For anyone who’s ever been to Melbourne, the appeal of Australia’s cultural capital is obvious. There’s so much to see and do around the sprawling metropolis, and when you have a rental car to get around in, you’ll have an even better time. You’ll be able to reach more of the city in a shorter period, and maybe even hit the Great Ocean Road.
Melbourne is a vibrant, fun, pulsing city, but there are some strange local laws and facts that make it just that much more enticing …
1. Melbourne is home to the world’s largest stained-glass ceiling
The incredible ceiling spans 51 metres by 15 metres.
Located in the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), the world’s largest stained-glass ceiling is a sight to behold. Visit the NGV and experience one of the many special exhibitions they have running throughout the year, plus see the permanent installations and be amazed by some of the most impressive works of art in the whole country.
The incredible ceiling spans 51 metres by 15 metres. That’s a lot of coloured glass to take in.
2. Melbourne’s tramway is the largest outside of Europe
Europe is famous for having incredible public transport, and the three largest tramways in the world are on the continent. The fourth? You’ll find that in Melbourne.
It’s a rite of passage to take a tram somewhere around Melbourne, even if you’re only going a few hundred metres. In some parts of the CBD it’s free as well!
3. No driving your goat or dog!
Strange local by-laws state that a person cannot drive their goat or dog in a public place if it’s harnessed to a vehicle. Or really at anytime, because good luck getting your goat or dog to pull you around at all! And why would you need to anyway when you have a perfectly good rental car?
4. You’ll find a rare Brakesman in Melbourne
Gone are the days when you had someone standing in the elevator pushing a button to take you where you needed to go. Brakesmen are not common around the world anymore, but you’ll find one at Luna Park in Melbourne operating a rollercoaster.
The only other place around the world where a Brakesman operates a rollercoaster is at the Tivoli in Copenhagen!
5. Melbourne changed the Olympic Games in 1956
Before the Games came to Melbourne in 1956, the Opening Ceremony didn’t feature the athletes from each country walking into a stadium together and introducing themselves to the world. A letter sent by one John Ian Wing suggested the athletes walk in together as a sort of first spectacle of what’s to come, and it’s been the same since!
We couldn’t imagine the start of the Olympics without the athletes walking in together, so congratulations to Melbourne for being the first host city where this was a reality!
6. Questions WILL be asked
Strangely, the 1958 Crimes Act states it is illegal to advertise a reward for stolen or missing property with no questions asked. If you’re trying to find something you lost at the beach or in a cafe, make sure you ask some questions of whatever kind soul hands it in!
7. The home of AFL
Australian Rules Football was invented in Melbourne in 1858 by a group of Australian men as a way to keep the cricketers fit in the off-season. Now it’s one of the most popular sports in Australia, and the Grand Final (so important it’s a public holiday) is always hosted at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Melbourne is a wonderful city to visit, and there are so many quirks to discover. To be more independent in your exploration of Australia’s second-largest city, hire a rental car in Melbourne by contacting East Coast Car Rentals today.