Friday, November 04, 2016

Port Melbourne

If we are down the way of Port Melbourne, usually to go to the big green hardware shed, we often go down to Station Pier for coffee and maybe a bite to eat. We usually go to the same place, Sputino next to where the 109 tram terminates. A while ago we decided to investigate further west and drove a little way along and stopped. Curiously there were lots of caravans, campervans and tent trailers parked. We thought that perhaps they were a group but pondered some more.

I think the area where we walked along the beach front was once known by gay men as Screech Beach, where many gay men took advantage of dunes and tussocked mounds and heavy ti tree shrubbery for liaisons. It has all been tidied up now and is quite a pleasant space, just not perhaps as interesting.

We were there before the cruise ship season began with the first, Carnival Spirit, arriving on the 25th October. Each year more and more cruise ships arrive. They normally arrive in the morning and depart in the evening. Passengers might just hang around the area, boring. They might go on a pre arranged scenic bus tour with some travelling up to the Dandenong Ranges or Yarra Valley wineries. The tourist double decker bus goes past the area, but I think the best option for visiting day passengers is to catch the tram into town and explore our city.

There is an anomaly in the cruise ship arrivals caused by Melbourne Cup, the horse race. Visitors want to go, and need nice suits and dresses so they must shop. The Spirit of Tasmania has its own berth at Station Pier, Inner East. As I am writing this, Pacific Pearl is at Outer West arrived 8:00 31/10 dep 17:30 02/11, Pacific Jewel, Outer West with similar arr and dep times. Carnival Spirit is at Outer East, arr 7:00 01/11 dep 16:00 03/11.

Where does the Pacific Dawn moor when all pier positions are full? Oh dear, at the very working dock, Victoria Dock, along with all the containers full of stock for $2 shops.


References to old piers.



The working port in the distance, taken from a similar position as when Margaret took her photo when on her way home to Tasmania.


I emailed Margaret as we realised all the parked holiday vehicles had found a free and pleasant place to park if they had arrived early to board the Spirit of Tasmania. I've been everywhere, man.



21 comments:

  1. Love your further investigations.
    Hanging round the ship? Not a good choice. The wineries sound more to my taste than the city though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EC, while I would recommend our city for tourists, it does take some stamina to get around a city to see the sights for a whole day. Easier to sit in coach and drink free wine when you have to get off.

      Delete
  2. I think riding on double decker bus would be different. Not sure if they even had them here.
    Coffee is on

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dora, they are like the hop on hop off buses in NY and other large tourist cities, that is open topped. Although in NY, they barely move because of the traffic.

      Delete
  3. A great read , full of interest, brings on memories of the past but not the sand dunes etc. the ride from the migrant ship the graffiti on and around the tram seating. also the 'Spirit Tasmania.which 'Once upon a time" sailed from Sydney to Devonport. Memories.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vest, I had forgotten about the ferry service from Sydney. It was a trial? Or was a scheduled service that did not last long.

      Delete
  4. That last caravan looks very similar to a campervan that I used to see parked here in the grounds, about the middle of the driveway, where it widens enough to have vehicles parked on both sides.
    I'd love to see cruise ships coming and going, I think they're so fabulous, I love the thought of extravagance.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. River, I can lie on my bed and watch them out the window before they reach Station Pier. Those cruises people do to say New Zealand and back in a week aren't very expensive, but you can do extravagant cruises too.

      Delete
  5. Lovely place Andrew to walk along the beach and look at the pier and cruise ships.
    I didn't know the history of 'that' area where we parked and waited.
    Thanks again for the 'tip' and link :).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Margaret, yes, it was a nice walk for us, up to the end, a kayak club or something? No, a food place. Sea Rescue was it?

      Delete
    2. We didn't walk up the other end that day as it was very windy..

      Delete
  6. That's always good for the business when cruise ships arrive !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gattina, invariably, but who gets the cream? The city? The hills? The wineries? The bus companies?

      Delete
  7. The cruise ships are terrific and life on board is huge fun. But the best times are had once the ship docks in a port. I would definitely go on a tour of the Yards Valley vineyards or something similar.

    Hels and Joseph

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HelJo, really? Melbourne city is so nice and so interesting. The temptation of a comfortable bus and wine is strong though.

      Delete
  8. Our cruise ships come into Fremantle Andrew and as you know Fremantle is a pretty great city in its own right, lots to see.. but the train station is so close to where the ships come in, it's so easy to head up to Perth.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Grace, yes, that would be a hard decision, or take a ferry out to Rottnest Island.

      Delete
  9. Screech beach........should be groan beach

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. John, yes lots of groaning, I imagine.

      Delete
  10. Did you see The Block in Port Melbourne? As we enter auction week on the show, I would appreciate your take on the show and its contribution to your city. This week's storyline about the big pink hummer breaking down in peak hour traffic apparently made the news. I was also fascinated with depreciation calculation for tax purposes that they featured this week. Surely that is only for investors, not owner occupiers.
    The show certainly loves Melbourne, but does Melbourne love the show?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Carol, I haven't but R watches the 'reveal' whatever night it is on. I am familiar with the building though. The Hummer breaking down would have made the Channel 9 news, I doubt any other. Correct about the depreciation. Who cares how much your house is worth unless you are going to sell it and use the money to upgrade or for something else.

      Has there been two or three series of The Block in Sydney? The rest have been in Melbourne. They just aren't as successful there as Sydney people just don't embrace the show like Melburnians do and they don't get the crowds and mayhem that an open for inspection day generates here.

      Delete