What even Google might not tell you about Melbourne but I will..

Maybe it is a connection formed in this life or perhaps a lifetime ago, I don’t really know. But I must admit it is inexplicable how ever since the very beginning of my career, I have only been associated with Australia in one way or the other. I even ended up living in Sydney for about a year but unfortunately the job was such that I couldn't find time, much to my dismay, to discover the whole of Australia. Naturally Melbourne too remained, for me, a city unseen. But now that I work for a client whose offices are in Melbourne, it seems entirely possible that one day I too get to live in, or maybe just visit, the most livable city in the world.
A few points about Melbourne before I proceed any further.

·     It is the capital of Victoria.
·         It is the second most populous city in Australia.
·         It has been named the most livable city in the world since 2011 and has been in the top 3 since 2002.

I’m sure just a search in Google will tell you about the hundreds and thousands of places in and around Melbourne which make it an unforgettable city, an affair with which is sure to last for a lifetime. When I think about Melbourne, I think of a kaleidoscope of colors, all vibrant and rich. I don’t know why, but that’s what I feel, and strongly too.

I know a number of fascinating places come to your mind when I talk about Melbourne. My friends there have always spoken about the Eureka Skydeck, St. Paul's Cathedral, Queen Victoria Market, Federation Square, the Great Ocean Road, Philip Island and more. They have told me how just a typical day in the city with its streets and laneways can be spectacular. But of all the places that I have heard and read about, today I’ll tell you about one that has been on my mind forever. The Dandenong Ranges.

Out of the many, many high talking points of Melbourne, I am somehow spellbound by these set of low mountain ranges about 35 kilometers from it. To say it is breathtakingly beautiful is a massive understatement. If you just do a Google search on the place to look for its images, you'll know where I’m coming from.

Picture a canvas with shades of green, auburn, yellow and blue, all masterfully stroked, basking in the sun. That is the image that rushes to my mind whenever I think about the place. The magical Puffing Billy Steam Railway again makes it hard not to fall in love with its pristine beauty. In it you could take a ride on a century old steam train which takes you through picturesque locales, full of colors in summer and dressed in snow in winter. The views, I’ve read and heard too, are spectacular. I don’t know about you but it certainly makes me want to get there one way or another. When the city life gets too much or maybe just after a hard day’s work, you could drive up to Sky High Mount there. Imagine watching the lights go up in the city, one by one, as the sun goes down packing the night sky with stars. You could see the sky transform from fiery orange to a stunning diamond-lit black velvet. And later watch the view mesmerized by stars, those in the sky and probably even those in the form of twinkling lights in the city at a distance. A place to truly relax and reflect within reach of a bustling city. I think that is the charm of Melbourne for me. that it is surrounded by such gems, perfect for my soul. I have had friends who have gone there and they swear that what I reckon is actually very close to reality.

Living in a city can sometimes get to you unless there are soothing places nearby where you can drive to anytime you feel like. It should be surrounded by places where you can spend time pondering over your life in peace, or where you can just relax with a glass of wine or a can of beer. Peace and Tranquility are perhaps the words I'm looking for here. The hustle and bustle of the city should have the calming touch of nature surrounding it. And from what I have read, I know, Melbourne has that in abundance.

Learn more about Melbourne here : Tourism Victoria website
Watch more videos of places in and around Melbourne here:

I have a contest for you here. Just answer a question in the comments section and you could win yourself a gift voucher. How does that sound?



Excellent! So let's get on with it.

Here's the question and remember it ends on 4th Jan 2015.

"Which of these places would you want to visit in Melbourne and why?".

Go on. Take a look at the videos and tell me which place you want to go to.

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