Part of the local culture of Melbourne is all the different ethnic group/international festivals held throughout the year, especially international music.
This one is from Jan 16, 2005, at Federation Square - about 8 hours of various music and dancing by the Brazilian community of Melbourne.
Wilson's Promontory is a really great National Park area a couple of hours east of Melbourne - easy to get there in a day from Melbourne but you'd want to spend more than a day there.
There's everything from short walks to overnight treks, but be warned: it's so beautiful it's extremely popular, and in summer the place resembles a huge tent/caravan village (even with streets marked out for these) and getting a booking is almost impossible then, and at Easter...in the more off season, it will be less crowded.
Wilsons Prom Wildlife
Besides great hill and beach walks of different lengths (and so much more) at Wilson's Prom, there's also the great wildlife - including these bold parrots who flew into our campsite for a free feed (luckily for them, we carry bird seed for these occasions!)
My Next Birding Destination
I saw a bright red parrot yesterday. Nothing strange except that I saw this native Australian bird in my own backyard in Singapore! I was stunned by the sight since this large bird was flaming red in colour and squawking his lungs out. It seemed likely he was an escapee since the folks in my neighbourhood have a strange habit of releasing these animals in the wild for instant karma. To elaborate a bit more, Singaporeans do quite a bit of spring cleaning when the Chinese New Year approaches and sadly, many of them release their pets in the wild when these animals wear out their welcome. Well, I thought of my relatives in Australia when I saw that Ozzie bird. I miss Melbourne and I haven't seen my niece in a while. Also, Sue, a dear VT friend of mine, had already bought a birding field guide for me. Perhaps this will be my birding destination for 2007. In the meantime, I am content to just check out the birds in this website:http://birdsinbackyards.net/surveys/
Melbourne (population 3.3 million) is undoubtedly Australia's most multicultural and diverse city.
It is home to peoples of over 100 different nations.
For example, in the city there is the Greek Quarter and Chinatown, several asian dominated suburbs, and 'Little Italy' (the suburb of Carlton, right next to the city)
In Fitzroy, there is also a Spanish Quarter, very unusual to see in Australia, with Paella restaurants and Flamenco bars.
One thing I enjoy in Melbourne is going there on the train and simply walking along the city streets, with no particular purpose in mind, just exploring.
"Melbourne early history"
Melbourne may look very modern as you drive through, but if you look more carefully, you'll find so many beautiful old buildings sandwiched in between newer skyscrapers.