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Part 20: Adventure World

Coasting with Culture through New Zealand and Australia!
Part 21, Walking Through Melbourne

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Part 22:  Luna Park Melbourne
& St. Kilda

11/19/2016 - After a redeye flight from Perth, I arrived to the last city of my visit to Australia, Melbourne. From the Melbourne Airport, I
took a a ride on the Skybus to Southern Cross Station, and since it was an early morning arrival, it was going to be a while before the Airbnb house I was staying at for the next few days would be ready for check in. So I I was happy to find that Southern Cross Station had pay showers and luggage lockers that I could take advantage of so that I didn't have to wait until I could check into the Airbnb. If I remember correctly, the shower was about $8-$10 AUD, which was well worth it after the redeye to feel freshened up before wandering around Melbourne. Having the luggage lockers was also of great benefit so that I didn't have to haul my bags everywhere with me.

Something else that I truly appreciate about Melbourne is their trollies. They have them all over the city, and in the Central Business District, they have a fare-free zone, so that you can ride them for no additional cost! This would be incredibly helpful for exploring the city as you
could cover a lot of distance without spending a lot of extra cash while saving energy going from place to place.

The first part of Melbourne that I explored after arrival was on the Eastside of the city, near the Victoria Parliment building (which I would come back for a tour of at a later time). In this area of Melbourne, there were several plazas with fountains, statues and sculptures that help
to tell the story and history of Australia and the state of Victoria.​

Just a little further was a beautiful building, St. Patrick's Cathedral. The building reminded me of a cathedral that you could have just as easily seen in Europe, which is probably tied to the fact that Australia was a former British Colony.

I then made my way to the central part of Melbourne's Central Business District and into the core shopping area. One of the main department stores here called Myer had special Christmas window displays that when you followed down the row, it would tell a story. It seems that they go with a different theme or story each year, and for this year, it followed the story of a family who would make a special Christmas visit to
Melbourne's Luna Park, with some of the windows feturing replicas of the rides you can enjoy at the park.

It was at this point that my friend Aaron, a resident of Melbourne, arrived and gave me a bit of a tour around Melbourne. We started by going to the Western end of the Central Business District to and area known as the Docklands where you could find a harbour that was also the home to Etihad Stadium and the Melbourne Star Observation Wheel.

We then went for a walk along the Yarra river that goes through the Southern portion of Melbourne's Central Business District. In many
ways, this area reminded me of the Chicago River as it passed through the City of Chicago with the sky scrapers right along side the river.
The Yarra had some excellent walkways along side of it, as well as multiple bridges for crossing it, making for a very pleasant stroll.

Aaron and I then made our way over towards the main stadium district of Melbourne where many of their large events take place, including
the annual Australian Open tennis tournament. Other sports including soccer, rugby and cricket can be enjoyed at one of the venues in this area.

A day later, I came back to do more exploring of Melbourne, returning to the area along the Yarra River, and this time found several different street performers, ranging from musicians, acrobats and living statues. To me, street performers truly add to the atmosphere of a place with their performances.

Just on the Northside of the Yarra is St. Paul's Cathedral. It is slightly shorter than St. Patrick's, around 30-40 years newer and doesn't quite stand alone that way St. Patrick's does since it is right in the heart of the CBD, but it too is an absolutely  georgeous building.

On the opposite corner is the Flinders Street Railway Station. Inside of the station, I found a shop that was selling "Spanish Doughnuts", which appeared to be either filled or dipped churros. I decided to Cookies and Creme variety, and it was delicious!

Just a couple blocks to the East, you can visit Hosier Lane for some incredible street art. Graffiti had become really popular in Melbourne in
the 1970's and 1980's, and started to appear in sveral areas. The state of Victoria has used it as a backdrop for their tourism campaigns, and others have used it as a backdrop for fashion and wedding photography. Many of the murals may cover a variety of subjects, including current events and politics. And from what I am aware of, it changes from time to time as artisits will create new pieces to replace their older works,
so it may not always be the same.

Melbourne is certainly a city that is worth taking a walk though, and is made even easier to do so thanks to it's extensive trolly system.

Up next, we head out to St. Kilda for a visit to the local area, including Melbourne's historic Luna Park!
Jump to another part of this trip report:
Part 13 - Australia Zoo
Part 1 - Wondering through Auckland
Part 14 - Aussie World
Part 2 - Walk to Mission Bay
Part 15 - Sea World & Wet n' Wild
Part 3 - Mount Eden
Part 16 - Alice Springs
Part 4 - Rainbow's End
Part 17 - Kings Park in Perth
Part 5 - Arrival in Sydney
Part 18 - Indian Ocean & Fremantle
Part 6 - Ms. Macquire's Point
Part 19 - Perth CBD & Elizabeth Quay
Part 7 - Luna Park
Part 20 - Adventure World
Part 8 - Sydney Harbor Bridge & Rocks Tour
>> Part 21 - Walking through Melbourne <<
Part 9 - Bondi Beach & Darling Harbour
Part 22 - Luna Park Melbourne & St. Kilda
Part 10 - Walk Through Cairns
Part 23 - Victoria Parliament
Part 11 - Great Barrier Reef & Green Island
Part 24 - Back to Auckland
Part 12 - Warner Bros. Movie World