiting Melbourne in Australia no doubt you need to make your way over to St Kilda. This is one of Melbourne’s most popular and vibrant seaside suburbs, attracting visitors and locals alike with its eclectic mix of culture, history, entertainment, and natural beauty. Whether you’re looking for a relaxing day at the beach, a fun-filled night out, or a cultural immersion, there are plenty of the best things to do in St Kilda, Melbourne.

Just a short tram ride away from Melbourne CBD the relaxed vibes and chilled-out residents make this place seem miles away. St Kilda has a rich history and heritage, dating back to the mid-19th century when it was first known as Melbourne’s seaside playground for the elite. It later became a red-light entertainment district in the 1950s and ’60s, and a haven for artists, musicians, and a diverse LGBTQIA community thanks to its carefree bohemianism that lingers to this day. There is an excellent vibe here as you will feel as you walk around and explore.

Though let’s get into this exploring as I tell you the best things to do in St Kilda, Melbourne. From the beach, sky, shops, and foodie spots we have you covered for the ultimate time in this iconic spot.


The 16 Best Things To Do In St Kilda, Melbourne

looking back towards the city when walking around the waterfront in st kilda
looking back towards the city when walking around the waterfront in st kilda

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Luna Park

Bring out your inner child at Luna Park. Luna Park is an iconic amusement park that has been entertaining generations of Melburnians since 1912 and is one of the best things to do in St Kilda.

Luna Park has something for everyone, whether you’re looking for a gentle ride or a thrilling adventure. You can ride the Scenic Railway, the oldest continuously operating roller coaster in the world, which takes you around the perimeter of the park and offers spectacular views of Port Phillip Bay. You can also try the Silly Serpent, a family-friendly coaster that twists and turns; the Pharaoh’s Curse, a swinging pendulum that spins you upside down; the Coney Island Top Drop, a free-fall tower that drops you from 13 meters high; and many more. They also have a variety of carnival games and attractions, such as the Laughing Clowns, the Dodgem Cars, the Carousel, and the Ghost Train. You can test your skills and win prizes at the games stalls, or enjoy some classic fun at the attractions.

Luna Park is not only a place for rides and games but also a venue for events and entertainment. Throughout the year, Luna Park hosts special events such as Halloween Nights, Christmas Parties, New Year’s Eve Celebrations, and more. You can also catch live music and comedy shows at the Espy Hotel next door, one of Melbourne’s most iconic live music venues.

Grab some amazing fairground treats such as hot chips, donuts, and hot dogs. Make sure to book your tickets online for an extra discount and skip the main ticket line (we had to wait an hour to get in).

of course no visit is complete without going to luna park, one of the best things to do in st kilda
of course no visit is complete without going to luna park, one of the best things to do in st kilda

Skydive

Looking for something different to do while in St Kilda? Something exhilarating? Exciting? That would make an excellent story. Why not give skydiving a go? Skydiving is one of the most exhilarating experiences you can have, as you freefall from up to 15,000 feet above the ground at speeds of over 200 km/h. You’ll also get to enjoy stunning views of the city and its surroundings, such as Port Phillip Bay, St Kilda Beach, and the Great Ocean Road.

Skydive Melbourne is Melbourne’s only beach skydive, offering tandem skydives from 14,000 feet above St Kilda attached to an experienced professional. You’ll get to see the iconic landmarks of Melbourne’s creative capital, such as Luna Park, the Palais Theatre, and the MCG. You’ll also land on the soft sand of St Kilda Beach, where you can celebrate your achievement.

Located next to the St Kilda Marina Skydive Melbourne has a group of well-trained staff and excellent facilities to make your experience perfect! Check out their website for prices and get ready for an epic adventure.

getting ready to go for a skydive, one of the best things to do in st kilda melbourne
getting ready to go for a skydive, one of the best things to do in st kilda melbourne

Sip On Craft Beer At The Local Taphouse

The Local Taphouse is a cozy pub that offers a rotating selection of over 20 taps from local and international breweries. You can also enjoy delicious pub grub, live music, trivia nights, and comedy shows at this St Kilda institution. The rooftop beer garden is a great spot to soak up the sun and enjoy the views of the neighborhood.


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St Kilda Beach

St Kilda Beach is one of Melbourne’s most popular beaches, offering a wide stretch of golden sand, calm waters, and stunning views of Port Phillip Bay. It is a sandy beach that stretches for about 700 meters between St Kilda Marina and St Kilda Harbour.

