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Melbourne Blog: A 13 Year-Old Visit

Was there last time?” I asked. The last visit was in June 2010. And this time, I relived my few childhood days and yes, the city has changed while I could see glimpses of my memory in those buildings and pixelated photos taken nearly 13 years ago. Small places that I could recall were Mount Macedon for my birthday, the Zoo. On my eight-day trip to Melbourne, Australia, I had set a goal. To see some of the places I visited 13 years ago; a strong yet vague memory I had. A city that lives on graffiti, murals, and abstract on its buildings and lanes throughout the wide lanes and narrow alley-ways. 


The first day, by its name I surely remembered; Chadstone a shopping complex, rather Australia’s famous shopping complex. An endless mall that would take hours to roam. 


Victoria Market

The following day, Victoria Market seemed the ideal place to find souvenirs, caps, baskets, and enamel pins and probably find those hot doughnuts and pure drinking chocolate, around the rows of shops and fresh produce. Upon the gaze, there was a florist shop owned by a young man. What a sight it was to see fresh flowers arranged in such a beautiful way and children hopping around asking their parents to buy single pieces. This market was one of my most prominent and strongest memory from my previous trip, buying a funny rainbow striped socks; what a childhood memory!


And surely picked up some souvenirs- keychains for my friends. Upon seeking a snack, I found the perfect one; fresh out of the oven sugar-coated doughnuts with jam filling alongside the authentic pure and rich drinking chocolate that warmed the winter soul. With farmers screaming about their produce and price, it gave off the vibe of a local market which wouldn’t survive without this chaos. 


Driving past the Docklands suburb, made up of an array of precincts, each of which was built with a unique mix of residential, business, retail, and leisure facilities under the direction of Development Victoria. The district is still developing today as a creative and vibrant neighbourhood. Docklands, which is almost two-thirds finished, is a combination of residences, business locations, hotels, entertainment centres, and creatively planned parks.


Shiva Vishnu Temple

On day three, after visiting the Shri Shiva Vishnu Temple, a temple that started as a small gathering of the Indian community soon became a popular gathering from conducting pujas to holding reception houses to having authentic South Indian breakfast at its canteen. 


Free Tram MapFree Tram Network

Of course, no trip to Melbourne would be complete without a stroll down Flinders Street, which is famous for its historic train station and Yarra River views. I took the metro from Mount Waverley to Flinders Street. One of the oldest stations in Melbourne is located at the vertex of Flinders and Swanston Street. With its palette in copper and green, this building stands as one of the most recognisable landmarks. I recalled that station with a grand main platform and many platforms, with commuters going in and out. One of my memories was buying cookies which had chocolate gems on them, from the coffee shops remembering my younger days. According, to a common urban legend denoted by my cousin's sister, Melbourne was the initial intended location for the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (also known as Victoria Terminus), while Melbourne was the original location for Flinders Street Station. 


Right outside St.Paul's Church, on the opposite of the station, A statue is located belonging to Captain Matthew Flinders R.N (1774 - 1814) who was a navigator and a cartographer. He was the first man to circumnavigate Australia.


Besides the station were the Arts Centre and the National Gallery of Victoria or NGV. A live and rich area filled with music concerts and art exhibitions. NGV was established in 1861, the oldest, most famous and most visited gallery in Australia holding more than 76,000 pieces. With art exhibitions from contemporary art to major exhibitions, architecture, dance and soul; in the end, a very colourful experience. With souvenirs to collect to the colourful stained glass ceilings of the building, NGV beholds a true experience. I remember laying on the floor staring at the glass ceilings as it flooded the floor with its colours; people were mesmerised by pieces of art that held their attention. 


Albert Park

The following day, two places were on the list. After roaming the city, especially the CBD and hunting our local restaurant, we drove from St.Kilda to Albert Park seemed like a perfect place to see the sunset with the family. Every May-June, the Grand Prix, a sports event occurs.


Burkes Lookout

After the sun left the horizon, a small journey to the Dandenong mountains to the Burkes Lookout, which captures all of Melbourne in its views; from the small hints of the docking area to the planes landing with the city lights glowing amidst the night, a beautiful lookout. 


Across the station on the left, were the trams that went across the city. And with the free tram system, that went around the CBD or the Central Business District showcasing the iconic places in the area. 


Start from Spring Street & Flinders Street, going to Spring Street & Collins Street to Parliament Station & Nicholson Street to Victoria Parade to Melbourne Central Station to Queen Victoria Market to Victoria Street & Peel Street to Batman Park to Flinders Street & Queensbridge Street to Federation Square to Russell Street and back to square one. With a voiceover stating the historic icons near the areas with its back history; right from the Duke of Wellington which is the oldest hotel in Melbourne to Parliament House to Victoria Library to Marvel Stadium.


An evening in Chapel Street, filled with thrift stores called Op Shops- clothes, shoes, books, old types of vinyl, maps, vintage photo albums, jewellery, Australian opals, postcards and more. A lane filled with boutiques, bookstores, restaurants from around the world and cafes for a perfect evening with the sunset. A street showing all the stages of life from recessions on its tips to live music on its streets. Two of my most acquired favourite dessert places on Chapel Street were C9 and Yo-Chi. C9 Chocolate and Gelato, produces freshly made in-house gelatos and desserts for every chocolate lover. Gelato flavours ranging from Tim-Tam, Tiramisu, Ferrero Rocher, Hazelnut, Truffle to Mango, Lemon, Strawberry Cheesecake and many more. Snacks from waffle sticks and hot chocolate sauce to combination waffle dishes, are truly a sweet experience!


Whereas Yo-Chi is a frozen yoghurt dessert which ranges from customising your dish. Starting from yoghurt flavour; original, tender coconut, mango, and strawberry to various toppings- raspberry coulis, passionfruit and lemon curd, kit-kat, various fruit pearls, Biscoff biscuit, coconut shreddings and more! Another flavourful experience. 


Finally ending my journey in this nostalgic city at TODCO with its famous passion fruit doughnuts with a cup of hot chocolate. 


As I leave the city, my camera rolls are full, a suitcase filled with souvenirs and a heart full of memories. Till next time, Melbourne!


Edited by Whitney Edna Ibe

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Tags: #chapel #burkes #albertpark #victoriamarket #melbourne #ngv #docklands #artscentre #citylights #flinders #todco


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