Aboriginal Melbourne walk
The Eastern Kulin is an alliance of 5 Traditional Owner groups: the Wurundjeri, Bunurong, Dja Wurrung, Taungurung and Wadawurrung peoples. Eastern Kulin Country extends around Port Phillip and Western Port, up to the Great Dividing Range and through the Loddon and Goulburn River valleys. The groups are spiritually, culturally, politically and economically connected with a shared creator, Bunjil.
1. Pastor Sir Douglas and Lady Gladys Nicholls Memorial
Pastor Sir Doug Nichols and his wife Lady Gladys, dedicated their lives to community service. Their great-granddaughter Ngarra Murray etched totems into the blue stone paving here signifying the emu – Bigarrumdja (Yorta Yorta) – and the Crow – Waa (Boon Wurrung/Woi Wurrung).
2. Paving inlay
The artwork called 'Ceremony' references the site as a traditional ceremonial ground and meeting place for the people of the Kulin Nation.
3. Ian Potter Centre: NGV
Includes pieces from renowned artists including Emily Kam Kngwarray and Rover Thomas, alongside contemporary works by Brook Andrew and Destiny Deacon.
4. Mabu Mabu - Big Esso
Get comfy at communal tables and tune into ‘Island Radio’ highlighting blak performers. Drinks feature native ingredients and are supplied by Indigenous owned and social impact businesses.
5. Koorie Heritage Trust
Join workshops, educational and walking tours, or participate in Indigenous cross-cultural awareness training. There is also a shop for design pieces by Indigenous makers and creatives.
6. Birrarung Marr
This popular park next to Federation Square is a meeting place for community and celebrations.
In the Woi Wurrung language of the Wurundjeri people, birrarung means ‘river of mists’ and ‘marr’ relates to the edge.Discover more about Birrarung Marr
7. Birrarung Wilam
This installation celebrates the cultural and spiritual connections between Aboriginal people and rivers.
8. Eel Trap sculpture
Made from weaving basket grass, eel traps were set near the shallow waterfalls that used to exist downstream, separating the freshwater of the river from the salty water of the bay.
9. Speakers Corner
Communities gathered here between the 1890s to the 1960s for regular forums and debates with renowned Aboriginal thinkers and activists like Bill Onus and Gary Foley.
10. Yarra Park and MCG
Scarred, or culturally modified, trees can still be found in Yarra Park. Football games at the MCG are a tangible connection for the Eastern Kulin to this area. They played marngrook here, an early version of football, elements of which still feature in Australian Rules Football today.
Bunjilaka (Melbourne Museum)
Bunjilaka celebrates thousands of years of continuous culture through multimedia experiences and artworks, alongside garden trail and Forest gallery of indigenous plants and wildlife.
Standing by Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheenner (Gallows Hill)
Kings Domain Resting Place
Tromgin Billabong (now site of ornamental lake) Royal Botanic Gardens
Tromgin Billabong, once part of an extensive integrated river and billabong system, survives as part of the ornamental lake in the Botanic Gardens. A traditional fishing spot, eels were a plentiful food source for Eastern Kulin people.
To further explore places of Aboriginal significance within the city, visit the aboriginal-map.melbourne.vic.gov.au. You can also check out our Aboriginal Melbourne page.
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