St Kilda Beach is a popular destination for locals and visitors alike, with a range of activities and attractions to suit everyone. You can swim, sunbathe, surf, kite surf, or paddle-board at the beach, or join the locals for a game of beach volleyball or cricket. You can also stroll along the palm-lined boardwalk and the historic St Kilda Pier, where you can spot penguins at dusk or enjoy a bite at the kiosk.

a quiet morning on st kilda beach during sunrise
a quiet morning on st kilda beach during sunrise

Check Out The Revamped Espy

The Esplanade Hotel, or the Espy as it’s affectionately known, is one of Melbourne’s most iconic live music venues, hosting legendary acts such as AC/DC, Cold Chisel, and Paul Kelly over the years. After undergoing a massive renovation in 2018, Espy reopened with three stages, 12 bars, two restaurants, and a podcast studio. You can catch a gig, have a drink or a meal, or explore the quirky art and decor that fill this historic hotel.

The Penguin Parade in St Kilda

Seeing the little penguins march together at sunset is absolute perfection if you are in the area and my personal favorite on this list of best things to do in St Kilda. Head down to the public area of St Kilda Breakwater for the best spot.

They are ‘parading’ all year round, though, during the winter months, there may only be a couple, so best to experience this in summer. Also, during daylight savings, there will be volunteer guides to show off the penguins, educate and answer questions.

Here, you can witness a colony of about 1400 little penguins, also known as fairy penguins, returning to their nests after a day of fishing in the bay. The best time to see the penguins is just before dusk when they start to emerge from the water and waddle across the rocks. The promenade on the St Kilda Breakwater can get very crowded at times, so it is recommended to visit during weeknights or off-peak seasons.

To protect the penguins and their habitat, there are some rules and guidelines that visitors must follow. These include:

  • No handling or feeding of the penguins
  • No flash photography or torches without a red filter
  • No dogs or cats past the entry gate (except assistance dogs)
  • No climbing or sitting on the rocks
  • No entering or staying past the fence on the breakwater
  • No littering
  • Keeping at least 3 meters away from the penguins

The penguin parade is a free and natural event that depends on weather and tide conditions. The number and timing of penguins may vary each night. The penguins are wild animals and may be affected by human disturbance, so please respect them and their environment.

make sure you check out the penguin parade, this is my favorite thing on this list of the best things to do in st kilda melbourne
make sure you check out the penguin parade, this is my favorite thing on this list of the best things to do in st kilda melbourne

See A Gig At The Palais Theatre

The Palais Theatre is another landmark of St Kilda’s music scene, boasting a stunning art deco facade and a rich history of hosting local and international stars such as The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, and Kylie Minogue. The theatre has a capacity of over 2,000 people and offers an intimate and atmospheric setting for concerts and events. Check out their website for upcoming shows and tickets.

the beautiful facade of the famous palais theatre in st kilda
the beautiful facade of the famous palais theatre in st kilda

Raise A Glass At The Pub

St Kilda has no shortage of pubs where you can enjoy a cold pint and a warm atmosphere, no doubt this is one of the best things to do in St Kilda. Some of the favorites include The Prince of Wales Hotel, which features a band room, a public bar, and an upscale restaurant; The Vineyard, which offers live music, comedy nights, and an extensive wine list; and The Post Hotel, which serves classic pub fare and hosts trivia nights and karaoke.
no better way to spend a hot afternoon then down at the pub with a cold one
no better way to spend a hot afternoon then down at the pub with a cold one

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Explore the Jewish Museum of Australia

The Jewish Museum of Australia is a fascinating place to learn about the history and culture of the Jewish community in Australia. It is located opposite one of the city’s most beautiful synagogues, the St Kilda Hebrew Congregation.

The Jewish Museum of Australia has a collection of over 20,000 objects, documents, and photographs that tell the stories of Jewish history, culture, and identity in Australia. The museum features permanent exhibitions that showcase Jewish art, rituals, and traditions, such as Belief and Ritual, Calling Australia Home, Evolving Identities, Timeline of Jewish History, and The Jewish Year. The museum also hosts temporary exhibitions that explore contemporary themes and issues related to Judaism and society.

The Jewish Museum of Australia is open from Tuesday to Sunday, 10 am to 5 pm. Admission is free for the permanent galleries and the shop. Charges apply for temporary exhibitions and some programs and events.


Feast On Seafood With A Side Serving Of Live Music

If you’re craving seafood with a view, head to Republica, a beachfront restaurant and bar that serves fresh and flavorsome dishes such as fish and chips, calamari salad, and seafood paella. You can also enjoy live music every weekend from local bands and DJs while sipping on cocktails or craft beers. Republica is located in the Sea Baths complex, which also houses an outdoor pool, a spa, and a gym.


