The world according to Michelle Wilding.

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4 Reasons why I heart Melbourne

When I touch down in Melbourne, a smile fills my face as my Mediterranean roots come alive.

I’m here for two reason: to sip authentic Italian coffee that Sydney can’t deliver and to see Incubus. Yeah boy!

I must admit that the arts, secret bars and more killer coffee beckoned me to further explore Melbourne’s well-planned city of creative laneways. I was curious enough to follow the espresso aroma down to laid-back coffee strips, boutiques and soup kitchens.

4 Reasons why I heart Melbourne:

1. Music venues are so much better

I was so thrilled to watch Incubus in Sydney. They haven’t toured down under in six years since 2006 Soundwave. They’re my fave band in the world; the only one I’d travel interstate for. And I’m glad I did because their Melbourne show was one of the best I’d seen them live. Clean, Admiration, Leech are songs I’d only dream of hearing… but Consequence, A Certain Shade of Green and A Crow Left of the Murder made up for it. And such a rad crowd; most knowing the lyrics.

I also caught a Toro y Moi show at the lovely Hi-Fi. The dude is amazing live. And I love how subdued little Melbourne gets into the music, without being overbearing or unsociable.

2. Shop up

There’s a reason why the only Top Shop store in Australia opened in culture-rich Melbourne last December and not Sydney – all the hipsters would buy up everything and make shopping there not worth it. Stereotypes aside, I blew money fast at Top Shop. It’s the next best thing to shopping in the much cheaper SoHo-New York store, or lodging online orders at the UK site.

3. Coffee

Locally-grown coffee is just as good as Italian, Brazilian and Argentinean imports in Melbourne. No matter what I sipped, it was damn good! I don’t like to drink coffee for convenience; I like a nice bang and pleasant taste that’s going to impress not wake up the writer in me. If you’re in Sydney, the best coffee is Campos or a little boutique cafe named Workshop.

4. Food

Whether I eat at the upmarket 15 Restaurant, at a soup kitchen hidden down a laneway, a tofu curry don in a Japanese shop or hit up the lovely bakery in Prahran called Amici, my tastebuds are always in heaven. Definitely go to Amici – amazing!!! The bakery treats and pumpkin omelette were absolutely delish! Shout to my new buddy, Ashi.

5.Trams… and art!

C’mon… as much as I enjoy walking, the trams are just too much fun. And they’re such a fast and cheap way to jump from suburb to suburb. And the street art? It propels you to explore the city more when there’s a chance of coming face to face to awe-inspiring pieces.