Good morning everyone! How is winter treating you? Or are you one of the lucky ones for whom it is summer now? Oh how I miss the blue skies of Australia, the warmth of the sun, the openness of the beaches with the view of the sea. Replacing part of my Fall with a Down Under Spring has both been a blessing as well as a curse. I love the short Fall but coming home from blue skies and sunhine sure made dealing with a grey, and very wet winter extra difficult. But let’s not dwell on that, let’s just go back to the blue skies and soak up on some Ozzie sunshine. If you are like me, you fellow northerners could use it.
Just the other day I ordered my photo album for Australia. It contains well over 100 pages filled up with memories. Narrowing down the immense number of pictures I took when I was creating the album was an horrific job. Narrowing them even further down for showing off here on the blog is next to impossible. So I am just going to share it a bit thematically. Let’s first start by visiting one of the cities I loved the most. I fell in love with the city of Melbourne when traveling in Australia. It has so much to offer, it was hard to determine my highlights. But I narrowed it down to these 5 things to do in Melbourne that I loved the most.
St. Kilda is a suburb of Melbourne on the coast. We choose to stay in St Kilda and simply used the tramline to go back and forth between St Kilda and the CBD. When you are at the beach take a walk down the beautiful, historical pier. From there you have a gorgeous view over the St Kilda harbor and Melbourne’s skyline.
St Kilda is also known for its beautiful Luna Park, it is over 100 years old and simply beautiful to look at.
Sunset is quite magical at St Kilda. Make sure you got time to watch it. And since at dusk the little penguins appear from underneath the pier you might catch a glimpse of those too.
Take a free guided tour
To get to know the city I can’t recommend the free guided tours more. The boys and girls in the green t-shirts do an excellent job. We thoroughly enjoyed our tour in Melbourne. In half a day we got to see the highlights and got a feel for the city. Our guide gave us lots of historical tidbits, good tips for eating and drinking, and he obviously was a Melbournian with a great love for his city.
Visit the public library
The public library is housed in a very beautiful old building. You can go up to the top floor for this stunning view of the reading room. There is a bookshop in there too and usually an exhibit on one of the upper floors.
Admire the street art in the graffiti lanes
Melbourne is a young city. In historical sense, but also population wise. And that is noticeable. The city just vibrates youth and combines a very friendly atmosphere with a nice ‘gritty’ urban feeling. I loved that most about it. Living in Europe amidst these beautiful, very old cities I sometimes feel as if I am walking in an open air museum. I definitely didn’t feel that in Melbourne. This city feels alive. And especially so when walking down the backlanes and alleys and admiring the graffiti everywhere.
Must see alleyways include AC/DC Lane and Hosier Lane.
It might look a bit dirty and rough, but don’t worry this graffiti is no sign of ‘better not enter this neighborhood’ instead it is simply street art to admire with an excellent Melbourne coffee in your hand.
If you are visiting Melbourne anytime soon, don’t expect to find the same street-art I saw. It is alive and changes all the time.
Eat and drink
Lot’s of excellent places to eat and drink in Melbourne. All the special chef’s cafe’s and restaurants definitely crowd out the chain restaurants. Our tour guide made us take a vow to only order coffee at a local coffee shop and avoid the big chains. He was not wrong, there wasn’t a bad coffee to find in all of Melbourne.
A fun addition to Melbourne’s offerings where the rather recent overhauls of the back alleys. The laneways in between the office and commercial buildings have been repossessed by hip eateries. Where there used to be dark alleys only used by trucks and delivery vans are now little eateries and bars that serve up some nice tucker.
Melbourne is famous for its many parks and open spaces. So if a picnic is more your style. Head on over to Victoria’s market and fill up your picnic bag there. So much fresh food, dished up in a very beautiful way in these small shops inside a covered market. Loved it.
I hope you enjoyed visiting Melbourne with me. Next time let’s do one of those old European ‘as if in an open air museum’ cities together.