First stop in Oz
11.07.2009 - 16.07.2009 13 °C
Arriving in Melbourne was a bit of a shock to the system. Not only was the weather so much colder than we had got used to, but stepping back into Western civilisation after eight weeks in Asia was pretty strange too. After 30 hours without any sleep, our first day in the land of Oz went by in complete daze. But as we gradually got settled in, we realised what a cool place Melbourne is, and so ended up staying for six days.
The city is famed for its fancy food and shops, which unfortunately we were unable to sample. However after eating out three times a day for six weeks it was actually really nice to be cooking for ourselves in the hostel kitchens. We found lots to do in Melbourne that was within our budget, and some of our best days were spent exploring the town on foot and by the great free tram service. We loved finding little alleyways to wander down with quirky shops and little cafes serving great coffee.
We were lucky enough to have a local guide in our friend Nick (who we met at uni) for some of our time here. We went with him to see an Australian Football (AFL) game at the impressive 100,000 seater MCG stadium; without Nick explaining the rules we would have been a bit lost! He also gave us a handy tour of the city, pointing out the best markets and cultural sights.
Our nightlife options were limited but we had great fun at the Las Vegas-style Crown Casino Complex and Cinema. We also discovered the cheap box wine which the Aussie's call a goon. This discovery resulted in several drunken evenings throughout our stay here.
In general, Melbourne was a very cultural and sophisticated city, which we are sure would be even more beautiful in the Summer months. In the mean time we are looking forward to the weather getting much warmer as we head up the East Coast.