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Carlton, a place to call home

Meld Magazine

Fri May 06 2011


LOCATED just outside the Melbourne CBD and a stone’s throw away from Melbourne University, Carlton has become a popular suburb for international students looking for a place to call home. Meld Magazine has compiled a 101 guide for new students moving into the neighbourhood.

Grocery shopping

If you’re new to Carlton, one of the first things on your mind is figuring out where you can buy your everyday necessities.

Supermarket giant Woolworths is located at Lygon Courtand is usually the first port of call for most international students moving into the neighbourhood.

One-stop-shop. Lygon Court is the first port of call for many international students new to Carlton.

One-stop-shop. Lygon Court is the first port of call for many international students new to Carlton.

Stephen Lim, owner of Yahweh Asian Grocery. Photo: Aun Ngo

Stephen Lim, owner of Yahweh Asian Grocery. Photo: Aun Ngo

If you’re hankering for a taste of home, head down to Yahweh Asian Grocery located on the corner of Swanston St and Pelham Place for just about everything: curry sauces; herbal soups; Chinese spices; dried, canned and frozen goods; condiments; and all importantly, snacks and drinks that bring back happy memories of childhood (remember Kickapoo?).

Buy fresh fruits and vegetables from First Choice at 327 Lygon St and pick up some fresh bread rolls from Baker’s Delight at 319 Lygon St. Along the same stretch of road, you’ll also find Middle Eastern grocery store Nuts About Life (339 Lygon St) and Donninis Pasta selling fresh pasta next door.

Get your pasta fix from Donnininis Fresh Pasta on Lygon St. Photo: Aun Ngo

Get your pasta fix from Donninis Fresh Pasta on Lygon St. Photo: Aun Ngo

Donninis Fresh Pasta. Photo: Aun Ngo

Donninis Fresh Pasta. Photo: Aun Ngo

Health care

There are a number of health services in Carlton available for students who are feeling unwell. They include the University of Melbourne Health Service (38-146 Cardigan St), as well as Lygon Court Medical Clinic and Metropolitan Medical Centres Carlton on Lygon St. The doctors there will be able to treat common conditions like viruses, colds and flu, infections, as well as take blood and urine samples, give you injections and perform minor surgeries such as stitches and the removal of moles.

If you are in need of medication, there are also numerous pharmacies in Carlton, such as Truman Pharmacy (279 Lygon St), Pickford Pharmacy (179 Elgin St) and Amcal Chemist in Lygon Court.

Unlike some countries, the hospital emergency department should be your last resort, unless you are in a life threatening situation. But in the event of an emergency, the Royal Melbourne Hospital is the one closest to you at the corner of Grattan and Flemington streets.

If you’re after a dentist, you can go to the Royal Dental Hospital across the road from Melbourne University on Swanston St.

Photo: Aun Ngo

Photo: Aun Ngo


Most of the major banks have branches and ATMs in Carlton, which are located on the main shopping strip on Lygon St, starting from Westpac (310 Lygon St) to ANZ (280 Lygon St), Commonwealth Bank (259 Lygon St) and Bendigo Bank on the corner of Pelham and Lygon streets.

The only exception is NAB, located at 129 Elgin St.

Commonwealth and NAB also have branches located on campus at Melbourne University.

The Carlton Post Office on Elgin St, Carlton. Photo: Aun Ngo

The Carlton Post Office on Elgin St, Carlton. Photo: Aun Ngo

Post Office

Did you know that in addition to sending letters and parcels, you can also pay your bills, make money transfers and have your instant passport photos taken at Australia Post?

The Carlton Post Office at 146-154 Elgin St is a magnificent Renaissance Revival building constructed in the late nineteenth century. But for somewhere closer, head to the Carlton South post office at 113 Lygon St.

If you’re on campus, the Melbourne University Post Shop is located in the Architecture Building.

Print and process photos at Vanbar. Photo: Aun Ngo

Print and process photos at Vanbar. Photo: Aun Ngo

Books, printing, supplies and stuff

If you need to get notes, projects and other things printed outside of university, try Scott’s Copy and Print Express(670 Swanston St) and Dinkums Print & Design(460 Swanston St).

To print or process photos, head to Vanbar Imaging on 159 Cardigan St.

Artists can find quality art materials and supplies from Art Stretchers at 76 Victoria St, on the corner of Orr St.

Students who want to buy discounted school books may like to browse the Academic and General Bookshops on 196 Elgin St. If your tastes are more inclined towards the literary, head to Readings at 309 Lygon St or Borders across the road in Lygon Court.


Student support and other services

The International Student Care Serviceopened a year ago, and provides 24-hour support and welfare service for international students in Melbourne. It is located on Level 1, 19-21 Argyle Place South, and students can drop in anytime. More on the service can be found here.

The nearest police station is the North Melbourne Police Station, located at 36 Wreckyn St, opposite the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

And last but not least, the Carlton Community Websiteis a good resource for keeping up-to-date on everything taking place in the neighbourhood.

Melbourne is designed as a grid, so it’s not difficult to get around. Take a day off and get those legs moving – there is no better way to familiarise yourself to a new place than walking and exploring on your own. Even better, grab a friend or two. You never know what you might discover.

The International Students’ Guide to Carlton has been sponsored by the City of Melbourne’s Opportunities for Carlton Fund.