For sports fans all over there are few greater thrills than experiencing the buzzing atmosphere of Melbourne in the grips of footy fever.
Footy is part of life in Melbourne and the revered MCG is so close to the CBD that you can easily combine a big game with Melbourne's famed laneway life, savour a coffee or two and see some of the city's most sensational sights.
Friday night games, Saturday afternoon spectaculars or twilight tousles all offer an unforgettable experience and leave plenty of time to make the most of Melbourne.
Afternoon games at the MCG generally kick off at 1:10, 2:10 or 3:20, allowing time for breakfast and lunch before the game, or even better, a lazy brunch and wander around the top end of town. Try Cumulus Inc for brunch or brekky that's all class, bunker down at Bowery to Williamsburg, or take advantage of Federation Square's expansive eateries.
City shop & stroll
Get your bearings with a brief wander around town, giving into the temptation to duck into the boutiques you pass as you stroll, building a distinctive football outfit as you shop.
If you've opted for an earlier breakfast over brunch you can take advantage of the extra hours to duck into ACMI or NGV to take in the Winter Masterpieces exhibitions. This winter NGV International reveals more than 200 works by French impressionist Degas, while ACMI at Federation Square is exploring the inspiration and works of master screen stylist Scorsese.
Alternatively, make it all about the MCG by heading over to the National Sports Museum to relieve some great moments of sporting history before the footy.
Absorb a bit of pre-game atmosphere by heading over Punt Road to one of the local Richmond pubs. Try the London Tavern, the Richmond Club Hotel or the Mountain View Hotel and get involved in an animated chat about your team's fortunes, or warm up for the game in The Corner Hotel's rooftop beer garden.
Head over to the MCG with plenty of time to orbit the exterior and pay your respects to the statues of players past before taking your seat and barracking yourself hoarse from the moment your team breaks through the banner.