LezGoMelbourne

A lesbian couple loving free, learning anew, and living in Melbourne


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Planning Your Melbourne Vacation: A 5-Day Itinerary (Part 3)

DAY 4
GAMES & GARDENS DAY

MORNING
Fitzroy Gardens
I don’t know about you but I haven’t seen gardens or parks like these back at home, so I am more than delighted to spend some time around Fitzroy Gardens. Sure there are lots of trees and farms in the Philippines, but there aren’t any parks in the cities. Sad but true.

You can also make a quick visit to Cook’s Cottage and other landmarks in the park.

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I wonder how many events this Royal Exhibition Building has hosted since it opened?

Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens
The Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens is recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage site. So there’s more to this garden than meets the eye. The Royal Exhibition Building also currently functions as a venue for different events. As to date, there is an upcoming Love Vintage Clothing Show starting May 17-19, 2013 and Great Australasian Beer Spectapular on May 24-26, 2013. I think I just may drop by for a visit soon!

Before I forget, Melbourne Museum is just right beside the Royal Exhibition Building so may want to visit that as well.

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The perfect setting for high tea, especially on a nice, sunny day

Rippon Lea Estate & Gardens
If you want a see exactly how people, rich people, lived in Australia back in the day then this is the place to be. It’s like walking into a Downton Abbey film set where everything is as it was back in the day. Just click on the link and you’ll find details on admission fees, opening hours, and house tour schedules, among others.

AFTERNOON or EVENING
Melbourne, I think, wouldn’t be Melbourne without its love for sports.

Currently, it is AFL season. If you aren’t all too familiar with footy but loves sports, you are sure to enjoy game day. The moment you see the crowd boarding off the train with their team scarves, jumpers, and jerseys, you wish you’re watching with them. So, book a ticket and join the electrifying crowd cheering and chanting for their favourite teams.

DAY 5
SUNDAY CHURCH & MARKET

MORNING
St. Patrick’s Cathedral

St. Patrick’s Cathedral is one impressive structure to visit, especially for those of the Roman Catholic faith. From Melbourne Town Hall, you can catch the 109 tram and alight at Albert St.

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Am I the only one who loves going to markets?

MIDDAY / AFTERNOON
Queen Victoria Market
From Albert St., ride tram 109 going back to the city and alight at Elizabeth St. to catch tram 19, 57, or 59 and alight at Queen Victoria Market.

Here, you can have a good cup of brew at Market Lane Coffee, a warm pastry called Borek, and maybe a more familiar jam donut from the truck outside before embarking on a little souvenir shopping.

Once you’re past the butchers, the deli section, and the produce section, you have to make your way to the outdoor market where stall after stall of trinkets and other souvenir items are waiting for you. If you ask me, I love the Secret Gully Puppets with their adorable and well-crafted pieces. It’d be hard to miss.

Note: Queen Victoria market is only open Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and weekends. Opening hours vary so check the website.

Well, that’s about it. I am still discovering Melbourne and I would like to know the city and the neighbouring areas more intimately. This is roughly the places where I would take my parents to; some of the activities I would recommend to friends with kids; or how I would introduce Melbourne to friends who are slowly getting to know this city.

Over all, it’s seems very “touristy” but once again, it’s up to you to edit out the parts you don’t want and shape the itinerary according to your interests.

Click here for Part 1 of the itinerary

Click here for Part 2 of the itinerary

P.S. A condensed version of this itinerary will follow shortly

Disclaimer: LezGoMelbourne is not paid by nor affiliated with any of the companies, shops, or brands mentioned above (if any). These are LezGoMelbourne’s personal opinions with no intention to cause or do any harm. These tips/guides are not to be taken as fact or absolute. Please consult with a professional for your own counsel.

© LezGoMelbourne/Lezgomelbourne.wordpress.com 2013 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, including photos if any, without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.

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Planning Your Melbourne Vacation: A 5-Day Itinerary (Part 2)

DAY 2
DIY Puffing Billy

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One of the many steam locomotive trains running the show

Puffing Billy
Take the train going to Belgrave. Depending on the train schedule, you might have to take the train going to Lilydale, alight at Ringwood, and then take the train to Belgrave. From there, you just have to follow the signs to Puffing Billy. Don’t worry; it’s just a few steps away. It’s just like transferring from one platform to another.

