The city of Melbourne has a great collection of Museums. It’s kind of like Philly because they’re all over the place. The best part is that most of them offer a student ticket that is usually free. Here are three of my favorite museums in Melbourne:
The Immigration Museum
I enjoyed the Immigration Museum quite a lot. I went during my first weekend in Australia and, in visiting the Immigration Museum, it definitely set the historical context for everything that I learned about Australia after that.
For me, it was interesting to learn about another country’s experiences and history with immigration, and just how the country was built. In the United States, obviously we’re taught from an American perspective. American history dominates what we learn about in school and we rarely, if ever, learn about how other countries came to be. The Immigration Museum opened up my perspectives because now I know a bit about the laws and regulations that were applied to immigration, I know about the campaign to try and bring people from England to Australia, I learned about how long the trip took by boat back in the day, and many other things like that.
History buffs and curious minds would really enjoy the Immigration Museum.
National Gallery of Victoria
The National Gallery of Victoria is unique in that it is completely free, except for its special exhibitions that you’d have to pay for. The National Gallery is a large art gallery much like the Philadelphia Museum of Art. It’s got several different installations that show different periods of time and different styles of art.
However, the one downside is that you probably wouldn’t find a place to sit amongst the art, but there is a large space with chairs under a stained-glass ceiling which is also very cool.
I LOVED this museum. I don’t know exactly why, but I think it’s because there are so many interactive elements to it. My favorite exhibit was the First People exhibit which taught me a lot about aboriginal people and their culture. Unfortunately, this isn’t a permanent exhibit, but it might come back. There was also this cute little cinema that they have in the corner of their Melbourne History exhibit that shows real clips from the 1920s, 30s, and 40s.
I think I really enjoyed this museum because it was so hands-on and tactile, which I really like. They also incorporated a lot of audio and video into their installations. So this is a great museum for all kinds of learners.
Overall, the city of Melbourne has a lot of (free) opportunities to learn about Australia if you really want to.