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Melbourne is a coastal city in southeastern Australia, in the state of Victoria. Known for its stunning views, beautiful beaches and rich arts scene, it’s also a great location for visiting nearby destinations by hire car such as Bendigo,Ballarat and Torquay.
If you’re arriving via Melbourne Airport then it’s a 13-mile drive by rental car to Melbourne. En route, you could take a detour to visit the campus of Victoria University, founded in 1916. If you’re arriving via Avalon Airport then it’s a 35-mile journey by hire car to Melbourne. On the way, you could stop off for a view of Port Phillip Bay, which stretches for 164 miles.
Finding a hire car in Melbourne is easy. You can rent a car from a range of providers at Melbourne Airport, Avalon Airport and within the city itself. Melbourne has a number of parking facilities on offer, including Secure Parking, Le Garage and Wilson Parking. The city also has a wide variety of hotels to suit a range of budgets, including the Hotel Windsor, Oaks on William and Best Western Atlantis Hotel. Many hotels offer free parking so do check before booking.
There are various hire car providers to suit your budget and preferences, including Enterprise, Economy and Hertz. Many offer extras like free cancellation, unlimited mileage and zero excess collision cover.
There’s much to see and do by hire car in Melbourne. This attractive, vibrant city is rich in scenic beaches, great restaurants and a thriving cultural scene. The arts hub of the Carlton region includes the Carlton Gardens, the Ian Potter Museum of Art, the Royal Exhibition Building and the Melbourne Museum. Great beaches to visit include golden St Kilda Beach with its range of water activities, Brighton Beach with its cute and colourful bathing boxes, and Williamstown Beach, which has a pier with spectacular city views. Other highlights to explore by rental car in Melbourne include Federation Square with its many restaurants and bars, the Arts Centre Melbourne, and the National Gallery of Victoria.
If you’re looking for a spectacular drive to enjoy in your hire car, then you could do no better than Great Ocean Road. Winding along Victoria’s southwest coast, this 249-mile route is one of the world’s most breathtaking ocean drives. It begins at Torquay, a 64-mile drive from Melbourne city centre, and ends at Nelson. En route you can spot the 12 Apostles, a set of iconic limestone stacks off the shore of Port Campbell National Park.
Port Campbell National Park itself is wonderful to visit, and is a 144-mile drive by rental car from Melbourne. It’s known for its wave-sculpted rock formations, and also includes the site of a 19th century shipwreck and the Port Campbell Discovery Walk. Bear in mind that a quicker journey to the park (by a couple of hours) is via the inland route on the M1 and A1, which has tolls.
When driving in Melbourne, be aware that the city has a large tram network that shares the same lanes as cars, so take care while driving behind one. Before going on a road trip, make sure to check which routes have tolls. You can pay for Melbourne’s CityLink toll road in advance via its website. Remember that Australia is left-hand drive.
Feeling inspired to explore Melbourne and the rest of Australia? Check out this City Guide and use the Expedia search tool to help you find the best car hire, flight and hotel deals and to research the best attractions and activities.