Ballarat - Cities, Towns and Localities
Ballarat is steeped in history, with majestic architecture of historic buildings
and statues that line the main street giving the gold city a genuine rich
colonial feel unrivalled elsewhere in Australia.
you’ve explored Ballarat’s past and present, there’s a whole region to discover,
as the city lies close to the Great Ocean Road and to the heart of some of
Victoria’s finest attractions, the spectacular Grampians, wineries of the
Pyrenees and historic mining towns abound.
Ballarat is also host to a number of festivals during the year including the Ballarat
Heritage Festival, Buninyong Gold King Festival, Ballarat Cup Carnival, Ballarat
Begonia Festival and many more.
Following are some of the attractions to be
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Ballarat Wildlife Park
• Cnr York & Fussell Sts, BALLARAT EAST VIC 3350 Ph: 03 5333 5933 •
• The interactive wildlife experience
of a lifetime! Koalas, wombats, salt and freshwater crocodiles, Tasmanian devils, goannas,
giant tortoises, wedge-tailed eagles, snakes, wallabies, free-range kangaroos,
emus and more. The park is a comfortable drive from Melbourne by car or coach
and just 5 minutes from Sovereign Hill.
Ballarat Botanical Gardens
• Ph: 03 5320 7444 •
• Cover an area of 40 hectares divided into 3 distinct zones. The central
Botanical Gardens preserve the ‘gardenesque’ style of the Victorian pleasure
garden. On either side are open parkland buffers known as the North and South
Ballarat Chinese Heritage Trail
• Freecall: 1800 446 633 (Contact
• The Ballarat Chinese Heritage Trail has been put
together to provide visitors to Ballarat with an understanding of sites that are
rich in information on the Chinese in Ballarat in the 19th century. They
encompass some original sites, such as the cemeteries, and contemporary sites
such as Sovereign Hill (in particular the Chinese Village and Joss House).
Ballarat Fine Art Gallery
• Ph: 03 5320 5858 •
• Home of the original Eureka Flag, Australia’s largest and oldest regional art
gallery housing major works throughout the year.
• Bradshaw St, Sovereign Hill, BALLARAT VIC 3350
• Ph: 03 5337 1107 • Fax: 03 5332 9052 •
• The Ballarat Gold Trail explores
Ballarat’s goldfields heritage through a driving tour in and around Ballarat. It
takes you to 16 of the major sites associated with Ballarat’s mining history and
provides a marvellous orientation to the city, incorporating two of the best
panoramic views of Ballarat.
Signs scattered along the Gold Trail offer visitors detaisl about the life of
teh miners, the characters, culture and events that helped shape Ballarat’s
The complete two-hour tour includes sites relatively untouched since the 1850’s
as well as totally reconstructed sites like Sovereign Hill. Take the time to
discover for yourself some of Ballarat’s rich, golden history.
The Ballarat Gold Trail brochure is available from the
Ballarat Visitor Information Centre. The trail includes:
- Centenary of Gold Discovery
Information Centre, 39 Sturt St)
- Welcome Nugget
(cnr Ballarat Leagues Club, 52
Humffray St, Nth Ballarat)
- Black Hill Sign
(down dirt track to end of
road, Black Hill Reserve)
- Eureka Lead & Miners’ Cottages
Centre, Eureka St)
- The Chinese Village and Gold Monument
- Old Theatre Site
(near Red Lion Hotel, 223 Main
- Poverty Point
(off Main Rd)
- Gold Museum
(Bradshaw St, Sovereign Hill)
- Sovereign Hill Lookout
(Golden Point, Sovereign
- Ballarat Goldfields
(current operation, Mount
- Desoza Park
(Warrenheip St, Buninyong)
- Hiscock’s Sign
(opposite Cemetery, Learmonth St)
(near bridge on Magpie Rd)
- South Star Mine
(cnr Albert and Vickers St)
- Band of Hope and Albion Consoles Mine
(1 Darling Street)
- Victoria Park
• Cnr Magpie and Cobden Sts, MOUNT PLEASANT VIC 3350
• Ph: 03 5332 7526 (Evening) • Mobile: 0419 103 213 (Daytime) •
• Fri-Sat - 7 pm - 9 pm (later if fine, add 1 hour for summer time)
• The observatory was established in
1886 by James Oddie with the help of Captain Henry Evans Baker, who make most of
the telescopes on site. After Oddie’s death it was looked after by the School of
Mines, then the City of Ballarat East, before the amalgamation with the current
City of Ballarat.
The Ballarat Astronomical Society was formed in 1959 and have been the
caretakers ever since.
In 1989, the Observatory gained National Trust classification which include the
buildings, telescopes with one of the special features being the “Stained Glass
Windows” created between 1914 to 1929. The observatory has 16 stained glass
windows in total, an excellent collection of cosmic, religious and scientific
symbolism which portrayed some contemporary understanding of astronomy.
