SIGHTS
Melbourne,
Australia

Area Code 03, US$1=$, Mar 6, 2002

S Queen Victoria Market: Elizabeth Street + Victoria St. The face of Melbourne and the largest market in the Southern Hemisphere which is a huge honour considering the number of markets present in Asia. Many nationalities control and bargain there way through the stalls that line the market. Everything can be bought here, and is probably the only place in Melbourne where bargaining is common. Whether buying fresh seafood to cook in your hostel, to buying a pair of walking boots 60% cheaper than in the shops, the Queen Victoria Market is a tourist attraction that has benefits.
S Rialto Towers:
It will probably be the first thing you see when arriving in Melbourne. Two towering buildings in the centre of the CBD. For
$12, you can go to the top of the tallest tower and stay there all day sipping coffee in what must be one of the highest cafes in the world.
S Southgate:
It does look a bit tacky but the Southgate complex that runs alongside the Yarra River has become extremely popular. Dominated by the huge casino, Southgate is full of pricey cafes and fine dining restaurants that if not on a budget would be a great place to eat. The Melbourne Casino, resembles a squashed lego set and inside the dark and claustrophobic surroundings does not help. But the entertainment complex can be interesting especially the Mercury Lounge, where a great cover band The Stone Cold Boners play nearly every Saturday. Ignore the nightclub h?eat . Probably the countries worst.
S Crown Casino: S from the center. You can walk from Flinders St/Spencer St Station, or Tram#12, 96, 109
You can enjoy gambling, cinema, bars, restaurants, shopping, etc. It is said that you can get better exchange rates here than in the citie.

Melbourne Streets:
The different cultures that are present in Melbourne can be found in the streets.
S Lygon Street in Carlton has been the pride of the Italians since the sixties. Although not cheap, the Italian restaurants that line the street are the best in Melbourne and some say Australia.
S Brunwick Street in Fitzroy is mostly for the alternative studenty scene. Prices are much lower and this is where the best pubs can be found. A whole day can be spent looking i the record shops, cafes, bookstores and pubs.
S Bridge Road in Richmond have classic style pubs and some cheap eateries. The trendy clothes stores are fairly cheap compared to other places.
S Chapel Street is where the yuppie liked to prance. Filled with overly expensive cafes and astonish dear designer clothing shops, it is still the fashion capital of Australia.
S Little Bourke Street: Melbourne's China town in the city. At first glance it does not look like much mostly because of the absence of any food markets, but what it does have is good inexpensive restaurants.

Australian Sports
S Australian Rules Football: Melbourne is the most sports mad city in the world. Where England and the USA get excited if the crowd reaches 40,000 in any sports arena, this would be below average for a crowd at the MCG. Aussie Rules is a pretty rough game. It is similar to Gaelic football in that a ball must be kicked through the two large sticks. Injuries are frequent in that pads and helmets are never worn, but this just adds to the talented gladiator type sport.
S Make sure you go to the Melbourne Cricket Cround (MCG) just off Jolimont Station and sit with the 90,000 strong crowd barracking for teams like the Essendon Bombers, North Melbourne Kangaroos or the Collingwood Magpies. Or go to the new Colonial stadium (off Spencer St Station) and see 50,000 fans crammed into an indoor stadium.
S For a touch of suburban football see the mighty Carlton Blues play at Optus Oval (West Carlton), and make sure you by a four and twenty pie at half time.

Out of Melbourne
S Victorian beaches are said to be the best in the world, and the world surfing competition calendar always revolves around them. Catching a v-line train to Geelong from Spencer Street Station ($7) then taking buses, you can go to the excellent Ocean Grove / Torquey area.
S Ocean Grove (and nearby Barwon Heads): It has a great small community that both welcomes and caters for backpackers and surfers. Cheap cafes, big waves and the famous Barwon Heads Pub make this part of Victoria a must.
S  Great Ocean Road: www.greatoceanrd.org.au, beautiful Coast road, 120km from Melbourne, running about 280 Kilometres from Geelong to Warrnambool.
Many travel agents organizes tours.
Very windy so you'd better to take a jacket.
S Torquay: 30 min down the road from Ocean Grove: A town made famous by students partying after finishing High School. Past Torquay is Lorne home of Victoria best New Years Eve party where Australia's best bands play in a three day festival. Anytime from November to February is the best time to go to these places.
S Sorrento: A small town, along the Nepean Highway, looking over Port Philip Bay. Catch a train to Frankston, then a bus to get there ($10). Sorrento is a sloppy hollow
S Phillip Island & Penguin Parade: Fairy Penguin World smallest penguins, 30cm can be seen. No photo allowed. Many tours from Melbourne. You can see the penguins after sunset so it could be very cold even during summer.
S Mount Dandenong: 1 hour from Melbourne. Autumn leaves are very beautiful. From the view point, the entire city of Melbourne can be viewed. Australian first steam railway, Puffing Billy is still running a few times a day between Belgrave and .Gembrook You can get off at the staions beteen . www.puffingbilly.com.au/ The schedule differs by days, seasons, etc. Reservation is highly recommended.
S Yarra Vallery: 1 hour by car NE from Melbourne.. Many vineries are spread around a vast plateau. One of the most famous vine production region. You can teate many international award winning wines there. Usually $4/glass or free if you purchased. Wine festival is held in March-April.
S Ski Resorts - Mt Buller, Falls Creek, Mt Hotham.: You may go there by organized tours. All equipments are rentable.
S Grampians National Park: Center town is Halls Gap. If you go by bus, go to Stawell, then take a school bus to Halls Gap. During school holidays, you cannot go . From Halls Gap to Stawell, you may be able to take a tour bus. This is a good national park for people who love bush walking. Rental bicycles are available at hostels.
Information office has maps and helps visitors.
Tours of rock climbing and Abseiling.
Accommodation: Tim's Other Place, homely hostel. Including breakfast. Kangaroos are jumping in the garden.
Other accommodation: www.grampians.net.au/menu/

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