Dandenong, situated on the outskirts of Melbourne’s east, certainly doesn’t lack for vibrancy, thanks largely to the area’s large migrant population. Two-thirds of residents were born overseas from 132 countries – including India, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka – with languages other than English spoken by seven out of 10 residents.
Only joining Melbourne’s suburban sprawl in the late 1960s – its elevation from town status beginning with an influx of post-war migrants from Greece and Italy – Dandenong is like a microcosm of a city, with its own major shopping complex, pool and recreation centre, theatre and its iconic market – Melbourne’s second oldest – which best showcases the suburb’s multicultural dynamism.
30 kilometres southeast of the city, the suburb is surprisingly well serviced by train, bus and road networks. The CBD is only just over a half-hour drive via the Monash freeway (when it’s flowing).
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