Ballarat Quick facts

* Population approximately 84,000
* 110 kilometres west of Melbourne
* Nineteenth century gold rush town and home of Sovereign Hill
* Local wineries specialising in chardonnay and pinot noir
* Prior to European settlement the area was occupied by the Wathawurung Aborigines.

Ballarat is Victoria’s largest inland city. It is famous for being the site of the world’s largest deposit of alluvial gold, and almost a third of all gold found in the colony was taken from its rich quartz reefs. The legacy of this boom period is still evident in the majestic architecture and wide tree-lined streets of the town today. Explore Ballarat’s rich history and heritage, nearby natural attractions and make the most of the friendly, cosmopolitan atmosphere.

Activities and attractions
* Explore the beautiful Botanical Gardens and Lake Wendouree
* Walk along Lydiard Street, a fine example of a Victorian streetscape
* Visit the Mining Exchange, where troopers gathered in 1854 before setting off to quell a revolt by miners
* Walk the Eureka Trail, from Camp Street to the Eureka Stockade Centre taking in many Eureka sites along the way
* Pan for gold or chat with the storekeepers and miners at Sovereign Hill, where the lives and times of a typical gold mining settlement has been re-created
* Relive the "Battle of the Southern Cross" in a sound and light spectacular at Sovereign Hill
* Visit the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery, Australia’s oldest and largest regional gallery, and view the comprehensive collection of Australian art
* Taste the region’s award-winning wines at the cellar door or head to the nearby Pyrenees and Grampians wine regions
* Visit the award-winning Ballarat Wildlife Park
* Visit the picturesque town of Buninyong, scene of one of the region's earliest gold rushes. Lining the streets are many of the town's original buildings still preserved and open for business..

Major events
* Ballarat Begonia Festival – March
* Royal South Street Competitions August – November
* Eureka Week – December

How to get there
Ballarat is just over 1 hour from Melbourne via the Western Highway. Daily rail and coach services are available from Melbourne.

Ballarat Tourist Association
Links

Ballarat Tourism - www.visitballarat.com.au
Ballarat City Council - www.ballarat.vic.gov.au
Events Ballarat - www.eventsballarat.com
Business Ballarat - www.businessballarat.com
Ballarat Begonia Festival - www.ballaratbegoniafestival.com
Commerce Ballarat - www.commerceballarat.com
Tourism Victoria - www.visitvictoria.com.au
Tourism Accreditation - www.tourismaccreditation.com.au


(c) Ballarat Aboriginal Cultural Experience & Kirrit Barreet Aboriginal Art Gallery