Are you committed to escaping the main cities? If you're travelling in Victoria, make sure you plan a Ballarat caravanning holiday, or stopover. Only an hour and a half west of the Melbourne, Ballarat is a unique township. History is the principal aspect of Ballarat, with a past that remains ever present. As soon as you enter the town you'll immediately feel as though you've taken a little trip backwards, but with some modern elements in disguise.
If you're looking for an ideal time to visit Ballarat, there isn't one, as all highlights remain accessible throughout the year. Although, if you're adverse to the Winter weather, you may prefer visiting during the warmer months – Ballarat can get overbearingly chilly.
Coated in rich history, Ballarat is a vortex of storytelling. Every corner of this regional Victorian town will enlighten you with a unique aspect the past. Ballarat became a hub for immigration in the early 1850's due to the Gold Rush, where goldfields became the livelihood of many. Due to the rapid influx of those seeking out gold, there were many issues with licencing and policing of mining activities. However, to this day, the Gold Rush period is at the core of Ballarat, in which you can learn about at the Gold Museum and Sovereign Hill.
Also, another substantial element of history in Ballarat is the Eureka Stockade, in which the discontent of miners soon grew into a battle with the police (who were conducting inspections in an ill-fitting manner). In order to protect themselves from the police, the Eureka Stockade was built (a barricade). After a battle between both parties ended, the town was left with many casualties, which has forever marked Ballarat.
All this history has certainly shaped a curious town, where you won't find yourself left with forgettable memories. Ballarat caravanning is quite the gem and not far from the Melbourne CBD. Many Melburnians will consider Ballarat the perfect ‘day trip' location.
Location: Bradshaw Street, Ballarat
Easily one of the most advertised and well-known attractions in regional Victoria, Sovereign Hill is an escape like no other. Many people will visit Sovereign Hill time and time again, as this place will plant itself firmly in your memory – especially for those who're taking little ones.
Sovereign Hill, in summary, is a mini-town built in the exact style as during the Gold Rush period. Here you can walk through the dusty streets or catch a ride by horse and cart, slowly travelling past quaint shops run by real people.
Making your way through the small little town will take about half a day – but if you want to soak in maximum enjoyment of every aspect, you could easily spend the day. Gold panning is an activity for all to enjoy and you'll be surprised how long you spend on the hunt for that sparkling piece of rock.
Every shop has a unique drawcard with many ‘hands on' activities. You have the option of making your own candles, watching hard lollies in creation and go on a tour in the mines.
Visiting Sovereign Hill isn't cheap, but many will be happy to pay the price for such a rare insight and experience.
With your entry ticket to Sovereign Hill, you also get access to the Gold Museum, where you can purchase your gold gifts, and take a look at the history of the Gold Rush period.
Sovereign Hill is an important tourism highlight for Australia, not only Victoria, so you don't want to skip out on a chance to see its' wonder. It sits upon roughly 25 hectares of land and easy to explore for anyone.
Location: 121 Forbes Road, Leigh Creek
If you like things that are a little odd, but certainly quirky and entertaining, there is absolutely no way you can miss out on journeying through Kryal Castle. A minuscule eight kilometres out of Ballarat, you'll happen upon one the most interesting castle arrangments possible. No, it's not merely an aged building carrying ‘rich' history (although the history is fascinating), it's a theme park! Might we mention the only medieval theme park in Australia, which is less surprising than it sounds.
Is Kryal Castle beginning to reflect a place to keep the children entertained? Well, it's not, and we'd certainly be offending many if we were even to play with that idea. On the grounds of Kryal Castle, an adult can enjoy the many activities, shows and displays. If you've ever watched a movie with jousting and forever wished the opportunity to experience the sport, you can now!
Although you can't saddle up yourself, you can watch a jousting match in person!
1:30pm- The Royal Championship Joust – The Main Arena
The evil rule of Mordred and Morgiana has come down to the point of a pin, and it is time for Arthur to defend his crown. Who will win the throne once and for all? Will it be the mighty and tyrannous Mordred? Or the honest and true King Arthur himself? Help cheer on your favourite knight, the fate of the kingdom rests on this final test!
We're 100% certain you'll find Kryal Castle an interesting theme park, with history to go with all the thrills!
Location: 250 Fussell Street, Ballarat
Love wildlife and cute animals? Ballarat Wildlife Park offers another way to spend your day, especially if you're a wildlife lover. Visiting a wildlife park is a great opportunity to entertain any kids, but also an enjoyable day for adults. Ballarat Wildlife Park will allow you to get up close and personal with some gorgeous creatures, such as Koalas. We highly recommend you spend one of your days at this park while Ballarat caravanning.
