About Melbourne Cricket ground
It does not matter whether you are a sports fan or not. For, this magnificent sporting venue of Australia – the Melbourne Cricket Ground would remind you of the sporting legends and the record-breaking history made in the field of cricket, rugby, football and others of the like!
Popularly known as the “G” by the locals, the venue has a century-long legacy for hosting some of the best cricket, Australia Rules Football and rugby matches ever! Right from being an integral part of the 1956 Olympic games, the cricket ground continues to be the hub for Victorian sport. So, where is this stellar attraction of Melbourne that draws tourists and sports enthusiasts alike!
Located in Yarra Park, in Victoria, Melbourne, the Melbourne Cricket Ground or MCG is known for its imposing stature. Its whooping 100000-odd seating capacity comprises different seating banks such as: Members Reserve, Ponsford Stand, Olympic Stand and the Grand 3-tiered Southern Stand. Adding to the iconic attractions of the ground are: two huge electronic scoreboards, a gallery of sport and a host of media and corporate facilities.
So, it is wonderful to witness the fan-frenzy at the MCG during the cricket and football matches that are held almost 90 days in a year. During the events, food kiosks serving variety fare are set up in the premises for fans/spectators to grab quick bites, while watching their favourite sports star in action.
While the sports events draw crowds to the MCG, the sheer grandeur of the venue is an attraction for tourists, even otherwise. Being a tourist hotspot, there are numerous stays – hotels, guesthouses, budget-stays and sorts within the vicinity of the MCG.
In addition, the location of the venue in Melbourne’s CBD(Central business district) makes it readily accessible by various means of public transport. One cannot but be in awe at the grandeur of the MCG, which talks of a glorious past ever since it was established.
How to Reach Melbourne Cricket ground
There are Metro, Shuttle, Skybus, Yarra trams and taxi rides available to reach MCG from the airport.
When you are using public transport, the route you take is:
From Jolimont MCG(closest stop) , to the Southern Cross by train;
Walk through to Skybus Coach Terminal and board the Melbourne Airport T3 Skybus.
Best Time to Visit Melbourne Cricket ground
To explore something as spectacular as the MCG, you will want the weather to be on your side. And that you are not browbeaten by extreme climatic conditions.
The ideal period to visit Melbourne is during autumn(March – May ) and Spring(September – November). This is the time when you can go on cycling trails or even explore the city on foot.
But if you choose to visit during summer or winter season you can catch some of the major sporting events in Cricket or Football at the MCG.
What Not to Miss at Melbourne Cricket ground
1. Hosier Lane: A 5-minute walk from the MCG, this cobbled street would sway you with its street art. A riot of colours would welcome you here! While you soak in the artsy vibes of the place, you could swing by at the popular cocktail bar or indulge at the famous tapas bar.
- Address : Hosier Lane, Melbourne, Victoria 3000
2. Hot air Ballooning centre: For a panoramic view of Melbourne city, the hot air balloon rides are the best option. Though hot air ballooning centres don’t operate during matches or events at the MCG(in which case its only during dawn), they function full swing during all other times.
3. Royal Botanic Gardens: Spanning 36 hectares across Melbourne and Cranbourne with garden-beds, lakes, breathtaking landscapes, the Royal Botanic Gardens showcase a rich biodiversity of rare and exotic plants. Whether you choose to tour the gardens or picnic in the vast greens, you will have an experience to remember!
- Address : Birdwood Ave, South Yarra VIC 3141, Australia
4. Degraves Street: Melbourne’s food hub, Degraves street offers you a palate of flavours with its wide range of cafes, bars and restaurants. It’s a great place to hang out with friends and family, to taste the best local flavours of Melbourne!
- Address :Degraves Street(Central Business District), Victoria, Melbourne
5. Federation Square: The cultural hub of Melbourne thrives in Federation Square with its unique mix of modern and classic architecture buildings, alongside some of the major cultural attractions such as the National Gallery of Victoria and the Australian Centre for the moving image.
