Southern Cross Station is one of Melbourne’s most historic train stations. Known locally as Spencer Street Station (its original name) - the station is located in Melbourne’s Docklands district on the western side of the Central Business District (CBD). For a time, Southern Cross Station was the city’s westernmost limit. In recent times, the city has been expanded beyond Southern Street Station further westward with lines running to suburbs on the fringes of the city.
Southern Cross Station was opened just a few short years after Australia’s oldest train station,
Flinders Street Station
. Although Flinders Street Station is the country’s oldest train station, it is not the centre of Victoria's railway activity. Actually, Southern Cross Station is considered the hub due to the connections with Melbourne Airport, Interstate Lines and the considerably large amount of activity each day.
Although the station was built over 160 year ago, Southern Cross Station has plenty of great modern amenities for travellers to enjoy. From luggage storage to restaurants to explore, you can meet all your needs when passing through.
History of Southern Cross Station
The station was opened in 1859 under its original name, Spencer Street. Although the name of the station was changed in 2005, locals of a certain generation still know the station as Spencer Street. The original station was opened just five years after Australia’s
first-ever train station, Flinders Street Station.
In the beginning, Spencer Street was a dead-end terminus. It ran parallel to Spencer Street unlike its current route today. Travellers in the 19th century would have had one main platform and a dock platform on the north side of the station. Flinders Street was not connected to Spencer Street Station until 1879, two decades after the train station was constructed.
The station was altered multiple times over the years until October 1960 when it was modernised to look more like it does today. The modernisation of the railway station came thanks to construction being made on the interstate standard gauge railway link between Melbourne and Sydney. It was at this time that the iron shed buildings constructed in the 1880 were modernised into a completely new station building.
One of the most iconic elements of Southern Cross Station is the Water Tower Clock. It was installed in 2014. The historic clock was originally built in 1882 for Flinders Street Station. Years later, the Water Tower Clock moved to Spencer Street Station. However, redevelopment work in the 1960s removed the clock. Its restoration brought back a piece of history. Today’s station is a gorgeous modern facility with shops, restaurants and bars for travellers to enjoy.
Luggage Storage & Lockers
Naturally, we recommend booking Luggage Storage with mindmybag. Bookings are made online and include a guarantee for the safety of your stored property. Enjoy the convenience and comfort of knowing your property will be kept safe and secure until you return to collect it.
The station also has lockers, however , the Lockers are expensive (starting at $12 and going upto $26) and generally in a state of disrepair (frequently unavailable / not functioning). Currently, there is no guarantee for the safety of your luggage when using the lockers.
If you book luggage storage with mindmybag, it will only cost AUD$10 per bag for the day. Once booked, you're free to drop-off and pick-up your bags off at a time that suits you. All bookings include a property safety guarantee.
To ride the Melbourne metro, you must purchase a myki to journey around the city. A myki card can be bought and topped up at local convenient stores or metro premium shops. Over 800 retailers sell and top up myki cards across Melbourne. The card allows you to tap in and out of the metro. Adults tickets start at AUD $6 and just AUD $3 for children. Its free to use the city loop trams.
Public Transport Victoria plans to unveil a new timetable in 2021 for Southern Cross Station and others around the area. The timetable will be officially released on January 31, 2021. Upgrades are being made to the busiest routes around Melbourne and the metropolitan and regional trainlines will be upgrade. PTV plans to run 450 new train services each week giving travellers more options for moving around Victoria.
Whether you're a tourist or a local, if you are traveling around Melbourne and surrounding areas including Geelong, Ballarat and Bendigo then you are likely to travel through Southern Cross Station. A home for Melbourne's VLine Services and a destination for all of Melbourne's Metro Trains and many Yarra Trams and Buses, you can easily get to everywhere from anywhere with Southern Cross Station.
Melbourne's airport transfer service, SkyBus runs express between Southern Cross Station and Tullamarine. This is why mind my bag luggage storage is located within Southern Cross Station. As Southern Cross Station is so central to Melbourne's attractions and places of interest keeping your excess luggage and baggage in this central CBD station will be very convenient.
Southern Cross Station not only offers train travel, but you can also hop aboard the Melbourne Metro. You can find a variety of services that are connected to and connect at Southern Cross Station. Bus services and tram service are available.
As Southern Cross Station is one of Melbourne CBD's main train stations majority of public transport routes will cross paths with Spencer Street. Melbourne CBD is structured as a grid making it an easy city to navigate. As Spencer Street, and thus Southern Cross Station is at the outskirts of central Melbourne, most tram lines running west down Flinders, Collins, Bourke and Latrobe Street will get you there.
What to do nearby
Southern Cross Station is the connecting bridge between Docklands and Melbourne CBD. Docklands is Melbourne's harbourfront neighborhood for restaurants, cafes, bars, shopping, and fun, unique activities.
As a major transport hub for Victoria, travellers arrive and depart Southern Cross Station throughout the day. Travellers can drop off their bags at luggage storage and explore the great sites around the station. One of the most iconic locations around Southern
Cross Station is Princess Theatre. Opened in 1854, the theatre is nearly as old as the sation itself. The iconic theatre is ideal to explore or to catch a play.
Travellers looking for more fun, live entertainment should visit the Forum. The historic building opened in 1929 and is the go-to place in the city for live music. Along with the Princess Theatre and Forum, you will find a variety of dining and drinking options.
If you want to stretch your legs and enjoy a day out in Melbourne, don’t miss the chance to explore Docklands Park. After excessing luggage storage at Southern Cross Station, head out to the park for some physical activity.
Another popular nearby attraction is the Old Melbourne Gaol. The former jail housed some of the roughest, toughest people Down Under. Today, it is a museum available to tour. Located on Russell Street, the Old Melbourne Gaol is situated next to the City Courts and old City Police Watch House. The venue puts on a number of events and tours. You can experience a spooky night tour of the jail or take part in a game of real-life Cluedo.
Take in the sights from Melbourne's Star Observation Wheel or stroll through the pedestrian plazas filled with sculptures, light displays, and playgrounds. Connected to Southern Cross station is Marvel Stadium.
Depending on the season you are in Melbourne you can catch an Australian Football League (AFL) game, an A-League Soccer match, or a game of Cricket. Adjoining Southern Cross Station is Spencer Street Outlet Centre, a great stop for anyone who is looking for excellent deals on popular universal and Australian brands.
To experience Melbourne city to its fullest potential you may not be permitted to enter venues with excess baggage. To avoid disappointment, drop your luggage off with mindmybag and make the most of your time in City.
Southern Cross Station Fun Facts
When the station was modernised in the 1960s, a variety of additions were made to it. In 1962, a subway network was built separate from the metro that was constructed. The subway network took mail from the station to the Melbourne General Post Office and back. The Melbourne General Post Office was the main sorting office for post and located on the other side of Spencer Street.
In order to further expand the city further toward the west, there were talks to close and remove Southern Cross Station. As the station is now an essential part of central Melbourne's transportation route, it is nearly impossible to imagine Melbourne functioning without Southern Cross Station.