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The Best Walks in Melbourne to Crush Your Step Goal

From easy walks to the more strenuous, the best walks in Melbourne take in some impressive views and surrounds.

Alexandra Gardens (Image Credit: City of Melbourne - David Hannah)

Melbourne has a multitude of scenic tracks and walking trails that will please everyone from casual strollers to weekend warriors. Soak up the relaxed vibes along beachside promenades, make your way through creek-side paths littered with native flowers or admire the city skyline from lush urban parks.

All you need is your walking shoes, SPF and your favourite podcast to go out and discover the best walks in Melbourne.

Docklands Waterfront Wander

When the sun shining and the Yarra River is glistening, a wander along the Docklands waterfront is just what the doctor ordered. Boasting unparalleled views of the city, the 2.2km easy walk passes by landmarks like Marvel Stadium and the bustling Docklands Esplanade. 

It also offers different perspectives and sights throughout the day due to the environment and light in particular. From sunrise to sunset, you really can't go wrong with this Melbourne walk. 


Royal Botanic Gardens (Image Credit: Visit Melbourne)

Royal Botanic Gardens, Kings Domain & Alexandra Gardens 

With an amazing array of things to see and an incredible 8,500 plant species, this is Melbourne's best park to spend the day walking around. Not so much a walk as a choose your own adventure, you could first relax by the Ornamental Lake, with a few ducks and other birds for company, before wandering up the hill from the lake along the meandering path through the beautiful cool, shady forest of Fern Gully. Guilfoyle's Volcano is another must-see, showcasing an amazing juxtaposition of wetland on the inside, desert garden outside. The nearby arid garden is a bounty of crazy cacti and other desert plants, and is super fun to explore. 

Once you've had your fill of these beautiful gardens, make your way through neighbouring Kings Domain, past the Shrine of Remembrance. The park contains many large Australian and European trees, shrub beds, annual floral displays and ponds. Alexandra Gardens is also part of the Domain Parklands, situated in an area beside the Yarra River.  The gardens' key features include the line of historic rowing boathouses facing the river, gardens’ palms, ornamental shrubs, rockeries and tree-lined avenues and lawns. making it a delightful place to go for a walk, and provide a setting for a wide variety of major events occurring throughout the year. Outside of the Domain Parklands, you'll step out into the Arts Precinct, where you can finish your extended park walk with a visit to the NGV. 

Birdwood Avenue, Melbourne

Capital City Trail (Image Credit: Kelsey Harrington)

Capital City Trail

The ultimate city walk in Melbourne, the Capital City Trail is a 30 kilometre loop that winds its way around countless Melbourne landmarks.

It explores the banks of the Yarra River, winds through many of the city's beautiful parks, and cuts through the charming streets of the inner north. The route connects multiple shared paths through a variety of landscapes, giving you a full grand tour of Melbourne.

Wander along the banks of the Yarra at Birrarung Marr, pass the Collingwood Children’s Farm and sports fan will marvel at the MCG. From urban sprawl to lush bushland – this much-loved trail has it all.

Sitchu Tip: Be sure to stop for a coffee along the way! 


Yarra Bend Park Walk

Yarra Bend Park Walk

The Yarra Bend Park Walk is a 30 minute loop that allows you to be immersed in scenic bushland. Located right near the Studley Park Boathouse, this tranquil walk offers a refreshing escape from the bustle of city life. Grab a girlfriend and go for a morning stroll along the Yarra River before sitting down for a coffee at the Boathouse, and make it the perfect productive day out.

1 Fairfield Park Drive, Fairfield

Fitzroy Gardens

Fitzroy Gardens Walk

A favourite of families and city workers looking to escape the chaos, there’s plenty to explore on the Fitzroy Gardens Walk. Impressively green for its inner-city location, this gorgeous 2 kilometre track is the perfect way to spend a lunch break or an afternoon. Be sure to stop off at the Fairy Tree, Tudor Village, and Cooks Cottage on your travels and enjoy Melbourne’s lush surrounds right in the heart of the city. 

East Melbourne

The Tan (Image Credit: The Long Run)

The Tan

One of the most beautiful inner-city walks in Melbourne, The Tan is a local icon. At just under 4 kilometres, the city’s iconic walking track loops around Kings Domain and the Royal Botanical Gardens. If you're not one for cardio, the city skyline and majestic gardens are sure to keep your mind off the burn. For less intensity, bypass Heartbreak Hill.

Kings Domain, Melbourne

Foreshore Trail (Image Credit: Crowne Plaza Melbourne)

The Foreshore Trail

The classic Foreshore trail stretches over 11 kilometres from Port Melbourne to Elwood, following the water's edge and passing all the bay’s highlights. It's dotted with palm trees, beaches, cafes and parks — and is often packed with Melburnians enjoying the sun and salty air as they walk, cycle or jog the track. Naturally, St Kilda sights feature heavily along the way, with hikers passing Catani Gardens, the breakwater and St Kilda Pier before continuing down the Esplanade to Acland Street. 

