Yesterday was our first day in Melbourne and the first time we have been to Melbourne. We left our cabin at 8:50 a.m. to meet up with our driver Peter, and returned to the ship at 10:30 p.m. I cannot imagine anyone did more yesterday than we did with Bill and Connie who shared yesterday and will share today with us when we go out to the wine country.
We started out with a visit to the South Melbourne Market. It is one of the best markets we have ever been to. The food is magnificent particularly the produce. One highlight was that there were great seafood stands. We shared two dozen freshly shucked oysters. There were four varieties. The cost was 2.50 per oyster Australian. Restaurants get $5 to $6 per oyster.
We then drove around party of Melbourne seeing, among other things, the botanical gardens. The parks in Melbourne are huge and beautiful. I am not sure but my money says the Central Park could easily fit into what we saw.
We then went to the Australian Section of the City’s major museum. Entry is free. We saw an outstanding exhibit of one benefactor’s gift of some 405 pieces of art. Some were truly outstanding. The museum is the National Gallery of Victoria.
Melbourne has a larger Greek population anywhere outside of Greece. Rather than just find a good Greek restaurant for lunch in the center of the city, we travelled about 30 minutes to the Greek area which has many, many Greek places to eat and some of the most unbelievable Greek bakeries one can imagine. We had a great lunch. On the way we stopped to see Rod Laver Stadium where the Australian Open is played.
After lunch we walked around the Greek area and then, on the way back saw some more of Melbourne including the Grand Prix track where a major race will be held in a few weeks. The best tickets are selling for about $4000 a piece.
We were then dropped off about 6 p.m at the edge of a major world Chinatown where we walked around for an hour before dinner at a terrific Chinese restaurant, one of the best in the City. We said we would return in a heartbeat. The Peking duck was outstanding
Our driver then picked us up and gave us a car tour of Melbourne by night, and then returned us to the ship where I wrote this post.
Again, I doubt anyone could have done better.
Stock market a disaster yesterday. Have no knowledge of what happened in the world. That is probably a good thing.
Continued to meet one Aussie after another going out of their way to be helpful and friendly.
See you tomorrow. At least that is my plan.