Saturday, September 27, 2014

Australia; Melbourne Itinerary part I #xbtravelogue

Don't know how I should begin this entry since the trip to Melbourne was more than a month ago! 
Call me the queen of procrastination, this entry has been in my draft for weeks...

Anw this vacation was rather impromtu cos I had a hard time thinking of what to get Sean for his birthday which was also our 8th anniversary, and since SIA was having promo, why not travel? 
We wanted to get out of Asia this time but couldnt decide between Sydney and Melbourne. After seeking advice from friends, we decided to go with the latter.

We found a pretty good 4d3n Groupon deal at $400+ for 3 nights of stay in Tune Hotel, 2 days of day tour of our choice and airport transfer. They were saying it was pretty risky to go with Groupon cos we won't have anywhere to stay if they were to screw up. 
 First thing we did was looking for SIM card in the airport the moment we got off the plane. Queued for a good 45mins and left because the queue wasn't moving. Thank god the airport transfer waited for us. We felt so bad when there was another couple in the van waiting for us. 

After a short 20mins, we arrived at Tune Hotel :D 
Tune Hotel is a pay-as-you-use hotel which means they only charge for things you want. (tv/wifi/toiletries etc) They don't have a pool nor gym so it's really good for those on a budget since what you're paying for is just the room which is very affordable considering the prime location. 

So, we arrived way too early before check in time, we had to pay AUD$2.20 per luggage to be stored in their storeroom. Pay-as-you-use indeed! Lucky for us, Groupon's deal included toiletries and usage of Tv so we didn't had to topup for it!  

What I really like about this hotel is how it's accessible to everything by foot! Say 15mins to Queen Victoria's Market, 5mins to Lygon Street aka little Italy where all the good food is and 15mins to shopping heaven at Bourke St. 
Colours and themed coordinated with Air Asia. Googled and found out it was under their organization! 

FYI

Our cosy box for 3 nights~ Do remember to state if you need a king size bed upon booking. We were told that we have to book another room if we didnt want this double bed room. Why so not flexible? -.- 

Explore time!
 3mins walk out to see RMIT and some other universities where we totally blended in with the undergrads cos 80% are asians. It totally made us feel like home, guess I worry too much about being out-casted in the Oz land. 

With the help of google map, we walked to Flinders Street Station, got a mandatory shot and left hahaha 
As stated on Trip Advisor, apart from the beautiful architecture there is seriously nothing much at this station!  
First selfie with good lighting in front of the hugeass H&M in Bourke St! 

LOVE love all these ig worthy buildings here! 

Just chilling with the cool kids and appreciating the 13 degrees weather we will never get in SG :( 

Went up to the Eureka Sky Deck to experience the 360degree view above Melbourne from the 88th floor! Entrance fee is AUD$19.50 and you can stay for the whole day if you'd like but I'm not too sure if it was worth it. The ambience was quiet and pretty romantic thou so it's good for first dates I guess? 
Thankq Sheila for lending us your awesome Gopro :D


Highlight of the night wasnt the beautiful view above the ground but the Queen Victoria winter night market! We were so lucky to experience this as it only takes place during winter every Wednesday. 
The night market is a mega 'food and fun fair' where stall owners sell their handmade stuff, home-cooked specialty food etc. I love how there are fire stands everywhere to keep us warm and everyone just stood around it to have their food. 
They even had booths to conduct mahjong sessions and silent disco where you pay AUD$5 for a headphone and dance in a container. Love the idea! 
I truly enjoyed myself there and wish we didn't have to leave.. 


DAY 2 
Dragged myself out of bed at 5am for skiing! 
Groupon arranged for pickup at a hotel 2 streets away from where we were staying. After a good 3 hours, we finally arrived at Mount Buller and for the first time in 24 years, I played with snow :D 


We spent a whooping AUD $300+ just on renting these skiing outfits that is 'appropriate' for skiing.
Jacket + gloves + goggles + pants + skiing boots + skis to be exact and an additional AUD$100+ if you want a personal coach for 3hrs. Felt a bit cheated when we arrived at the snow hill because only tourist are dressed up like ba-zhang. The locals were all pretty chill on their outfits. We gave up skiing after an hour and rented 2 toboggan at only AUD$20+ each which we very much preferred more! 

Click here for Sean's IG for a 15sec vid :)

Just a piece of advice, bring your own gloves and beanie and just go for tobogganing! 
 Do you wanna build a snowman? 

Removed the ba-zhang outfit cos we were perspiring inside like crazy after using all our energy on skiing.. 

At the end of the day, I am still thankful to be able to feel and experience snow and skii.
First and last time perhaps? :)

Walked to little Italy (Lygon St) for some authentic woodfired pizzas for dinner.
Typical Singaporean mindset on: choose a restaurant that is full housed. 
Mercadante is indeed a good choice because everything was so yummeh! The total bill came up to AUD$70+ which was rather reasonable as well. I love how Moscato is only $2 more expensive than a regular coke there! $6.50 for a glass? We just had to buy a bottle back to the hotel every night :p 



Day 3 was the day I looked forward to the most, 1 day tour to Great Ocean Road to see the 12 Apostles! Good thing about tour buses is that you can just knock out for the entire journey before reaching the destination. You need to set off extremely early if you're driving there on your own because the 12 apostles is located right at the end of the road and by the time you reach there the sun might have set and it would be pitch dark. Sunsets are as early as 515pm in Aussie land btw! 
So frigging niceeeeeee~ 

Stopover for lunch was at Apollo Bay whereby there's a stretch of restaurants, motels and grocery shops. The coach driver recommended us this fish n chips restaurant and we went ahead with it but it was kinda awful.. Only bonus was this crazy cone ice-cream which was very well received on Ig, in fact one of the most liked picture on my account. 

Giselle Oversized Sunnies available on Ohvola :)


Behold the remaining seven apostles!
One of my fav photo from the trip. No wonder everyone said we had to 'drive' down the great ocean road. Looking at the magnificent horizon made us love nature even more. Wish I had the guts to go on the helicopter tour thou. 
So yup free to ask me anything about the trip, I'll try my best to answer :) 
Stay tuned for part II

Till then.. 

10 comments:

  1. Hello Jolene, oh my!! I love your polka dots coat & boots! Mind sharing where you got them? :)

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    1. Hello! Polka dot coat is from F21 c/o Desiree and boots from guangzhou :)

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  2. what does xb stand for?

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    Replies
    1. It used to be xiaobao when we were younger but it's just xb now lol

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  3. Hi may i ask how long does it take for your customer service to reply to message? I have been waiting for a few days w/o reply regarding my order 61913 with some probs. I need my order soon as it is meant to be birthday gift. This is my first time purchasing from Ohvola so i am very worried. Thanks in advance :)

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  4. Hello you should have gotten a reply from us by now :)

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  5. hi Jol, which company did u take the tour with and how much did you pay? there are so many companies that offer GOR tours!

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  6. Hi, may I know which airport did you arrive at?

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  7. I really loved reading your thoughts, obviously you know what are you talking about! Your site is so easy to use too, I’ve bookmark it in my folder
    Camping in Queensland

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  8. Hi, may i know which month were you travelling to Melbourne?

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