Shamrock Hotel in the main street
This is one of my favorite views of Bendigo, the French architectural inspired historic Shamrock Hotel.
In fact, it's really a combination.... Australian style for the first floor, and French for those above that level.
Sacred Heart Cathedral
The Cathedral is quite a prominent landmark in Bendigo. Construction began in 1896 and continued over 12 years when funding ran out. It wasn’t until 1954 that work recommenced and was finally completed in 1977. This has to be the longest construction for a church. The cathedral was built of Geelong sandstone. The tallest spire is 86.6 metres high with a 3 tonne, 7 metre bronze cross on top.
You can visit the Cathedral at most times.
Lansell, the Quartz King
Follow the gold trail, start with the George Lansell statue in the garden between the Visitor Information Centre (former post office) and the Memorial Hall. Lansell is one of the most successful mining baron, owner of 7 gold mines and investor in countless outhers. This guy must be filthy rich.
The inscription says "Indomitable courage and persistent enterprise of George Lansell in the development of Bendigo's gold resources."
Interestingly, the "citizens of Bendigo" erected this statue. The story goes something like this....in 1899, 2628 Bendigonians signed an illuminated letter begging Lansell's return from England to Sandhurst to help revive the flagging economy.
If you study the relief sculptures on the monument, you'll see the development of mining form from cradle to big companies involved in deep shaft mining.
Bendigo, the city built with gold
"Or so it says...."
In the guidebook, it says, "After a pleasant two hour drive from Melbourne, your first glimpse of Bendigo is through an avenue of majestic plane trees.". Majestic plane trees yes, pleasant two hour drive no. Finally, after years of saying, "I want to go to Bendigo!" I finally convinced my boyfriend to drop by on our way to Shepparton in August 2003. However, due to him not used to driving on the left hand side and me too slow in giving direction we got stuck on the wrong freeway and couldn't get ourselves out. After 1 tense hour on the darn freeway and a couple of stops along the way, we finally arrived in Bendigo 4 and a half hours later.
We didn't get to stay there for long as we wanted to get to Shepparton before dark, what a pity.
Pic shows the Beehives along Pall Mall. It was the site of Australia's first stock exchange. Established in the 1860's it was originaly known as the Sandhurst Mining Exchange.
"Bendigo vs. Ballarat"
I'd always heard how beautiful Bendigo is, but for some unknown reason, I'd only visited Ballarat, Bendigo's "rival" city, think Springfield and Springvale, alright, I'm exaggerating here, but they do compete when it comes to tourism. Both prospered due to the gold rush, both rich in history with elegant Victorian-era buildings, and both have a history of Chinese immigration. Gold mining, however, still continues in Bendigo, making Bendigo one of the richest goldfield in the world.
"Just for the experience....."
My second visit was on the 2nd Dec 2003. A friend from the dental school is working in the Community Dental Services in Bendigo and she highly recommended that I work there after I graduate, I thought why not and sent in my CV. A week later they told me to go there for an interview. However, by the time they informed me I'd already been offered two jobs, one in Mildura and the other in Mount Isa, the place where I've always wanted to work since I was in 1st year of Uni.
So there I was, barely out of Uni (haven't officially graduate, haven't even got my results) and being offered my dream job without a face to face formal interview (I've never been to a job interview before!), it all sounded too good to be true, and that also made me very curious what an interview is like. Everyone's telling me how scary it is but I wanted to experience it for myself. Since I already got a "back up" I don't care even if I stuffed up. :p
Ling (aka Footfetish) and Baton_West boarded the north bound train with me. Train journey was only 2 hours, so I figured it'll probably take less time if we didn't take the wrong turn onto the wrong freeway.
I was told that the hospital is only 20 minutes walk away from the train station, but it took much longer than that. Public transport is almost non-existent so be prepared.
Update: Now I'm stuffed. They offered me the job, and I dunno how to reject them! I feel so evil!