Jelbart Dome - house the 125 mm (5 inch) brass Jelbart Refractor
telescope made in 1916 in England and brought to Australia and donated to the
Observatory by the Jelbart Brothers in 1918.
- Oddie Telescope - 200 mm (8 inch) Newtonian
reflector. Built by Captain Henry Evans Baker c1880.
- Baker Telescope - 650 mm (26 inch) reflector.
Built by Captain Henry Evans Baker, commissioned 1886.
- Celestron Telescope - 350 mm (14 inch) Schmidt
- Federation Telescope - 406 mm (16 1/4 inch) Adcock
F16, Cassegrain/Springfield. Designed and built by Barry Adcock in 2001. This
telescope has disability access.
- Thommo Telescope - 250 mm (10 inch)
- Thompson Memorial - 200 mm (12 inch) Reflector
AstroTour - virtual tours of the universe. BAS is proud to announce the
Virtual REality/3D theatre is now at the Ballarat Observatory. This is similar
to IMAX but on a smaller scale. The movies (ranging from 30 to 50 mins) are made
at the Centre for Astrophysics and Supercomputering, Swinburne University of
Technology and cover various topics. Tours of the observatory and viewing if
fine, day or night. Talks can cover specific topics for school groups, a
requested by teachers and arranged for community groups.
Warm clothing is advised, even in summer for evening viewing.
Ballarat Tramway Museum
• Ph: +61 3 5334 1580 •
• Australia's most authentic Tramway
Museum. Trams run on Saturdays, Sundays, public and school holidays between
12.30 pm and 5 pm throughout the year. Charter trips can also be arranged.
Enjoy a ride on one of the 80 year old trams which provided Ballarat's main form
of passenger service until 1971. The vintage tram ride covers 1.3km of original
line through the beautiful Botanical Gardens by the western side of tranquil
The Museum is one of a couple of purely volunteer group in the world operating
tramcars in a public road and over a section of original track. At the depot
there is a museum display of photographs and tramway memorabilia for visitors.
The tramcar fleet and workshops area can also be inspected.
The rolling stock includes Ballarat Horse Tram No. 1 and ten tramcars which
initially ran in Melbourne between 1913 and 1951, plus two acquired directly
from Melbourne by the Museum in 1975.
• 5451 Midland Hwy, MOUNT FRANKLIN VIC 3461 • Ph: 03 5476 4208
• Opens Tue-Sun — 10 am - 5 pm and public holidays
• Had-made with Belgian chocolate. Come
taste the difference... Our goal is to provide you with world class hand-made
chocolates made from a unique combination of all natural, premium quality
ingredients, with no artificial preservatives. These, together with
Callebaut, Belgium’s finest couverture, make our chocolates sinfully
delicious... We have over 70 different selections of freshly hand-made
chocolates and are continuously creating new sensations to tempt you.
• Cnr Eureka & Rodier Sts, BALLARAT VIC 3350
• Ph: 03 5320 5858 • Fax: 03 5331 6361 •
• Open daily except Christmas Day
• The Eureka Centre in Ballarat stands
on the site of one of the most significant events in Australian history, the
“Eureka Rebellion”. In December 1854, Ballarat’s miners took up arms against a
corrupt and unjust goldfields administration. After years of oppression, the
bloody battle that followed led to the birth of true democracy in Australia.
The Eureka Centre — explore five exhibition galleries,
reflect in the Contemplation Space, see ‘Voices from Eureka’ in the Theatrette,
consider you verdict in the Hall of Debate, browse in the Eureka Gift Shop and
relax in our coffee kiosk.
Eureka Stockade Gardens — visit the 1880s monument,
explore the 2004 Eureka Circle, play at the Eureka Adventure Playground, picnic
with the family, take time to relax and reflect at this sacred site.
• Bradshaw St, Sovereign Hill, BALLARAT VIC 3350
• Ph: 03 5337 1107 • Fax: 03 5332 9052 •
• The museum takes you on an
extraordinary journey, beginning with a gold coin struck in 330-380 BCE for
Phillip of Macedon, father of Alexander the Great and ending in Ballarat, a
goldrush town that became a grand Victorian city in just 20 years.
“Land of the Wathaurung” is a multimedia display that tells the story of the
Wathaurung people, the traditional owners of the land in the region.
“Ballarat: Inspired by Gold” is a magnificent exhibition telling the city’s
story through the eyes of artists including Eugène von Guérard, S T Gill and
François Cogné and the panoramic photography of William Bardwell and others
Numerous artefacts from the diggings and quartz mines support extracts from
diaries, letters and government reports which give eye-witness accounts of the
Gold Rush that changed the face of Victoria.
