Melbourne Cruise

Tree-lined boulevards and hi-tech skyscrapers
The Queen Victoria Market 
The Serendip Sanctuary

Find MSC Grand Voyages Cruise

Melbourne

The garden city

In many ways, Melbourne is the most European of all the Australian cities, its highlights making it one of the most unique stops on an MSC Grand Voyages cruise: magnificent landscaped gardens and parks provide green spaces near the centre, while beneath the skyscrapers of the Central Business District (CBD), an understorey of solid, Victorian-era facades ranged along tree-lined boulevards presents the city on a more human scale.
 
The CBD lies at the heart of the city, a grid bounded by La Trobe, Spring, Flinders and Spencer streets, dotted with fine public buildings and plenty of shops. To the north of the CBD, a wander through lively, century-old Queen Victoria Market will repay both serious shoppers and people-watchers.

 In the east, the CBD rubs up against Eastern Hill, home to Parliament House as well as the landscaped Fitzroy Gardens, from where it’s a short walk to the venerable Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), a must for sports fans. A shore excursion on your MSC Grand Voyages cruise can be the opportunity to visit the riverside’s most innovative development: the new 92-storey Eureka Tower located on the Southgate site and named after a landmark rebellion in Victoria’s gold-rush era (the top levels are clad in gold). Finished in 2006 and towering 300m, it is the tallest building in Melbourne.

Visitors can enjoy amazing views of the city and beyond from the 88th-floor Skydeck, which features the stomach-churning “skywalk”, The Edge, a 3m glass cube that juts out over the city below. Another MSC excursion is the Serendip Sanctuary: a square kilometre of bush, marsh and wetlands where you can observe kangaroos, wallabies and emus, as well as numerous other water birds, in their natural habitat.

Must see places in Melbourne

Discover our excursions

5 results found

  • MELBOURNE DISCOVERY AND CRUISE ON THE
    YABBA RIVER - approx. 4 hours

    CITY TOUR
    • Drink included

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level
      Easy

    • Duration
      4 h

    • Adults£79Price per person

    • Children£55Price per person

    MEL04

    Get set to explore the captivating city Melbourne in two equally leisurely ways: first by coach through the city, then by boat down the Yarra River. After boarding your coach at the pier, the first part of the tour will take you past such key landmarks as the modern Crown Casino and vast Convention Centre, then through the trendy ‘burbs of South Yarra and Toorak as well as past some of the city’s many parks and gardens. Then keep your camera at hand for a photo stop at Victoria’s most important memorial to WWI, the Shrine of Remembrance. The moment the armistice was signed – the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 – continues to be commemorated by a ray of sunlight that falls on the shrine at this precise point in time every year. You’ll then continue on to Fitzroy Gardens, where you’ll have some time to stroll around the gorgeous greenery and enjoy the fresh air. Originally planted during the Victorian era, the landscaped parklands are a popular local recreational area. A short coach ride later will then see you board a riverboat to cruise down Melbourne’s beautiful Yarra River, with a refreshing cup of tea or coffee to enjoy as you pass the Royal Botanic Gardens, the splendid governor’s residence, Herring Island and the impressive Melbourne Sporting Precinct – all views that make perfect motifs for photos to take home. Back on dry land again, the coach will then return you to the pier and your ship. Please note: guests must be capable of walking approx. 200 metres from the coach to board the riverboat. Walking through Fitzroy Gardens and at the Shrine of Remembrance over grassed and paved areas is at guests’ discretion. The order in which the tour runs may vary to avoid congestion.
  • MELBOURNE SKYLINE & GARDENS -
    approx. 4 hours

    CITY TOUR
      • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

        Difficulty Level
        Easy

      • Duration
        4 h

      • Adults£59Price per person

      • Children£42Price per person

      MEL01

      This appealing half-day sightseeing tour of Melbourne begins in a truly spectacular and photo-friendly manner – at the Skydeck 88 observation platform on the 88th floor of the Eureka Tower, the city’s tallest building, at a height of 285 m. And you’ll reach the Skydeck’s gorgeous 360° views of Melbourne and the surrounding area after only a short coach ride from the port. The tour then continues on through the expensive residential districts of South Yarra and Toorak, noted for their antique shops and high-end boutiques, before passing the mid-19th-century Melbourne University en route to the Carlton area with its galleried Victorian-era terraced housing. Another photo stop is then scheduled at one of Melbourne’s most important landmarks, the WWI Shrine of Remembrance, before you move on to Fitzroy Gardens and the Royal Botanic Gardens. You’ll have some time to stretch your legs and explore the leafy parks at leisure, after which you’ll also head past the modern Crown Casino complex and Melbourne Convention Centre on your way back to the port and your ship.
    • YARRA VALLEY, HEALESVILLE WILDLIFE
      SANCTUARY & MELBOURNE - approx. 8 hours, lunch included

