Australia Day Twenty One: A Morning In Melbourne
Because of my long day visiting the penguins, I slept in a bit on my last full day in Australia. I missed the sunrise, something I rarely do while traveling. I awoke hungry, since I didn’t get a chance to eat the night before, and I had a quick breakfast at the hotel. I again had a discussion about the vegemite, and once again had the local folks trying to give it another try. I politely passed. I did not have a good first experience in Sydney. Sorry mates. Yuck!
It was a short ride through the residential areas near the hotel to the train station at Watergardens. I joined the crowd of commuters waiting for the train downtown. It was the same scene I have seen in so many cities in the United States and other countries I have visited. We were pretty much at the end of the train system so there were still seats available. However, he train car became more crowded at every stop on our way into Melbourne. It was packed like a can of sardines when we reached the main station downtown on Flinders Street.
I exited at this beautiful old train station and walked into the hustle and bustle of downtown Melbourne. I was now familiar with the public transportation network, and boarded a trams for a short ride to the Fitzroy Gardens section of the city. Here is a link to some more photographs from my ride into Melbourne.https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-bus-nd-train-rides-february-24-2016ustralia-day-twenty-one-melbour
I walked through the tree lined paths and flower gardens of Fitzroy Gardens and made my way to the Conservatory. This building, built in the Spanish Missionary style houses a variety of displays of flowers throughout the year. Tuberous begonias were now on display and the building was filled with their many beautiful colors. I spent some time enjoying the flowers in this delightful place. Here is a link to more photographs of the Conservatory.https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-conservatory-february-23-2016
I continued my way through the paths of Fitzroy Gardens and walked under the many large trees until I made my way to Cook’s Cottage. The house was built in 1755 by the parents of the famous explorer Captain John Cook. The cottage was taken down, transported to Australia, and reconstructed there in the 1930’s
I remember learning about his travels in grade school and had just I visited the site of his first landing in Australia on Bruny Island in Tasmania. I learned a lot about this famous explorer and also about life in 18th century England. I loved the traditional English flower and vegetable gardens in the rear of the cottage.
I wish I had more time, there was still so much to see, but I wanted to see more of Melbourne and so I walked the tree and flower lined path out of the gardens and made my way , by short walk, to the sports stadium complex. Here is a link to some more photographs of my visit to Fitzroy Gardens.
I neared the famous MCG (Melbourne Cricket Grounds) site of the 1956 Olympics and home of Australian cricket and football. This impressive stadium was surrounded by larger than life size statues of famous stars of both of these sports.
I really wanted to learn more about these sports, and wanted to take the tour of the stadium, but I didn’t have time. I continued on my walk, and a short distance away, I came to the famous tennis stadiums, including the Rod Laver arena. This is the main venue for the Australian Open which is held here in Melbourne every January.
During my walk the sun came out and it got pretty hot out. I decided it was time to cross the bridge over the beautiful Yarra River and head to the trees and gardens of the Botanical Gardens on the other side. Here is a link to some more photographs of my walk around the cricket and tennis stadiums. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-cricket-stadium-february-23-2016
“In merging nature and culture the most successful cities combine such universal needs as maintaining or restoring contact with the cycles of nature, with specific, local characteristics.”
― Sally A. Kitt Chappell,