The 10 Best Museums in Melbourne

Melbourne, a cultural hub teeming with art, history, and expression, offers a treasure trove of museums that are as diverse as they are engaging. Whether you’re a history buff, art aficionado, or science enthusiast, this city has something to pique your curiosity. Let’s dive into a curated list of the top 10 museums that are a must-visit in this vibrant Australian metropolis.

As Australia’s oldest and most visited gallery, the NGV is a beacon of art in Melbourne. With two impressive locations, NGV International and The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia, it showcases an extensive collection of international and local art. From Indigenous to contemporary pieces, the exhibitions here are thought-provoking and visually stunning.

2. Melbourne Museum and Royal Exhibition Building

Next up is the Melbourne Museum, nestled in the Carlton Gardens. It’s a modern foray into natural and cultural histories with a dash of science on the side. The adjacent Royal Exhibition Building, a World Heritage Site, is an architectural marvel that hosts various events and exhibitions throughout the year.

3. Scienceworks

Hands-on and interactive, Scienceworks makes science approachable and fun for all ages. It’s a place where you can challenge your mind, indulge in a planetarium show, or even take a nostalgic trip with old-school machines. The lightning room is particularly electrifying – literally!

4. Immigration Museum

Located in the Old Customs House, the Immigration Museum tells the moving stories of people from all over the world who have made Melbourne their home. Its exhibitions are a poignant reminder of the city’s multicultural fabric and the shared experiences of migrants.

5. Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI)

For film buffs and digital culture vultures, ACMI at Federation Square is a cinematic goldmine. It’s a hub for the moving image in all its forms – from film and TV to video games and art. Their interactive exhibits and retrospectives are a feast for the senses.

6. Old Melbourne Gaol

Step back in time and experience the darker side of Melbourne’s history at the Old Melbourne Gaol. Once home to notorious criminal Ned Kelly, this museum offers a chilling glimpse into 19th-century prison life. Night tours are available for the brave-hearted.

7. The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia

Part of the NGV, The Ian Potter Centre is dedicated to Australian art. It’s a cultural gem where you can admire the works of Indigenous artists and the Heidelberg School painters. The gallery’s collection is a testament to the richness of Australian art.

8. Heide Museum of Modern Art

Heide, once the home of art patrons John and Sunday Reed, is now a museum that celebrates modern and contemporary art. Set in a vast Parkland, it’s a place where art and nature harmoniously intersect. The sculpture park and kitchen garden are not to be missed.

9. Jewish Museum of Australia

This museum offers a deep dive into Jewish culture and history, with a particular focus on the Australian Jewish community. Its exhibitions are both informative and engaging, providing a unique perspective on the Jewish experience in Australia.

10. Hellenic Museum

Last but not least, the Hellenic Museum connects visitors with Greek art, history, and culture. Housed in the historic Royal Mint building, its collection spans thousands of years and is a testament to the enduring legacy of Greek civilization.


  • What are the opening hours for the NGV?

    The NGV typically opens from 10 am to 5 pm, but it’s best to check their website for any changes or special events.

  • Can I find interactive exhibits at these museums?

    Absolutely! Museums like Scienceworks are designed to be interactive, making learning fun and engaging.

  • Are there any museums that focus on specific cultures?

    Yes, the Immigration Museum, Jewish Museum of Australia, and Hellenic Museum offer cultural insights into the diverse communities that enrich Melbourne.


In conclusion, Melbourne’s museums are not just buildings filled with artifacts; they’re vibrant institutions that tell the stories of our world, its history, and its people. From the awe-inspiring collections at the NGV to the interactive displays at Scienceworks, there’s a museum in Melbourne to satisfy every curiosity. These top 10 museums offer a glimpse into the heart and soul of the city, making them essential stops on any cultural itinerary. So next time you’re in Melbourne, make sure to carve out some time for these incredible institutions – your mind will thank you!

Remember, whether you’re a local or a visitor, Melbourne’s museums offer a world of discovery at your fingertips. So go ahead, step into the past, ponder the present, and imagine the future – all within the walls of Melbourne’s finest museums.

Kurby Team

The Kurby Content Team is a diverse group of seasoned real estate experts dedicated to providing insightful, reliable information for homebuyers, real estate investors, and real estate agents. With backgrounds ranging from real estate brokerage, property investment, and residential home buying, our team combines decades of experience with a passion for demystifying the real estate world. We at Kurby are committed to helping you make informed, successful real estate decisions. Whether you're a first-time homebuyer, a seasoned investor, or a real estate professional, count on the Kurby Content Team to deliver the most relevant, actionable real estate content you need.