I’ve been living in Melbourne now for just over three months and it has to be said that it’s a fantastic city.
From the trams to the street art and creative buskers, I love the atmosphere and sense of freedom everywhere I go.
There is a certain magic in the air here that always makes me feel so inspired and part of something.
The original plan was not to settle for too long before moving on but…real life happened and my travel funds weren’t looking too great either.
With my long-term living arrangements sorted, I worked with what I had and started looking for work in the Central Business District.
That was around two months ago.
Thankfully, after several dead end job applications and help from a dear friend, I’m going to start a great job soon and begin saving for the next leg of my trip; Western Australia.
Meanwhile in all that time, I’ve spent my spare days exploring the suburbs and the city.
The result being that I’ve now developed a handful of favourite places.
Whether it be just a good place to sunbath, chill out or simply go for a walk, I thought they were worth a share from one Melbourne backpacker to another.
St Kilda Beach:
On a hot, sunny day, St. Kilda Beach is the place to be. Both locals and backpackers flood here for a good spot of sunbathing, lunch or watersports.
My favourite thing about this part of town is the atmosphere. There are always events going on and it’s full of life no matter what I’m doing.
My favourite thing to do is chill out with a book and watch the world go by from the beach front. There are spectacular views that spread all the way from the city right along to Brighton Beach.
Just a short walk up from the sea front, there is also the famous Luna Park and a whole host of restaurants, bars, cafes and shops.
If you’re paying a visit, it’s a must see place!
The Botanical Gardens/Kings Domain:
This park is as large as it is beautiful…So it’s pretty darn huge! It actually has many different sections and the Botanical Gardens is only one part.
It is home to a beautiful war memorium, thousands of species of trees and flowers and several outdoor events throughout the year.
This place made the list simply because it is a green, peaceful paradise in amongst the madness of the city. I love to grab a blanket and a nice sunny spot and just relax here some days.
It’s also a great place for a good, old fashioned stroll.
The Botanical Gardens is a wonderful, scenic route and you can learn all about the conservation efforts in the park at the same time.
Melbourne just wouldn’t have the same charm if this magnificent, central patch of nature wasn’t there.
It’s a place where families, groups of friends and local events come together on weekends and summer days.
I’m actually lucky enough to be living within 10 minutes walk from this beautiful spot.
Lined with palm trees, bustling with water sport activities and home to the Formula 1, this park is very much a part of South Melbourne’s appeal.
It’s great for a place to run, walk or just to take in the city view from across the lake. It really is such a diverse space.
I’ve learnt from living close to a bustling city that I’m definitely one that needs a good green space to get away to every now and then.
But although I’ve done quite a bit of exploring since I arrived, I still have places on my list to visit.
I have only taken myself on two tours since I arrived here in mid-December; the City Sightseeing Bus Tour and a short Yarra River cruise.
Usually I would be more inclined to pay for other tours but actually, I’ve really taken to exploring on foot and by tram in my own time.
Because what’s the big rush?
I’ve stumbled across so many little hidden gems in the city streets because I’ve just been wandering around.
That’s one of the reasons why I really have been enjoying living in Melbourne.
Much to my surprise, I’ve even began to use the trams and buses like I know exactly where I’m going.
This is a big deal for me.
Funnily enough, I’ve actually become so used to being lost that I no longer feel embarrassed by it! I now usually wait for a kind stranger to take pity on me and ask me if I need directions.
So until my next Western Aus adventure in June/July, I will be working and saving away here in Melbourne.
Watch this space for updates!