While I was in Melbourne, I embarked on an optional day trip called the Great Ocean Tour. It was an amazing day - definitely one of my most memorable in Australia. We road tripped the entire day in a van along the beautiful coastline while our quirky tour guide entertained us. We stopped at various beaches, saw breathtaking gorges, and even saw the famous Twelve Apostles! We also stopped at a cove where we saw koalas up close in their natural habitat - one even ran on the ground right in front of me, which the tour guide informed me was a very rare occurrence. I also got to have a parrot eat out of my hand. We also hiked through a rainforest and got to climb through a cave. It was a beautiful day - I must have taken hundreds of pictures but the sights were incredible.
Last week, BU took our entire program on a 4 day all expense paid “academic” trip to Melbourne. They flew all 120 of us up north, put us up in swanky hotel rooms that had gorgeous views of the city from the balconies, and all we had to do was attend two academic tours. I went on a laneways tour - we explored a lot of side streets and graffiti-covered alley ways, and ended up in hipster suburb Fitzroy. Melbourne has a lot of crazy, well done graffiti - even the trash cans are painted. My other academic tour was centered around Ned Kelly, who was Australia’s criminal equivalent to Robin Hood. We got to see his jail cell, where he was hung, and go to a courtroom and act out his trial (complete with wigs and costumes - I played a witness). I also visited the ACMI - Australian Center for Moving Image - which was amazing. There was a room where you could be filmed in slow-mo Matrix fashion, the first video games ever created, a really freaky dark room that had only one cone of light shining in it, and much much more. Needless to say, at the end of the four days I was not ready to leave.