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Colourful Characters of Australia’s Cities

Colourful Characters of Australia’s Cities

For the 136,500 Kiwis who head to Australia’s cities during spring, there is much more than great shopping and dining to be experienced.

“Behind each city is an inspirational and interesting character waiting to be discovered,” says Vito Anzelmi, Tourism Australia’s Regional Manager for New Zealand.

“Australia’s history has been shaped by all sorts of people, from every walk of life, and there are some fantastic ways to learn about, or delve deeper into, how individuals have contributed to making Australia what it is today.

“From pioneers, convicts and sportspeople to celebrities, every Australian city has colourful characters to shore with Kiwis heading across the Tasman,” says Anzelmi.

Below are some great characters in Australia’s history who have helped to shape this vibrant and unique country.

Henry Jones & The Henry Jones Art Hotel, Tasmania

Henry Jones, born in 1862, began his working life in George Peacocke’s jam factory in Tasmania pasting labels on jam tins, six days a week for 10 hours a day. From these humble beginnings Henry grew an empire spanning five continents with interests in jam, fruit, timber, mining and shipping.

Today the buildings that were once used as storehouses for Jones’ produce have been transformed into the Henry Jones Art Hotel, Australia’s first hotel dedicated to showcasing art of established and emerging artists

Guests can enjoy, or even purchase, the art and marvel at the hotel’s interior, an example of colonial splendour, from its beautifully crafted staircase to its magnificent all-glass atrium.

To this day the Henry Jones & Co motto ‘IXL’, meaning “I excel, in all the products that I make” is a part of Tasmanian, and Australian, folklore.

“The hotel has definitely excelled, winning the ‘Best New Tourism Development’ award at the 2005 Australian Tourism Awards,” says Anzelmi.

Colonel William Light & The City Of Adelaide

When Colonel William Light was appointed as Surveyor-General to the then new colony of South Australia in 1835, it was his vision that created what the city of Adelaide is today.

Legend has it that when Light walked to the top of Montefiore Hill he saw a vision, referred to as ‘Light’s Vision’ of the layout of the city of Adelaide.

Light’s design for Adelaide has been hailed as one of the last great city plans, with its layout still able to fit the needs of a growing modern city to this day. Light also carried out the city planning for Christchurch in a very similar manner to Adelaide.

Visitors to Adelaide head to Montefiore Hill and stand in the same spot that Colonel William Light stood in when he envisaged the city of Adelaide at the Light’s Vision memorial.

Don Bradman & the MCG, Victoria

Don Bradman, knighted as Sir Donald Bradman in 1949, is known as one of Australia and the world’s greatest cricketer in sporting history.

During his 21 year first-class cricketing career he managed to achieve everything that was possible in the sport. Bradman also won awards for Sportsman of the Century, Captain of the Greatest Team of the Century (1948 Australian cricket team), and nominations for the top ten world sports figures of the century award by the World Confederation of Sport.

Visitors, and sports enthusiasts, can see how the “Don” captured the heart of a nation at the Bradman Museum in New South Wales, recently listed by Australian Traveller Magazine as one of the ‘Top 100 Things To Do In Australia Before You Die’, or take a behind the scenes tour of the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and view the commemorative statue of Bradman on the ‘Parade of Champions’.

“Don Bradman is a true sporting icon and someone that Australian and New Zealand cricket fans alike can identify with,” says Anzelmi.


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