Thursday 16 March 2017

Melbourne II Day 6: Brighton Beach, St Kilda & Luna Park

After 5 days of the hot end-of-summer sun, we woke up this morning to the sound of rain and gloomy skies. For most people, it's probably not a good thing but for us, we were exhilarated! Finally, the jackets that we brought can be put to good use in this cold weather! =)

We were running out of food supplies so we made a stop at our favourite Prahran Market. As a result, it was 12 noon by the time we arrived at Brighton Beach. If it were the days before, the sun would have been beating down on us relentlessly by now. However, this morning, it was grey skies, strong winds and by the grace of God, no rain! God has heard our prayers! =)

At Green Point Brighton Look Out
Signboard of the Bayside Coastal Trails
Family Photo taken using timer mode of my Olympus OMD

We had originally intended to go straight to Brighton Beach but as we overshot the carpark, we stumbled onto Green Point Brighton by accident.

We drove back to the correct carpark and parked our car.

Pay your parking fee at one of these machines.
Do ensure that you have coins with you as not every machine allows you to use notes or card.

The highlight of Brighton Beach was the Brighton Bathing Boxes.

Brighton Bathing Boxes/ Huts at Brighton Beach
(Address: Dendy Street Beach, Dendy Street and the Esplanade, Brighton, Victoria, 3186)
Love the bright and colourful huts!!
The huts make really good background for a mini photo shoot! =)

The kids enjoyed jumping up and down the platforms

The weather was perfect for exploring the beach, which the kids enjoyed doing with their daddy (this is what fathers are for I suppose because this mummy would rather keep her feet nice and dry on the beach *laughs*).

Having fun at Brighton Beach!
Following the daddy to the sea
Finding sea creatures like snails and starfish at the rocks
Hubby found a tiny crab!

We really loved Brighton Beach and definitely recommend it! =)

Washing our feet outside the washrooms

We drove off towards St Kilda and passed a nice playground along the way where we decided to have our lunch.

Parking at the road side

The parking system was similar to Sydney (read my previous post for tips on reading the parking signboard). The parking is not free but technically we didn't have to pay as we could watch our car from the bench at the playground. We paid anyway because we're too honest *laughs*.

Walking towards the playground
Play structure with slide
Pirate ship structure!
Photo of us at the park bench
(taken by my Olympus OMD on timer)

We were supposed to go to St Kilda Adventure Playground after lunch but it was not opened yet (only opened at 3.30pm on weekdays). To kill time, we popped by the nearest mall, Acland Court Shopping Centre, to do some shopping.

Acland Court Shopping Centre

It's a really small mall so don't expect too much. However, the AUD 3 fee for the first hour of parking is waived if you spend at least AUD 15 at Coles. Pretty good reason to shop at Coles when you're here =)

Scanning our receipt to redeem our free parking

When it was 3.15pm, we drove to St Kilda Adventure Playground. After going around the park in circles looking for the perfect parking spot, we found that the best place to park is along Neptune Street.

Parking is FREE but be sure not to park more than 2 hours because they do issue you with a fine if you do. We saw a lot of cars with parking tickets when we left but don't ask me how they know that you have exceeded the 2 hours (I have no idea either).

Left: Parking along Neptune Street;
Right: Look out for this signboard, which means you can park for free for 2 hours within the stipulated time.

Please remember to check the opening hours before going as it might be different. When we went, the opening hours were 3.30pm to 6pm on weekdays and 12 noon to 4pm on weekends and Public Holidays.

St Kilda Adventure Playground
(Address: Neptune St, St Kilda VIC 3182, Australia)
A treehouse greeted us as we entered the playground!

The playground is big on imagination and bringing the child back to nature by using very organic materials such as tires, wood and metal. It was a very unique playground where my girl had a lot of fun!

Clockwise from left: Miniature Luna Park!;
Castle-like structure made of wood;
Climbing and exploring.
My girl loves riding this Flying Fox
The kids must join this queue for the trampoline, which only allows one child at a time
Jumping on the trampoline and having a lot of fun
They loved climbing up and sliding down this very cool structure

The kids didn't want to leave for dinner even though the stomachs of the rest of us were growling so much. The hubby and mum-in-law preferred to eat home-cooked food so we travelled back to our apartment.

Simple dinner of pork/beef with rice, egg and vegetables

After dinner, we drove back to St Kilda Pier to see the St Kilda Little Penguins at the St Kilda Breakwater. These penguins belong to the St Kilda Protected Little Penguin Colony and are the same species as the penguins at Philip Island.

Welcome to St Kilda Pier!
Walking towards the St Kilda Breakwater
A noticeboard with information on the penguins at the gate
Please remember that you MUST NOT use your flash at all times! Not only is it illegal, the flash harms the eyes of the penguins. Only red light is permitted as they are less sensitive to red light. Not to worry about capturing the best photo: volunteers are stationed around the breakwater with red touchlights so that you can still capture the moment without harming the penguins.
We were soooo close! What an honour to see them in their native environment!

I'll definitely recommend visiting St Kilda Breakwater if you find driving all the way to Philip Island a hassle. Although there were much less Little Penguins here then at Philip Island, you come much closer to them, almost touching them if you're lucky (although please do not touch them). Plus, it's FREE! =)

When it got more crowded, we decided to leave and head to Luna Park Melbourne. Similar to the Luna Park that we visited in Sydney, the park had its iconic large clown head as an entrance and very old school rides.

Luna Park in the DAY
(Do check the opening hours as it is sometimes not open in the day during the weekdays)
Luna Park at NIGHT!
(Address: 18 Lower Esplanade, St Kilda VIC 3182, Australia)

The park only opens on certain days and for certain weekdays, they only open at night because it's a lot spookier and more fun (as you can see above!). The nice thing about Luna Park is that you only pay if you want to sit the rides. Entry and phototaking is FREE! If you're getting tickets, they are a lot cheaper online so do purchase them beforehand.

The ticketing booth.
It costs AUD 49.95 (adult) and AUD 39.95 (child) for unlimited rides. You can also pay for single rides.
Clockwise from left: Chinese Junk rocking ship;
Scenic railway (that's the roller coaster that ran around the park);
Ghost train, which looks extra spooky at night!
Ferris wheel and a super spinner that I wouldn't be caught dead on!

My poor girl was the only one interested in the rides but we really couldn't justify paying AUD 39.90 for so little "kiddy" rides. In the end, we decided being there and taking photos was good enough for the rest of us and headed back to the apartment. It was a long but very fulfilling day. One of the best days we had in this trip! =)

Continue to >> Melbourne II Day 7-8: Queen Victoria Market & Half Moon Bay
<< Back to Melbourne II Day 5: Melbourne Museum & Flinders Street


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