      CULTURE AND HISTORY
      • Lunch or dinner included

      • Best seller

      • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

        Difficulty Level
        Moderate

      • Duration
        8 h

      • Adults£152Price per person

      • Children£112Price per person

      MEL05

      Melbourne’s enchanting hinterland not only boasts one of Australia’s finest wine-growing regions, but is also home to the Rochford Winery in the Yarra Valley and the wonderful Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary – all of which will be yours to enjoy on this all-day tour. After leaving the ship, you’ll first travel to Melbourne’s Belgrave Station for an old-fashioned ride on the “Puffing Billy” vintage train. Your 30-minute trip will see you chug through the spectacular Dandenong Mountains – inclusive of breathtaking rainforest views – and over timber-trestle bridges to reach the vine-covered slopes of the Yarra Valley and the Rochford Winery. The sleek interiors of the winery, with large windows affording splendid views of the landscape outside, make a perfect setting for both a delicious lunch and an informative wine-tasting session. You’ll then continue on by coach to the nearby Healesville Wildlife Sanctuary, where you’ll have time to explore at your own pace. Next to pursuing a wildlife protection remit and selective breeding programme, the park also provides visitors with unique access to a wide array of native Australian wildlife. Stroll around, meet and greet the park’s various inhabitants and get your fill of Aussie’s best-loved animals before the coach returns you to Melbourne, with more superb views to enjoy on the way. As a final highlight, you’ll also be taken around the main Melbourne sights on the return route to your ship. Please note: to ensure maximum enjoyment of the tour, guests are recommended to wear comfortable flat shoes, weather-appropriate clothing, a hat, sunscreen (SPF30+ or higher) and to bring bottled water. The “Puffing Billy” train is not air-conditioned and on total fire-ban days will be pulled by a diesel engine.
    • BLUE DANDENONGS, BIRDS & AUSTRALIAN
      CRAFTS - approx. 4 hours

      SCENIC ROUTE
      • Lunch or dinner included

      • Best seller

      • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

        Difficulty Level
        Moderate

      • Duration
        4 h

      • Adults£72Price per person

      • Children£52Price per person

      MEL07

      Take a break from the ship and instead prepare to enjoy a half-day outing to one of the best destinations in Melbourne’s appealing hinterland, the beautiful Dandenong Ranges. These rolling hills rise to their highest point of 633 metres at Mount Dandenong and feature a thick cover of temperate rainforest. You’ll be heading for the area known as Sherbrooke Forest, a wet sclerophyll forest situated at an elevation of 300 metres. The predominant mountain ash vegetation provides a perfect habitat for a variety of Australian birdlife, including brightly coloured crimson rosellas, king parrots, kookaburras, bellbirds and lyrebirds. And since the inquisitive parrots may well alight near you while foraging for food, it’s as well to keep your camera at hand to take some snapshots of these cheeky chappies. Leaving the forest behind, you’ll then move on to either Olinda or one of the region’s other picturesque small towns, many of which are particularly noted for their excellent craft shops. You’ll have some time to explore the surroundings and browse the shops that showcase the work of local artisans in such fields as jewellery, glassware, pottery, leather ware, woodcarvings and even old-fashioned confectionary. Your return to the pier and your ship then brings your tour to a close.
    • MELBOURNE PANORAMIC TOUR - approx. 3.5
      hours

      SCENIC ROUTE
        • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

          Difficulty Level
          Easy

        • Duration
          3:30 h

        • Adults£39Price per person

        • Children£29Price per person

        MEL03

        Rated the world’s “most liveable city” in the 2013 Liveability Ranking of the Economist Intelligence Unit, the beautiful city of Melbourne not only offers locals plenty to shout about, but also rewards visitors with a pleasing cityscape and a generous helping of cosmopolitan charm. This coach-based tour, which includes an informative professional guide, begins with a trip down to the bay-side suburb of St. Kilda, a trendy spot with great beaches, music venues and a relaxed lifestyle, before continuing on past Albert Park and the Australian Grand Prix track to the WWI Shrine of Remembrance, one of Melbourne’s key monuments. You’ll have some time to check out the nearby gift shop of the Royal Botanic Gardens, take photos of the shrine and, if you like, climb up to its balcony for great vistas from the top. Continuing by coach again, you’ll then be driven past the MCG sports arena, famous as the venue of the 1956 Olympics and now popular for Aussie rules football, cricket and music performances, as well as the Rod Lavers Tennis Centre. As you head for the city centre, you’ll also catch views of further landmarks such as the treasury, parliament house, the Windsor Hotel, the Princess Theatre and the beautiful Gothic-style buildings on Collins Street. As a final highlight before you return to the ship, you’ll also drive through the lovely Carlton district for views of the historical Exhibition Buildings and the ultramodern Melbourne Museum.

      The excursions in the programme above are intended to provide MSC Cruises guests with an idea of the different tours which can be arranged in each port of call; this programme is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise. 
      Shore excursions programmes and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.
       
      Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.

      Australia

      The land of contrasts
      The land of contrasts

      More than most other developed countries, a cruise to Australia releases your imagination. For most visitors its name is shorthand for an endless summer where the living is easy; a place where the adventures are as vast as the horizons and the jokes flow as freely as the beer; a country of can-do spirit and easy friendliness. No wonder Australians call theirs the Lucky Country.

      The energy of its contemporary culture is in contrast to a landscape that is ancient and often looks it: much of central and western Australia – the bulk of the country – is overwhelmingly arid and flat. In contrast, its cities, most founded as recently as the mid-nineteenth century, burst with a vibrant, youthful energy.

      A holiday to Australia isn’t complete without a look at its most iconic scenery, the Outback; the vast fabled desert that spreads west of the Great Dividing Range into the country’s epic interior. Here, vivid blue skies, cinnamon red earth, deserted gorges and geological features as bizarre as the wildlife comprise a unique ecology. This harsh interior has forced modern Australia to become a coastal country. Most of the population lives within 20km of the ocean, occupying a suburban, south-eastern arc that extends from southern Queensland to Adelaide.