Some people say about Melbourne that it a city that is better “lived” than seen. What this means is that perhaps there aren’t the numerous visual attractions as Sydney boasts, but in its place is a fantastic liveable city for you to interact with. Below are a few ideas, generated from some conversation with locals, about things that you can do in Melbourne to better connect to the city. Take my advice, its a great place and the longer you stay the more you will love it.
Go get a coffee
Melbourne fancies itself, the coffee city. Here a barista is actually a well paid, and highly trained position, that is not given be-grudging respect, but full fledged respect. Forget any of the international chains, or the Australian ones for that matter, find yourself an independent coffee shop. A few to consider include Leroy Espresso and Inkr7 in St Kilda.
Check out some graffiti
Melbourne isn’t just known for coffee, it also has some kick ass graffiti. The place to look for it is the Croft Institute which is located somewhere inside the tight side streets and alleyways in central Melbourne. Don’t be afraid the alleys have become more chic than dangerous. When you have found it, you’ll be treated to a variety of international graffiti artists works, including the one and only Banksy. Also while in the area check out Hoosier lane and the city lights project for more local graffiti work.
Go for a hike
For a different experience outside the allures of the Central Business District take a short train ride to Upper Fernstreet Gulley station and enjoy the net work of hiking trails that are there. From this station you are connected to a network of foothills called the Dandenongs. Take a walk and see some of the Australian countryside, which is different than anywhere else in the world, and enjoy the fern gullies, gum trees, and ash forests.
Scour a few Op shops for different gems
One thing I noticed when I was in Melbourne is that people really have a funky style of dressing, it’s awesome… Sydney is full of expensive shoes and collars, Melbourne is full of retro clothes. Now the way to try to pull off this Melbourne look is to go to the inner city suburbs of Fitzroy and St Kilda and look through some of the op shops. (Opportunity shops) These shops are basically second hand shops where people find great clothes, books, and records for great prices. Looking in op shops is cultural institution in Melbourne. So, when in Rome…