OUR walking tour provides opportunities to gain an understanding into key locations within one of the oldest continuous Chinatowns in the world and its influence on Chinese history and culture in Australia. We provide students with multicultural identities, quizzes, food samples and activities as well as access to both historic and contemporary locations eg street art.
The Chinese New Year Festival is held in February/March each year. Celebrations feature traditional and contemporary Chinese cultural activities and festivities, dances, Chinese opera and singing, karaoke competitions, numerous stalls of culinary delights, arts and crafts, Feasting, firecrackers, Chinese chess competitions, lion dances, dragon parades, calligraphy and children’s events. Several lanes are illuminated. During the Dragon’s Awakening Ceremony, the Millenium Dragon parades through the streets of Melbourne starting in Little Bourke Street. Mabel and David Wang helped restore the craft of Dragon-making to the world when they assisted a town in China to build Dai Long, our second dragon.
- Corrs Lane in China town is the smallest lane in Melbourne and connects to the Greek Precinct
- Corner Market Lane is the Chinese Mission and the former Kuo Ming Tang building. The lane houses the famous Flower Drum restaurant founded by the Lau family.
- China Square holds the Heavenly Gates of Nanking, the monument to China’s first president and the Cohen brother’s cabinet-making building, now the Chinese museum.
- Sun Yat Sen memorial.
- The Chinese Museum houses the three historic dragons of Melbourne. Other dragons can be found engraved and marked around the city.
- The Chinese warehouse 1888 is at 112-114 Little Bourke Street, a historic Boom period 1887 Sum Kum Lee building owned by ship-owner and philanthropist Sum Kee. The name of the architect is in the lane beside it: Charles De Lacey Evans.At 116-18 is a former Chinese Gospel Hall now called Ancient Times House (former home of the Archaeological Association).
- The Chinese Evangelist Hall is corner Lt Bourke and China square.
- Croft Lane is the former home of stables, ragged schools, brothels, brawls and gambling dens. It is also the rear of the Chinese Mission Church once led by famous civil rights campaigner Reverend Cheong. Today it is also a well-known Street art venue.
- Waratah lane is the home of Chinese gambling halls and, Squizzy Taylor two-up schools.
- Queen Victoria centre is the home of the former suffragette hospital and today Women Centre.
- On the corner of Heffernan Lane and Lt Bourke Street is the oldest church in China town the beautiful and tiny Chinese Methodist Church 1865, still used each Sunday morning.
- At 11 Heffernan Lane is the former first purpose-built Chinese restaurant (1890s) the Chung Wah..
- The oldest Chinese temple in Australia Num Pon Soon 1861 is at 200 – 202 Little Bourke Street.
- Celestial Lane (Chinese immigrants were once referred to by westerners as ‘celestials’) has several Chinese boarding houses from the nineteenth century built at numbers 15-17, 16-18 by the See Yup Society.
- Tattersall Lane is a glimpse of old Melbourne before the recent boom. The two Shanghai Noodle Houses represent 1800s cuisine.
OTHER IMPORTANT CHINATOWN HERITAGE
Early social welfare reforms
Melbourne boom, 1920s heritage and modern architecture,
Street Art in the Lanes
Early Christian Missions
The Labour movement
Outcasts of Slum Melbourne e.g 1920 crime eg gambling, sly grog, Squizzy Taylor etc.
Greek precinct Lonsdale Street
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