Travel Diary: Staycation in Echuca, Victoria [Part 1]

I just came back from my staycation in Echuca, Victoria and it was a great experience. Staying there for almost three (3) months, I had the pleasure to observe and experience their culture, their way of life, meet new friends, tour some of their tourist destination and more importantly, I’ve got to spend a reasonable time with my partner and his family as well. This has been in my bucket list for quite some time now and I was over the moon when finally, I received my notice of visa grant from the Australian Embassy.

Melbourne is a big city but apparently, my partner’s hometown is 3 hours away from it which is Echuca, a heritage town in the Murray River. If Melbourne City is said to be sophisticated and stylish, Echuca is exactly the opposite. It is a laid back town where it features more of the countryside. However, Echuca is said to be a popular destination for visitors because of its warm climate, location along the Murray River, historical features like the Port Echuca and native forests.

from Clockwise 1. Old Echuca Post office 2. Port of Echuca 3. Theme Park 4. Paddle Steamer 5. Commercial establishment along High Street 6. Bridge Hotel

Quite frankly, I was blown away with their culture and way of life because it is different from what I get used to. I made a bit of adjustment to adapt myself with everything unrelated to me – weather, transportation, culture and language. Unfortunately, I arrived in Victoria when it is currently winter. They have a dry winter so snow is out of the picture though there is one certain place in Victoria where you can see and experience authentic snow. I am not a fan of cold weather because my body has a low tolerance with it and one of my biggest mistake was I didn't bring with me some of my thick jacket to protect me from the harsh cold (blame it to my weather advisor - my partner! Pffttt!). But the weather is unpredictable. There were some occasions of unexpected change they called it 4 season in 1 day so a bit of advice, always pack clothes that can be worn in layers, making them easy to add or take off. When it comes to mode of transportation, owning a car is a necessity here especially if you are working or going for an errand. Their transport system is very organize and on time. If you happen to board on a bus or in a train for a trip, make sure that you will come early on the station or else you will be left behind and wait for the next trip. Getting a taxi here is way different from the Philippines. You have to dial a certain number and ask the customer service to pick you up from where you are located. The locals are friendly and nice. It’s very surprising for me to find out that at by 5pm all the shops were shut down already except for the supermarkets. You don’t have to worry about the language, as long as both you and the locals understand each other you are fine. ☺

Sunset view in our House

Certainly, I had a nice stay in Echuca. Though it was brief but I had a glimpse of their way of life and it will definitely help me to adjust once I migrate here permanently. 

*Victoria is the State of SE Australia & Melbourne is the City Capital