Relax At St Kilda Botanical Gardens

The St Kilda Botanical Gardens is a beautiful oasis in the middle of the bustling seaside suburb of St Kilda. Established in 1859, the gardens cover 6 hectares and feature over 800 mature trees, a rose garden, a conservatory, a pond with a fountain, a giant chessboard, a playground, and an eco-center. The gardens are open from sunrise to sunset every day and are free to enter.

The gardens are a popular spot for locals and visitors alike, who enjoy the tranquil atmosphere, the seasonal displays of flowers, the local indigenous plants, and the wildlife that visits the gardens. You can stroll along the paths, relax on the grass, have a picnic, play chess or explore the glasshouses. The St Kilda Botanical Gardens is a heritage-listed site that showcases the diversity and beauty of nature in an urban setting.

taking a walk through the st kilda botanical gardens is a lovely way to spend a couple of hours
taking a walk through the st kilda botanical gardens is a lovely way to spend a couple of hours

Eat St Kilda’s Favorite Italian

For authentic Italian cuisine in St Kilda, look no further than Cicciolina, a cozy and charming restaurant that has been serving locals since 1993. You can savor classic dishes such as spaghetti carbonara, gnocchi gorgonzola, and veal scallopini, or try their daily specials that showcase seasonal produce. Don’t miss their famous tiramisu for dessert. Cicciolina also has a back bar where you can enjoy cocktails and snacks.


St Kilda Esplanade Market

The St Kilda Esplanade Market is a vibrant and colorful market that showcases the work of local artists and craft makers. Every Sunday, from 10 am to 5 pm, you can browse through over 200 stalls along the Upper Esplanade in St Kilda, Melbourne. You can find a variety of handmade products, such as jewelry, clothing, accessories, homewares, paintings, sculptures, and more. It is a great place to shop for unique and authentic Australian gifts or to treat yourself to something special.

shopping at the stalls at the st kilda esplanade market, this is one of the best things to do in st kilda if you are visiting on a sunday
shopping at the stalls at the st kilda esplanade market, this is one of the best things to do in st kilda if you are visiting on a sunday

Catch A Ferry To Williamstown

For a change of scenery, you can hop on a ferry from St Kilda Pier to Williamstown, Melbourne’s oldest port town that boasts historic buildings, maritime museums, and waterfront cafes. You can explore the town’s heritage sites such as Fort Gellibrand, Timeball Tower, and HMAS Castlemaine, visit art galleries such as The Substation or Williamstown Art Centre, or enjoy fish and chips by the bay.


Shop At Acland Street

Acland Street is St Kilda’s main shopping strip, where you can find everything from fashion boutiques and bookstores to souvenir shops and bakeries. You can also indulge your sweet tooth at one of the famous cake shops that line the street, such as Monarch Cakes, Europa Cake Shop, or Acland Cake Shop. You’ll be spoilt for choice with their array of delicious pastries, cakes, and desserts.

the entry to a busy luna park // delicious cakes in a shop window, the foodie scene here is incredible
the entry to a busy luna park // delicious cakes in a shop window, the foodie scene here is incredible
A Weekend Exploring St Kilda in Melbourne, Australia | What to do in St Kilda | Where to eat | Where to stay and sleep | Backpack Melbourne | Travel Australia | Sky dive Australia | Australia beaches | Luna park | Backpackers Wanderlust |
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Experience Street Art And Street Food

St Kilda is home to some amazing street art and street food, offering a feast for your eyes and your taste buds.

You can admire the colorful murals and graffiti that adorn the walls and laneways of St Kilda, such as the portrait of indigenous musician Archie Roach on Grey Street, or the Alice in Wonderland-themed escape room on Fitzroy Street.

You can also sample the diverse cuisines that reflect St Kilda’s multicultural heritage, such as Mexican, Thai, Indian, Greek, Vietnamese, and more. Some of the best places to enjoy street food in St Kilda include Lentil As Anything, a pay-as-you-feel vegetarian restaurant; Radio Mexico, a lively taqueria; Babu Ji, a modern Indian eatery; and Claypots Seafood Bar, a seafood lover’s paradise.

of course there is some incredible art street well worth checking out as you walk around st kilda
of course there is some incredible art street well worth checking out as you walk around st kilda

How To Get To St Kilda

If you want to travel from Melbourne CBD to St Kilda, you have several transport options to choose from. Here are some of the most convenient and affordable ways to reach your destination:

Uber: Uber is a popular ride-sharing service that you can use to book a car from your location to St Kilda. You can download the Uber app on your smartphone and enter your destination. The app will show you the estimated fare and the driver’s details. The trip usually takes about 30 minutes.

