Melbourne Odds and Ends

A trip into town

I live about 10 kms from the centre of Melbourne. Today I had to go into town to change a ballet ticket, and I thought I would ask you along for the ride. [When I came home there was a blog post from Margaret, describing a walk with her dogs, through lovely lush English countryside. Isn’t serendipity a wonderful thing!]

Our first steps take us up to the tram stop, about 5 minutes away from the house, past the Little Free Library


to the shopping strip and the tram stop.

We will travel on the #57 tram, which wanders its way through Flemington and then North Melbourne. Ascot Vale is 10 kms from the city as the crow flies, not as the tram travels, so sit back and enjoy the half hour ride. Actually the tram is very full today, as we pick up the RMIT students who have just poured out of their exams at the Showgrounds. We also rumble past the Flemington Racecourse, where the Melbourne Cup is held, and later, the Victoria Market, home to great fresh produce.

Eventually we get to the end of Elizabeth Street, at Flinders St, right at Flinders Street Station. The station is not looking its best, as it is covered up while some work is done on it. So out we get and cross the road. (Sorry the second photo is blurry ~ I was in danger of getting run over!)

[BTW, a little piece of esoterica…..the streets in Melbourne are built on a grid layout. I still remember how delighted I was to realise that the streets that ran north/south were named King, William, Queen, Elizabeth. That pleased me no end!]

There is a walking tunnel under the tracks. It is rather grungy and in need of a good clean, but this sign made me smile, as there are not many options, only forward or back the way you have come!


Out into the sunshine, right on the bank of the Yarra River.


We are going to walk across that bridge, and stop in the middle to look down stream. That bridge you can see used to be for trains. I remember travelling across it in the old red rattlers, as the old trains were called. Those silver things are sculptures that now adorn the bridge.


And then look upstream to Princes Bridge, which links Swanston St and St Kilda Road. If you look closely you can see the mighty MCG in the background. The Melbourne Cricket Ground is not only where cricket games are held, but is the heartland of Australian rules Football… there’s a good game! At the foot of the MCG is Melbourne Park, a tennis complex where the Australian Open in played each January.


You have probably noticed the rowers on the river, but if you look on the other side you will see a group of canoeists as well. I wonder if the pair of ducks in the fore ground are have a little laugh at the antics of the humans on water!

Let’s walk on, to Southbank, the promenade that runs beside the river. It is full of cafes and restaurants and food courts, and if you can’t get something you like here, you are not trying!

Up the steps alongside Princes Bridge


and stop to admire the fancy lettering on the foundation stone.


Then take a breather at the top of the steps….Hamer Hall, a recital centre, is on our left. I must take you on a tour inside one day. The Arts Centre is straight ahead, with the National Gallery of Victoria further along St. Kilda Road.


To get to the ballet box office we need to go around the back of the Arts Centre, and we get some great angles of the spire. In the original design the spire was meant to be coated in bronze; it turned out that the budget didn’t stretch that far.


Past some interesting ballet sculptures, just to let us know we are on the right path

and then to the box office. No photos of that, as it wasn’t very interesting!

To make the return journey a little different we are going back to St Kilda Rd between the Arts Centre and the Gallery, then back to the river.





Now, we deserve some lunch. Let’s walk back along Southbank

to the Blue Train, where we can sit in the Winter sunshine and admire the view.



Then it is back on the tram, which, fortunately, is a lot less crowded on the home journey!


Thanks for taking this walk with me. Perhaps you would like to tell us about a favourite walk around your home town.


A newsletter update:

I have given up on trying to get a button on the side bar. However, I can insert a link to the sign up form on the post itself. So that is what I am going to do. At the end of each post you will see the link. I hope it will be prominent enough for new people click on, but not so prominent that it annoys those of you who have made the decision about the newsletter. It has got to be better than one of those wretched pop-up screens that appear whenever you open up a page.

So, if you are interested in keeping up with my art doings, click on this link.

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29 replies on “A trip into town”

Ooh, this post brought back memories of our last holiday, the cruise we were on stopped at Melbourne for the day and as my OH was born in Melbourne he took great delight in showing me his home city. We have family in Maldon so we occasional stop there too. I love the ballet statues, next time we visit I’ll look out the art centre.