St Kilda

Main Yarra Trail (Image Credit: Visit Victoria - Robert Seba)

Main Yarra Trail

The Main Yarra Trail, also known as the Yarra Trail is a shared-use path for both cyclists and pedestrians, which follows the Yarra River through the northeastern suburbs to the fringe of the CBD, passing ancient gums and billabongs before ending at Southbank.

Get to know this 23.5 kilometre point-to-point trail; it's considered a moderately challenging route and takes an average of 5 hours to complete. Open year-round, it is beautiful to visit anytime, can be taken in either direction and is easily accessible to commence from any section.

Throughout the journey, this popular Melbourne walk connects with several larger bushland reserves, including Yarra Bend Park, Warrigal Park, Birrarung Park and Westerfolds Park. 

This is the perfect Melbourne walk to tackle on a weekend, and whether you're alone or with a group of friends, make sure to pack plenty of water and snacks. 

Templestowe to Southbank

Birrarung Marr (Image Credit: What's On Melbourne)

Flinders Street to Jolimont Walk

Take in the city sights while strolling along the banks of the Yarra with the Flinders Street to Jolimont Walk. Quintessentially Melbourne, this easy walk on the city’s borders packs a whole lot into its 2.15 kilometre distance. Starting at the iconic Flinders Street Clocks, you’ll make your way over to Federation Square and through Birrarung Marr Park. Catch the Birrarung Wilam installation near Art Play for your daily dose of culture.

Flinders Street, Melbourne

Abbotsford Convent (Image Credit: Abbotsford Convent)

Maree's Inner-Yarra Hike

From Fairfield Boathouse to Federation Square, the highlights of this 16 kilometre Inner-Yarra hike are plentiful and varied. Start with some breakfast fuel at Fairfield Boathouse, before striking out for the beautiful Dights Falls (where the Merri meets the Yarra). Wander through Collingwood Children's Farm and the beautiful Abbotsford Convent, and pop in for a gorgeous bite or bevvy at either Cam's or the newly minted Julie. Stroll through Burnley Gardens and make a visit to the Corroboree Tree, before arriving along the Yarra aiming squarely for Federation Square. The perfect balance of nature and the city, as well as some culinary delights along the way, this is one of the best Melbourne walks to really highlight what makes this city its own. 

Fairfield to Melbourne CBD

Albert Park Lake (Image Credit: Tyrian Serviced Apartments)

Albert Park Lake

Whether you’re looking to burn calories or catch up after coffee, the iconic Albert Park Lake with its omnipresent swans and cheerful weekend sailors has long been a favourite with inner city walkers. Ringed with palm trees and offering an unrivalled vista across the CBD, this 5 kilometre loop is best experienced at sunset.

Albert Park Lake, Albert Park

Merri Creek Trail (Image Credit: Shutterstock - Adam Calaitzis)

Merri Creek Trail

Join the bike riders in the fun and take a leisurely walk along Merri Creek Trail for a taste of bush life in the heart of the city. Winding your way along the ambling creek path, you’ll encounter ancient gums and native plants aplenty. Measuring an impressive 21 kilometres, the beauty of this trail is that you can hop on and off as you please.

Merri Creek Trail, Clifton Hill

Bayside Coastal Trail

Bayside Coastal Trail

There’s nothing like an ocean view with your morning walk and the Bayside Coastal Trail offers up endless blue for as far as the eye can see. Stretching 17 kilometres from Brighton to Beaumaris, you can join the path for as long as you desire, taking in the beachfront mansions and palm-tree lined promenades. Just don’t forget to stop for ice cream.

Bayside Coastal Trail, Brighton

Pound Bend Reserve

Pound Bend River Walk

Follow the interpretive trail at Pound Bend Reserve to learn about the history, culture and life of the Wurundjeri people. Along this Melbourne walk, you'll be able to take in views of the Yarra River as it flows through the Evelyn tunnel, a relic from Warrandyte’s gold history.

The Pound Bend River Walk is a gentle and easy 2.4 kilometres, that takes one hour-return to complete. It will take you upstream along the Yarra River, a serene journey marked by the calls of the many birds, as you walk through riparian forest dominated by towering manna gums. Afterwards, picnic at the beautiful Pound Bend Reserve, situated on the river flats; if the weather is warm enough, you might even want to take a dip near the tunnel. 

Warrandyte State Park, Warrandyte

Looking for more of the best Melbourne walks to challenge yourself, check out our article on the scenic walks of the Mornington Peninsula and the best hikes surrounding Melbourne. You'll be a walking pro by the time you make your way through these lists!

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