Etihad Stadium (formerly known as Telstra Dome and before that, Colonial Stadium) is a multi-purpose facility that is used for major sporting and entertainment events, as well as various other social functions in Melbourne. Etihad stadium is home to many of Melbourne’s exciting sporting events but is best known for being the home of Australian Football League (AFL) matches. The venue officially became known as Etihad Stadium on March 1, 2009.
Etihad Stadium is the only football stadium in the Southern Hemisphere with a fully retractable roof. The stadium is situated in the heart of Melbourne’s Docklands, just minutes from the Melbourne Central Business District (CBD). Since opening on March 9, 2000, more than 20 million people have visited the stadium.
Sporting Events at Etihad Stadium
The main use of the Etihad Stadium is for Australian Football League matches. AFL matches typically happen on the weekends, when Australians from various walks of life come together to watch their team play Aussie rules football. The stadium hosts approximately 50 AFL matches a season in the summer. Etihad Stadium currently has five AFL tenant clubs – Essendon, Western Bulldogs, St Kilda, Kangaroos and Carlton. Over the years, the stadium has hosted many international sporting events such as Rugby League World Cup matches, Rugby Union Tests and World Cup Soccer qualifiers.
Other Events at Etihad Stadium
Located on the picturesque Docklands, the Etihad Stadium does more than play host to sporting events. The stadium is also used quite frequently as an entertainment complex, hosting everything from music concerts to other special events. The venue has also hosted many concert spectaculars featuring international performers such as Robbie Williams, Barbra Streisand, Bon Jovi, Kiss, U2, ACDC, Bruce Springsteen and many others.
Getting to Etihad Stadium
Etihad Stadium is easily accessible by public transportation. Trams are easy accessible within the city and from outside of the city, trains run every 10 minutes when sporting events are on. The Docklands can also be reached by foot. In fact, many Melbourne locals choose to walk to the Docklands to take advantage of the sights of the Yarra River, restaurants, cafés and retail outlets. It’s quite common to see people dinning out after watching their AFL team play and celebrate a win at one of the many pubs and clubs in the Docklands area.