Online Melbourne Tours

Many of Melbourne Walks School Tours can be adapted for use by school groups using media such as video, google slides, google maps, PowerPoint
Examples of materials for our Online Tours created at teachers’ requests include:

Online Maribyrnong River and Valley

Online Runner Squizzy Taylor
Online Geography and Indigenous Landscapes (Sandringham)
Online Architecture (1) Art Deco
Melbourne Indigenous Landscapes Tour (CBD)
Online Change in Communities
Melbourne City Discovery Tour below!
Ask An Historian – Online Class Activity


Our popular real-life Melbourne City Discovery Tour of iconic heritage is now also available online. This online resource explores Melbourne’s iconic architecture, places, and people to learn how the Melbourne community has evolved from traditional owners through settlement, federation, gold rush, war and depression to the modern era.
The resources on this page are subject to copyright. They are available free for viewing by teachers but require prior permission for use for schooling purposes. Please contact Melbourne Walks for a quote.
. VIDEO (above) exploring the key buildings and locations in the city which explain the Melbourne Story.
C. HISTORIC IDENTITIES of Melbourne that students can select to understand the contribution of people to iconic places.

D. GOOGLE MAP enables students to study the locations of 21 places.  They can also use this as a basis for exploring future’ visits to the city.
E. KEY inquiry notes below enabling students to explore a deeper understanding of the contents.


      1. START Federation Square 1901, Swanston and Flinders
      2. Flinders St Station 1914, Swanston and Flinders
      3. St Pauls Cathedral 1857, Swanston & Flinders
      4. Young and Jackson, Swanston & Flinders
      5. Hosier Lane
      6. Nicholas Building 1926, 37 Swanston St
      7. Customs House 1858, 400 Flinders
      8. Banking Chamber 1891, 333 Collins St
      9. Block Arcade 1892, 282 Collins. Can we see front of building instead of from
      10. Manchester Unity 1931, 220 Collins
      11. Royal Arcade 1870, 335 Bourke St
      12. Melbourne GPO 1859, cnr Bourke and Elizabeth
      13. Myer Melbourne 1910, 320 Bourke
      14. Princess Theatre 1888, 170 Spring
      15. Parliament House 1857, Spring Street
      16. Old Treasury Building 1858, 20 Spring
      17. Collins Street Churches, Russell and Collins
      18. St Michaels 1864, 120 Collins
      19. Athenaeum Theatre est. 1839, 188 Collins
      20. Cromwell House 1886, 135 Collins
      21. Melbourne Town Hall 1867, Collins & Swanston
      22. FINISH Federation Square

What was Melbourne’s Indigenous name?  What does the Federation square plaza depict?
1835 Why was one of Melbourne’s first names Batmania? What was the ‘Melbourne Treaty’?
1835 Who was Melbourne’s first European female passenger?  What date is the official Melbourne Foundation Day?
1837 Who laid out the original city grid?  Approximately how many lanes and arcades now exist within the grid?
1851 Why was Flinders Lane and nearby lanes such as Hosier known as the Rag Lane for a century? What is Hosier Lane now famous for?1854 What was the Eureka rebellion about? Where did Melbourne residents voice their protests?
1854 Where did the first steam train line in Australia depart from?1859 What building has long been considered the centre of Melbourne?1857 What building stored Melbourne’s gold after the 1851 gold rush?1862 What was practised in the Collins Street Assembly Hall. What is a suffragette?
1867 What classical building is the home of the Melbourne City government?
1870 What is the oldest Arcade in Australia? Who are Gog and Magog?1888 What is Melbourne’s oldest theatre est 1857?
1891 What street is the golden mile of Melbourne?
1892 From where does Melbourne’s Block Arcade draw its name?1901 What does Federation Square celebrate. Name 2 cultural places on Fed Square?
1901-1927 Where was Australia’s first national parliament housed?  
1906 What was the world’s first feature film? Where was it first shown?
1914 What was Simcha Baevski’s other name?
1915 What famous medicine was synthesized by George and Alfred Nicholas?
1931 What 1931 building was the tallest building in Melbourne for 20 years?
2020 What is the City of Melbourne’s Latin motto?

C. STUDENTS can select from HISTORIC IDENTITIES of Melbourne to pursue an understanding of their contribution to iconic places. 
Task  One: Choose three identities and name places they are connected to in Melbourne.
Task Two: Choose one identity and write 300 words about your contribution to the Melbourne community.

