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Things You May Not Know About Melbourne

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by Lesley Mitchell (subscribe)
Author/lecturer/Intuitive/Natural Therapist/Artist/Soap-Maker/Chef. WEBS: or Also find us under RenascentBathBody or RenascentCollege on eBay, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube, Instagram
Published November 12th 2011
Photographer: David Iliff (Wikimedia Commons)

Its been voted the world's most livable city, here are some interesting facts about Melbourne you may not know, they may even make you a perfect tour guide.

Dim sims - get a New Zealander to order 6 of these and they sound pretty funny. The Dim Sim was created by a then living in Melbourne chef - William Wing Young.

Known as The Garden State - The people of Melbourne love their gardens and parks with access to over 480 hectares of them. This is the largest proportion of open spaces anywhere in the world.

We love our clocks - Our perfect meeting place on Flinders Lane for decades. A few years back, they thought to replace them with digital display boards and the public objected so vehemently they stayed.

In 2008, Carey Baptist Grammer School broke the world record for the Largest Human Wheelbarrow Race. They then continued to break another record for the fastest time in a 50-metre Human Wheelbarrow Race.

We are sports crazy - especially AFL. Now widely thought of as 'the' sport, it was originally created as a game to keep cricketers fit during winter.

Melbourne was the home of many firsts including, seat belts, breathalizers, Olympic Games, pizza, beer, tennis balls, mc cafe, blood transfusions, walk through lion enclosure and trains.

Let me entertain you - Melburnians love everything to do with the arts; theatre, galleries, live concerts, street performers. At any given time, there are dozens of performances occurring throughout the city.

Feed me - with more cafes and restaurants per capita than anywhere else in the world, you're sure to find something to tickle your taste buds.

Melbourne was the home to the first ever plastic banknotes, Vegemite, the Eight Hour day, the Telephone, Electrical Drill, Kiwi Shoe Polish, Hills Hoist, Utility Vehicle - the 'Ute' and the Bionic Ear.

Dame Nellie Melba - our famous opera singer lived here and chose her stage name in honour of Melbourne.

Hey big spender - no less than eight of Australia's top ten spenders on research and development (R&D) reside in Melbourne, including the huge Telstra and Ericsson.

The world's first female TV host of a variety show was Toni Lamond, taking over from Graham Kennedy on In Melbourne Tonight.

From 1901 to 1927, before Canberra was built, Melbourne was the capital city of Australia.

The voice of women - women wanted the right to vote in 1891 and collected a petition of 30,000 signatures by gluing paper to a roll of fabric measuring 260 metres long.

This was later known as the 'Monster Petition.' Inspired by this massive effort, there is a commemorative statue near St. Patrick's Cathedral.

How inventive - Melbourne is the home of the creators of the Bionic Ear and the Black Box flight recorder.

A gift from china in the 1870s to Bendigo was the imperial dragon - Loong. He is now the oldest dragon in the world.

The world's oldest amusement park under private management is to be found in St Kilda - Luna Park.

The only city in the world to have 5 international standard sporting facilities. They include Melbourne Cricket Ground, Docklands Stadium, Rod Laver Arena, Hisense Arena and Olympic Park in Melbourne Park.

Outside Europe, we boast the largest tramway system in the world and the 4th largest overall. With 450 trams, it runs for 244kms.

In Ballarat in 1869, the world's largest alluvial gold nugget was found. The welcome stranger certainly was welcome, weighing 70kgs.

The worlds largest stained glass ceiling at 51metres long and 15 metres wide is found at the National Gallery of Victoria. (My dad cut a lot of the glass for this roof and I have some built into the floor of my home).

We are the home of the world's first gay radio station.

On the corner of Swanston Street and Collins Street, you will find Australia's first traffic lights.

Filmed and made in Melbourne in 1906, the story of the Ned Kelly Gang was the world's first feature film.

With an estimated 6-23 foxes every square km of the metropolitan area, we have more foxes than anywhere in the western world.

Do you have some interesting facts about Melbourne?
Add them in the comments here.
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Why? If you live or visit here, this will make you appreciate Melbourne even more.
When: Anytime
Where: Melbourne
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Your Comment
Your article is packed with very interesting tidbits I can share & make the everyday places I visit just seem that much more interesting, thankyou !
by clare (score: 1|76) 3163 days ago
What a fabulous article Lesley!
by Joy (score: 3|1945) 3442 days ago
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