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Days 1-3: Begin in Melbourne

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After a decade-long revival, this boomtown has emerged as the continent's capital of cool. It's as vibrant as the rainbow yarn bombs that often decorate trees in City Square—and easier to navigate than its glamorous northern sibling. It's a place where food is celebrated, where the flat white will convince you to leave drip coffee behind forever, and where subcultures thrive in café-lined laneways. Most of all, its the optimism and independent spirit that best recommend Australia's second city.
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Wellington Parade, East Melbourne VIC 3002, Australia
Just outside the CBD, the Fitzroy Gardens encompass wide lanes lined with English elms, vast lawns, and a weird, but wonderful collection of fountains, statues, and such. Cook's Cottage, the reassembled childhood home of Captain Cook, is here...
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637-641 Chapel St, South Yarra VIC 3141, Australia
Contributed by Nicole Smith AFAR LOCAL AUSSIE EXPERT Part of the Art Series Hotel Group, the Olsen Hotel offers top accommodations with five-star suites that are infused with the works of revered Australian Landscape artist Dr John Olsen. Olsen is...