Docklands

Docklands: The way forward or a planning misstep?

Located to the east of the city is Melbourne’s newest feature: Docklands. It hosts many attractions some of which I have written about previously like Ovo and the Fireworks in July.

Location

Transport:

It’s easy to get to via Trams either by Tram 70 or 75. Or alternatively enjoy the nice stroll from Southern Cross Station. If all else fails, jump onto the free tourist shuttle bus or city circle tram, both of which will get you here!

Attractions:

There are too many things to see, so I’ll limit it to the top things I love doing here.

Food – you cannot go past some of the excellent riverside dining here: the main one being Watermark and Squires loft. For lunch, you cannot beat the awesomeness of Harbour Kitchen and for a few after work drinks, (think cheap drinks) Watermarks or on the other side, Alumbra that does 2-for-1 deals every weeknight. The prices of each place changes from time to time, so I recommend you shop around. Definitely recommend Watermark, Harbour Kitchen, Squires Loft, Pizza in the middle, achelya and Italian place across the water.

Don’t forget to check out the stand alone gelati place. OMG, I don’t care what the temperature is like, this would have to be one of the best places in docklands that can compete with the gelati from Lygon street! (Don’t worry, I’ll be covering Lygon street soon).

Shopping – it’s quite simple really: Harbour Town Shopping centre. Given it’s location, it has both it’s pros and cons. There are heavily discounted retailers and independent shops that make this place just simply amazing. And the food in here tantalises and sizzles your taste buds for just about any cuisine you desire. Harbour Town Shopping Centre’s location also means that on a weekend, you can still get around without necessarily feeling rushed. Plus, there is $6 all day parking (as of now close to it). If you don’t understand why I had to write that… parking in Melbourne is worth a fortune and a casual drive into the city ends up costing you close to our budget of $50 (last I checked one day trip ended up costing me $58). So $6 all day parking…AWESOME! There is even Melbourne’s first Costco close by if that takes your fancy.

Sights – Etihad Stadium also hosts the AFL headquarters. Enjoy the sights and definitely catch one of it’s daily tours. You will not be disappointed. I’d love to tell you more but I’d be robbing you of the opportunity of going through it yourself.
The waterfront is an excellent location and it hosts many great restaurants. It is also the site for the fireworks in July. They do have random art exhibitions which is intriguing and can at times take you by surprise…(yes red men squatting… I don’t get it)

The magnificent harbour and I recommend you get out onto a jetty. Once at the end, I urge you to let your senses wander, you taste the salty wind against your lips from the gentle breeze off the water that tickles and cools you on a warm sunny day. And then you open your eyes and look around and take in the view. Both the sea and the sky come alive with the wind which dances with wispy white clouds above and little waves below. Just for a moment, stop, and watch. Do nothing, no camera, no talking, just soak it in. (And no, the pun is not lost on me either).

Along the edge you’ll also see apartments that were meant to mimic the big ships that once you to inhabit this part of Melbourne. And the white sculpture which is meant to signify the local marine life. And then you also get to see the famous trams, one of the older ones (which a few of them have been reconditioned to become the Melbourne City Circle trams).

Oh and the channel 7 building…which you really can’t miss. Why you ask? There’s a massive red “7” on the intersection…

I reckon this place is going to grow. Just give it time, when I first visited this place in 2007, there was only one multi-coloured building (NAB). And if you go through the photos, you’ll see there is plenty more.

Weekend travel: $3.50

Spending money: $46.50!

See you there!

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