Looking for fun places to go in Melbourne?
Are you looking for fun things in Melbourne? Well there is a new kit in town and it is just purrfect as one of the new places to go in Melbourne. Therapeutic, calming and with a dose of caffeine you’ll be crazy to miss the Cat Cafe Melbourne.
For a long time I saw the idea of cat cafes as an exclusive feature of visiting Japan. It was a way to benefit those who due to accommodation restrictions were unable to keep pets themselves.
Well now the feline love is being shared as 2014 saw the opening of the very first cat cafe in Australia. The State of Victoria was the lucky beneficiary but already I hear a place has now opened up in Sydney.
I was staying in the northern part of the CBD when by pure chance I stumbled across this new Melbourne coffee shop.
If you visited the capital of Victoria you will know that coffee shops are plentiful around here; Aussies love their coffee. Whether it be Gloria Jeans, Hudsons or a smaller chain, you’ll always be able to get a caffeine fix.
After nearly 14 years of frequent visits to the city I’ve still not run out of places to visit in Melbourne. Yet when new places crop up which are this exciting they just keep adding to my bucket list.
If I’m honest, the visit was quite self indulgent but it was also on someone else’s behalf. My bride is a massive and I mean massive fan of cats. I know that if she’d been fortunate enough to have joined me on this business trip then she’d have spent all week in here. She’d probably volunteer to help out too!
Well loving cats is one thing, getting the chance to share a coffee and maybe a muffin (as I virtually ended up doing) with a cat here is another matter. You have to book in advance.
After a little research I found out that the Melbourne Cat Cafe works on bookings to control the number of visitors.
How do I book a place at the Cat Cafe Melbourne?
To book your reservation you need to go online to https://catcafemelbourne.com/ and find the “book” page. You could also call them on (03) 9642 8540.
I paid $10 to reserve my place. You can pay by credit card or paypal.
I was attending on a Saturday which is their busiest day. It is also worth noting that children under the age of 8 are not allowed.
Your booking will allow you to spend 1 hour with our furry friends.
Where is The Cat Cafe Melbourne
The Melbourne Cat Cafe is located very close to the Victoria Market. It is literally on the corner of Queen Street and Franklin Street.
The address of the Cat Cafe is 375 Queen St. Melbourne, VIC 3000.
If you are looking to stay nearby I can personally recommend this hotel. I have stayed there and it is less than 5 minutes walk to the Cat Cafe. If apartments and hotels are outside of your budget there is also this hostel within 2 minutes walking distance.
When is the cat coffee shop in Melbourne open?
The Cat Cafe Melbourne is open:
10am – 6pm Sunday – Wednesday
10am – 7pm Thursday – Saturday
I’d read a little bit online from the cafe website prior to visiting. Also since I am highly allergic to cats I dosed up with Loratadine before my arrival (the staff are not allowed to provide medication in the cafe).
I was part of the first visiting group beginning at 10am.
After walking across a small shop section towards the main counter I was advised about the house rules which were signed above.
I then had to sign a declaration that I agreed to the rules. This was quickly followed by being directed to wash my hands before entering the cafe.
I then passed through a doorway to the cafe version of a Melbourne cat rescue. The cats were actually sourced from animal rescue centres so it is good to know they are being cared for rather than just bred without consideration for abandoned cats.
In total the Cat Cafe Melbourne will hold up to 15 cats (as a worker told me) and they currently have 14 cats living there.
Before I even got up the stairs to where the cafe area is located our feline friends were already gathering at the bottom of the stairs. One even emerged after hiding underneath a stool; they do get everywhere!
As I reached the top of the stairs there appeared to be three separate rooms (four if you factor in one room being divided into two) all decorated out with cat friendly toys and climbing frames. There was even consideration for us humans with some sofas (which the cats loved sleeping on), chairs and a table here and there.
After initially exploring and waiting for some of the cats to wake up, remember the rules require us to leave alone any cat sleeping, I settled in the main room.
I couldn’t help but be highly amused by the sight of a very popular bird feeding station literally outside one of the windows. It was a real draw for the cats to watch although I’m not sure if it is cruel to place it there to tempt them.
Large information posters about each of the cats were decorated around the walls so you knew who you were petting.
As it was, during my visit 2 cats really stole my heart.
The first was Ruby. I’d already singled her out before I even arrived here after seeing their profiles online. Ruby is very distinctive in that she sadly had an eye removed due to an infection. Whilst she is barely a year and a half old she seems to be incredibly cute and just as healthy as all the others. She was rescued from a Dogs Home so I think she is better in the company of other cats.
The other character that bonded with me, or rather my muffin, was Shakespeare.
When I arrived, this all black cat was perched up high in the main room and seem disinterested in attention from all us visitors. However that soon changed.
I ordered a coffee and a muffin from the menu shortly after arriving; well eating and drinking is one of the things to do in Melbourne when in a cafe, even if it is full of cats. To be honest the menu was quite limited. I guess people aren’t really visiting for the food are they?
Anyway, as I tucked into my white chocolate and raspberry muffin, Shakespeare decided to come over, climb up onto the table and start making friends. He’d stick his neck out and work his way towards my muffin. I’d slide the food away whilst telling him that it was human food and not for cats. He didn’t take any notice though. Every once in a while he’d tried to take a bite but then just reached out with his paw. Soon enough his claws had some muffin on and he happily licked away.
At this point a member of staff joked that I’d now met their resident hoover.
Over the hour I was there I kept exploring the various rooms to see what the cats were up to. I was astonished at the variety of toys the felines have. They truly are spoilt here. They even had one of those water fountains for cats.
From experience with my bride’s cat I know they really work. Highly recommended if your cat needs to be drinking lots of water.
Soon enough time was up and it was time to say goodbye. In typical cat fashion a few had disappeared into their private (cats only) room and didn’t want to bid farewell.
For the cats remaining it was hard to track them all down for a final quick pet goodbye. Even still I had to bid farewell to the lovely Ruby and cheeky Shakespeare.
On leaving the Melbourne cat cafe itself I was to pass through the shop again on the way out. I know every novelty place now seems to be designed with a gift shop at the end but at least this one was worth it. I thought most things were very reasonably priced and there was a nice selection.
Here are some more highlights from my visit to the Cat Cafe Melbourne:
From all the attractions in Melbourne CBD this has been one of the most fun activities for animal lovers. Yes there maybe pet shops nearby but nothing quite beats a bit of playtime with mild natured cats. Whilst there are a vast arrange of places to go in Melbourne, the actual Cat Cafe Melbourne is one of the most relaxing and feel good places I could find.