Explore The City – Melbourne Visitor Shuttle
To help myself navigate around the city I decided to use one of the hop on hop off bus services. The Melbourne Visitor Shuttle offers a $10 ticket that is valid for 2 days. It includes 13 stops with running commentary about the main sites of Melbourne. I did one stop on my own on Thursday but started the actual tour on Friday with Rachel and continued it on Saturday. We didn’t do all of the stops but got the main areas done.
Federation Sq: Fed Sq included the Melbourne Visitor Centre, Federation Sq main area, the Ian Potter Centre, Birrarung Marr and William Barrack Bridge, The Federation Bells, Flinders St Station, St Paul’s Cathedral and Hozier Lane. The Ian Potter Centre is full of Australian art pieces and is worth a visit. Hozier Lane (which is basically across the street) is a really interesting spot with graffiti everywhere!
Fitzroy Gardens: We had a walk around the Fitzroy Gardens where we got to see Cook’s cottage (famously relocated from the UK to Melbourne and rebuilt brick by brick) and the Observatory. The gardens are beautiful with places to have BBQ’s and picnics. There are also ponds and fountains to feed the ducks! Other areas to visit at this stop are the Melbourne Cricket Ground and National Sports Museum.
Chinatown Precinct: This area is full of Chinese restaurants and cafes. The Parliment Building is also in this area.
Melbourne Museum: The Melbourne Museum is absolutely my favourite place in Melbourne. You could spend a week in there and not see it all. We got a tour around the main areas of the museum by a lovely volunteer which lasted a little over an hour. It was a great introduction and we re-traced our steps when it was over to look at all of our favourite parts.
Lygon Street: We came to Lygon St on Good Frdiay so a lot of the places were closed. This street is full of Italian restaurants and cafes though which would usually be teeming with people.
University of Melbourne: We took a walk through the grounds of the university which was beautiful.
Southbank and Yarra River: Southbank is another area that is full of restaurants and cafes and is based on the river. In this area you can visit the Eureka Skydeck 88 and Polly Woodside.
The Shrine of Remembrance: This is a massive building dedicated to those who have served in war. You can go upstairs and get an amazing view of the city skyline!
St Kilda Penguins
In St Kilda, at sunset, all of the penguins swim in from the sea and settle in for the night between the rocks. I got to see some of the cuties up close as they swam ashore!
On Saturday, a group of us went to Bounce, a trampolining centre. This place was brilliant and you get an hours session. There’s an obstacle course as well as free style tramolining areas. The staff were really friendly and the place itself was easy to get to by the train,
Rachel and Aoife’s housemates cooked up a huge Sunday Roast (to feed 12 people!). It was delicious! That night, we went to the Fifth Province (an Irish Bar and Restaurant), the White Rooms (across the street) and Robertas (the nightclub). I honestly don’t think I’ve laughed as much as I did about the night!
Peninsula Hot Springs
On Monday, 4 of us rented out a car and drove up to MorningtOn to go to the Peninsula Hot Springs. On the way, we stopped in at Sorrento. I immediately fell in love with this town. The beachy vibe was very relaxed and the people were great. I found a lovely health food store, Sorrento Organics, that did loads of vegan and gluten free meals so I stocked up!
The hot springs were about 20 minutes from Sorrento in Mornington. The springs have over 20 outside baths, one of which is based at the top of a hill. You have a 360 degree view of Mornington which is stunning. Tere was also a cave pool, reflexology walk, turkish steam bath and a cold plunge pool for the brave (Rachel!). We stayed here for around 4 hours and headed back to Melbourne.
For the hot springs you have a to book in a couple days in advance as it gets really busy!
I’ve updated the gallery with more pics and the places visited! 🙂