Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Melbourne Walking Tour

As a local to Melbourne I'de never contemplated doing the walking tours I've noticed around the city, until I experienced and enjoyed the array of free/tip-based walking tours available when I went to Europe in 2014. Although I consider myself pretty Melbourne literate, at least in terms of navigation, I know very little regarding the historical basis of the city.

A friend of mine whom I met on my solo-adventure through Europe in Berlin has come to Melbourne from England for a few weeks. It is so amazing how you can meet people in locations for only a matter of days, and then reconnect with them years later and still get along well. Life is beautiful sometimes. Anyway, seizing the opportunity to learn more about my home city and also to show Rachel a good time, we decided to take the 10.30am free walking tour that is held everyday outside the State Library.

Walking from the State Library down to the Old Melbourne Gaol, my knowledge of Ned Kelly and his notoriety within Australia was rekindled. Afterwards, we walked down to the outskirts of the CBD, stopping at a monument with the numbers 888 that I had seen before but hadn't taken the time to understand the meaning of. I learnt that it was designed to reflect the plight of workers fighting for a fair working day. The 888 represents the 8 hours of work, 8 hours of play, and 8 hours of rest ethos that originated in Melbourne and has been adopted in many countries around the world.

We then walked around the streets of Carlton, noticing the French inspired terrace architecture. Apparently Melbourne has the highest amount of Victorian era architecture in the world. I love the architecture in Melbourne. Especially the diversity of architecture within the city centre and surrounding inner-city suburbs. 

Although I remember less than I really should have considering the tour went for over two hours, it was nice to see Melbourne anew.