We flew from Sydney to melbourne, as the cost of flying and getting the greyhound was the same, however the greyhound takes 10 hours and flying take 1.5.
We landed to cooler weather than Sydney, and took the skybus to the southern cross train station. The cost was $18 per person and you can purchase a single or return. From southern cross we asked the tourist information centre for the easiest way to our hotel, which was by the free trams which operate in the city. We were meant to catch a direct tram 2 blocks away to La Trobe street, and walk up to russel street where our hotel was located. However when we got on the tram in went straight back along the 2 blocks we walked and a completely different way. After some consulting of the map, and some guess work, we managed to find our hotel and check in.
The room was one of the nicest we’ve had in a while and definitely one of the cleanest. We headed out for some food and stumbled upon a nice Thai cafe where we are pad Thai, before heading to woolworths food store to pick up some supplies for our trip to the cricket the following day.
We had 6 nights in Melbourne in total, which is the longest we’ve had anywhere, so it was nice to get out our belongings and be in one place for more than a few days.
On our 2nd full day we took the hotels courtesy bus to St Kilda beach, where the basking 36 degree temperature was just about made bearable by the breeze from the sea. St kilda beach very much reminded us of southsea, as you can see land across the water and there was a funfair near where we were laying.
On New Year’s Day we had initially said we would hire a car and drive the great ocean road. Owing to the recent scorching temperatures, we had seen there were Busch fires along the way, and the drive was 700km. So we opted against it after a late night on NYE and instead had a wander around the city, used the free tram and having a snooze in Fitzroy Gardens.
Close to our hotel was Victoria Market, it has just about everything you could want to buy. There are vendors selling everything from leather goods to live animals, phone shops, shoe shops and everything inbetween. We purchased some bargain food to cook in our hostel later that evening and John had his phone fixed for much less than it would cost in England (he had some ‘crud’ in the charging socket. The market is pretty cool and has been operating for over 100 years in the city.
We had to switch hostels on our last day, as our original one wanted too much money to add an extra night. We stayed at flinders backpackers, which probably won’t go down as one of our favourite hostels we’ve stayed in.
Melbourne is famous for its street art, you can come across it quite easily wandering around the lanes near the city centre.
On our final day in Melbourne we visited Eureka Sky Deck, 88 floors high above the skyline and took in the views of the city. The sky deck is home of the “experience”, which is a glass cube pushing you out all 88 floors above the ground. The cubes glass is frosted until completely suspended in the air, to which is then goes clear. We were hoping to do this, but the wait was over 90 minutes and with a flight due to New Zealand that evening we couldn’t. The views were spectacular though, with binoculars pointed in the direction of many points of interest across the city. We also took the free circle tram on its entire loop, it has audio commentary telling you what points of interest are near each stop and also giving you directions.