Wednesday, October 19, 2011

6 Things To Do In Ballarat

Ballarat is one of Victoria’s most beautiful and historic centers and if you haven’t visited yet, you should. Originally settled as a rural town, Ballarat came to symbolize gold following the great gold rushes of the 1800’s and early 1900’s. In particular Ballarat is famous as the scene of the Eureka Stockade, an armed uprising by miners protesting licensing fees that ended in 35 deaths. It’s easy to fill up a week or two roaming around this picturesque city, though if you are short on time, at the very least include these 5 ideas on your list.

Stay in Style

Ballarat Accommodation is all first class, though if you have to choose only one place to stay, try the George Hotel. Built in the 1850’s, this charming colonial style hotel is a magnificent building and will provide you with all the luxury you hope for. From polished fancy door knobs to beautiful bed linen, this hotel is like none other.

Sovereign Hill

Modeled on Ballarat of the 1850’s, this re-created gold mining town consists of over 70 buildings based on those that lined the main street over 150 years ago. For around $20 you can step back in time, feel the excitement of the Ballarat Gold Rush and even do a tour through an underground mine. Also containing the Gold Museum, Sovereign Hill is well worth the visit. Allow plenty of time to check it out properly.

The Botanical Gardens

Take a break from the history and relax and enjoy the serenity of these impressive gardens. If you are looking for a peaceful place to have your lunch or read a book, look no further. A collection of mostly native plants and flowers, these gardens are famous for their Begonias, a Ballarat specialty, with Ballarat even hosting an annual Begonia Festival in March each year.

Visit The Ballarat Fine Art Gallery

The Oldest Art Gallery in Australia, the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery is an impressive building and has an equally impressive collection of colonial era art. A particular highlight is the tattered original Eureka Stockade flag. If you are even remotely interested in art or history, it’s worth taking the time to visit this Ballarat gem.

Have A Beer

There are more than fifty different pubs in the city of ballarat, all full of charm and charater and no two are the same. Do as the miners do, and cool off in one of the historic watering holes and reflect on the lives of those who came there before you.

Pay Tribute

Walk down the Avenue of Honour, a 22 km stretch of trees planted in memory of those who fought in World War Two. This beautiful and somber boulevard is a stunning memorial inspired by the many Ballarat men and boys who went off to fight for our freedom.

Enjoy Ballarat! It is a city full of history, character, friendly locals and is the perfect place to get away to from the city. You’ll not only enjoy your stay, but you’ll leave knowing both more about the area and also about what it means to be Australian.

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