A Travellerspoint blog

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Day 40: Black and white


View Antje is out of the office. on An.Ke's travel map.

I woke up to a thunderstorm and it kept on raining pretty hard until about noon. Luckily it cleared up afterwards as I had booked a walking tour of Melbourne for the afternoon. We walked around downtown for about 3.5 hours which was very interesting and definitely provided me with a better overview of the city - and the sun was shining! :) (Probably only because I bought an umbrella beforehand.) And since the weather turned out to be so nice after all, I decided to go to Fitzroy Gardens for the remainder of the afternoon.

Today was also AAMI Victoria Derby Day, "a day of pure elegance" according to the guide I picked up. It seemed most of Melbourne participated in today's horse racing event and it was really quite a sight on the train this morning as everybody was wearing black and white and all the ladies were sporting fascinators. Unfortunately, I couldn't take a picture on the train but I managed this nice shot at a tram stop in the afternoon ;)

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Posted by An.Ke 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 41: The long walk


View Antje is out of the office. on An.Ke's travel map.

The first half of the day was still going to be nice so I decided to walk from my hostel in South Yarra to St. Kilda, "Melbourne's very own beachfront paradise". First stop was the botanical garden though with one of the loveliest rose gardens I've seen so far. Then I continued to the beach but it was really windy so I didn't feel like sitting down as originally planned but instead walked along the Bayside Trail, including up St. Kilda Pier from where you had a nice view of Melbourne's skyline and I even saw a little penguin at the end of it, and then all the way to the ferry terminal at Beacon Cove where I caught the tram back to the city centre - after almost 5 hours of walking .

By then it had turned quite cold, it was still windy and it also had rained a little so that I felt I deserved a treat in form of a delicious slice of Nutella and ricotta cheesecake :) Afterwards I strolled the new Emporium mall and the Melbourne Central mall - mainly for warmth as my skirt turned out to be a little too skimpy for the afternoon's weather, but I also bought a great watch because I think I lost mine... at least I have not been able to locate it for the past week or so.

I think I must have walked at least 15 km today so this evening's activity was sitting down, reading a book and waiting for my laundry :) And even though this might not have been the most amazing day of all times, I am still attaching three pictures - the best one being of my new watch of course :P

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Posted by An.Ke 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 42: Beautiful buildings


View Antje is out of the office. on An.Ke's travel map.

The weather was pretty miserable today: 13 degrees Celsius and a lot of drizzle. So I started with checking out the ANZ Gothic Bank and the adjoining Banking Museum. The museum was alright, it got me out of the rain but the bank was quite a sight, so beautiful! I don't think I would mind going to work there everyday ;) Afterwards it actually stopped raining, just in time for the 155th Melbourne Cup Carnival which was a parade of this year's trainers and jockeys and a few old champion horses - at least that's what I understood from the guy next to me who provided me with some live commentary :)

I then continued my impressive buildings tour with the Royal Exhibition Building. Unfortunately there was no tour offered today, but I could do a self guided walking tour of the gardens and around the building - that thing is huge! I really wonder what it must have been like at the time of the exhibition when there where even more buildings surrounding it. And the last stop on my tour was the Victoria Parliament where I participated in one of the free guided tours they offer. The tour was very entertaining and the Parliament itself is simply amazing - it seems they really didn't know what to do with all the gold they found back in the day and just gold plated about everything!

In today's OPAD the ANZ is on top, the Royal Exhibition Building in the middle and one of the Parliament's rooms is at the bottom:

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Posted by An.Ke 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 43: Melbourne Cup


View Antje is out of the office. on An.Ke's travel map.

It was the Melbourne Cup today, which is so big that it's actually a public holiday in Victoria. So everybody was dressed up for the race again - or for getting drunk in the car park, apparently that's a thing as well :) But that also meant that a lot of things were closed so I had a pretty uneventful day. I started with switching hostels and then went to Federation Square where the Cup was broadcasted. So I watched that for a little bit but then went to the National Gallery of Victoria and took a short highlights tour of Aboriginal art.

In the afternoon I went to the docklands and spent most of the time just reading. Then it was time to go back to the hostel for the welcome meeting for my tour from Melbourne to Alice Springs starting tomorrow. We're a group of 16 people, 14 girls and 2 guys :) We had Korean for dinner and then a rather early night in as we'll be leaving for the Great Ocean Road at 7 am in the morning - exciting! ;)

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Posted by An.Ke 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

Day 44: Great Ocean Road


View Antje is out of the office. on An.Ke's travel map.

We left Melbourne at 7 am trying to beat all the other buses to the stops along the Great Ocean Road. That didn't quite work out as there was something not 100% safe with our bus (a missing nut?) and we had to go to the garage to try and fix it, which actually was not possible... So on we went regardless, with a first stop at Bells Beach to get a first feel for the big waves ideal for surfing and some more on other viewpoints along the road.

For lunch we stopped at Apollo Bay and there we also met with another tour group who did the same trip as us just southbound. So they were on their last day only needing to go back to Melbourne - and our tour guides decided to swap buses to be on the safe side.

All settled in our new bus "Gilbo" (the other was called Giles), we then continued our drive along the Great Ocean Road, stopping for a short rainforest walk before arriving at today's highlight: the 12 Apostles, a really impressive rock formation at the coast. There some of us did a helicopter ride over the 12 Apostles - including me! :) - that was just amazing and went by way too quickly! It's not just that the rocks are huge, but the colours of the water, beach and rocks were absolutely stunning, I could have taken a million pictures :)

Our last stop was the Loch Ard Gorge, yet another beautiful place with really strong waves just like all along the road, before turning in to our hostel in Port Campbell.

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Posted by An.Ke 17:00 Archived in Australia Comments (0)

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