Footscray, Yarraville and Spotswood

Footscray lurks in the shadow of the enormous Docklands, Melbourne’s container port, where bulks of goods are loaded and unloaded day and night. Its location and history as a working-class suburb, have given Footscray the reputation of an industrial district with hard-boiled residents. However, its proximity to the city has recently turned Footscray into a popular address for middle-class families searching for affordable housing within reach of the CBD. Together with a multi-ethnical mix of immigrants from around the world, these new residents are turning Footscray into an authentic, unfussy community with fabulous eateries and good shopping.

You can almost imagine yourself in a bustling Asian town during a visit of the vibrant Footscray Markets. Stalls not only offer fresh fruit and vegetables but also an impressive array of Asian specialties and excellent seafood.

The Maribyrnong River – once a delivery channel for the heavy industries – is slowly being transformed into a recreation hub with a cycle path and a promenade. The Living Museum at Pipemakers Park in Maribyrnong treasures the intriguing history of the Western suburbs and its immigrants. It is open on the first and third Sunday of each month and is free of charge. Also see BlackBird & Maribyrnong Crusies  for a great day out

Yarraville further south has a laid-back alternative flair and a good café, bar and restaurant scene. Treat yourself to a movie and a glass of wine in the Sun Theatre with its nostalgic charms and comfy reupholstered seatings. The adjoining bookshop has a well-selected collection and you won’t struggle to find a cosy locale for a pint or a cocktail just around the corner.

The technology museum Scienceworks in Spotswood is reason enough for a visit to the Inner West. Located in an old pump station, the museum revolves around topics such as energy, meteorology, technical inventions, and much more. With lots of hands-on facilities, the museum offers a great learning experience for children and adults alike. Attached to the museum is the Melbourne Planetarium, which sends visitors on a 3D journey through the universe