University Student Go Guide for 2018
Geelong Deakin Students: assemble!
Here you all are: the bright and aspiring future in our bustling City of Greater Geelong. Whether you’re shacking up in a share-house, living large as a newfound local, or commuting from home, this go-guide will help you settle in to your university life as a local.
Waurn Ponds Students Go-Guide!
For Deakin students electing to live in or near Waurn Ponds, walking will only get you so far in just as long. So, if you’re periodically indolent like myself, then you’ll want a vehicle or bicycle (preferably motorised) to get around. Keep reading to check out the best bus routes.
Coming into Waurn Ponds, you would have seen the large shopping centre, and if you live within walking distance to this baby, you’re set. There’s a Readings Cinemas, Town and Country, Boss Burger, Coles, Kmart and EB Games (for all that ‘free time’ after another midnight cram).
If you want to stay fit using gym services (other than the gym on campus), the most accessible place to get a membership would be the Leisurelink Aquatic and Recreation Centre. The reason being, you will have access to six different locations around Greater Geelong inclusive for that $65 per month student concession price. Burpees lead to HDs.
If you’re looking for a pub in Waurn Ponds, then I apologize. The nearest you’ll find other than the plaza or a take-away franchise, is called the Waurn Ponds Hotel. But if you want a decent or cheap meal (por qué no tenemos ambos?), your best options would be to travel to the CBD. Otherwise get some Mi-goreng in you. All carbs can’t be that bad, right?
So to get back to Geelong’s Central Business District without exploiting your housemates’ parent’s taxi service for a fourth time this week, you can take any of the three McHarry’s bus routes: 40, 41, or 42 (link below). Route 40 will take you the long way, so grab your Myki card, find the nearest bus stop and jump on bus 41/42 to begin your new adventure. You can also take the free Deakin shuttle between campus’s, but not all of us get to live on res.
For the Go-Guide to CBD Geelong… read on!
Geelong Waterfront Students Go-Guide!
If you’re a CBD dweller: good news! You’re surrounded by adventure. To start, I’d suggest some light cardio by checking out the two plazas – Westfield and Market Square – followed by a nice stroll around Eastern Beach. You might even see some of the Baywalk Bollards strutting their stuff along the waterfront. Keep an eye out for them. They are sort of iconic to us.
We also home a beautiful Botanical Gardens, which can reset the mind and induce the allergies. So grab a Zyrtec and have a squiz. It’s in a common parking area the locals call ‘Eastern Gardens’ – a lingual mix of Eastern Park and Botanical Gardens. If you are driving, and you need somewhere to park on a busy day, check out that area. Free all-day parking. That is, if you’re okay with walking six blocks back to campus (cardio, woo!).
There are plenty of other CBD food spots to check out, mainly in the Lt. Malop st pedestrian section (between Moorabool and Gheringhap st). There is a Blues bar, a karaoke bar, and various cafés and restaurants. Also, if you walk up to Ryrie st opposite the Village cinemas, you’ll find a local noodle store – Ohako Japanese Sushi Noodle Dumpling Bar – and the Sporting Globe. Ohako is similar to Noodle Bar, but family owned. Therefore, made with love. The Sporting Globe is a must visit for any type of sports lover. The price is mid-range, but you can always offset that by checking out their specials days. $16 rumps? That’s not a missed-steak.
…Let’s move on.
Pro Tip: the best meal I’ve come across in Geelong is the lunch special (before 5pm) at the Sir Charles Darling hotel. It’s central, cheap, has a good range, and a nice serving size considering the price (you won’t even need an entrée).
For those keen to party after dark (or before, no judgement), there are several nightclubs for the party-goers, and two afore-mentioned music bars available in the CBD. If you’re looking for some heavy beats and dirty dancefloors, St James, Home House, and Uno will be your digs. If you’re more of a live music enthusiast, Lambys (mixed age), and Beav’s Bar (karaoke on Thursdays) still have a nightclub edge to it, whereas a good place to sit down and escape the music (whilst still being a doorway away) would be CQ at the end of our Cunningham Pier, and The Edge, nearby on the waterfront. The two primarily ‘live-music’ venues to check out are Pistol Pete’s Blues Bar, and the Piano bar (book ahead!). Both within a block of each other in the heart of the CBD. Oh, and to add the novelty venue, there is a licenced arcade bar just down from the Village Cinemas on Malop st going by the name of Ms Bartronica.
For the art lovers, you can check out our fresh golf ball… I mean, Geelong Library & Heritage Centre, or ponder your next theatre show at the Geelong Performing Arts Centre (GPAC). Both located on Lt Malop street near Johnstone Park (next to the central station – a short walk from campus).
Outer CBD Locations
If the constant Ubers are loosening your purse-strings, make your way to Geelong Central Station, and await your chariot of exploration.
Sometimes the CBD alone will not be able to satiate your culinary cravings, so try exploring Pakington street spanning Geelong West and Newtown (aka Pako st). Bus route 22 will take you to the Geelong West side, which has much more options (including the Barking Dog, Boss Burger, Panache, Pizza Bar, and several cafés). However, if you wanted to check out Pakington’s Newtown area (we call it the riverside), you’ll sacrifice your options with the boon of peace and tranquillity (bus route 43). There is also The Rock [Climbing] Adventure Centre right on the river, for those keen to get a grip strength level of over 9000.
The Simmonds Stadium (hosting “the greatest team of all”) can be seen by taking nearly every bus heading south from Geelong CBD (check link ), and if you’re keen on checking out a sporting oval closer to the CBD than the Waurn Ponds campus, Kardinia Park is as good a place as any. There are netball courts, a football field, and the Kardinia Aquatic Centre for those with a Leisurelink membership (remember that?).
Finally, I suggest checking out the local brewery: Little Creatures. This location is difficult to get to by bus, so maybe convince your housemate’s parents for that ride you’ve been saving for this rainy (yet beautifully brewed) day. The food is hip, and the beer doesn’t stop flowing. So, rideshare your way to happiness. Just make sure to expect your wallet to feel lighter after paying. If worst comes to worst, remember: water’s free.
Also make sure you detour into White Rabbit Brewery at least once (it’s on the same premises). You’ll get to see their large brewing vats up close or even book in for a brewery tour. Okay, it’s not for everyone, but it’s still exciting!
Notable Geelong Foods Go-Guide
Local Pizza Chains:
Town and Country – the best around, mid-range prices. Waurn Ponds + Geelong
Bubba’s Pizza – gourmet, mid-higher prices. Waurn Ponds
Pizza’s with Attitude – cheap deal on Monday + Tuesday. Geelong
Pizza Bar – gourmet, hip, and highly rated. Mid-higher prices. Geelong
Sir Charles Darling – cheap lunch menu, specials nights. Geelong CBD
Lord Nelson – mid-range prices, but quaint establishment. Geelong CBD
The Sporting Globe – okay, not local, but good weekly specials. Geelong CBD
Irish Murphy’s – Irish cuisine, + hefty parmigiana challenge. Geelong CBD
The Waurn Ponds Hotel – a short walk from campus. Waurn Ponds
Little Creatures – hip and spacious. Good for large groups South Geelong
Eastern Spice – Quality Indian cuisine. Geelong CBD
Arani Thai – central Thai cuisine. Geelong CBD
Mexican Graffiti – cheap – mid-range prices. Taco Taco. Geelong CBD
Parkers Steakhouse – trading pineapples for beefy bliss. Geelong CBD
Lipari Café – Italian food at its best; excuse the price. Geelong CBD
Waurn Ponds Plaza – Plenty of options! Waurn Ponds
Bear and Bean – local favourite. Geelong CBD
Launch Café – Great mix of coffee and meals. Geelong CBD
Coffee Cartel – quaint, yet hip place to wake up. Geelong CBD
Deakin Lakehouse – on campus. Decent place. Waurn Ponds
Waurn Ponds Plaza – Muzz Buzz Java Juice Waurn Ponds
Skinny Dipper and Co – Great wholefoods alternative. Geelong
Well! Enjoy your new home along the bay, and if you make it here before Christmas, check out our Christmas tree on the waterfront. I’ve heard the ambience is quite nice.
Get empowered. Get Geelong.
Blog by your friendly local, Cameron Walker.