What’s On: AFL Grand Final and How To Get There

What’s On: AFL Grand Final and How To Get There

The Australian city of Melbourne is set to celebrate the annual Australian Football League Grand Final during the last weekend of September. So revered is this game that the Victoria Government declared the day before a public holiday for the state, so that everybody could enjoy the lead up to the big game. Here’s the low-down on everything you need to know about the 2018 AFL Grand Final.

The game

The AFL Grand FInal attracts big names like Meatloaf, Ed Sheeran and Ellie Goulding to its entertainment stage, and the Melbourne Cricket Ground, fondly known as the ‘G,  is filled to its (more than) 100,000 seat capacity, making the AFL Grand Final one of the biggest sporting events in Australia. But who will be victorious and take home the AFL Premiership Cup and Flag this year? Will it be the mighty Magpies, or the Eagles?

When: Saturday 29 September 2018

Time: 2:30pm (despite rumours that it would be a twilight event this year)

Where: The Melbourne Cricket Ground

Who’s playing: Collingwood vs West Coast Eagles

What’s the Brownlow Medal?

Awarded to the player deemed ‘best and fairest’ throughout that season, the Brownlow medal is awarded at Melbourne’s Crown Casino on the Monday night before the Grand Final. Named after Charles Brownlow, a former player for AFL team the Geelong Cats, the Brownlow Medal is widely considered the highest honour an AFL player can receive. The medal is currently held by Richmond player Dustin Martin.

Grand Final Eve

Each year, Grand Final Eve is celebrated with a parade on the Friday afternoon before the game. It’s so popular that in 2015 the State Government deemed the Friday a public holiday. The parade has been a paramount part of the grand final celebrations since 1977, and tens of thousands of people attend each year.

Crowds in Melbourne attending the AFL Grand Final Eve Parade
Tens of thousands of spectators attend the Grand Final Eve Parade in Melbourne

Getting around

The city of Melbourne has two main airports; Melbourne Airport (colloquially known as Tullamarine Airport), which is Australia’s second busiest airport and lies about 25 kilometres from the city centre, and Avalon Airport, just over 50 kilometres to the west of the city. When booking flights to and from Melbourne, always double check which airport your flight departs from.

Jayride.com lists airport transfer options for both airports, so if you’ve booked your flight and hotel, make sure you sort out your ground transport so you’re not left stuck at the airport, or paying too much for a taxi.

As for navigating the city, Melbourne’s public transport requires you to purchase a Myki Card to use the trains, trams and buses. There’s a free city circle tram that trundles past major attractions, which is a great option for some sightseeing.

What to do in Melbourne

Melbourne is a thriving, multicultural city known for its creative vibes, hidden bars, live music, fantastic food, love of sport and coffee culture. Add to that lots of gardens and green spaces, art galleries, museums and distinct neighbourhoods, and it’s little wonder Melbourne is such a popular destination.

Melbourne Central shot tower. Photo by Heidi Sandstrom on Unsplash
While in Melbourne, visit Melbourne Central, home to great shopping and the architectural curiosity of the brick shot tower housed in a glass dome

Whether you want to bar-hop through the hipster suburb of Fitzroy, stroll through the Botanic Gardens, see an art exhibition at the National Gallery of Victoria, stroll along the esplanade in the seaside suburb of St Kilda, go shopping at Melbourne Central, enjoy a feast of dumplings and top-notch noodles in Chinatown, or enjoy a cracking game of football, you’ll find something to love about Melbourne.

For more inspiration on what to do in a short amount of time, check our our guide 24 Hours In Melbourne as well as 12 Free Things To Do In Melbourne.

Heading to Melbourne for the AFL Grand Final? Don’t leave your airport transfer until the last minute. From shared shuttles to private cars, there’s a transfer to suit all needs and budgets. Browse Jayride.com today to find a fantastic deal.

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When booking flights to and from Melbourne, always double check which airport your flight departs from.