I am glad to bring back those pleasant memories, Margaret. Next time you visit you will have to stay longer, and we will have a catch-up-coffee! Maldon is a very pretty place too. One side of my mum’s family came frump that way, so I know it quite well.


I’ll consider a “walk/trip” to my local hub. I need to go down there, sometime soon – and get the JP to sign a form – that particular place where they have a session is from 1-3pm (but you usually have to take a ticket, busy-as) – then I need on another day (I expect) to take that form and some other pieces of paper to a certain branded bank…

Tomorrow, I’m being driven to the supermarket. I now have a friend who will take me to “fill the cupboards” – it’s been 6 weeks since we last went (ok, I got a few small things here and there…since). I’ve been making some quite delicious meals (as it turned out) these last few days. The most hilarious must have is the ordinary cheese, I’ve had only a little bit about palm size left the last 5 days – and I’ve down to about a 1/2″ rectangle left, carefully taking little bits off…instead of decent slices…

There are other things left, including a whole large packet of sliced green beans in the freezer, but sometimes what you have “just doesn’t cut the mustard” meal wise.

Anyway our trip tomorrow will be short/sweet travel wise – almost a straight line of road if I was a “crow” 🙂


May your trip be short, sweet and SUCCESSFUL! It is tricky when a place is only open for a few hours. It is amazing what you can make to eat with a few ingredients, although, not sure what I could do with cheese and beans. A bean mornay perhaps?


Oh no, another trip to make me all nostalgic! I’ve just read Margaret’s country walk, which took me back to my own childhood, and now I’ve read your walk, which makes me a tiny bit homesick for Melbourne. I really must get myself over to the Botanic Gardens for a walk and a nice cuppa overlooking the lotus lagoon!


And take us on the walk through the gardens too! I would love to see them, and sit and have a visual cup of tea with you. Margaret’s walk was delightful. Imagine having that just at the back fence. ~sigh~


I am glad you could come along too, Louise. And the sunshine was glorious, while I think today will be rather overcast and chilly. As for the newsletter technology….well I think I have given up on the really fancy stuff. The newsletter seems to be going out okay. I hope to draft #3 today.


Thank you for this charming tour. I’ve never been to Australia, though I’ve seen the great films & documentaries & read books set there. It is an endlessly fascinating place & interesting to me. I watch Miss Fisher on PBS here in the US, to see modern Melbourne. We see Melbourne of the 1920s in the series, as Phryne, who lives in St. Kilda, zips about town in her Hispano-Suiza. I am sending this letter to a neighbor who had our neighborhood little free library built, so she can see yours. And to a friend who is on a team turning a vacant gravel lot into a civic garden space so she can see those low stone walls in cages with seating on tops, such a clever, inexpensive idea.
Thank you for sharing your neighborhood & trip to Melbourne with all of us in the blogsphere, another clever idea. Now I am off for a walk with the dogs in the English countryside. Judith, very widely traveled, in Asheville, North Carolina


Hi Anne I tried to leave a comment but couldn’t work my way through the rigmarole. I think your walk was brilliant, and made me homesick. I think I will come home after all! Love you. Judy xxx

Sent from my iPad


I am glad you could come along with me, EllaDee. I am quite sure that you wouldn’t swap your lovely rural life for the Big City now! Thanks for signing up for the newsletter, and I am glad the process worked well.


This was fascinating–such amazing details! I doubt I will ever visit Melbourne, or Australia–it’s so FAR–so I especially liked being able to see the sights with you. I read a Dick Francis book where the character was in Melbourne so a lot of the place names were familiar. I love the ballet sculptures!


You are right ~ Australia is a long way from everywhere, and Melbourne is right at the end. However, it is worth a visit if you ever feel like suspending your life for the 24 hour plane trip. 😉


Anne, I had so much fun. I really felt like I was right there along with you. What a great idea for a post. You live in such a beautiful city, one I hope to visit one day. I love bridges and sculptures in the midst of a city, as they really bring it to life. You made me giggle that if I couldn’t find something I liked I wasn’t trying. 🙂 I think adding a link at the end of each post is a great idea and I agree that it is far better than a pop-up. I’m happy to be on your list.


I feel quite certain that we will meet up in real life, Alys, somewhere, sometime. Maybe in the Italian villa that we could organise for the Sisterhood of the Travelling Sketchbook! I hope you are enjoying the newsletters. It is an interesting challenge to work our what to include.


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