St Kilda Pier, Melbourne, Australia
What strikes you first when coming to Melbourne is how relaxed look to be its inhabitants, an atmosphere that becomes imprinted upon the city itself. It’s true that this is prevalent in the entire Australia – more to talk about this later on – but when you are in a vibrant city you expect a little of, you know, the craziness associated with the large cities that we are way too familiar in New York.
Melbourne skyline from St Kilda
And probably to make sure that I stayed in this relaxed spirit I hopped a tram in the morning and got in St Kilda, the sea side neighborhood full of interesting people drinking their coffee and reading their books like is nothing else to be done in the day, in cool cafes that align the main road.
Hugo is a rakali, native water rat, that is coming for food on the pier
St Kilda Pier is the place to be and you are there together with the penguins who come on the rocks in the evenings and with ratali, a species of native rats that come out all day if you know how to call them …and of course feed them.
The circular tram of Melbourne
Melbourne is a city with a vibrant cultural life, ease of moving around by bikes or public transportation, and lots of pockets of free Internet; a city full of cafes and bars that look to be filling to the brim in late afternoon by people coming out from work. It has a remarkable tram system that runs extremely often on most of the main streets that you can hop on free of charge if you go in a large swath of town that encompass the entire city center.
St Peter Catholic Cathedral, Melbourne, Australia
From St Kilda I hopped in the tram and went all the way to Fitzroy and Collingwood, with its edgy look, a larger immigration population, many beautiful and creative cafes and lots of antique and vintage clothing shops. All are aligned around Brunswick and Smith Streets that represent the main thoroughfare of the two districts.
Concert in Federation Square, Melbourne, Australia
It is a lot to see in Melbourne and not having enough time – time is always too short when you travel – I started to do a tour through alleys and streets in the relaxed style that characterizes the locals. From Federation Square, an interesting concoction of metal and glass cubes in whose main square was happening an open air concert, to Hosier Lane covered in graffiti, to the two cathedrals, one catholic one Anglican. Talking about the Anglican church, that guy Henry the Eight was quite a character if you think, not of what he did in his lifetime but for the heritage that he left behind, a sort of Brexit way before his time.
Hosier Lane is the graffiti Lane in Melbourne, Australia
We continued through the connected inside galleries full of glitzy shops connected to the outside one full of restaurants conduits of accessibility that let cross the entire city following their path.
Royal Gallery, Melbourne, Australia
I ended up where I started on the shores of the Yara river guarded day and night by the Melbourne high rises, an iconic image of the city.
Downtown Melbourne by the Yara River by day…
…and by night.