Kindly check their website for fares and time tables as the train changes schedule on different days, depending on their calendar. They also post announcements here, in case there is a line disruption for trains going to Belgrave.

At Puffing Billy, aside from enjoying the ride and the scenery, you can spend an hour or so enjoying the different stops to your destination. Pack a picnic basket with you on your journey too and have a great lunch or snack outdoors. And if you go at the right season, say spring, you might even meet Thomas the Train.

If you decide to visit Puffing Billy, remember that it’s an hour travel back to the CBD. It might be early afternoon or late afternoon by the time you get back. You can make the most out of your day either with a short DIY visit to Puffing Billy and make plans for the rest of the afternoon/evening or you can go on a guided tour which allows you to visit nearby attractions such as Healesville Sanctuary, the Blue Dandenongs, the wine region of Yarra Valley, and maybe even Phillip Island to meet the fairy penguins. You can review your options with the tour operators you choose.

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I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of looking at the sea.

EVENING
St. Kilda Beach
Hang out at the beach and watch the sunset at St. Kilda where you’ll witness the city transform into a landscape of sparkling lights. The famous Acland St. is also nearby so you can have some coffee and cakes after dinner.

As it is autumn, St. Kilda Beach has somewhat limited attractions. Luna Park only operates on weekends this May and June, so it’s best to check their calendars. You can still visit the St. Kilda Pier but all access and tours to the fairy penguins living at the breakwater doesn’t resume until September because of the construction taking place.

DAY 3
Road Trip

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This is a great way to get introduced to a lot of good wines, great wines.

Wine Tour
I think one of the best ways to experience Melbourne is to go on a wine tour. There are many tour operators who offer this experience, so you are spoilt for choice. And they say autumn is the best time to visit, since the vines will be changing its hues from greens to oranges and reds.

The most popular destination are the wineries in Yarra Valley, although there are other wine regions too like Mornington Peninsula, Macedon Ranges, Gippsland, Bellarine Peninsula, and Bendigo among others.

Brewery Tour
If you don’t fancy wine but love beer, there are also private tour operators who can give you a microbrewery & craft beer tours in Yarra Valley.

But if you plan on staying in the city, other than hiring the services of tour operators, there are a couple of breweries I know where you can get a tour. One is the Carlton Brewhouse at Abbotsford which gives you a tour for $25 and the other one is Mountain Goat Beer at Richmond who offers free brewery tours on Wednesdays.

For everything else, you can sample a good variety of beer and cider on tap at a hotel or pub. Beer Advocate has a list that can guide you where to get a cold glass.

Road Trip Options:

Great Ocean Road
If you are staying longer or if you want to have more road trips into your itinerary, you can check out the Great Ocean Road. I haven’t been, so, I can’t give you any personal feedback.

Phillip Island
A road trip to Phillip Island too is a good idea on a warm, clear day. If I were to visit again, I would buy the 3 Parks Pass for the Penguin Parade, Churchill Island and Koala Conservation Centre. I would go and see the seals at the Nobbies Centre too and make sure you do too since admission is free. Some people say that Phillip Island is a tourist trap, but personally, I think it is well worth it to observe these wonderful creatures in their natural habitat (I’m pertaining to, of course, the undomesticated wildlife here). Make sure to visit the websites and stay informed of any announcements, especially when it comes to the penguins’ arrival time.

Note: These fairy penguins arrive at night so expect to finish late.

Click on this link for Part 1 of this itinerary

Click on this link for the Part 3 of this itinerary

Disclaimer: LezGoMelbourne is not paid by nor affiliated with any of the companies, shops, or brands mentioned above (if any). These are LezGoMelbourne’s personal opinions with no intention to cause or do any harm. These tips/guides are not to be taken as fact or absolute. Please consult with a professional for your own counsel.

© LezGoMelbourne/Lezgomelbourne.wordpress.com 2013 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material, including photos if any, without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited.