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Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Yarra River

Centuries ago, settlers developed Melbourne around this river. Today it is the heart of the city with bars, shops and restaurants lining its banks.

The picturesque Yarra River is the focal point around which Melbourne flourishes. Enjoy the river's beaches, try out a watersport or take a boat tour to one of the scenic islands. 

Go shopping at the Southgate complex which is situated along the river’s banks. Find upmarket shops, entertainment and restaurants here. Climb aboard a boat at Southgate or Princes Walk for a trip down the river. 

To the east, you’ll find a more rural setting. Take a stroll around the Royal Botanic Gardens and stop at one of the many picnic and barbecue facilities. Visit Herring Island Park in the summer months by taking a Parks Victoria ferry and walk around the sculpture parks. This area is remarkably tranquil considering it is in the center of a busy city. Take photos of the Melbourne skyline at sunset. 

Cycle along any of the many cycling routes or go kayaking along the waterways. Swim at one of the river’s many beaches, manned by lifesavers in the summer months. 

If you are brave enough, take a dip during the chilly winter months. If that seems a bit too cold, visit one of the numerous heated pools and centers. The annual Moomba Festival celebrates the cultural significance of the Yarra River to Melbourne. It takes place over Labor Day weekend on the first Friday of March. Head to the river then for firework displays and live music.

Before the arrival of Europeans, the river was used as a main meeting point for the indigenous people of Australia. As Europeans began to settle, they forced the indigenous population away from the river and gradually the city was built along the banks.

The river runs from the Yarra Ranges down through the center of Melbourne and into Hobsons Bay. The main attractions around it are focused within a 1-mile (1.6-kilometer) section but parks and recreational attractions spread out for miles along its banks.

Traveling isn't just about destinations and plush hotels. It's about the experiences you embrace and the wonderful memories you collect on the way!

Comtemplating what to put first on your must-do list? Why not think about trying out a Melbourne City Sunset Kayak Tour?

For a complete guide to activities, head to our Yarra Riverfront things to do page.


Guide to Exploring around Yarra Riverfront


Best Lodging Options Near Yarra Riverfront

See all 4,022 Properties near Yarra Riverfront
Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel ¥8,099
Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel

Oaks Melbourne on Market Hotel

60 Market Street, Melbourne, VIC
     
    4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

    This family-friendly Melbourne aparthotel is located in the entertainment district, steps from Collins Street, Flinders Lane, and Yarra Riverfront. SEA LIFE Melbourne and Bourke Street Mall are also within 10 minutes. Flinders Street Station is 9 minutes by foot and Flagstaff Station is 11 minutes.

    Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel ¥6,468
    Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel

    Oaks Melbourne on Collins Hotel

    480 Collins Street, Melbourne, VIC
       
      4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Collins Street, SEA LIFE Melbourne, and Flinders Lane. Yarra Riverfront and Hardware Lane are also within 10 minutes. Flagstaff Station is 9 minutes by foot and Southern Cross Station is 7 minutes.

      Oaks Melbourne on William Suites ¥7,555
      Oaks Melbourne on William Suites

      Oaks Melbourne on William Suites

      350 William Street, Melbourne, VIC
         
        4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Flagstaff Gardens, Hardware Lane, and Queen Victoria Market. Melbourne Central and Emporium Melbourne are also within 15 minutes. Flagstaff Station is only a 2-minute walk and Melbourne Central Station is 7 minutes.

        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne ¥5,429
        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne

        Atlantis Hotel, Melbourne

        300 Spencer Street, Melbourne, VIC
           
          4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this motel is within a 15-minute walk of Marvel Stadium, Melbourne Central, and Queen Victoria Market. Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex and Bourke Street Mall are also within 1 mi (2 km). Flagstaff Station is 6 minutes by foot and Southern Cross Station is 7 minutes.

          WRAP on Southbank ¥10,123
          WRAP on Southbank

          WRAP on Southbank

          133 -139 City Road, Southbank, VIC
             
            4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Southbank Promenade and Eureka Skydeck 88. Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex and Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre are also within 10 minutes. Flinders Street Station is 11 minutes by foot and Flagstaff Station is 20 minutes.

            Pegasus Apart'Hotel ¥7,746
            Pegasus Apart'Hotel

            Pegasus Apart'Hotel

            206 A'Beckett Street, Melbourne, VIC
               
              4.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this aparthotel is within a 10-minute walk of Flagstaff Gardens, Queen Victoria Market, and Melbourne Central. Emporium Melbourne and Festival Hall are also within 15 minutes. Flagstaff Station is only a 3-minute walk and Melbourne Central Station is 7 minutes.

              Aura on Flinders Serviced Apartments ¥7,115
              Aura on Flinders Serviced Apartments

              Aura on Flinders Serviced Apartments

              707/534 Flinders st, (Enter via 7 Katherine Pl), Melbourne, VIC
                 
                3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this aparthotel is steps from SEA LIFE Melbourne, Yarra Riverfront, and Flinders Lane. Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre and Crown Casino and Entertainment Complex are also within 10 minutes. Southern Cross Station is 8 minutes by foot and Flagstaff Station is 15 minutes.

                Avani Melbourne Central Residences ¥10,531
                Avani Melbourne Central Residences

                Avani Melbourne Central Residences

                60 A'Beckett Street, Melbourne, VIC
                   
                  4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Melbourne Central Business District, this luxury aparthotel is within a 5-minute walk of Melbourne Central and State Library of Victoria. Queen Victoria Market and Bourke Street Mall are also within 10 minutes. Melbourne Central Station is only a 3-minute walk and Flagstaff Station is 8 minutes.