Community, culture and character come together in South Melbourne, the little village just minutes from the big city.

At the heart of this vibrant suburb is the South Melbourne Market (open Wednesday and Friday to Sunday). The market is an enduring institution that has been part of the local community for 150 years. Here, you can buy superb local produce, feast on freshly shucked oysters and the market’s famous dim sims, and shop for clothing, books, fresh flowers and arts and crafts.

Looking for something extra special for the kids? Nearby is Little Darcy, a boutique with a wide range of clothing, footwear, toys and homewares for newborns through to eight-year-olds.

If you’re looking for a moment of respite, just around the corner and tucked down a cobbled alleyway, you’ll find an all-day menu of French-inspired breakfast and lunch dishes at Chez Dre. The cafe-cum-patisserie also has a selection of home-style cakes, slices and pastries if you’re wanting to indulge your sweet tooth. Enjoy your coffee in the umbrella-shaded courtyard out the back; it’s perfect on a sunny day.

Just a few streets away is Honey Bar, a modern establishment with a stylish marble bar and lounge area. There’s a great selection of beers, wines, ciders and cocktails, and it also offers a menu of traditional pub meals for lunch and dinner.

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