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Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,

I will be migrating to Australia later this year. Although it is still not confirmed whether I will be moving to Sydney or to Melbourne, I have started looking at the places to stay. I was hoping that the members of this forum could let me know from their experiences or what they hear about some of the suburbs.

I am considering two factors (amongst others). Whether to stay in a location closer to the city (just about close enough to walk) and save on the transportation cost; or to stay in the suburbs and perhaps save on the rental. There are a host of other factors, of course, such as where I will eventually end up working, etc. But I was wondering whether the readers of this forum could give me an idea of what living in some of the areas in these two cities are like (not so much on the consideration of the distance, transportation, etc).

In Sydney, I am looking at suburbs out of town such as Paramatta, Castle Hill and Glebe compared with the suburbs closer to the CBD such as Surrey Hills. In Melbourne, I was wondering what the readers think of suburbs away from the city such as Bulleen and Templestowe compared with suburbs closer to the city such as North Carlton or places around Richmond.

It be good to hear what the readers here think of these places. Thank you

Rgds,
Hock Siew
 

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Therer's something of a rivalry between Sydney and Melbourne and whilst both are great cities with Sydney having a slightly milder climate, its harbour and many ocean beaches close enough for those fortunate enough to live to the east/north of the CBD, the popularity of Sydney in recent decades is choking it to death and the traffic density combined with that harbour having multiple dissecting of the inner Sydney areas does not make for easy commuting.
If there are a couple of regular items on the tongues of Sydneysiders it'll be traffic congestion and poor public transport.
Parramatta is a city in itself more than a suburb and Sydneys third CBD you could say after downtown and North Sydney, perhaps Parramatta even in second place and there are some unwanted city violence activities at times.
Castle Hill is kind of ostracised as far as public transport goes and you would need to rely on a buses or a mix of bus and rail, a commute of say an hour to get into the CBD.
Glebe is within walking distance for the ardent walker but you'll sure work up a lather in warmer times of the year for Sydney CBD has its own micro heat sink climate of being hot and muggy and anywhere out west away from sea breezes is no better.

Whereas Sydney is central to the east coast, though hemmed in by the Blue Mountains portion of the East Coast Great Dividing Range as it is otherwise known, Melbourne is central to Victoria, less of a dividing range and whilst its diverse weather can often be criticised, the state is compact yet diverse in itself and you have a number of regional cities to the west of Melbourne whereas Sydneys comparable ones are on south and north coast, Melbourne really having only the one CBD and that does also tend to focus the traffic.
It is more a state of rolling green hills and a more temperate climate rather than Sydney's sub tropical.
Bulleen and Templestowe are probably akin to Castle Hill and likewise reliance on Bus/Train for public transport.
As a lot of Sydneysiders opt for inner city suburbs so do Melbournians and there is something of a renaisance in a ring right around Melbourne from NW of CBD to south so do not confine yourself to just Carlton and Richmond and then especially in the east and south you have the more established suburbs close enough as a second ring.
Melbourne has an extensive tram network as well as trains and is regarded as having a better public transport set-up.
Mind you, you can pay for the convenience and so for both cities you ought to have a look at sites like www.domain.com.au or Real Estate, Property, Land and Homes for Sale, lease and rent - realestate.com.au
For renting and for Sydney in particular it is not so much choosing as being prepared to outbid on what may be available, it being a very tight market.
Melbourne probably has more in the way of semi rural outer suburbs having decent train services, places along the Lilydale or Belgrave lines for instance.
Have a use of Google Earth and it is amazing the detail you can pick up.
 

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Parramatta is not the best location you can get. I suppose that you are targeting cheaper areas and are not willing to move that much to the north or east. You might want to consider Homebush - not that noisy but closer to CBD (and also close to Parramatta) with good public transport. If you are ok with muslim areas, Auburn, Lidcombe and Granville would be a better choice than Parramatta. Alternatively, you might wanna move more to the west. You can consider Westmead, Seven Hills or even Blacktown (all have quite good shopping and public transport).

Please note that all: Parramatta, Granville, Auburn. Blacktown are located quite far from Sydney CBD and if you want to live closer you would rather look at Surry Hills, Glebe, St Peters, Marrickville, Ashfield etc.

As for Melbourne... again, it depends how close to the city you want to be. Carlton is practically CBD, you can walk to La Trobe St and catch free tram around CBD (takes 10 - 15 minutes). Richmond is slightly further but still very close. Both are much closer than areas of Sydney that I mentioned above. Brunswick and Parkville are not very far, both are full of shops.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Dear Wanderer and Dexter,

Many thanks for both the long and informative replies :) I`ll be moving to Australia in May, so I need to decide where to stay soon :) I`m quite torn between both the cities. I like them both; each have their own charms. At the moment, I`m still looking for work; so if I turn up something, that will decide for me where to move to. On the other hand, in the likely event that I end up going to Australia to look for work, I get to decide where to live :)

The other matter is where to live within either city. I have a background in manufacturing, so there is a fair chance I may end up working in a location away from the city. On the other hand, I am looking at finding casual work whilst I search for a better job. In which case, the city might be a good place to live during my initial stay in Australia.

Both your posts have given me a lot of good information about the transportation in each of the cities and about the suburbs there. I just need to go through them and also to review the information from other sources (such as the websites listed above).

In the meanwhile, I was wondering whether anyone else has experience or heard about living in areas like Glebe and around Surry Hills in Sydney, and Carlton and the areas near Richmond in Melbourne (there is no particular reason I asked about these few areas, it`s just that I`ve heard of them; I`m not limiting myself to these areas, just getting a start from here). I understand that choosing where to live is a very personal choice, and that opinions will vary greatly; but just want to get some input on the readers` impression of these areas.

Thank you very much!

Rgds,
Hock Siew
 

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I don't have experience in Glebe or Surry Hills but I know people who used to live there. Both of them are well known for their old townhouses, Glebe is all kind of monumental. You can practically walk to CBD from Surry Hills whereas in case of Glebe it is probably better to catch a bus.

As for Carlton... I stayed near Carlton during my stay in Melbourne as my hotel was in North Melbourne. Queen Victoria Markets are just around the corner and lots of trams directly do the CBD from Elizabeth St.
 

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My son lives with his family in Surrey Hills, Melbourne - he teaches at a school there. They like the area a lot, although property is very expensive. We are aiming to join them next year!
 

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Best places to live in sydney

Hey!
In my view:

Eastern Suburbs - Bondi, Coogee
On the other side of the harbour - Manly and Queenscliff are few good places to live in Sydney. I don't know much about Melbourne so can't really help.

The places which I mentioned above are even economic places where cost of living doesn't crosses an average budget.
Hope that it'll help you :)
 

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Cheaper places in Sydney

Hello,my name is Jeremy

I am sending you information about cheaper place in eastern suburb Sydney.The public transportation system in Sydney is better the closer that you are to the CBD. You will find good green grocers, butchers and bread shops in most areas of Sydney. I've lived in the Eastern Suburbs for almost 10 years now. You can get to Bondi Junction by bus then it's a quick train trip into the City. The ferry is a great way to travel but it sometimes has it's limitations.
 

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Frankston?

What can anyone tell me about Frankston? We will be moving in two months and I find the rental properties there more appealing than so close to the city. I will be working near Clayton, and am "okay" with the commute. I just don't want to get my hopes up that it is a nice area and come to find out I was wrong when we finally arrive. Additionally, can anyone tell me a general range for what the water bills are like on a monthly basis for a family of 4? I found one article that said the average rates would be $1200 - and I can only assume that is an ANNUAL amount.
 

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Hi there! I already lived in several suburbs in Sydney (Surry Hills, Glebe, Bondi, CBD, North Sydney and Randwick) and think it makes sense to live relatively close to the CBD (dont move to Parramatta!). While Bondi is still 'relatively' central, it already takes me an hour to get to the CBD by bus so be aware that Sydney is huge in terms of its area. You will also be able to find decently priced places around the CBD, Surry Hills and Glebe for example are fantastic places to stay, they have a great atmosphere, lots of bars, cafes and good transporation
 
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