Tram: Tram is a great way to enjoy the city views and avoid traffic jams. You can use a Myki card to pay for your tram fare, which is $4.40 for a one-way trip. You can buy a Myki card at 7/11 stores or at some tram stops. You can also top up your card online or at machines. The best trams to take from Melbourne CBD to St Kilda are the 9616, and 3a, which depart from Swanston Street, Bourke Street, or Collins Street respectively. These trams will take you directly to St Kilda Beach, where you can enjoy the sand, the sun, and the sea. The tram ride takes about 25 minutes.

Bus: Bus is another option to get to St Kilda from Melbourne CBD. You can also use a Myki card to pay for your bus fare, which is $4.40 for a one-way trip. You can catch the bus route 246 from Swanston Street or Lonsdale Street in the city center. This bus will take you to the heart of St Kilda, where you can explore the shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants along Fitzroy Street and Acland Street. The bus ride takes about 35 minutes.

Bike: If you’re feeling adventurous, you can rent a bike and cycle from Melbourne CBD to St Kilda. The distance is about 7 km and the route is mostly flat and scenic. You can follow the Yarra River Trail from Federation Square and then join the Bay Trail along the waterfront. You will pass by landmarks like the Royal Botanic Gardens, Albert Park Lake, Luna Park, and St Kilda Pier. Cycling is a fun and healthy way to enjoy the fresh air and the views.

taking the tram is no doubt the easiest way to travel from melbourne cbd to st kilda
taking the tram is no doubt the easiest way to travel from melbourne cbd to st kilda

Where To Stay In St Kilda

St Kilda is a lively and vibrant neighborhood that offers a variety of accommodation options for travelers. Whether you’re looking for a budget hostel, a cozy apartment, or a luxury hotel, you’ll find something that suits your needs and preferences in St Kilda. Some of the best areas to stay in St Kilda are:

Fitzroy Street: This is the main street of St Kilda, where you’ll find plenty of shops, cafes, bars, and restaurants. It’s also close to St Kilda Beach, Luna Park, and the St Kilda Pier.

Acland Street: This is another popular street in St Kilda, known for its colorful cake shops, bakeries, and eateries. It’s also a short walk from the St Kilda Botanical Gardens, the Esplanade Market, and the Palais Theatre.

Inkerman Street: This is a quieter street in St Kilda, away from the hustle and bustle of the main roads. It’s still close to public transport and attractions like Albert Park Lake, the Melbourne Sports and Aquatic Centre, and the Chapel Street shopping precinct.

shark hostel

Nomads St Kilda

My favorite choice for a hostel. Clean and comfortable dorm rooms start from $26 per night.

BOOK NOW
shark hostel

Summer House Melbourne Backpackers

A great social hostel. Dorms here start from an affordable $18 per night.

BOOK NOW
shark hostel

Cosmopolitan Hotel

A more mid-range option for those wanting a private room. Prices start from $100.00 per night.

BOOK NOW
392229162

Selina St Kilda

A high quality hostel chain for more upmarket backpackers. Dorms start from $26.00 per night.

BOOK NOW

Ultimate List Of The Best Things To Do In St Kilda

  1. Luna Park
  2. Skydive
  3. Sip On Craft Beer At The Local Taphouse
  4. St Kilda Beach
  5. Check Out The Revamped Espy
  6. The Penguin Parade in St Kilda
  7. See A Gig At The Palais Theatre
  8. Raise A Glass At The Pub
  9. Explore the Jewish Museum of Australia
  10. Feast On Seafood With A Side Serving Of Live Music
  11. Relax At St Kilda Botanical Gardens
  12. Eat St Kilda’s Favorite Italian
  13. St Kilda Esplanade Market
  14. Catch A Ferry To Williamstown
  15. Shop At Acland Street
  16. Experience Street Art And Street Food

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Thinking of visiting St Kilda but wondering what exactly to do there. Then no worries, I will let you know the best things to do in St Kilda for all types of travelers! I want you to have the ultimate time in this beautiful suburb so get ready for some relaxed vibes. 
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Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. So, if you click on it and purchase something, I get a small percentage at no extra cost to you. As always all opinions are my own and your support is much appreciated.

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