Australia – Melbourne
Day 34: Country #6
Melbourne, pronounced “mel-bun” by Australians, is a sprawling modern city remarkably similar to San Francisco in aesthetic, culture and history, including it’s own free, but modern, tram system and gold rush which contributed to it’s large population. As a major tourist hub, many tours, including free (and donation based) walking tours are available, each starting at different spots. I joined one that went through the heart of the city center, including Hosier Lane, a famous graffiti filled laneway. After finishing at the Arts Centre, I crossed the street to explored Alexandria Gardens, observing all the memorials and various sites as I continued south all the way to St Kilda where I saw a sunset and found a marina with a penguin colony. People huddled around to sneak peaks at little baby penguins hiding between rocks.
Locals appreciate it if you learn how to pronounce their city or country properly. You’re able to instantly connect with them because they know that you’re not a regular tourist who’s there just to snap profile pictures. It’s even better than learning basic phrases in their local language.