Although the Urban Central Hostel was an amazing place, I looked for a couchsurfer because I just like to get a non-touristy feel about a place and it’s such a great change to walk in and out of a normal apartment or house instead of a hostel dorm. Here in Melbourne, it was the complete opposite to Adelaide. Within an hour, I had replies from at least 5 people. Most of them didn’t live in the CBD though and so I ended up at a really great place in St. Kilda.
I spent Sunday exploring the waterfront. There was a small market and after that I enjoyed a beautiful mocha at Phamish. Behind that, the two main restaurant and shop strips start. The choice of cute cafés, bars, delicious cake shops or restaurants is too big. I wished I could live here and try a new place every week. It was almost a torture to my stomach to walk past all these people sitting at the tables on the boardwalk and their full and great looking plates. Mouthwatering!!
After that, I walked a quick circle in the Luna park. Probably more something for younger kids. Then, the sun already started to set and I thought I had to hurry to go see the penguins at the pier. As I was walking towards the pier, I witnessed a beautiful sunset.
I had wanted to go to Philipp’s Island because of the Penguin Parade. I’ve never seen penguins in the wild. But a day trip there was 90$ and I didn’t want to spend so much on that, since I heard that it was extremely touristy. But somewhere I read that there were penguins in St. Kilda too. When I arrived at the end of the wood walk, there was a sign with a picture of the penguins, saying that the penguins only come out after the sunset and that we must take pictures without flash. There is a boardwalk where the people are supposed to wait. It was packed but I still found a good spot.
I’m glad I didn’t walk out here earlier 😉 I also had to wait about 10min until the first little guy appeared between the rocks. They sometimes came as close as half a meter to the people, which was really cool! There were only about 10 penguins visible that evening but I think everybody got a good view of them. The only annoying thing was the people who still were taking pictures with a flash. Come on! There even was a volunteer with a red light (which apparently doesn’t hurt the eyes of the penguins), to make it easier to take photos. At some point cameras will be forbidden here too, like at the penguin parade on Philipp’s Island (in the end, I did make it there but I liked the experience in St. Kilda much better).
To get to St. Kilda, you could walk an hour from Melbourne or take a tram. But the system with the key card for public transportation in Melbourne is so complicated and often charges you too much (heard that on several occasions) that I avoided riding public transport by all means. So, I chose the third option: Melbourne’s blue bikes. All you need is a credit card and the rest is explained at the station. I only paid 8$ for a whole week of riding around. Plus, the ride from St. Kilda to Melbourne is so beautiful (ca. 15min) that I’d love to ride to the city to go to work every day, if that was my way to work 🙂 I took Lakeside Drive along Albert Park. So, the whole ride, there is a beautiful lake and a green park on the left and the approaching skyscrapers in front of me.