D. OUR GOOGLE MAP enables students to visit 21 places online and learn about them.
Task One:  If you had half an hour to explore historic places of Melbourne, which 3 places would you visit and why?
Task Two: This map can also use this as a basis for designing and exploring future ‘non-virtual’ visits to the city. If you were designing a class trip to seven places, which would you choose and why?

ONE Federation Square 2001, Swanston and Flinders. Welcome to Federation Square where we commence our online discovery tour exploring city places that tell the story of Melbourne’s buildings, history, culture and people. Today Melbourne is a city voted seven times the most liveable city in the world and a mecca for business, art, culture sport and education as well as the fastest growing city in Australia. Some things in our city don’t change. We’ll be walking today across the same Hoddle Street Grid laid out by Robert Hoddle only two years after European settlement as well as its extraordinary system of 200 lanes and arcades created after the gold rush. Federation Square celebrates the 100th anniversary of six British colonies uniting in 1901 to create the new nation of Australia. It is a cultural and gathering place including the ACMI film museum, the National Art Gallery and the Koorie Heritage Trust. Federation Square also celebrates the First or Kulin Nation comprising five tribes including the Wurundjeri and Boonwurrung peoples of ‘Nearam’ or Melbourne and their elders past and present. The Plaza is laid with 470,000 thousand tiles from the Kimberley desert depicting an 1864 Aboriginal bark painting of the cosmos reflected in water.
TWO Flinders St Station 1914, Swanston and Flinders – The meeting place. Opposite Federation Square on the southwest corner of the Flinders and Swanston Street intersection is Flinders Street Station the great transport hub and meeting place of Melbourne. In 1854 the first steam train in Australia headed from this corner to Port Melbourne.  Melbournians have been catching up ‘under the clocks’ ever since.
THREE St Pauls Cathedral 1857, Swanston & Flinders. On the northeast corner is that great Gothic revival landmark – St Paul Anglican Cathedral, where Melbourne’s first public Christian service was held in 1835. On 7 December 1854 thousands of protestors gathered outside St Pauls to protest the death of gold miners at the Eureka rebellion at Ballarat under the Southern Cross Flag. Melbournians support of the miners created democracy in Victoria (and the Southern Cross on the Australian flag).
FOUR  Young and Jackson, Swanston & Flinders – Batmania town. On the northwest corner is the famous Young and Jackson Hotel, formerly the site of the house of John Batman who claimed to have signed the Melbourne Treaty with Aboriginal elders, purchasing 500,000 acres of land called for beads, blankets mirrors and axes. Within six years there were 5000 settlers and 1.4 million sheep grazing on the traditional owners’ lands without permission or payment.
FIVE Hosier Lane – Textiles to Street Art. Waterfront warehouses around Flinders lane once held gold rush goods transported by ships and horses. Flinders or the ‘Rag’ Lane’ later contained hundreds of clothing factories. Since 2008 factory lanes like Hosier have become world-famous street galleries.
SIX Nicholas Building 1926, 37 Swanston St, cnr Flinders Lane. The Nicholas Building with its exquisite leadlight arcade was created by brothers Alfred and George Nicholas with income from their synthesis of Aspro in 1915, today of the world’s most-used medicines. Their building is a centre for many creative businesses including arts, crafts and clothes.
SEVEN Customs House 1858, 400 Flinders, Cnr Williams – Immigration . In early Melbourne, ships arrived at Enterprise Wharf on the Yarra River.  Passengers and goods entered the town through Customs House, today the immigration Museum. The official ‘Melbourne Foundation’ Day is 30 August 1935 when John Fawkner’s Enterprize unloaded nine passengers including Melbourne’s first European woman – 18-year-old Mary Gilbert.
EIGHT  Banking Chamber 1891, 333 Collins St –
The Golden Dome. Collins Street was the ‘golden mile’ when ‘Marvellous Melbourne’ was one of the wealthiest cities of the world. Perhaps its most spectacular building is the 1891 Banking Chamber at 333 Collins Street. It was built just in time for disaster – the great crash of the gold rush economy that ruined many citizens.
NINE Block Arcade 1892, 282 Collins –
Marvellous Melbourne. This arcade was the centre of Marvellous Melbourne, that fabulous wealthy metropolis of the Victorian era built on gold and thousands of hopeful immigrants seeking their fortunes. Here the citizens promenaded in their finery around the ‘block’ of Collins, Swanston, Elizabeth and Little Collins streets: courting, gossiping or taking refreshments at the Hopetoun tea house, still serving high tea five generations later.
