Taste of Australian countryside: Olinda

by - 7/31/2018

If you want to get a real feel of any region, ditch the city and explore the countryside. Yes, high tech cities are all the same whether you are in Sydney, Shanghai, New York or even New Delhi! Skyscrapers, metro trains, honking traffic and busy people. Big malls with the same brands. However as soon as you leave the city, the actual culture gets uncovered. Greek countryside has white houses with blue doors, the Dutch suburbs have dark green wooden houses, the Italian Riviera has worn out colored buildings while the Tuscan area are dotted with huge stone mansions. That is why we allotted more time in exploring the Australian countryside (just Victoria and New South Wales; Oz is a HUGE nation) than the big cities like Melbourne and Sydney.

You may know that it was almost dark when we left the Alfred Nicholas Memorial Park. However we wanted to explore of Dandenong Ranges. There are many cute villages there like Belgrave, Cockatoo, Gembrook Olinda, etc. There are perfect for getting a feel of the original lifestyle there. Usually popular as retirement places for the city dwellers. The village that was closest to our way back to Melbourne was Olinda and we decided to get a peek into that village.
It was late evening during the spring season and hence very cold. I, however was not carrying enough warm clothes (fashion blogger problems). We stopped our car in front of a meadow and within no time, clouds engulfed the whole area. There were pretty wooden houses on the opposite side of the road.
As expected, Olinda is a sleepy little village in the Dandenong. It is famous for its boutiques, cooking spice shops and homeware goods. Everything was closed as it was dark outside and so cold. However that was better because we felt that we owned the entire place! We three hopped around on the roads ( not forgetting to shiver in between :D). The suburbs of Victoria are very sparsely populated...no life can be spotted on the roads barring cattle and the ocassional kangaroos and Tasmanian devils. Hailing from India, it felt very strange. So much space to live but no humans to be seen!
I particularly fell in love with a house that had bushes of daisy blooming. I always remember Meg Ryan when I see daisies ('Aren't daisies the happiest flowers?' from You have got mail) I wish we could have explored more but it was getting annoyingly colder and darker and our stomachs were gnawing. Not to forget we were jet lagged and without sleep for 48 hours and had a long drive back home.

On the way back we stopped at Bubba pizza and filled our gut. It was on the highway with a Coles store (the commonest departmental store in Oz) and a petrol pump. It seemed straight out of a psycho thriller...travellers usually get robbed or something creepy happens in such kind of an environment. Anyways we dropped Soniya at her place in Clayton and then headed straight to Melbourne. 
However, we did not call it a day yet. We went to St Kilda Beach first and then retired :D It was 1 30 at night and we were scheduled to wake up at 4 30 AM next day for our Great Ocean Road Trip.

You May Also Like