The Jessica and Paul Simon Gold Pavilion boast one of Australia’s finest
collections of gold coins. Most were given by passionate collectors, Paul and
Jessica Simon, who believed the world’s history could be told in its coins.
If you buy a Ballarat Eureka
Pass, you will get two days of unlimited entry to explore Sovereign Hill and
the Gold Museum at your own leisure, along with admission to The Eureka Centre
and Ballarat Fine Art Gallery.
• One of Australia’s finest historic
theatre’s. The centre of performing arts in Ballarat since 1875.
• 407 Main Rd, BALLARAT VIC 3350
• Ph: 035332 2755
• Fax: 03 5332 2855
• A place of creation — Kirrit Barreet
(meaning place of creation) is an art and cultural centre that exhibits high
quality local and regional contemporary and traditional Aboriginal art and
craft. The centre was established by the Ballarat Aboriginal community as a way
to preserve cultural identity and educate non-Indigenous people about both
Koorie culture and the local Wathaurong tribe.
Kirrit Barreet is also an education centre. Visitors to the Aboriginal owned and
operated centre can enjoy educational tours, cultural talks, an art gallery,
profiling Victorian Aboriginal artists and a retail shop stocking a wide variety
of predominantly Aboriginal Victorian arts and crafts, including an extensive
bookshop and educational resources. Activities such as didgeridoo playing,
boomerang painting and throwing are available. We also have an indigenous plant
garden and feature garden.
• R.S.D. E332, BALLARAT VIC 3352
• Ph: 03 5334 7388 • Fax: 03 5334 7422 • Ph: 0413 599 391 (Wedding enquiries) •
• Situated on the picturesque slopes of
Mount Warrenheip, just 8 kilometres east of Ballarat on the Western Highway.
Come and enjoy the experience of life in the Medieval Days. Attractions include
daily live medieval re-enactments, magic shows, archery, a bluestone maze, and
live birds of prey (on weekends and holidays). There is also a fine collection
of arms and armour, a torture chamber, dungeons, a comical graveyard, an
exposition of the “Magna Carta” and jousting in season. Kryal Castle is also an
ideal venue for your next conference or wedding - with the tavern offering the
setting for a superb night - with Royal Accommodation available for function
guests or casual travellers. The castle building itself is a vast complex of
gothic towers, turrets, parapets and battlements, complete with moat and
• Ph: 03 5333 4242 •
• Victoria’s largest range of natural
gold nuggets found in local goldfields, plus a huge range of gold products for
• Sovereign Hill, BALLARAT VIC 3350 • Ph: 03 5337 1100 • Fax: 03 5331 1528 •
• Image going back over a century to
Victoria’s Gold Rush days, to relive the history and excitement of the era.
Sovereign Hill is a recreated goldfield township set across over 60 acres on a
site linked with the richest alluvial gold rush in the world. Sovereign Hill
faithfully depicts Ballarat’s first 10 years after the discovery of gold in
Australian history is brought to life with the streets bustling with people
dressed in costume of the period. The Diggings are alive with miners panning for
real gold, and you can even take a ride through the streets in a horse-drawn
carriage. There shops, hotels, schools, a theatre, crafts, steam-driven
machinery and working plant, all of which were know to have existed in Ballarat
during the 1850s.
You can try your luck at panning for gold on the Red Hill Gully Diggings. See
and experience the lifestyle of the early gold diggers in their tents and
mud-and-bark huts. Learn about the influence of the Chinese at Golden Point on
the Ballarat goldfields. You will see horses everything from hauling carriages
and carts to providing horse power to work the early mining machinery on the
In the Main Street, as well as people in period costume, you will also see
business typical of the era. There is the United States Hotel with its Victoria
Theatre, and the Charlie Napier Hotel, representing two of Ballarat’s more
famous hotels. Treat yourself at the Spencer’s Confectionary Shop and the Hope
Bakery. Enjoy the special aroma of the Grocers or the Apothecaries’ Hall and
admire the stock of elegant items in the Drapery. You can exhilarate with riding
in the Five-In-Hand Concord Coach and then have your photograph taken in the Red
Hill Photographic Rooms.
You can also watch Carriage Builders and Wheelwrights at work. There is also a
Furniture Manufactory, a working Jeweller’s, Tinsmiths, Metal Spinners,
Blacksmiths, Potter, a Candlemaker’s and Confectionery Factory.
In the quartz mine precinct you can re-discover the steam age. It begins in the
Boiler House where two Cornish Boilers produce steam for the quartz crushing
Battery. the Beam Pump and the Mine Blacksmith’s Shop. The mine building stands
beside the mullock heap of the New Normanby Mine. There is a guided tour below
ground where you will see some of the original workings of that mine, a number
of dioramas depicting the working life of miners in the quartz era and the
traditional digging methods used in the late nineteenth century.
If that is not enough you can also see our
sound and light show
under the stars and maybe stay overnight in our accommodation.