If you haven’t already heard, Melbourne was recently named the “Most Livable City in the World” by The Economist. While there have been arguments against this title, including lack of “urban density” and transit options, I reside in the affirmative camp.
Here are my 5 reasons (in no particular order) why Melbourne is truly a most livable city for our family.
5. The Inner Suburbs
These are not really suburbs, but outlying city neighborhoods. It is the perfect blend of city and suburb life. You can live in a house, have a small garden, take bike rides with the kids, enjoy neighborhood shops and restaurants, feel miles away from a large city and have but a 10 minute drive downtown. You can’t beat that unless you want to get away from it all…
4. The Surrounds
Yes, get away from it all by traveling an hour south to the Mornington Penninsula. We recently rented a sports car, had a fabulous winery lunch, took a dip in the hot springs and returned home in time to put the kids to bed. OR…
Travel an hour northeast to the Yarra Valley. We recently visited Healesville Sanctuary (again) for our Aussie animal fix, had yet another fabulous winery lunch, ran through art installations with winery dogs, and again, we were home in time to make a quick dinner. OR…
Travel a couple of hours north toward spa country or the Grampians for even more outdoor adventures and wild Aussie animals. It goes on and on.
3. Relaxed Atmosphere
There’s a no frills, happy-go-lucky feeling about Melbourne that I enjoy. (Of course, you can opt for the fancier side of Melbourne.) This feeling makes it different from my experience with Sydney. Sydney is gorgeous with lots to offer but during my visit I felt I needed to take extra time to look the part of mum with the most.
Perhaps I feel this way about Melbourne because of our neighborhood or the people I’ve met, but there’s simply a relaxed, comfortable air about the place.
2. The Under 12s
With 5 playgrounds within walking distance of our home (countless others a short drive away), library, playgroup center, toy library, state of the art sports center, nicer cafes and restaurants with play areas and children’s menus, museums with fabulous children’s centers, multiple wildlife options and children’s programs during holiday periods Melbourne is my favorite city for my children. They agree and noted that I forgot to mention the beach.
1. Everything Else
Have I mentioned the services? Great restaurants, markets, shopping, museums, arts, sports and outdoor activities are yours to choose and enjoy.
Sure, groceries, restaurants, home goods, gas and real estate (and just about everything else) are expensive, waitlists for schools are common and it’s necessary to obey the speed limits but the resources and surrounding environments are right at your fingertips, just waiting to be explored.
Of course I miss home but you can make Melbourne your own. We have and we are loving it.