I'm doing some research on where to stay during a week-long trip to the Melbourne area in December. I'm already planning a two day trip to see GOR/Phillips Island, as well as Yarra Valley, but would like to explore the city and beaches while I'm there as well. I'm torn between whether to stay in Melbourne CBD or in St. Kilda, as I've heard and found amazing things about both locations.
I'm in my mid-30s, traveling alone and on the one had would love to have my last week of my holiday to be spent in a relaxing beach atmosphere close enough to venture into the CBD during the day to walk about and take in the sites. On the other hand, since I only have three days after my tours are booked, I'm wondering if staying the CBD will allow me to better maximize my time and see/do more. Although I really, really do like the idea of beach side accommodations to round out my trip.
I'll be utilizing public transportation throughout my stay as I will not have a car of my own. I'm leaning towards St. Kilda, but how close is it really by public transport? Also, if I stay in St. Kilda, is there a recommended (i.e. is not a two hour commute) way to get to the airport via transport as well?
Appreciate any/all advice anyone might have in advance!