Trip Start Jan 16, 2008
Trip End Jul 28, 2008

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Where I stayed
Ashley Gardens Holiday Village

Flag of Australia  , Victoria,
Sunday, June 8, 2008

The city lights of Melbourne meant the end of our dreamsome 9,000km drive around Australia together. Getting to the campsite was our final chance to show off the skills we'd picked up en-route. While Rob sat in his chair very well, and fended off some excellent last minute banter about not being able to drive, I finished my spell of flawless driving, mastering fly-bys, six lane roads and low clearance bridges to make it safely to the campsite. A final salute to the madness of Australian driving, in addition to the 'continue to drive through red light at any time with care' sign, Melbourne has the 'turn right from left lane only' rule, which we very much enjoyed.

Our first day in Melbourne was an Australian public holiday (the Queen's birthday) so we headed to the tourist information to see what was going on. I was holding out for some kind of fayre, potentially based around tea and cake, while Rob was chattering about sports. It turned out there was a special AFL game on th the MCG, which Rob had been harping on about since we left the UK. While Rob chatted away to the man who had provided the bad news, I set about finding a cafe we could go to before I endured the game. I hit absolute jackpot with Max Brenner,a  cafe where absolutely everything was made from, or covered in chocolate, the mugs were desinged for hugging, there were big vats of melted chocolate and fudge all over the place, and they'd even got Nora Jones on. Lovely.

Having filled up in my consolidation cafe, we headed for the MCG, the worlds biggest sports stadium. It was amazing, there was a brilliant atmosphere walking over the bridge towards the stadium, with thousands of people teeming in. The stadium holds almost 100,000 people, seated about two-thirds of the way up, birds were flying around below us, the palce was amazing. I even sort of understood what was going on.

The following day I spent yet more time toying with the idea of buying some Uggs at Queen Victoria Market, the rest of the day was spent at the excellent Melbourne Museum, and the evening was spent playing around Brunswick street.

The next day we visited St. Kilda, for brilliant views of the city from the pier, and a very Carrie Bradshaw cupcake cafe. The rest of the day was spent in the art museum, which housed some particularly hideous porcelain painted items, but also some more enjoyable things.

Our fifth day in Melbourne begun in Fitzroy Gardens, a really lovely autumny park, another visit to Max Brenner, the town hall, the war memorial, the botanical gardens, South Bank and finally the very foodie Lygon Street.

With our last day in Australia we took Sophie back and ate a lot in a very lovely resturant before heading to the airport to await New Zealand.
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