Australian adventures, volume # 2: Victoria 

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First of all, truth must be said and I am hoping to be forgiven by that state: we unfortunately didn’t have much time to discover it properly. Phew, glad this is out! My first (and only so far) impression is therefore based on 24 hours spent in Melbourne. While my companions prefered to either drive the great ocean road or celebrate Christmas with their families, I opted for an exploration day and a night in Melbourne.

You can usually rate a city you visit the following way:

– Thanks but no thanks
– It was nice but I’m glad to say goodbye
– I could totally live here!

I can tell you this: Melbs definitely belongs to the latter. People were friendly and welcoming from the moment I looked like a lost tourist and I fell for this city!

What was supposed to be an easy ride to our hostel turned into a small adventure. On this Christmas day, there was no direct shuttle to our hostel (Habitat HQ in St Kilda – highly recommend it) but the hostel didn’t seem to be aware of this so I waited and waited and waited. After all, I was not in Switzerland anymore so buses CAN be late *sigh* and I was in no rush. A friendly local asked me if I was aware that there was no service. Yeah of course I knew it, I was just erm… suntanning?! Oops!

Thanks to my lovely M, I however had a plan B: Jump on a skybus (AUS 18) to CBD. From there I only had to catch a tram. Sounds easy and straightforward for a seasoned traveler, right?! Let’s rewind then… I reached the CBD. First step completed. Pat on my shoulder. But I somehow didn’t manage step # 2. I found a way to sit on the right tram, good on me but realized that I had been driving to the complete opposite direction after 20 minutes. Seriously? Yep, I did it even though I visited 42 countries, rode a few trains and trams in many languages and even with the help of another very friendly local.

On the plus side, tram was free (thanks Melbourne for this Christmas gift), I got to see the Melbourne university and I discovered a lovely sushi place for a late lunch. For any traveler who would only have a few hours in this beautiful town, here are my highlights in Melbourne:

  • Bourne street: many shops. Very lively and pretty central. Many trams stop there so very easy to reach
  • City square with its town hall and its Christmassy atmosphere
  • Shrine of remembrance: since it seems that on that day, I was somehow unable to get off at the right stop so I walked and discovered this beautiful monument.

  • Federation center Flinders. Perfect fusion between old and new buildings and a great spot to get a sunset picture! 

     
    Thanks Melbourne for showing me a great time and making my Christmas Day pretty special. Next stop: Tasmania.

    Happy trails and remember: Carpe Diem!

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