Melbourne Journals

Melbourne: Australia's Second City

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An August 2001 trip to Melbourne by reef2020

Prahran Market Photo, Melbourne, Australia More Photos
Quote: Laid back, yet still cosmopolitan, Melbourne is a great place to begin an adventure to the world's smallest continent. Lacking a lot of touristy options, Melbourne affords an opportunity to blend in and become one of the locals.

Melbourne: Australia's Second City

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Overview

Melbourne, Australia Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
Melbourne's markets provided the most enjoyable shopping/people watching experiences I've ever had: a full-on sensory assault. Prahran Market's bright colors and tantalizing aromas made me wish I had a kitchen handy to prepare my own dinner! The Queen Victoria Market was huge and provided us with plenty to see and do on a cold and rainy Sunday morning. The St. Kilda Crafts Market, held each Sunday in this trendy waterfront community south of downtown, was a great source for inexpensive handcrafted items that were a huge hit when we got back home. One of our finest meals in Australia was aboard the Colonial Tram Car Restaurant, a restored tram that rolls all over town for two hours while you enjo...Read More

Hilton On The Park Melbourne

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Hotel | "Hilton on the Park"

Hilton On The Park Melbourne Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
We found the Hilton on the Park to be convenient to much of what we did in Melbourne, and perfectly wonderful after 22 hours of flying. Nice city views from our high floor, close proximity to Fitzroy Gardens (lovely to walk through on your way downtown), and easy access to the tram car (public transit) made it even nicer. When we returned to the room after our first day exploring the city, we found our bed turned down, chocolate on the pillows, and a complimentary bottle of a local Victorian wine. The typically fine service that Hilton is known for was doubled by the typical friendliness of the Aussies. The cost of the room ($260 AUD, or about $130 USD) was higher than we usually spend, but the "b...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on April 28, 2002

Hilton On The Park Melbourne
192 Wellington Parade
Melbourne, Australia 3002
61-3-94192000

Colonial Tramcar Restaurants

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Restaurant | "The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant"

Colonial Tramcar Restaurants Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
Talk about a restaurant with a view! The Colonial Tramcar Restaurant is exactly what it sounds like — a restaurant on a restored 1920s era Melbourne City Tram. Sounds like Victoria Station, huh? Not even close, because this tramcar is still on the tracks, still running about town. For three hours, you can dine in absolute luxury as the city's parks, monuments, streetscapes and people roll by. The whole idea of a rolling restaurant is fun in and of itself, but the food, prepared by a master chef in a tiny kitchen right on board, is exquisite. The menu changes regularly to take advantage of seasonal fare. The night we went, we began with a glass of champagne and a cream, liver and cognac ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 16, 2002

Colonial Tramcar Restaurants
Board at stop 125, Normanby Road
Melbourne, Australia 3205
+61 (0)3 9696 4000

Prahran Market

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Attraction

Prahran Market Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
Our guide book said Prahran Market was "one of Melbourne's great Saturday morning experiences." I wasn't really expecting much though, because, in my mind, "markets" were either grocery stores or places intimately associated with fleas. Prahran forever changed that perception. What struck me most was the extreme sensory nature of the place: a riot of colors from fruits and vegetables, the sweet aromas of flowers mixed with pungent garlic and cheeses, the textures of meats arrayed in cases like artwork, and the bustle of shoppers combined with the frantic callings of vendors trying to sell off their goods before closing time. We bought fresh-baked bread, a chunk of herbed cheese and a container o...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 15, 2002

Prahran Market
163 Commercial Road
Melbourne, Australia 3141
+61 (0)3 9522 3301

Royal Botanic Gardens & National Herbarium

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Attraction | "Melbourne's Gardens"

Royal Botanic Gardens & National Herbarium Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
I can't help but think that one of the reasons Melbourne is such a laid-back city is because of all the lovely public gardens scattered about town. They offer a cool, green, peaceful way to move about town, making the city seem much smaller than it actually is. Fitzroy Gardens is home to Captain Cook's Cottage, brought here piece by piece from England to honor the man who "discovered" this part of the world. Guided tours are available for a fee; ring (03)9419 4677 for details. Our early-spring visit meant that daffodils and tulips were just beginning to poke out of the ground. Inside the Conservatory, the shades of purples and blues were amazing. Plenty of benches afford the opportunity to...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 17, 2002

Royal Botanic Gardens & National Herbarium
South Bank of the Yarra River
Melbourne, Victoria 3141
+61 (0)3 9252 2300

Sunday in St. Kilda

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Story/Tip

St. Kilda, Melbourne, Australia Photo, Melbourne, Australia
Quote:
Sidewalk cafes, second-hand shops, bikers and rollerbladers, an amusement park and a craft market make St. Kilda a great place to spend a Sunday afternoon. It is just a 25-minute ride from downtown aboard any of the "St. Kilda Beach" trams that go by. Guidebooks say St. Kilda is Melbourne's Playground, and even on a gray and drizzly early spring day, there were lots of Melburnians out trying to put winter behind them. The spring flowers hadn't pushed up yet, but colorful pink and purple winter cabbage added color to flower beds, while brilliantly colored lorikeets worked on their nests in the neighborhood's many date palms. We went in search of work by local artisans at the weekly c...Read More