Just a stone’s throw away from our hotel, Melbourne CBD’s Chinatown was beautifully lit every night and regardless of the chilly weather, the atmosphere was always buzzing; noodle houses were packed even on week nights. The aroma of dumplings wonderfully wafted in and out every so often as we walked along the narrow street lined with dozens of different Asian eateries and grocers.
2. Luna Park/Palais Theatre
Out of the CBD’s chaos and into the beautiful coastal suburb of Saint Kilda. The lights of Luna Park and the Theatre at night are spectacular, creating a truly majestic and vintage scenery. Such a shame I didn’t capture it at night. This one was taken during the afternoon.
3. Hardware Lane
Stumbled across this little laneway one night and it was like finding the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. We were surprised to find a street lined with al fresco dining right in the heart of the CBD as we thought Lygon St was the only place like this. It had a fun, European vibe to it with a musician on the street playing funky music. Each restaurant had their host out the front trying to lure customers in with suspicious, too-good-to-be-true deals, some were very persistent! It was almost like a game to see how many we could dodge or the best deals we could get. We settled with Max’s Bar & Restaurant, scoring a free starter and two glasses of white on the house! It goes without saying, the pizza was divine. (Excuse the poor quality, my phone camera doesn’t work too well at night).
4. The Queen Victoria Markets
And on this day, I died and went to European delicatessen heaven. While there are lots of things to look through at the QV markets such as clothes and little knick knacks, we headed straight to the food hall. Cheeses by the wheel, salami hanging from the ceiling and freshly baked bread rolls galore, I have to admit this could have been the highlight of the trip. The vast range of European stalls were incredible, from Hungarian sweets to German wieners to delicious Turkish bread rolls (pictured), we had a field day picking all sorts of sandwich fillings for our lunch.
5. Catching trams
The tram system was impeccable in Melbourne. Well, coming from Wollongong/Sydney where we don’t have these services, they were really impressive. Also, what a weird and wonderful ad for a tram, right?! Definitely eye-catching, I wonder if this ad was purposely used on the trams to resonate with the saying “packed like sardines”? The simile is totally relevant, especially at seven o’clock in the evening when everyone is finishing work, definitely want to avoid the trams at these times!