Hello, fellow readers! You have probably seen my pictures from Melbourne, so I am going to tell you all about my amazing weekend there.
Well, the trip did not have a great start. After getting lots of hours of work in, finishing school assignments, and being caught up with my lectures; I was looking forward to flying out of Sydney after my tutorial on Friday. I wake up Friday morning from the worst message from TigerAir, saying that my flight was pushed back to 7:00AM Saturday. I was super bummed out that I was missing OUT on a day of adventure with Zoe and Jennifer. But, luckily the flight to Melbourne the next morning ran very smoothly.
I arrived and walked outside and it felt like an October in Ohio. I got used to the weather after about 5 minutes –because after all I have seen all four seasons in one day living in Ohio my whole life. Melbourne’s public transportation is SO much better than Sydney’s. I was able to get a shuttle from the airport to my hostel! I probably would have spent twice as much taking an uber. But, anyways since I missed out on a day of fun in Melbs, I was eager to get the show on the road (literally).
I met up with my travelling buddies Zoe (my Toronto fan – go cavs btw) and Jennifer (another Cali friend) at a café along the Yarra river and we had breakfast and coffee and quickly made our way to the car rental place to get our ride for the Great Ocean Road. And, to mine and Zoe’s demise we were given another Fiat – no intentions of sleeping in a car this time. After getting the keys, I made my way down the street and we quickly discovered the car had a weird gas leak smell to it and the engine was making weird noises. Being typical girls, we initially panicked and turned our hazards on in a very busy intersection on a Saturday morning in Melbourne. The car people drove our Fiat back and we were upgraded to a Toyota Camry – hallelujah. Some of you, will not be surprised at all about why our car started to have problems. Jennifer picked up on it after we were given the keys to the Camry, that I never pulled my emergency break lever down – whoops. Lol, we kept our mouths shut and made our way to the Great Ocean Road.
For any of you who want to know the Great Ocean Road, it is one of the most famous roads in the World. And it is about 151 miles long and is the largest war memorial in the world (thank you Wikipedia). We have had friends who did this as a tour in one day, but since we had the time we wanted to spread it out and do it ourselves. On the first day we didn’t see many of the touristy attractions. We ate lunch at this café where Zoe and I had the most disappointing meringues. Jennifer also drove for the first time on the other side of the road after my shift of driving. I did not know if it was the lack of sleep, my sinus/allergies symptoms/the meringue/or the winding roads and sitting in the back seat. But, I had to make Jennifer pull over to the side of the road twice so I could puke. After being car sick, we made it to our hostel in Port Campbell. We had this disgusting microwavable pizza and bonded with a German guy in our room. It was a great start to the trip.
Since we all passed out super early, and didn’t see much of the touristy things we made our way to the 12 Apostles to watch the sunrise. And wow, it was absolutely beautiful – 10/10 would recommend. Another bonus, we beat the tourist crowd at the 12 Apostles. We returned to our hostel showered, checked out, and had breakfast at another café. Next on our list was the Loch Ard Gorge, then the London Bridge, the Grotto, Bay of Islands, and the Erksine Falls. We were so lucky it was a nice day and we beat the tourist crowd. I took many of panoramic shots, time lapses, and go pro shots along the way (yes, I am making another video). After, getting completely lost on the way back, we made it back to Melbourne right around dinner time. I absolutely loved driving on this road – the Victoria countryside reminded me so much more of the US and it was so different compared to driving through New South Wales and Queensland. It was also fun blasting music and having jam sessions along one of the most beautiful drives in the World. We checked into our hostel that night and ate at an Indian restaurant for dinner.
(12 Apostles, fun fact: Florida Georgia Line’s H.O.L.Y music video was filmed here)
(Loch Ard Gorge; we definitely had the most fun with photoshoots here)
We began another start to our day at a café at one of the many laneways in Melbourne. The city already had a different feel from Sydney. I have only been to Dublin and Belfast in Europe, but Zoe said it was a very European like city. After our amazing breakfast, we walked around and made our way to the famous Graffiti alley on Hosier Lane. The alley was so lively with all of the people and some street performers and we had our photo-shoots in the Graffiti Alley. After, the graffiti alley we made our way to Brighton Beach which is one of Melbourne’s most famous beaches. The famous bathing houses that sit along this beach go for over $100,000 – fun fact. We walked along the beach and had another photo-shoot, and then walked along a pier to get a good glimpse of the city. After that, we made our way to St. Kilda’s. This neighborhood was filled with shops and restaurants. We had dessert and coffee at this really cute café and took pictures in front of the Famous Luna Park (my inner six year old Mary Kate & Ashley fan was in heaven). We decided to eat dinner at Lentil’s As Anything in St. Kilda. Lentil’s is a vegan restaurant offering pay-as-you-feel prices – perfect for Uni students like us and I have been to the one in Sydney before. After, dinner we made our way back to the hostel to go out for the night. Our hostel’s bar had a boozy bingo night – which actually was a blast and we sang karaoke and got free drinks for it. Since, it was a Monday night not many places were open to go out at. So, we just decided to go to bed.
(Hosier Lane the famous Graffiti Alley)
Our last day in Melbs began at another café. We then made our way to the ACMi (Australian Center for Moving Image), where we walked around and saw some cool exhibits. Then, I was so excited to take the free tram over to the Queen Victoria Markets. We browsed around the markets for a bit and then headed to this crepe place where Jennifer and Zoe had nutella crepes at on Friday. Then, we made our way to the Eureka Skydeck where you can see amazing views of the city from the tallest building in the southern hemisphere. We said our goodbyes to Jennifer because she had an earlier flight back to Sydney and Zoe and I enjoyed our last meal in Melbourne which was Greek food.
(Last Day in Melbourne)
This trip was so much fun and I couldn’t have asked for better travel buddies. Melbourne exceeded my expectations. Honestly, Sydney and Melbourne are tied for me (Sydney – the harbour, the beaches; Melbourne – the city, and I really miss seasons). I am looking forward to these last three weeks in Australia and so glad I have made some awesome new friends. Australia, I love you so much -Annie