The Melbourne Star Observation Wheel is a fixture on every Melbourne tourist’s to-do list but it can also be a fun outing if you’re local. It’s particularly suited to families who are looking for something a bit different to experience together.
The last time we visited was in 2014 and since then my kids have been begging me to take them on the ‘big wheel’ again.
The Melbourne Star offers a 30-minute ride on a giant wheel with enclosed glass pods. It’s 40 storeys high and provides expansive 360-degree views of Melbourne’s skyline day and night.
Your trip starts with waiting rooms filled with colour information placards. I notice that most people don’t bother reading them, anxious to get inside the wheel itself.
Note that you cannot take prams inside the pods and there is pram parking available.
Each glass pod is temperature controlled and fits up to 28 people so you can’t wait for your own, private pod unless you book in advance (and pay more).
Lady AB and Baby 2.0 enjoy the experience but towards the end to be honest they are no longer as excited by the view. Unfortunately, the Melbourne skyline really isn’t that interesting – it’s not like going on the London Eye and seeing all these storybook locations in miniature. After about 20 minutes the kids are itching to get out.
As it is an enclosed space everyone is free to roam around. There are rails at toddler height.
For those with a fear of heights (me) it’s not like you’re in an open carriage of a ferris wheel as it sways and the wheel turns so slowly that the movement is imperceptible.
To avoid long lines I’d visit on a day that’s NOT a special occasion eg Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, school holidays. It’s pretty relaxed most weekends.
At the gift shop there’s lots of wheel-related paraphernalia as well as an impressive Lego replica of the structure.
The Melbourne Star is free for children under 4 and they regularly offer specials or school holidays events. Even merely booking ahead online can save you 25% off. At full price, it is a really expensive 30-minute experience. So my recommendation is to keep a lookout for promotions and discount coupons and take advantage of them if you can.
FLASH SALE! Buy a discount voucher for a single ticket for the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel for only $15! The voucher is valid until 16 January 2019.
- Tickets are expensive so go when there are discounts and promotions.
- During school holidays and special events there are often free additional activities;
- You can take in snacks and drinks;
- For younger children I recommend taking some other toys/activities as after about 20 minutes they may lose interest in the view; ‘
- You can hire binoculars for $14.95 online;
- The Lost Forests run storytelling sessions regularly; and
- Short drive or long walk to Library at the Dock and Ron Barassi Snrplayground.