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Tuck your Penguin Classic into your back pocket, scuff those shoes and adjust your specs: you're entering the home of Melbourne's creative elite and the stomping ground of the city’s fashionistas. Hark at the bars, design stores, writers' studios, galleries and boutique fashion outlets.

Looking good

Be dazzled by the choice of local and international fashion between Swanston and Elizabeth streets, the heart of Melbourne's original 'rag trade'. Find something to challenge and delight around Flinders Lane and Cathedral Arcade, a long-time haven for experimental designs by young and emerging designers.

Take home an artwork

Catch the contagious creativity from the art spaces that comprise Australia's highest concentration of commercial galleries. Find quirky letterpress, contemporary sculpture and Indigenous art, and snap up one-offs at Craft – a gallery and shop showcasing the work of Victoria's finest craftspeople.

Recharge or charge up

With an endless array of hole-in-the-wall cafes, bakeries, sushi, sandwich and soup bars plus with bars and restaurants galore, you’ll easily find a place to recharge.

Chow down at Chin Chin, go subterranean at Coda, be bookish at Journal and admire Andrew McConnell's golden touch at Cumulus, Inc.

Loiter over Centre Place at Hell's Kitchen, and earn your rock stripes at Cherry on AC/DC Lane.

How to get there

Free Melbourne Visitor Shuttle: Stop 2. The complete trip includes 13 stops and takes approximately an hour and a half. The bus runs every 30 minutes between 9.30am and 4.30pm daily (excluding Good Friday and Christmas Day) and includes an on-board commentary.

By foot: Half a block north from Federation Square (about one minute).

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Things to do

Flinders Quarter

12 of 27 results

Restaurants

Kappo

Enter a serene world of Japanese fine dining and choose from omakase menus featuring traditional cuisine with a contemporary twist.

Fashion

Aesop Flinders Lane

Expect an inspiring olfactory response to this minimalist, eco-minded beauty and skincare range, housed in a much-talked-about wholly cardboard fit-out.

Art galleries

fortyfivedownstairs

Head downstairs for independent, experimental and thought-provoking visual art, theatre and live music at this not-for-profit theatre and gallery space.

Restaurants

Sake

Overlooking the Yarra River in revamped Hamer Hall, this sleek city restaurant and bar offers new-style sushi and classic Japanese cuisine.

Fashion

Kuwaii

Feel the magnetic pull down Cathedral Arcade towards Kuwaii's flagship store, and spoil yourself with timeless, elegant, and beautiful womenswear.

Restaurants

Cumulus Inc.

This loft-inspired restaurant, hatted by The Age Good Food Guide boasts a drinking bar, an eating bar and regular tables for serious eating.

Bars

Cumulus Up

Kick back and sample the best of local and European wines in the designer interiors of this loft-style bar from the award-winning Cumulus Inc. team.

Restaurants

Supernormal

There are few places more aptly named than Andrew McConnell's Asian eating sensation and its mouthwatering Chinese, Japanese and Korean morsels.

Restaurants

The Meatball and Wine Bar

Roll up for Melbourne's latest food and wine craze – meatballs and prosecco. Or chianti. Or anything, really, in the swish Flinders Lane bar.

Art & design

Craft

The best thing about Craft, where the line between retail space and gallery is artfully blurred, is that the art you see is often attainable.

Cafes

Dukes at Ross House

With sustainability at the heart of Dukes, it makes sense that the coffee roasters would set up in Ross House to bring coffee to the masses.

Fashion

LIFEwithBIRD

Slip into ultra modern, ultra chic clothing and accesories by Melbourne designer duo Bridget McCall and Nicholas Van Messner. Think modern classics.

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Art & culture

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Make your way around Melbourne's 100-plus galleries, ranging from large public institutions to smaller commercial spaces and artist cooperatives.

Destinations

Arcades

Do a modern version of "the block", a century-old form of cruising Melbourne's arcades that takes in cutting-edge artwork, fashion, music and design.