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An Expat Opinion on Melbourne

Plenty of us harbour a desire to live in another country, and Australia is a common favourite. We’ve been speaking to bloggers and other writers with first hand experience and asking them to write about the place they call home, whether they’re natives or expats. Here’s the lowdown from Fran, who made the long move from the North of England to sunny Victoria – specifically the capital city, Melbourne.


I’ve always wanted to live abroad for a year.  It wasn’t until 2012 that I decided where.  I had been to Melbourne before on a backpacking trip and fell in love with the place.  Two years later I decided to pack up and go there with nothing, and just see how it went.

Luckily enough it went brilliantly and there are a vast number of reasons why I think Melbourne is a great place to live, but I’ll try and summarise these into five points.

Firstly, it’s easy to find yourself a community.  There’s a certain pride found in Melburnians that I haven’t found anywhere else.  They’re proud to say their city has something for everyone.  Whatever you like to do whether it’s run, paint, row, or even ride vintage bicycles, you’ll find it incredibly easy to seek out like-minded people.

Secondly, there’s always something to do.  Again that strong pride makes an appearance here.  Melbourne is somewhat famous for its events and as soon as one finishes another is starting.  In my year over here I’ve been to art gallery events, culture events like White Night Melbourne, shopping events, festivals and many more.

Thirdly, it doesn’t ever feel that far from home.  The one bugbear I have with Australia is that it’s so far away from the rest of the world, but it doesn’t feel that way.  Australia is so similar to the UK that you sometimes have to look twice to notice the differences.  It’s comforting to be somewhere that reminds you of home.

Fourthly, Australians are genuinely nice people.  I have encountered nothing but kindness from every Aussie (and expat) I’ve met in the past year.  I’ve been given a place to stay, have received donations of bed linen and now never hesitate to ask for help when I need it.  People here love to help you out and do their country proud.

Last but not least, expat living really is like being on a permanent holiday.  Maybe it’s not like this for everyone, but I find that being an expat leaves you with a permanent giddiness at the fact that you’re abroad in a warm country.  The good thing about this is I think it encourages you to live in the moment and make the most of now, a great attitude to have in a place as vibrant as Melbourne.

I have loved living in Melbourne.  The city, the inner and outer suburbs and country Victoria all have something to offer you.


Author Frances Bibby is a self-described ‘Northern lass’ who decided to up sticks and go to live in Melbourne, Australia. To keep up to date on Fran’s life down under you can check out her blog, or follow her on Twitter @Frances_M_B.

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