Melbourne street art is amongst the best in the world. An ever-changing, dynamic and colourful collection of Melbourne graffiti laneways, the street graffiti found here is, in fact, works of art. The street artists are talented professionals, some already famous, others on their way. It’s one of my favourite cities for a getaway, so much so that this is our second visit in the last 15-months.
Melbourne Australia is a diverse, modern, and fun city. We visit for relaxation, drinking coffee in laneway cafes, walking the neighbourhoods, shopping, and exploring the Melbourne street art. Australia’s second largest city is internationally known for its colourful and eclectic street art found on “approved outdoor locations” throughout the city.
As street art is fluid, and the wall art is always updating, I have added the year I took each photo in the caption. Watermarked or not, all photos on this page are ©Rhonda Albom. All rights reserved.
Where to Find the Best Street Art in Melbourne
In truth, finding Melbourne street art is often as easy as turning your head as you pass an alleyway or laneway. However, finding the best Melbourne street art requires a bit of guidance. If you are like us, stop by any information booth and ask for a Melbourne street art map, or download your own from the city’s website and enjoy a self-guided journey. However, if you prefer to learn more about the history, the artists, and not miss a thing, you might want to take a tour. Check out these three Melbourne street art tours:
- Melbourne Street Art Walking Tour
- A 3-hour walking street art tour in the CBD
- ⇒ Click to check for prices and availability for the walking tour or Book Now
- Melbourne Street Art Rickshaw Safari Tour
- A 90-minute tour of the street art in Fitzroy and Collingwood via rickshaw
- ⇒ Click to check for prices and availability for the rickshaw tour or Book Now
- Fitzroy Street Art Tour
- A 2.5-hour walking tour of the street art in Fitzroy and Collingwood
- ⇒ Click to check for prices and availability for Fitzroy and Collingwood tour or Book Now
Melbourne Street Art on Hosier Lane and Rutledge Lane
No question about it, if you only have the time or inclination to visit one of the Melbourne graffiti lanes, Hosier Lane is it. And as you walk about halfway down the street, you can’t miss Rutledge Lane, a Melbourne graffiti alley intersecting Hosier Lane. Ever changing, and overwhelming, Rutledge Lane was painted over in solid blue in 2013 by street artist Adrian Doyle. Funded by the council, it was an attempt to breathe new life into the graffiti-laden area.
Melbourne Street Artists
If you know where to look, you can find the art of some of the world’s best street art artists like Rone, Phibs, Alexis Diaz, Ghost Patrol, Lush, Askew One, Sofles, and others. Possibly the most famous are the nine stencil street art creations by British street artist Bansky, who made during a secret trip to the city in 2003. Unfortunately, three were destroyed during construction in 2016 on AC/DC Lane, another two ruined in 2014 (also on AC/DC Lane), and two others in Fitzroy painted over in 2013. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, there is a push to preserve the remaining two.
While we didn’t see any of the famous artists mentioned above, we did see a few people creating their own street art illusions.
Political Street Art
Street art is also a platform used for political commentary.
More of the Best Melbourne Street Art
With over 1,000 ceramic tile pieces on display, Drewery Lane is a different example of Melbourne laneway art. Organized and taught by Sanker Nadeson, the ceramics are for Legacy House, an organization committed to caring for families of those who lost their life or health to defend the nation.
Sniders Lane (off of Drewery Lane)
Sniders Lane is a side alley off Drewery Lane, and a quick reminder to always turn your head and look down every laneway and alleyway, as you never know what you will find.
Coverlid Place / Croft Alley
Labelled on the official map of Melbourne street art as Croft Alley, the sign at the street is Coverlid Place.
What do you think, Melbourne Graffiti or Art?
Practical Information on Melbourne Street Art:
- Lonely Planet included Melbourne street art on its list of the top cities to enjoy this modern artistic expression. And, of course, Melbourne Australia is prominently featured amongst the 42 countries in Lonely Planet’s new guide to global Street Art book.
- Hosier Lane and Rutledge Lane are considered to have the best street art in Melbourne, as well as the most comprehensive.
- Bring a camera.
- Remember to turn and look up and down alleyways and laneways, otherwise, you might miss something special.
- Take the shot when you see it, Melbourne graffiti laneways are continually changing, and the same graffiti art may not be there the next day.
- If you want to add your own cool street art, be sure to check out the current laws surrounding it first, as it is only legal in specific areas, with plenty of restrictions.
Melbourne is not the only street art city. If you’re a fan, be sure to check out some of my favourite New Zealand street art in Auckland and Christchurch as well as this series from travel bloggers around the world including Australia and New Zealand, North America, Asia, Central and South America, and Europe.
There’s More Melbourne than Laneways and Street Art
This is our third visit to Melbourne, and the first time we brought our teen/adult children. We drank coffee, ate some fabulous meals, visited a few landmarks like the State Library of Melbourne, St. Paul’s Cathedral, and Queen Victoria Market (more on these three coming soon). And of course, shopping, lots of shopping. There is nowhere better within four hours of our home in Auckland, New Zealand.