Known to locals simply as “The G”, the Melbourne Cricket Ground is considered Australia’s most legendary sports stadium and the country’s largest. It was here that the 1956 Olympic Games and 2006 Commonwealth Games were showcased and it is considered the spiritual home of Test Cricket and Australian Rules Football.
The MCG was built in 1853 and hosted the first cricket Test match to be played between Australia and England in 1877. It was also here that the first One Day International was played between the two countries in 1971. Today its biggest event of the year is the annual Australian Rules Football grand final that takes place each September and sees the stadium filled to capacity.
The MCG is home to the National Sports Museum, which celebrates Australia’s sporting achievements, and has been listed on the Australian National Heritage Register. In addition to sporting events, the MCG also holds big-name musical concerts and cultural events, with its largest attendance being recorded at 130,000 for a Billy Graham evangelistic crusade in 1959.
The best way to experience the MCG is on game day, with cricket being played over the summer months and football during the winter. Alternatively, you can join one of the daily tours that take visitors through the player change rooms, the Ron Casey Media Centre and to walk on the arena itself. You’ll witness iconic portraits of Sir Donald Bradman and Sachin Tendulkar and have time to explore the Australian Gallery of Sport and Olympic Museum, as well as taking in the views of Melbourne’s skyline from the City Terrace.