Bound to attract a series of puzzling looks, is the suggestion that one should venture out of the Melbourne CBD and its surrounding inner city suburbs to go shopping. However, for those second hand shopping enthusiasts forever on the hunt for that something original, a 70km trip out of Melbourne to the Geelong Mill Markets, may just be the thing for you.
Spread over some 40,000 square feet, the Mill Market, is one of the largest indoor markets in Victoria, a one-stop collectors dream, where your wildest shopping fantasies are likely to come true. Similar in nature to Chapel Street Bazaar (yet perhaps on a much larger scale) the Mill Market provides over 140 stalls, each displaying an eclectic mix of treasures, bric-a-brac, vintage clothing, retro fashions, home wares, memorabilia a plenty, exquisite antiques and collectables from the 1870's to 1970's.
Large arrays of retro advertising signs, one of a kind furniture and quirky mechanical equipment line the walls and fill every nook and cranny of the market. Shelving filled with old records are piled high and genuine period props make the Mill Market a haven for theatre companies and filmmakers. For the fashion hearted, pill box hats, fur coats, vintage lace gloves and seventies flower print maxi dresses are enough to make your heart over flow with joy. Never has such a diverse range of goods been on offer under one tin roof, achingly close to the Bellarine Peninsula and the Queenscliff ferry (for those inclined to make a real day trip out of things!)
But if weaving in and out of each stall starts to prove too much, you may want to consider stopping at the Mill Market's very own café. Here you can indulge in a coffee or tea accompanied by an array of tasty treats, including delectable cakes, freshly baked scones, muffins and cucumber sandwiches to rejuvenate the mind, body and spirit for round two of your Mill Market shopping expedition.
And so as you head back out those doors, arms loaded with new purchases, you will leave knowing you have visited your own little slice of shopping heaven, a mere hour's drive from the Melbourne CBD. Well worth the effort if you ask me.