Your Australian Local Travel Guide: Explore Melbourne with Kristina Karlsson

Adventuring doesn’t have to involve long-distance travel (or distance travel at all for that matter!) for it to give you a sense of exploration, an opportunity to switch off and turn moments into memories. Whether it be a short weekender away or navigating your way through untapped areas of your home city, your sense of wanderlust can still be explored! And if there’s one thing we know well, it’s that any true Melbournian will tell you that there is no experience in Australia quite like exploring all of Melbourne’s hidden gems.  A hub for all things trendy and tasty, you’ll find bustling laneways, cosy cafes, world class restaurants and the best that shopping, art and culture have to offer. So if you’re ready to set that out-of-office status to ‘eat, drink and explore’ then these are the tips you need to take with you as you navigate Melbourne!

Despite her proud heritage growing up in Sweden and a passion for all things Swedish design, our wonderful founder Kristina Karlsson is also a true Melbourne local! It is a place that will always hold a special place in her heart, with the first kikki.K store having opened right here in the heart of the Melbourne CBD. She took us through some of her favourite spots from over the years, as well as some great new finds that visitors and locals alike should immediately pop into their journals!

Q| As a local, my favourite thing to do here is…
A|
Walk to a great café! One of my favourite things to do is go for a walk while listening to an inspiring podcast and land at an exciting café. My new favourite that I can’t go past recently is the Commons Restaurant in St Kilda. Not only do they have great coffee (up to those notoriously high Melbourne standards!), but they’ve also got the most inspiring setting, friendly service and the best part – I can take my dog Coco with me there as well!

Q| When I’m hungry, I can’t go past….
A|
Coda. It’s easily of my favourite restaurants in Melbourne. I dream about their buffalo mozzarella, zucchini fritters, mint & pea salad – I just can’t get enough of it!

Q| When I’m in the mood for an inspiring wander, my go to place is…
A|
The Avenue Book store in Albert Park. It’s my favourite bookstore and I could literally spend hours wandering around in there (I am a true paper lover after all!). If you’re heading for a look, it is best done with a coffee in hand from Balderdash in my opinion!

Q| When I’m looking for something special to buy to give, I always go to……
A|
Monogrammed notebooks. They are the perfect way to give a beautiful gift that anybody can love but still has a personal touch. I love giving it them to my loved ones with their initials added and paired back with my favourite gold pen – all from my local kikki.K store of course!

Q| My favourite place to chill-out is…
A|
At a wine bar on my own! I will often put on a pair of sneakers, throw my journal and a pen into my bag and walk to some of my favourite wine bars for a glass of wine and some journaling. Some of my personal favourites that I love to visit include Bar Lourinha, Coda, Di Stasio Citta, Belota Wine Bar, City Wine Shop, The Village Wine Bar & Embla – but there are plenty more I could include! I always feel so lucky to live in a city like Melbourne that has such quality food and wine no matter where you turn.

Q| A hidden gem that needs to be talked about more is…
A|
The Commons at Ormond Collective. It is truly a little oasis in Melbourne – with the most inspiring environment and the best service. Start with a coffee at the café, eat lunch at the restaurant and finish at the Bar Moubray – all I need to remember is to bring Coco the dog home !

Q| Something visitors to Melbourne shouldn’t miss is… 
A|
Cumulus inc. I love going there as it just feels so Melbourne, so if you want a true Melbourne dining experience this is it. Love their coffee, food and atmosphere – all so great!

Q|If you’re coming, don’t forget to pack…
A|
Comfortable sneakers! If you want the true Melbourne experience you will find yourself exploring from café to café, restaurant to restaurant and bars to bar, so you don’t want to find yourself without some comfortable shoes on. And of course, you don’t want to forget a journal and a pen to document it all!

If you love hearing from Kristina and are searching for more inspiration be sure to listen in to her weekly ‘Your Dream Life Starts Here’ podcast, sign up for one of her fabulous digital courses, join one of her challenges and become a part of the wonderful Dream Life community!

If you’re left feeling motivated to do a little exploring, be sure to check out our latest Out Of Office Collection for the perfect travel pieces to come along with you on your next adventures and capture all of the special moments both near and far!

Don’t forget, we love to see which kikki.K favourites you’re bringing along on your next adventure, so be sure to share all of your exploration and more with us by tagging @kikki.K and using #kikkiklove.

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