Monday, September 17, 2012

Should I go to Mt Dandenong?

"Get some Perspective & Escape the noise and pressures of the concrete jungle. Less than one hour from the Melbourne CBD you can be SkyHigh – on the uppermost reach of the Dandenong Ranges, amid cool fern glades and lush towering native forest, looking at the big picture, from the Mornington Peninsula across the majestic sweep of Port Phillip Bay, surrounded by Melbourne’s growing urban fringes, to the You Yangs on the southern horizon. After sunset the southern sky, brilliant in the clear mountain night, is imitated by a spectacular carpet of city lights."
Doesn't that sound enticing?

If you've been to Melbourne, you'd realize that there aren't many outdoorsy places to go to that's near the city.You know, for a day trip kind of thing.

After hearing so much about it, we decided to head to Mt. Dandenong (which is only an hour away) in the hopes of seeing the awesome view, eating Ms. Marples pie in the sky, sitting on the Giant's chair and the Puffing Billy.

To get to Sky High (where the view is) in Mt. Dandenong:

What you have to do is take a train from Flinders Station to Belgrave (about an hour)
and then take a bus to Sky High. (about 20 minutes)

But honestly, if you're planning to go on public's terrible.
Why I think so :

Reason 1

We got off the train at Belgrave and I got distracted by a "PUFFING BILLY this way!" sign and wanted to check it out. (this took less than 10 minutes)
Then we walked back to the bus station to get to Sky High and found out the bus only comes every hour and we missed the last bus by 10 minutes.
So we had to wait almost 50 minutes! for the next bus to come.
And let me tell you...there's almost nothing there! Trying to kill 50 minutes is extremely difficult.
Even better, there's barely any reception there, so if you miss the bus GLHF.

A 50 minute wait and a 2o minute bus ride later,

We got to Sky High and were amazed at the view!!

You can see the city from here!

Walked around and found The Maze, which was well, a maze.
It's closed sometimes, but just go to the counter in the restaurant and tell them to open it for you
it's AUD6 to enter.

After going through The Maze, we were like "hmm I think we should try Ms. Marples pie in the sky that everyone's talking about."
BTW! it's not in the same place. You have to take a bus from Sky High to Sassafras to get there (something we only found out when we got there) and here's the best part, which bring us to..

Reason 2
the busses only pass through Sky High like every 2 hours, and we just missed the last one! Yet again! So we angrily waited there for 2 hours and by that time it was pass 4.30 and Ms. Marples was closed.

Reason 3
By the time the bus came it was 5-ish and the Puffing Billy was closed.

Reason 4
All the busses (on weekdays) are like that (scarce..ahem), we thought we better get back to the train station because the train for Flinders leaves at about 6pm and the next one about 8pm.
God forbid we stay in that place until 8pm! We wanted Melbourne! We wanted civilization! We wanted an ample and constant flow of public transport!

So that's the story of my trip to Mt. Dandenong. No Puffing Billy. No pie in the sky. No giant's chair. (because it was hidden and we didn't know where it was) With my luck that day I should've tried for the lotto. I know.

If you're planning to go there you should probably go with a journey planner and follow it to a T!
Or go by car so you can see the whole of Mt. Dandenong, which looks quaint and quite interesting. (but then again I might be wrong, this is based on seeing it from the inside of a bus #bitter and #angry)

Pros of visiting Mt. Dandenong:

- Good for a day trip
- Ms. Marples pie in the sky
- The view
- It's outdoorsy
- The Puffing Billy

Cons of visiting Mt. Dandenong:
The 4 reasons above.

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