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RvTrips explores Ballarat
Ballarat
Australia VIC 3350
 
Ballarat

Ballarat

Description

Ballarat is a city located on the Yarrowee River in the Grampians region of Victoria, Australia. The city is approximately 105 kilometres (65 mi) west-north-west of the state capital, Melbourne, with a population of some 102,230. It is the third largest population for an inland city in Australia. Locals are known as 'Ballaratians'.
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Reviewed by RvTrips
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RvTrips' comments

28 Jul 2017

We visited the beautiful town of Ballarat during April and this was probably not the best time of year as the weather was cold and raining. No worries as we rugged up and enjoyed our stay. Walked around the streets and marveled at the historic buildings – the railway station dates back to 1863 and the facades of buildings lining the streets are quite fascinating. The main street of Ballarat is very wide with a huge median strip /park down the centre which features many statues, gardens and rotundas.

The Visitor Information Centre is housed in the Town Hall Building with short term parking in Armstrong Street and Bath Lane (behind the building). Open daily form 9 am to 5 pm (except Christmas day).  We spoke to one of the staff who was a keen gold prospector and insists that there is still plenty to be found around the area.  The VIC has internet and recharge points, a kids corner plus a couple of long vehicle parks suitable for those towing caravans or camper trailers.

We enjoyed lunch at The Unicorn - a unique cafe and dining experience housed in one of the oldest hotels built in Ballarat - open 7 days a week from 7 am for breakfast, morning tea and lunch. I recommend you stop by and check out the funky interior -  interesting paintings on the wall, old record album covers and even some singles plus soft music playing in the background. We discovered later that the music was coming from records being played on a turntable on a shelf near the counter. You must go to the bathroom when you visit this café – what amazing decorations. The ladies has a very shinny dressing table from the 50’s or 60’s and lots of black and white photos all around the walls of musicians from the jazz era.  In the corner is a beautiful bedroom chair.  Just lovely.  

We stayed for a couple of nights at the BIG4 Ballarat Windmill Holiday Park on Remembrance Drive. This park is relatively easy to access and there is a large parking area to leave the van while checking in. Boom Gates sit either side of a lovely garden featuring, of course, a windmill which actually spins when windy. This lovely park has the great feature of an indoor heated pool complex with lap pool, spa, kids pool, splash play. All fully enclosed with plenty of windows allowing light into the area - you can keep up with the laps at any time of year.  

Called into the Ballarat Golf Club on the way home on evening. What a great looking course and the clubs history dates back to about.1895. The new course, I believe, was designed by a British Open Champion Peter Thomson in 2008. It has been ranked in the Top 100 public access courses in Golf Australia Magazine. In the club itself is a large dining room overlooking the course and this was fully booked for dinner. Specials are available each night and Sunday has a carvery of baked meats. 

We also spent a few nights at the BIG4 Ballarat Goldfields Holiday Park which is the closest caravan park to Sovereign Hill - in fact walking distance. The caravan park is extremely well presented and some of the cabins have been built to resemble old miners cottages. The dump point is a toilet housed in a funky old outdoor 'dunny' building complete with a chain pull flush system. It has a large children's playground and indoor play-land for younger children (1-5) plus a lovely resort style pool opposite reception.  

A must see while staying in Ballarat is Sovereign Hill telling the history of Ballarat's early goldfields, and the Gold Museum (across the road). A map will give you a list of daily activities at Sovereign Hill and I understand your ticket will last for two consecutive days (make sure you have it validated).

Another stop during our stay was the Museum of Australian Democracy at Eureka (M.A.D.E) which tells of the pivotal role of the Eureka Stockade played in shaping Australia's democracy. It is located on the site of the 1854 Eureka Stokade and has permanent as well as visiting exhibitions. We enjoyed lunch in the M.A.D.E cafe and found some really interesting gifts in the extensive shop behind reception.  A great afternoon.

We would not hesitate to return to Ballarat and continue to explore this beautiful historical town in Victoria - about 120 kilometres north of Melbourne.

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Ballarat Weather
Mostly sunny
Range 15°C - 35°C
Currently 16.7°C
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Explore Ballarat with RvTrips and find out where to stay, what to do and what to see. Helping caravan, motorhome and camper owners have a great holiday.
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