- Address: Swanston St & Flinders St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia
The above are but a few places that you can visit around Melbourne Cricket Ground. Being at the hub of Melbourne, there is more to discover around MCG. You could explore by taking a walk along the Yarra river or reaching up to the 88th floor of the Eureka Skydeck 88 for a mesmerizing view of the city.
Things to do at Melbourne Cricket ground
1. Spanning a playing area of 172.9m long, 147.8m wide, with a host of facilities, you will find a plethora of things to do in the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
2. With some of the world’s best seasonal matches being played here, you can grab a hotseat for the AFL or Aussie Rules matches played during winter. Or, if summer is the season you choose to holiday in Melbourne, you should not miss the cricket matches played during that time.
3. Between the seasons and the sports, the MCG vast premises are for you to discover. Among the Cricketers’ viewing room, Ron Casey Media Centre, Players’ Change room, other attractions include
4. National Sports museum showcasing 150 years of Australia’s sporting history.
5. Melbourne Cricket Club Library that showcases the heritage of the MCG through a vast collection of books on sports and sports’
6. The famous MCC Long Room that has the long-standing tradition of being a meeting point for members and guests
7. Portrait of Sir Donald Bradman and Sachin Tendulkar, the cricketing legends of the century.
8. Cricket Victoria Bill Lawry Centre celebrating the legendary cricket player
9. MCG Tapestry that is 7 metres wide and 2 metres tall, highlighting MCC’s contribution featuring milestone events, players and so on
10. Ponsford Stand that is one of the vast seating banks named after the Victorian batsman Bill Ponsford
11. City Terrace that unfolds a breath-taking view of Melbourne’s skyline
Other Essential Information About Melbourne Cricket ground
Location: Yarra Park, Jolimont, VIC, 3002 (Phone: +61 3 9657 8867)
Timings: Monday – Sunday (10:00 AM – 5:00 PM)
Entry fee: The entry fees are made available in the following packages
- Family (2 adults + 2 children) : $60
- Family additional child (up to 2) : $5 each
- Adult : $25
- Concession : $21
- Child (5-15) : $14
There is no entry fee for children below 5 years of age
History of MCG – Reliving the past glory, time and again
As it stands tall today with some of the most amazing world records in sports, the story of MCG began in 1853, when it was first established. The sporting venue came into being within a decade of the founding of the city of Melbourne.
From having a 6000-odd seating capacity at the time of its construction to accommodating a staggering 100000-odd spectators at present, MCG’s stature as a premier sports venue in Australia, is something to reckon with.Apart from being home to the AFL(Australian Football League) rugby and cricket matches, the MCG was the centrepiece during the 1956 Olympic games and the 2006 Commonwealth Games.
The first official kick-off of a sporting event at the MCG was in 1854, when the first cricket match was played on its grounds.This was followed by a football match played by the Victoria Football league, during the 1870s. Apart from cricket and football, the MCG has also hosted the State of Origin series , the rugby union, the FIFA World Cup qualifiers in 1997 and 2001.
These sporting events have pulled in crowds over and beyond the capacity of MCG, especially during the 1975 VFL Grand Final, with to the extent of 121696 spectators cramped for space! What adds a jewel to its crown is that the sporting facility has also played host to iconic celebrities like Pope John II in 1956, Queen Elizabeth in the 1980s, along with staging musical concerts by Madonna and Rolling Stones. As the past glory of MCG shines on, you have umpteen avenues to explore and discover in the biggest sports venue of Australia.
Tips for Melbourne Cricket ground
There is no doubt that the visiting Melbourne Cricket Ground is one for your bucketlist of things to do in Melbourne. As you gear up for an amazing experience of the MCG, here are a few tips that will come in handy before you head to Australia’s largest sports stadium.
1. Check for tickets online to explore the MCG, where you can book in advance.
2. You should go for the guided tours to get better insights of the MCG, its sporting history and a host of facilities and features that make it world-renowned.
3. Do not forget to check for events happening on the ground in the MCG website.