Some might think Federation Square is just a token Melbourne meeting place; its long list of year-round activities suggests otherwise.
Federation Square is Melbourne’s answer to London’s Trafalgar Square, New York’s Time Square and Moscow’s Red Square. While this precinct might not be as big or ‘brutal’ as these famous centres, the more commonly named ‘Fed Square’ comes up trumps for design sustainability and a bulging social schedule.
The area hosts over 2,000 activities annually (that’s on average 5 a day) most of which won’t cost you anything! From free Tai Chi and lunchtime meditation classes to book markets and comedy performances. This ‘town square’ has something to offer throughout the year.
Then there are the buildings that accompany the square. The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, the Australian Centre for the Moving Image, the Melbourne Visitor Centre (see below) and the Deakin Edge indoor theatre all surround the paved courtyard.
Everything at Federation Square is designed with environmental sustainability in mind. This includes rainwater filtration systems, waterless urinals, rooftop beehives, a biogas plant and sensor lighting. Their aim is, to not only minimise their carbon footprint but, to become a carbon negative precinct.
Sure, organise to meet your friends at Fed Square, just make sure to spend some solid time exploring the area.
Melbourne Visitor Centre
The Melbourne Visitor Centre isn’t your typical pokey hole-in-the-wall information point. The glass structure can be found sticking out of the middle of Federation Square like a sore thumb. Once inside, you’re lead underneath the street into a bunker filled with eager travellers scanning brochure-stuffed walls.
This underground hub contains everything ‘touristy’ that Melbourne has to offer, from craft markets flyers to sporting schedules. Understandably so much content can be overwhelming, so grab a ticket number and let the helpful staff guide you in the right direction.
The Visitor Centre is fantastic for gaining a broad overview of what Melbourne, and Victoria, has to offer. It’s perfect for finding your bearings, via the Melbourne Greeter Service, and organising your travel routes from ground zero.
Get the lowdown.
Melbourne Visitor Centre. Open daily. 9am–5pm. More details on their website.
Visiting Federation Square is a great opportunity to catch the free City Circle tram that laps Melbourne CBD. Otherwise, catch any of the trams running along Swanston or Flinders Streets.