How to Get around Melbourne on Public Transport

by | Last updated Mar 22, 2024 | Melbourne | 0 comments

So you are coming to Melbourne for a holiday and are wondering how to get around Melbourne on public transport. Well, the good news is, Melbourne has an extensive and easy to use transport system that includes trams, buses and trains making it easy to get around. All you need is a Myki and nothing can stop you from discovering Melbourne and its surrounds. 

Most visitors to Melbourne base themselves in accommodation in the city centre or surrounding local suburbs. And they want thier accommodation to be within easy reach of restaurants, museums, shops  and all the top spots in Melbourne to visit. Using Melbourne’s public transport will allow you to get around Melbourne so you can make the most of your visit to Melbourne.

In this post I will explain how to get around Melbourne on public transport. Plus, include links for you to get a Myki card and to plan your journeys around the city. Let’s get into it!

 

Get Your Myki Card First

 

Sharyn's myki card to get around Melbourne on public transport.

Get your Myki card and get moving around Melbourne

 

To use Melbourne’s public transport you will need a Myki card. A Myki is a plastic smartcard that allows storage of the value of the card. Basically, you top the card up with value (money) that allows you to use it on every trip you make. When you get on and off transport you tap the card on and off and the correct amount of value is taken off the card to cover the cost of your journey.

You can purchase your Myki in a number of ways. Online at the PTV website which is the best way. Or you can get one at premium train stations, retail outlets displaying the Myki sign (including 7-Elevens), or by calling 1800 800 007 (free from a land line) in Australia.

There are different Myki’s available including for seniors, students, adults and children. So make sure you get the right one. Once you have your Myki card you can then get around Melbourne on public transport options, that’s after you have topped it up. And not just during the day, Melbourne has a Night Network of public transport to help you get around the city, or home.

Speaking of topping up your Myki, you are limited as to the places you can do this. You cannot do it on the transport itself anymore. And if caught without tapping on or off, expect a fine from the transport inspectors.

 

Trams

 

Free Red City Circle Tram, Melbourne.

See lots of things on Melbourne’s free circle tram

 

Trams are synonymous with Melbourne and they are one of the best ways to get around Melbourne. There are different routes to take you different places, so when you know where you want to go, get on the appropriate tram. Route numbers are displayed on the front of the tram and you can board one at the signposted stop. 

Don’t forget to tap on your Myki when you board and tap off when you get off. It is worth noting that within the CBD area trams are free. For information on the area covered by the Free Tram Zone and a downloadable map, go to the Public Transport Victoria website. Outside of the Free Tram Zone, Melbourne has two transit zones (1 and 2).

Speaking of free trams. Melbourne has a free Circle Line Tram, the number 35, that travels a decided route around the city. It is more like a free tourist tram that provides a commentary to tell you about where in Melbourne you are, and what buildings you might be seeing. For anyone on their first visit to Melbourne and wondering what to see and do in Melbourne, a ride on the free Circle Line Tram is in order. 

 

Trains

 

Facade of Flinders Street Station, Melbourne with lots of people crossing the road to and from the train station.

Melbourne’s meeting point – Flinders Street Station

 

Melbourne’s metro trains run between the outer suburbs and Flinders Street Station in the city. These are above ground trains. It isn’t until you get to the city, does the city loop, which is Melbourne’s underground system begins. 

The five stations in the central business district are Flinders Street Station, Flagstaff Station, Melbourne Central Station, Parliament Station and Southern Cross Station. Southern Cross Station is Melbourne’s hub for regional and interstate trains so if you are wanting to see more of Victoria by train, your journey will more than likely start at Southern Cross Station.

You can plan your trips on Melbourne’s trains with the Public Transport Victoria’s journey planner. Most people use the trains if they are going to a suburb outside of Melbourne or if going further afield in Victoria using Victoria’s V/Line services to regional towns and scenic attractions.

 otherwise, they use the trams to get around Melbourne.

 

Buses

 

bus at bus stop at Pines in Melbourne is one of the options to get around Melbourne on public transport.

Buses are a great Melbourne transport option to get you out of the city to the suburbs

 

Melbourne buses run frequently to major hubs, including shopping centres, schools, hospitals, leisure and sports venues, and some of Melbourne’s biggest attractions. So if a tram or train doesn’t get you around Melbourne then a bus probably will. You just need to get on the right number bus which will be displayed, along with end stop on the front of the bus. For more information on using the buses to get you around Melbourne visit ptv.com.au. 

For people travelling further afield, Victoria’s V/Line service gives access to regional towns and scenic attractions across the state.

 

Walking

Yep, one of the best ways of getting around Melbourne is to walk, particularly in and around the CBD area.

 

Taxi and rideshare

 

Melbourne taxis are easy to spot. They display a lamp on the cab roof and most are painted yellow, silver or white. There are cab ranks around the city, you can hail one in the street or book a taxi to pick you up at a set location. There are also rideshares available via apps with Uber, Taxify and DiDi. 

 

Are You Ready to Get around Melbourne on Public Transport?

 

Melbourne’s public transport system is easy to get around when you know how. With the options available there is no excuse to get getting out and discovering Melbourne on your next visit to Melbourne. Have you been to Melbourne? I’d love to hear.

20 Best Things to See and Do in Melbourne with Kids
Free Things to See and Do in Melbourne

 

Melbourne transport pin.

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Bells Beach Surfing Recreation Reserve Sign shaped like a big white wave with Sharyn McCullum On the Great Ocean Road.

G’Day! Sharyn here, an Aussie loving discovering Australia. Let me show you around so you can discover Australia too.  Read my story here.

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