Melbourne was lovely - shame I didn't have longer there. I arrived late afternoon and once got bags sorted and tours booked for the following day went to meet Amy whom we'd met on the whitsunday's and had flown from Cairns that day.
The following day was another early start to catch my bus tour of the great ocean road and headed for our first town called Torquay (which is where the guys who invented rip curl and quicksilver began) and stopped at Bells beach for take a few pics - after there we headed along 'Bass Strait which is the part of the sea between Tasmania and Australia and then stopped at the split lighthouse (where they filmed 'round the twist' - I only vaguely remember it as our guide played the theme tune for us). Then we made our way through Fairhaven town which is where the house in Mad Max 1 is (apparently that's where they had the shooting scene - having seen it myself?) and down the road is a house on a pole - literally, the guy that built it had his house burnt down by bush fires twice and had had enough so requested to the council to build a house on a pole which they agreed and he did - eventually he sold it for 3.26 million - bearing in mind it was very small with only one bedroom!! We continued along the Great Ocean Road until and stopped at a nature reserve for lunch and to see more Koala's but eventually made it to the 12 apostles - after some photo time we made the long drive back (not before a stop at subway tho ;-) That night I met up with Amy and Adam (also from Whitsunday's and now in Melb) and went to the night market but apart from some strawberries (girls got to have her fruit!) I was a good girl and didn't purchase.
The next day I had another two tours booked, Neighbours in the morning and the penguin parade in the afternoon so another early start. We started by going to visit some of the outdoor sets e.g. Carpenters mechanics, Greasy monkeys, Lacciters, the school and a new car lot which wont be shown on air in the UK until May? One of the characters turned up for a chat, photo and sig opportunity - I had my pic done but wasn't sure who he was? Someone said he was Lucas who just kissed libby and either was run over by Toady or has run Toady over?? not sure - might have to catch up on that at some point when i'm home? After there we made our way to Ramsey street! Its actually a little cul-de-sac in a small suburb and people do live in them - they get paid a fee (of how much we wasn't told) to use their house and apparently most people who are there have been there the whole 25 years of filming apart from one massive fan who has now moved in? We had a photo's done with the 'Ramsey sign' and headed back to the office but not before a few episodes of neighbours on the bus (did you know that Russell Crow & Guy Pierce along with Kylie and Jason were in the show?)
After Neighbours I had to catch my Penguin Parade tour - now I think I got a little confused about this tour - i hadn't had much sleep since I left Cairns and had to catch my flight the following day back to Sydney and therefore needed to pack, book the shuttle etc and planned on doing all this when I got back around 7 - unfortunately I was wrong and my return time as around midnight!! ooops. Anyway - lucky for me there was a nice group of girls on my bus and we chatted most of the journey time so all good. We stopped at a wildlife park (not that I hadn't already had my fair share of these!) but I did get to see a Tasmanian Devil which I hadn't seen before, then onto a farm and watched some sheep shearing - as bizarre as it was I liked the guy, it was amusing as he had one of the worst sets of teeth i've seen but yet seemed to smile constantly (not quite sure why that was inc in the tour?) after there we made our way to a koala sanctuary and then onto another beach - all very good but have seen quite a few koalas and beaches by now. Then came time for dinner and they bought us all pizza - mmmmmmmmm but not quite dominoes :-( Then we made our way for the penguin parade - this is basically a beach where they have set up viewing stands so the crowds can watch the hundreds and hundreds of little penguins parade out of the sea and up into the sand bank so spend the night in their burrows. It was sooooo cold but one of the girls leant me her towel (classy as I am) and we watched all these tiny penguins march up the hill - with a few stumbles too, so funny to see them waddling! I think I finally made it back around 1 and went straight to bed!
Today I managed to pack, get ready and check out all in about 30/40!! and made my way to the airport - gutted didn't have more time in Melbourne as I think its a fab city with loads to do, could say better then Sydney? I have now arrived in Sydney and am just sorting things out ready for our departure to New Zealand on the 22nd - Dave arrives tomorrow so looking forward to seeing him and will update you on our final days in Australia soon.