You don’t need to spend long in Melbourne to realise how well planned the city is. This is especially true of our central business district, the Hoddle Grid. It’s amazing to think this dates back to 1837, just a few years after the area was settled.
We particularly like Hoddle’s depiction of the Yarra River in this drawing. It was well documented to have been narrow and serpentine, dotted with lovely little waterfalls and crystal clear and blue. Anyone who knows the river today will find that difficult to imagine, it’s still lovely, still the lifeblood of the city but crystal clear and blue it is not.
Another beautiful feature of the city are its parks and gardens. Never having to walk more than a few minutes before you are in a lovely green space is something we really value and it’s rare in a big city these days. We owe this largely to the foresight of our first governor, Charles La Trobe. He started buying up land around town from the late 1830′s, often paying £20 an acre. He set aside land all over the city for parks including the Carlton, Flagstaff, Fitzroy & Treasury Gardens as well as Kings Domain. La Trobe even had trees brought over from England to make things a little more homely.
Let us know when you’re coming to visit, we’ll take you for a picnic.