Architecture, art, coffee, food – Melbourne.

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On Saturday morning, I still had all my things in the storage room but for now I put my worries about that aside to go hunting for a new laptop cable (I’ve already been without a laptop for a week…I usually do EVERYTHING on my laptop…involuntary rehabilitation. Hasn’t been agreeable.) But I had a good feeling about Melbourne and so even after the third computer store on Elizabeth St had told me that I most likely wouldn’t find this certain plug because it was a special one, I still walked into the fourth one, where he had exactly one of the ones I needed left and he sold it to me for 50$ 🙂 Finally, I was able to charge my laptop and I even have an Australian plug, which I will be able to switch back to my Swiss one.

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Then, it was time to look for lunch and I found a real gem in the Causeway Lane off Burke St. Sushi Monger was packed with people. No wonder, the sushi there was one of the bests I ever had and they offer a lunch deal (2 rolls and a miso soup for 5$).

Afterwards, I took the free circle tram up to the library to do the free walking tour. Again, the tour guide was extremely funny and had loads of stories to tell. I’ve only ever had great experiences on free walking tours! And they just give you a good overview of the city!

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Back at the hostel, I felt the heavy load of my things again. I really had to sell them tonight, because I couldn’t keep carrying them around. A guy had written me, that he’d pick everything up at 10pm. So I just had to have faith that he’d really show up. And he did and bought all the camping gear and the surfboard for 250$. So, all in all, I now spent about 1450$ on my car (which unfortunately only lasted 1,5months but it was still cheaper than just booking tours or renting).

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Michèle and the German girls wanted to leave Melbourne on Monday already. That was way too early for me, since there was so much more to see! So, I tried to find someone on couchsurfing and this time, I really lucked out. Ben lived in a beautiful place in St. Kilda (I will make a special post about that) and he offered me to stay a whole week, which I would have if I hadn’t found a great opportunity to go to Sydney on Thursday. However, I said I’d come back to Melbourne before I fly. Such a great city. But so, what is there about this Melbourne?

First of all, there is a lot of amazing architecture. There is not one street without a special house or bridge on it. Then, there are all the graffitis or the street art on the walls in sometimes very narrow laneways. I think, the city is best visited on foot or by bicycle, because that’s the only way to find the interesting things in the small laneways.

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In case it’s raining, visit the museums! I was lucky to have a week with sunshine, so it was almost a pity to be inside but they were really worth it. I was surprised to find that the Swiss artist Pipilotti Rist is so popular here. Both the Art Gallery (cool fountain along the building!) and the Museum of Contemporary Art (great, cheap coffee cart at the entrance!) were free. So even if you aren’t usually interested in art, just give it a try:)

Melman!

Melman!

Then, I also went to the ACMI film museum. At the moment, there was a fun looking exhibition about animation movies. But I didn’t have the time to visit that too, so I just walked past the looooong waiting line of people and went directly to the free part of the museum. That was one of my favorite exhibitions ever! I went there twice so that I wouldn’t get tired of looking at the things, read, listen and interact. There were old projectors, history of movies, actors, producing, special effects and so much more. There even was a section with old video games (that’s where you could find all the dads and sons :)). Definitely worth a visit! And it’s on Federation Square, which is a nice place to look at anyways. Since the comedy festival was going on, the place was always bustling with street performances too.
If you’re tired of walking, hop on the free old fashioned city circle tram, which drives around the city center (to all my Swiss readers, did you know that in German “das Tram” is called “DIE Tram” because of DIE Strassenbahn. Sounds so wrong.) A tape informs you about all the touristy places.

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When you don’t want to lose too much time or need to go further, rent a blue bike. It’s only 2.80$ a day or 8$ a week and I found them perfect to ride to and from St. Kilda (go along the lake in Albert Park!) or to ride along the water in Docklands or to the other suburbs. In the CBD, I preferred walking because it’s up and down and there are too many people and cars. You have to wear a helmet but luckily, there were free helmets on most bikes. There probably used to be on every bike but people must have taken them…
I loved Victoria Market. Finally, I found cheap vegetables and also the cheapest souvenirs, in case you have space in your luggage.
In Melbourne, I had at least one coffee at a different place every day. There are a lot of cute cafés, that offer cheap (3.50$ to 5.50$ for a mocha or iced coffee), delicious and beautifully crafted coffees, so it would almost be a shame to go to Starbucks (this is the first city I’ve really noticed Starbucks in Australia and it’s cheaper than in Switzerland :)). But like I said, I haven’t gone there yet. Plus, they just opened the first H&M of Australia here in Melbourne. A continent without H&M, I didn’t know that still existed..

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Degraves Ln and Center Place were the most central places for coffee but I really liked the cute places along South Wharf and my favorite so far was Phamish in St. Kilda.

In case you have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I like to go to movie theaters in different countries. It took me two months to finally find the time for it here:) On Monday, Carlton Cinema in Melbourne offers a 6$ deal if you go before 6pm. Afterwards, it’s 9$.I took the opportunity to go watch “Tracks”. I saw the preview in Switzerland and thought that it would be really cool to see it in Australia, since it’s about a female who walked from Alice Springs to the Indian Ocean alone. (But I had forgotten the title and was a bit confused, since everybody I met always talked about Wolf Creek, which is a horror story about people getting lost in the outback. Now I know that there are two different movies:)). Tracks is pretty good, especially if you’ve ever travelled alone.

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For now, I have to leave Melbourne because my new travel mate only has time to travel over Easter but I’ll definitely come back before I leave Australia.

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