Riding the Melbourne Star – at lastWednesday, 25 December 2013
Melbourne’s big ferris wheel is finally back in operation. Back in 2009 – after I’d been for rides on the London Eye and the Singapore Flyer – commented on the sad story of Melbourne’s version. It opened on my birthday – 20 December 2008 – and shut down just 34 days later when it started to crack up. The problem was put down to a design fault and a it took five years to complete the redesign and reconstruction. I posted recently about its forthcoming reopening.
The Melbourne Star finally reopened on 23 December 2013, I never got around to taking a ride during that first brief window of opportunity so this time I definitely wasn’t going to miss out. I went along on the opening day and took the half hour twirl. Want to go? It’s open 10am to 10pm and the adult fare (flight ticket) is $32.
Unfortunately it doesn’t offer terrific views, it’s kind of far from anywhere, rather like the Arcelor Mittal Orbit outside the London Olympic Stadium. I had a ride on that earlier in 2013 and once the Olympics finished the view from the Orbit revealed – well a lot of post-industrial wasteland, but now with an Olympic Stadium in the middle of it. The Melbourne Star does give you a great view of the Bolte Bridge (the view from the bridge, driving in to Melbourne from the airport, has been my Melbourne favourite view) and the docklands area (yes it does look like a Jeffrey Smart painting). The city skyline should look good at night.