- Tasmanian Devils
- And Giant Tortoise
Places To Eat
Ballarat caravanning is a historic experience, full of many intriguing pieces of history, but what's there to eat? You won't find Ballarat to be a broad platter of modern cuisine and dining, but you'll still find some hearty tucker in this goldfields region.
Location: 9379 Western Highway, Ballarat
If you are looking for modern feed in this historical heartland, the Ballarat Provedore is something which will satisfy your cravings. Titled as a Cafe, Bar and Pizzeria, there is a little something for everyone. Longing for a carb-loaded pizza delight? Or maybe you'd settle for strong coffee and delicate salad? You can find both cuisines here at the Ballarat Provedore. Even breakfast is a platter choice, with some nutritious and delicious options.
Sliders anyone? Yes, this popular dish is available, along with ‘low carb' options for those who're focussed on keeping their health in check. It sounds almost like you're visiting an inner city cafe!
- Avocado Crush
- Breakfast In Paris
- Pulled Pork Sliders
- Chilli Prawn Pizza
Location: 602 Eureka Street, Ballarat East
What's better than a curry if you're visiting a new locality in winter? Or perhaps you're even willing to delve into the Indian cuisine in Summer? Either way, it's a solid choice. Aromatic Indian food may be the perfect way to end your day in Ballarat. You can either dine in or choose takeaway, because we know some of us caravanners will enjoy eating in the comfort of their caravan.
- Chilli Chicken
- Lamb Rogan Josh
- Tandoori Chicken
Indian is certainly a hearty meal for us exhausted caravanners, which is why you should definitely treat yourself to Ballarat Indian Resturant.
Places To Stay
Location: 108 Clayton Street, Ballarat
Staying in Ballarat with your caravan is surprisingly simple, with the Big 4 Ballarat your central base to explore the highlights of the town. With an array of facilities on site, you won't be left feeling uncomfortable. Here you have access to a camp kitchen, where you can cook up a feast on the BBQ, or heat up a warm meal in the microwave. Although many of us caravanners already have our own cooking facilities, you may want to socialise in the camp kitchen area, or find appliances your caravan doesn't include. Within the camp kitchen you have undercover seating and heating – now that's dining in comfort.
- Ensuite Sites (for a little more convenience)
- Powered sites
- Giant Checkers
- Jumping Pillow
- Adventure Playground
- Tiny Tots Indoor Playground
As you can see this holiday park is extremely kid friendly – so if you're looking to keep the young ones entertained, inquire early! Your Ballarat caravanning adventure should be a comfortable and relaxing experience.
Location: 104 Stawell St S, Ballarat VIC 3350
Located East of the main Ballarat township, is the Eureka Stockade Holiday Park. With a name falling perfectly in line with the historic background of Ballarat itself, this park could be the perfect haven for your Ballarat caravanning experience. Eureka is a sub-section of Ballarat, and the park is only a short walk away from the Ballarat Wildlife Park. For those who're travelling with their beloved pooch, you'll happy to know this park allows your furry family member – which we know is high on the important list of many caravanners.
If you do end up staying at the Eureka Stockade Holiday Park, you'll be in the best position to get involved in learning about the Eureka Stockade, and right next to the iconic monument.
- Powered Sites
- Ensuite Sites
- Mini Golf Course
- Games Room
- Camp Kitchen
- Adventure Playground – across the road
Big 4 Ballarat Windmill Holiday Park
Location: 56 Remembrance Drive, Cardigan Ballarat VIC 3352
Yes, this is another Big 4 Holiday Park, but this one is a little bit different, and a little bit further out on the outskirts of the town. Instead of being in the heart of the area, you'll be in a more secluded section, which will suit some caravanners. Here you'll be closer to Lake Wendouree and have the opportunity to relax amongst bush surroundings. Although your new caravan abode will be a short drive away from central Ballarat, that doesn't mean you'll be Ballarat caravanning in less comfort. At the Big 4 Ballarat Windmill Holiday Park, you have a range of facilities on offer, with a standout being the heated indoor pool with two spas, splash pad and lap pool.
- Super Ensuite Powered Sites
- Powered Sites
- Indoor Sandpit
- Exercise Facilities
- Tennis Court
- Camp Kitchen
- Large Jumping Pillow
- Free Wireless Internet
- Basketball Ring