Australia Day Twenty One: Melbourne Afternoon Walk
It was now sunny and very hot in Melbourne as I crossed the scenic Yarra River and entered the gardens and parks of the Kings Domain and the Royal Botanical Gardens. As you may know from reading my earlier post about my visits to Sydney, Adelaide, Perth and Hobart, one of my favorite places to visit in a city is the botanical gardens.
The trees and shrubs were beautiful and so were the many birds that inhabited the woods, ponds and wetlands of the gardens. I saw, and heard so many new species of birds including the unique call of the Australian bellbird, a member of the honeyeater family. There were many water birds roaming the grassy areas adjacent to the ponds and the trees had many of species of birds fluttering about. Here is a link to some of the birds I encountered in the Botanical Gardens. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-botanical-gardens-birds-february-23-2016
I spent a couple of hour exploring the many paths and walkways. The gardens were crowded with folks of all ages, with most of them, because of the hot weather, sitting, laying or picnicking near the lakes at the center of the gardens
I walked around the perimeter of the gardens exploring the many exotic plants from all over Australia and the rest of the world. I especially loved the water lily gardens. Again, I wish I had more time to enjoy these beautiful gardens but it was around noon now and I was getting hungry.
I walked to the Old Observatory near the main entrance to the Botanical Gardens and found a lovely Vietnamese restaurant the Jardin Tan. It was crowded but I was able to get a seat and enjoyed an interesting, but delicious , fish dish with a number of side dishes. It was a very good meal and although I was tired, from my long morning walk in the hot sun., I was rested and refreshed enough to continue my exploration of Melbourne. Here is a link to some more photographs I took on my walk through the Botanical Gardens.. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-botanical-gardens-february-23-2016
I left the Botanical Gardens and I saw immediately, and was drawn to the colossal Shrine of Remembrance. This impressive structure was built to honor the Australian soldiers who fought, and died in World War One.
I walked the many steps to the main hall honoring the fallen soldiers. The hall was somber and quite and I spent some time reading the inscriptions and reflecting on the young men who traveled ti the other end of the earth to fight for their country. I wondered if any of them may have encountered my grandfather who was a ‘doughboy’ in this great conflict.
I visited the Shrine’s museum and visitor center before left this impressive monument. I passed the eternal flame before I descended the steps back to the green lawns and grounds of the King’s Domain.
It was a hot day and this park was also filled with crowds of people either enjoying the sun or shade. I walked down to the beautiful Queen Victoria Gardens area of the park. Along the way I passed many statues honoring the famous men and women prominent in Melbourne history.
The garden were enchanting and imagined how they would appear during the other seasons of the year. I left the park and again crossed the Yarra river across from the train station at Flinders Street. Here is a link to some more photographs from my visit to the Shrine of Remembrance and the King’s Domain. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-shrine-of-remembrance-february-23-2016
It was hot and I was tired but i wanted to explore some of the shopping and commercial areas of downtown Melbourne so I just walked aimlessly up and down the congested streets in the heart of Melbourne.
I love walking the streets of large cities and I observed the many types of people, tourists, shoppers, office workers, and students rushing the crowded streets of the city.
I continued my walk and found myself in the Chinatown of Melbourne. It seems there is a Chinatown in every major city and I love exploring the shops and grocery stores with all of the fresh and exotic produce.
I had now walked almost ten miles, and although I wanted to keep exploring the streets of Melbourne, the heat got to me and I decided to head back to the hotel. since I was returning home the next day and had to pack. I made my way back to the Flinders Street Station and took the train and bus back to my hotel. Here is a link to some more photographs from my walk through the streets of Melbourne. https://keepyoureyespeeled.net/australia/nggallery/australia/australia-day-twenty-one-melbourne-afternoon-walk-february-23-2016
It was late afternoon now so I showered, finished packing and decided to eat dinner at the hotel restaurant.. I got to know the friendly staff quite well at the hotel and they recommended the home cooking at their restaurant. They were right I had a wholesome meal of fresh salmon, mashed potatoes and a vegetable. On my way back to my room I had twenty dollars in Australian money left over from money I had just exchanged to get some coins for souvenirs. There were slot machines in the hotel, and I decided to give them a try. I don’t gamble a lot but when I do, I usually win, and I did! I won three hundred dollars! Not bad for five minutes of work. I cashed in my winnings, headed to my room, finished packing and fell asleep almost instantly, recalling the wonderful day I spent exploring Melbourne.
“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”
― Augustine of Hippo