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Melbourne is a sprawling city with numerous suburbs that you could stay in, many with a unique character of their own. Don't assume that the best place to stay is in the center of the city. Beachside suburbs like St Kilda , or hipster areas like Fitzroy offer good quality budget accommodation in charming surrounds.
Inner suburbs are within 30 minutes of the CBD by public transport and often that distance can even be walked. Here are some of the most popular areas where you will find good budget options.
A traditional beachside tourist resort area, St Kilda has become a first choice for backpackers visiting the city. It's about 20 minutes out of the CBD by tram and unfortunately no train lines go here. The great attraction of staying in St Kilda is that there is a beach on your doorstep and a great walking trail along the foreshore. There are also a large number of restaurants, bars and pubs along the two main strips of Acland Street and Fitzroy Street. Luna Park, the city's iconic amusement park is also located in St Kilda.
Within walking distance of the CBD, North Melbourne provides a good range of cheap hotels and hostels. This is within easy walking distance of the CBD. Multiple trams also head this way, so you should have no trouble getting into the center when you need to. The main attraction in North Melbourne is the Victoria Market, where you will be able to save even more money by buying cheap fresh food and souvenirs for family back home. It's a great place to visit for lunch, coffee or just to have a browse around.
While many of the options in the CBD are mid-range and luxury hotels, there are a few hostels and cheap(ish) hotels that are incredibly popular. If you want to explore the laneways and bars to the fullest, then being in the CBD is perfect, because you will be able to stumble back to your bed after a big night out. Victoria Market is still just a walk away, as are sporting grounds like the Vodafone Arena, MCG, Etihad Stadium and AAMI stadium. There is no shortage of things to do in the CBD. Enjoy walks along the Yarra, strolling through the Royal Botanical Gardens or getting a good look over it all at Eureka Tower. Consider also that if it's going to cost you a few dollars extra to stay in the CBD, you will save a few dollars by not having to catch a tram in. There's also a free tram that circles the CBD, allowing you to get around very cheaply.
Fitzroy and neighbouring Collingwood are great places to be if you enjoy somewhat more bohemian surrounds. It's still within walking distance of the city and a few tram lines run through it making access easy. Nearby you will find the Melbourne Museum and Royal Exhibition Building. A short walk away is also Carlton, where you can find an abundance of Italian restaurants and cafés.
A few options are available in the outer suburbs, particularly motels. If you have a car with you, this can be a good choice because it will mean less money spent on parking. The trip into the city to see things will be a bit longer though, up to an hour if you're staying a long way out. Consider carefully what the public transport options are when you stay in the outer suburbs. It's not ideal to have to drive into the city for the day, since parking can be exorbitant.
For more information about Melbourne, have a look at our travel guide, created by members of Travellerspoint.
x The average starting price for a place to stay in Melbourne is £77 per night.
Sander This is really a budget hotel, which happens to have a tiny kitchen on the second floor, and thus also can function as a hostel. As such, it unfortunately lacks all hostel atmosphere. If you book a private room, you will need to explicitly ask about that kitchen to have your room key recoded to provide access, as you won't find information about its existence anywhere. Staff is friendly enough, and the location is great (right next to Errol Street, for some great restaurant options), but WiFi is freakishly expensive. Definitely not bad, but know what you're getting.
mvac001 The place wasn't bad at all...the room my friend and I got was a private room, and was very small - but cost $80 a night. Good location, about a 10 minute walk from the main city centre Quite clean, the staff are all awesome, very friendly
333 St Kilda Rd, St KildaAwesome 86%
lemet We had a great stay at the Habitat HQ. The staff was nice and helpfull, it was a clean place with all the facilities you need. Can gladly recomend this place for other travellers.
pullboy Coffee Palace is not just a hostel where you lay your head for the night, eat your free breakfast and move on. This is a hostel that encourages you to get involved, stay a week, a month, a year and really become part of the furniture. Upon arriving you'll think the same as me and many before me; a bit of a crazy maze with bathrooms dotted all over the place, outdated decor and certainly not a modern "flashpackers". The facilities are adequate, a well equipped kitchen with large pots to encourage communal cooking. A medium sized tv room. A couple of fridges behind reception selling six packs of grog. Some ensuites, some double rooms but mostly 8-10 bed dorms. The stand out feature is the large lounge and dining area and the large rooftop garden- two great places for meeting people and sharing a beer (or two!) Who wants a spotlessly clean flashpackers when you can have the atmosphere of this place? The staff will encourage you to get involved with the nightly activities (bingo, bbqs, fancy dress, movie nights, free nibbles) and are very knowledgable about St Kilda and Melbourne. The guests are a mix between those that have been there for a while and work, those that are just passing through and those that have been there for a while, don't work and just can't leave because they're having the time of their life. 90% of reviews you'll read on this place are by people passing through for a night or two who have been unfortunate to find themselves in a noisy or untidy room. These things happen. But if the hostel was so bad why would half the people there be counting their time in months rather than days? Oh and if you ever do leave the hostel, Melbourne is an amazing city!
Cool Paul WIth the exception of The palms in Sydney this is the best hostel around. It's like a house, everyone knows each other, everyone talks to each other it's very comfortable. People seem to stay here for months at a time while working. the location leaves a little to be desired but it is close to the train station so it's not too bad. free internet, showers are nice. it's just very comfortable!
alandchris This place was really a sweet deal for us... A great place near the south bank and great room for our needs! :)
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