Hello everyone! My name is Shane, I am the Activities Officer at Langports Gold Coast, today I would like to talk about a great trip to the city of Melbourne I recently did.
If there’s a destination students need to add on their travel bucket list in Australia, then look no further than the city of Melbourne. It’s a cultural hub that thrives on its fashion, food, entertainment and nightlife.
No matter what time of the year you visit Melbourne, there is always something to do. In January, you can see the biggest names in Tennis battle at the Australian Open. In March, the first race of the Formula One Grand Prix happens along Albert Park and in November, Good Food Month attracts foodies across the country sampling delicious meals from across the world.
This month, I traveled down to Melbourne for the annual International Comedy Festival, now in its 30th year. Many comedians from Australia and across the world come to entertain and provide plenty of laughs from all different age groups. I also planned a Melbourne Weekend with a couple of former Langports students that shows off what the city has to offer. Including a visit with my high school mate to plan his wedding for next year, this was going to be a jam-packed weekend.
Here is a list of the destinations that were covered during my weekend in Melbourne:
1. Hosier Street Art – located opposite Federation Square along Hosier and Rutledge Lane, this free exhibit is a public gallery that brings artistic creativity and vibrant urban culture in the underground street art scene.
2. Melbourne Aquarium – located along the Yarra River and opposite the Crown Casino, the Melbourne Aquarium is home to thousands of animals including sharks, turtles, stingrays, tropical fish and penguins.
3. Eureka Skydeck – to see the awe inspiring views of Melbourne from the 88th floor is a must see attraction. Located along the Southbank, it’s the highest viewing platform in the Southern Hemisphere.
4. Chinatown – covering nearly two blocks, Chinatown has amazing selection of restaurants and entertainment during the night. Two restaurants worth looking into are Hotpot, located near Exhibition Street and a new restaurant, Rice Workshop located near Swanston Street. The Rice Workshop gives people the opportunity to create your own rice dishes from a selection of ingredients.
5. Dex2rose Nitrogen Gelateria & Café – located on Little Bourke Street, this bar creates made to order gelato using liquid nitrogen to create silky and smooth ice cream.
6. Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) – home of the biggest sporting events in Australia, the popular sport of Aussie Rules Football (AFL) is played here during the weekend with a massive crowd capacity of 90,000 people.
7. Melbourne Town Hall – completed in the 1870s, this building is the heart of the cultural events and exhibitions that happen all year round in Melbourne. It was also where many of the comedians performed at the International Comedy Festival.
8. Gazi – this Greek restaurant located on Exhibition Street is home to celebrity chef and judge of Masterchef Australia, George Calombaris. They serve sophiscated and fun Greek street food. On the Saturday night we visited, the vibe was electric. We recommend trying the 7 course feast for a full Greek experience. Although $49 per person is fairly expensive, it’s worth every bite.
9. European Bier Café Rooftop Bar – located on Exhibition street, the bar provides a wide selection of European beers and a live band playing every Friday and Saturday night.
10. Good Things – if you visit South Yarra, there are many bars and nightclubs along Commerical Road and Chapel Street. Good Things is a brand new bar that offers a wide mix playlist of songs. Friday’s event was the songs of 2008 and Saturday’s event was a Beyoncé tribute night, which include some of the biggest RnB hits over the past decade. The venue also provides free photo booth pictures all night long to capture the night.
11. Burch and Purchese Sweet Studio – this dessert studio located in South Yarra along Chapel Street is home to dessert chef Darren Purchese, who has appeared on Masterchef Australia and several other contestants. He produces extravagant creations, skillfully balances flavors and textures. If you are after something sweet, I suggest a jar of Salted Caramel, perfect for tarts, dessert creations or a piece of toast in the morning with Devonshire Tea.
12. Brighton Beach Houses – a 20-minute train ride down to Brighton, this attraction is popular Bayside attraction for visitors. Each beach house is unique with artistic and colourful variations.
In addition, here are some other attractions worth looking into:
· Federation Square
· Queen Victoria Markets
· Great Ocean Road (1-day tour if you are planning a weekend trip)
· Prahran Markets (Organic Food Markets)
· Lygon Street (Home to many Italian Restaurants)
· Her Majesty’s Theatre
Melbourne is most definitely the cultural hub of Australia and a city worth checking out, no matter what time of the year you visit. If you ever need any advice on getting around the city or tips on making the trip work on any budget, feel free to contact me.
My thanks to the students Luca, Ianis, Dimitri, Michael and Noah for meeting up and sharing this awesome weekend in Melbourne.