Australia – Melbourne

Melbourne is the capital city of the Australian state of Victoria, with a population of around 5 million it’s the country’s second biggest city.

I worked in Melbourne around 30 years ago and it’s great to return after so long, its a city packed with culture and a has the cosmopolitan feel of a modern city.

City view from the river Yarra

We did a lot of walking in the city, clocking up nearly 45 miles in the week we stayed there, however there is plenty of public transport available, including a good tram service.

Flinders Street Station

We visited the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to watch a test match, it’s a fantastic stadium.

The MCG

We stayed in Cremorne, a city suburb and a 30 mins walk into the city. Below are some of the older, traditional houses in the city suburbs, they have a relatively small frontage but run quite deep and have lots of character.

A more modern apartment block!

Our walk into the city passes along the Olympic Park, with many famous stadiums on the route. Below is the Melbourne Rectangular Stadium, now the AAMI stadium. Named rectangular as its intended for Rugby and Soccer, not cricket or Australian Rules Football!

The city has a mix of old and new buildings making for an interesting skyline,

Sunsets in Melbourne bring the fruit bats out en mass
Chinatown
The Old Match Factory

Melbourne has an impressive cultural scene, reflected by the museums and galleries in the Southbank area.

The National Gallery of Victoria is a world class asset with its impressive traditional and modern collections, it’s well worth a visit.

State Theatre

A walk from Port Melbourne Beach to St. Kilda reveals Melbourne’s beach areas.

We took a day trip west along part of the Great Ocean Road which is 243km long. It is the world’s longest war memorial, built by hand, by around 3,000 WWI veterans from 1919 to 1932.

Bells beach is along the route, this is the home of the world’s longest continuously running pro surfing competition – now known as the Rip Curl Pro Bells Beach.

Further along are the Twelve Apostles, which were actually just nine limestone stacks out in the sea, although now just seven remain, the two others having collapsed into the sea a few years back due to natural erosion.

A bit further west is Loch Ard Gorge. The gorge is named after the clipper Loch Ard that was shipwrecked here on 1 June 1878 near the end of a three-month journey from England to Melbourne. Of 54 passengers and crew, only two survived:

Now we travel to Tasma

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