WEST SIDE // Melbourne, Australia

Despite officially being Spring in these parts, the sunny days remain few and far between. Every time we encounter blue skies and temperatures high enough to not justify a coat, Chris and I head out the door. Last weekend was such a day, and without much of a plan we spent our afternoon wandering over towards Footscray and Melbourne’s west.

Walking to Footscray from our home in North Melbourne involves winding through Kensington, one of our dream suburbs. I mean, city views, warehouses, cute cafes and terraces. What isn’t to love? The price tag perhaps.

After crossing the Maribrynong River we stumbled across the Heavenly Queen Temple. I had only previously seen it from a distance, so it was interesting to get a close look. Plus, it just made me all the more excited for my upcoming return to China!

The Maribrynong River is not the prettiest! Given the sunshine we weren’t too fussed though.

Footscray is an eclectic melting pot of Melbourne’s multicultural heritage, as well as being relatively up and coming in terms of development and cafes. We admired some local street art and wandered through the Footscray Market, which was as insane as you would imagine for a Saturday afternoon!

Our final destination was a brewery we had come across online earlier in the day, whilst searching for another brewery. Hop Nation is relatively new on the brewing scene, and has recently opened up a bar in the warehouse converted brewery! Located down the above street, it honestly could not have been more hipster Melbourne. But then a food truck pulled up out the front and it out-Melbourned itself.

Despite the over top Melbourne vibes, the place was fantastic and the beer delicious. It is days like this that make me truly appreciate living in this city. There is always something new to discover/eat/drink!

– Reanna

BAY TRAIL // Melbourne, Australia

Things have been rather uneventful around here lately, as life continues to rush by in a blur of work, class, assignments. Rinse and repeat. It is officially less than two months until I submit my last assignment, which is an incredibly exciting prospect. Fours years of university done, for now anyway.

I found myself in desperate need of some time outdoors today, something more than just a quick walk around the block or a ride into the city. After some vague online research, I decided to put aside study for the sake of some self care and rode down to St Kilda, where I jumped onto the Bay Trail.

The Bay Trail looked so familiar that it felt like I had ridden along parts of it recently, but the only time I can recall riding along it was when I was far younger.

The trail itself follows along Beach Road, which is incredibly popular among cyclists (i.e. my father and brother). I stuck to the shared bike path, as my cheap little bike wasn’t going to get me places quickly. The path meandered a bit closer to the coastline, offering great views and the opportunity for me to pull over frequently for photo stops.

I did have my camera, but I decided to try out my iPhone (yes, I finally return to the modern era). The photos came out alright, but I think I prefer the quality of my usual camera – some photos have come up quite dark! Despite how gloomy these photos look it was actually quite a pleasant mid-afternoon ride.

The trail was busy the entire way, with other cyclists, runners, walkers, and (much to my joy) numerous dogs. My latest obsession is deciding every second dog I see whilst out with Chris is the one we should adopt. Perhaps one day, when we don’t live an apartment…

I wasn’t quite sure how far I would end up riding, but the track was relatively flat and made for an easy journey. In the end I made it as as Mordialloc Beach, where I was able to jump on a train back to the CBD. Some other cyclists I had seen along my way made a similar move!

In the above photo you can see the far end of the Mornington Peninsula, where Rye and Sorrento are.

All up I clocked around 33kms, or so google tells me (sorry Dad, no Strava). To me, that seems like a very long ride, but to the true cyclists out there it is probably a walk in the park. Admittedly, by the end of the afternoon I was pondering buying a proper road bike. Who knows, maybe I will be back soon to take on Beach Road like everyone else!

– Reanna