TEN Manchester Unity 1931, 220 Collins –
The Great Depression. In 1931 the Great Depression was raging with almost a third of Victorian were out of work. Hunger was everywhere when a Friendly Society aimed to build one of the finest buildings in the country – twelve stories in just 12 weeks.  You can believe in your country, your workers and yourself. They built the exquisite art deco MU in 12 weeks. It remained the tallest building in Melbourne for 20 years. No wonder Melbournians love this building!
ELEVEN Royal Arcade 1870, 335 Bourke St – Gold Rush Shopping. The beloved Royal is the oldest arcade in Australia. An arcade, by the way, is a lane with a roof! There are almost 200 lanes and arcades in the 1837 Hoddle Street grid resulting from the massive gold rush migration to ‘Marvellous Melbourne’. The famous robots Gog and Magog have been striking the hours since 1892.
TWELVE  Melbourne GPO 1859, Cnr Bourke and Elizabeth – Communications. The grand Melbourne GPO 1859 was the centre of Melbourne and the distance from which everywhere in Victoria was measured. Its postal, telegraph and phone services connected Melbournians to their suburbs, nation and the world for almost 150 years.
THIRTEEN Myer Melbourne 1910, 320 Bourke – Cathedral of Commerce. In 1898 Simcha Baevski, an impoverished Jewish immigrant arrived in Melbourne from Russia. He changed his name to Sidney Myer and created Australia’s greatest shopping empire. Melbourne families have been visiting the famous Christmas display windows since the 1956 Olympic Games.
FOURTEEN Princess Theatre est. 1857, 170 Spring – Entertainment. Melbourne’s oldest theatre site is the fabulous Second French Empire building in Spring Street.  ‘Federici’ who died playing the devil Mephistopheles in 1888 is Melbourne’s most famous ghost.
FIFTEEN  Parliament House 1857, Spring Street, Cnr Bourke – The People’s House. ‘We swear by the Southern Cross to stand truly by each other and fight to defend our rights and liberties’. The 1854 Eureka rebellion spurred the creation of a democratic parliament. This house of Victoria’s government sits high on Eastern Hill on a ceremonial meeting ground of the five tribes of the Kulin Nation. From 1901 to 1927, this Parliament housed the first national parliament of the new Australian nation.
SIXTEEN Old Treasury Building 1858, 20 Spring (cnr Collins) – Gold. One of Australia’s finest 19th-century buildings in Australia was designed by a legendary teenager architect – John James Clark. The Old Treasury Building (1857), now a free history museum, contains the bluestone vaults for storing the gold escorted by troopers from the gold mining fields.
SEVENTEEN  Collins Street Churches, Russell and Collins – Holy Hill.       EIGHTEEN St Michaels 1864, 120 Collins. The gold rushes made Melbourne wealthy but respectable reflected in the ‘bible-belt’ of Collins Street churches such as the cluster of the Baptists temple 1861, Scots Church 1874 and Assembly Hall and St Michaels (1864). For a while the Assembly Hall 1915 (156 Collins) was used as the Women’s mock parliament to practise suffragette ideals of parliamentary representation.
NINETEEN Cromwell House 1886, 135 Collins, Cnr Russell – Diamond Jim
. Cromwell House 1886 was the huge private mansion of wealthy Melbourne hospital surgeon ‘Diamond Jim’ Beaney who had the unfortunate reputation of operating in a blood-soaked gown with jewelled hands while inviting an audience to watch.   Beaney medical scholarships are still offered today at Melbourne University.
TWENTY  Athenaeum Theatre est. 1839, 188 Collins – Melbourne’s Cultural DNA.
The Athenaeum is the oldest public institution in Victoria, the venue for the first Melbourne Council and library and since 1839 has hosted arts, science, opera, theatre and cinema. It premiered the first feature film in the world, the Ned Kelly Gang in 1906 and the first Australian ‘talkie’, The Jazz Singer, in 1927.
TWENTY-ONE Melbourne Town Hall 1867, Collins & Swanston – Comedy and Rock and Roll. The classical building is the home city government as well as tens of thousands of civic functions including the Comedy Festival. In 1964, the Beatles appeared on the balcony before 20,000 screaming teenagers. In 1975 the young ACDC band rolled past singing ‘Its along way to the top if you wanna Rock an Roll’.
TWENTY-TWO Return We return to Federation Square where the beginning of our journey began but the Melbourne story continues per the 1842 city motto: Vires Acquirit Eundo – ‘She gathers strength as she goes’.