We all love a good Aussie beer and couple that with rugby, bliss. Australia in general is known for natural phenomena like the Great Barrier Reef, a conglomerate of coral which have deposited themselves layer by layer for centuries, reflecting the turbulent past of our planet. Tourist attractions like the Opera House in Sydney, or the Apostles along the Great Ocean Road have overwhelmed the response to other attractions around Australia.
In this edition, an attempt has been made to provide a new perspective to a metropolitan city like Melbourne and to place it on a higher stead while encompassing the various features that led to the development and modernization of the city.
The Eureka Skydeck, the tallest building in the city, is built on the Southern bank of the Yarra river which camouflages it in Melbourne’s landscape. Also on the Yarra River is the ‘Westgate Bridge’, the third longest bridge in Australia.
The city is divided into a grid with various streets bisecting it, the ‘Flinders Street’ coincidentally being the main street of the city, hosting a wide spectrum of coffee shops, pubs and merchandise shops making it one of the most happening parts of town.The large number of shops contribute directly to raising the economy of this sector of town, however it possesses an aesthetic appeal like no other. Vehicles are banned and the only way to traverse this area is via a tram or by foot, a unique concept whose outcome is spellbinding. Before we proceed any further, it is critical for us to know the historical context and roots of the city so that one can get their minds around the stature of the rapid development of the city.
In the year 1851, abundant gold was found in lakes and streams around a town called ‘Ballarat’, thus marking the onset of the ‘Gold Rush’ in Australia. In the 1860’s. Melbourne became the second most important city in the world owing to the economic spurt and the rapid development. Most of the people who settled in this city during the early years migrated from a town called ‘Geelong’, which at that time hosted a population of 200,000, contributing to the development of Melbourne.
The Tasman Sea and parts of the East Coast were discovered by an Italian named as Abel Tasman and about 80% of Australia’s population resides on the East Coast, its major cities along being located here.
Since the theme of the post is ‘unearthing’, it only seems apt that I mention places that are not commonly known to first time tourists and travelers. To kick things off, one must visit the ‘Torquay Beach’ in Victoria. This low key beach is famous among the locals, the shore breaking off into a coastal area in the form of a right handed curve. Its strategic location allows the Southwesterly Winds to blow across the waves, enabling them to sit up and stay that ways for longer durations of time, thereby providing conducive conditions for novice and intermediate level surfers.
A drive on the Great Ocean Road is something that if given an opportunity, one MUST NOT miss. Constructed by hand by the soldiers and refugees who returned to Australia after the First World War. These soldiers were employed by a private contractor who was inspired by the Highway Pacific 101 and wanted to emulate the same in Australia. Several settlements alongside the road with Lorne being the largest ( a population of about 10,000 people ), form an integral part of the overall experience of the drive. The ‘Sheoak Falls’ is a picturesque location one can stop at, to encapsulate the entire journey.
All in all, Melbourne continues to be a top notch tourist destination for travelers. However, there is more to this amazing city that what meets the eye. I hope that this post has been beneficial for all those aspiring travelers out there.
That is Australian lingo for goodbye.