And so it is almost time to go.
I’ve been in Melbourne since Monday afternoon and already it’s Thursday evening.
The drive from Halls Gap to Melbourne was quite straight-forward, after driving through more tree-lined roads for about an hour it all turned into familiar dual-carriageway all the way passed Ballarat and onto Melbourne. I only stopped for the toilet food & fuel.
Once I got to Melbourne (over 3 hours) I then had to drive into the city to my hostel.
All I can say is thank God the Sat-Nav worked, I would not have had a clue how to get to the hostel otherwise.
So once I had reached the hostel (Melbourne Metro YHA) and after I got my stuff into my room I began to realise how much Melbourne had changed since I was last here (December 2006).
There has been a BIG building boom here, I barely recognised the hostel, all but 1 of the surrounding buildings has been redeveloped into apartments.
Still I settled in knowing I had to return my hire-car the next day.
Returning my hire-car was’t difficult, the Sat-Nav worked perfectly as it has done so throughout my trip. Once I had returned the car I then had to make my way back to the hostel.
I bought a round-trip SkyBus ticket so in one foul swoop I had sorted my transportation to the airport on Friday as well as getting back into the city that day.
So once I was back in the city I had a good long walk around managing to get lost twice before finally reaching the hostel.
On Wednesday I walked down to the Queen Victoria Market which is less than a 10 minute walk from the hostel. I found it to be very empty, in fact the market does’t run every day. The only day I could go now was Thursday!
So I walked into the centre of the city hunting for things to bring back to Blighty (bought some t-shirts & a couple of items requested by work mates).
Later that night I went up to the roof garden (they didn’t have that the last time I was here!) and took some long exposure photos but only a few came out well.
So Thursday – finally got to walk around Queen Victoria Market, it is huge, takes up more floor space than TESCO’s @ Holmebush in Shoreham. I confess I did buy a few more t-shirts but still have enough cash for my long wait at the airport tomorrow. They have all sorts of things though I did notice there were more than a few stalls selling exactly the same things – mostly t-shirts, leather jackets & handbags. There were also lots of fruit & veg stalls and the usual tourist trinkets.
Alas it was soon the afternoon & time for lunch before my return to the hostel. I spent the rest of the afternoon packing up my stuff so I would be in no rush come check-out time tomorrow (Friday 10.am).
All in all I would say my trip has been a very pleasant one apart from the head-cold which surprisingly has now gone (just a little cough every now and then).
I’ve really enjoyed my time out here in Australia & will begin planning my return trip, though next time I think I’l go to a different state. 3 weeks just isn’t enough time, Australia is so vast you could spend a year & still have places to go.
Oh well this is me signing off, next stop home…