Melbourne has great food and coffee everywhere in the city. Some of the best places are hole-in-the-wall types. Exploring the alleys of downtown Melbourne was one of my favorite ways to find hidden gems. I still think about the black forest cake and tiramisu cheesecake I tried from Tori’s. I spent half an hour trying the different flavors from Beku Gelato in Carlton, which has many traditional and Indonesian flavors with dairy and non-dairy options that are equally as delicious. For coffee and bakeries, there are spots all over the city. Some of my favorites are Green Refectory, the Baker’s Block, and Le Bajo Milkbar. Also, UniMelb’s campus has good coffee if you’re on the go!

One of the first cameras used in film at the ACMI museum

For places to see, there are wonderful museum exhibitions constantly being shown. The NVG showed an Alexander McQueen exhibition and ACMI always has amazing exhibitions. I particularly loved ACMI’s Goddess: Power, Glamour, Rebellion, showcasing powerful and important women in pop culture. ACMI also has beautiful exhibits on First Nations peoples and film and television history. Additionally, there is much to learn about cultures from around the world and First Nations peoples through performances, food, and ceremonies. Art and music are heavily embedded in the city, if you seek them out.

My classes in Melbourne were a bit more intense, but with fewer assignments. It felt a bit easier to keep track of everything because overall I was in class less. I would commute a bit to class using the public transit (the tram). It's super easy to use and super convenient. It goes all over the city and there are plenty of maps and apps to navigate everything and get live updates. Additionally, I found that downtown Melbourne is quite a bit bigger than Ann Arbor, but just as easy to get around. If you don't take the tram somewhere, there are trains and also it's a super walkable city. It felt really safe as well. I mostly stuck with friends when I went out, but I never felt unsafe.

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