Ballarat Winter Festival


Pull your loved one close and wander along Ballarat's glistening streetscapes, umbrella in-tow, as you explore all the magical beauty of a romantic winter wonderland! 


Stay a night or two, and enjoy whispering sweet nothings to your better half. Our pick for accommodation is Craig’s Royal Hotel, a luxurious gold-rush era grand hotel where romance and relaxation go hand in hand.


Get comfortable at one of our award-winning restaurants or romantic wine bars for a well-deserved night-cap. Cosy up by the fire at Mitchell Harris Wines and order yourself a locally-produced gourmet dinner accompanied by a glass of red.


Your Ballarat Winter experience awaits! Rug up, put on that beanie and get ready to treat the senses! Meander the cobbled streets hand in hand, until you stumble across the Art Gallery of Ballarat - Australia’s oldest regional art gallery. Take your time as you admire the permanent collection of historic fine art as well as the indigenous and contemporary art. Afterwards, venture to the temporary French exhibition Into Light, showcasing outstanding 19th- and 20th-century impressionist artworks from the Musée de la Chartreuse. Featuring pieces reflecting the romantic seascapes and tranquil landscapes of northern France through to paintings celebrating pure light, colour and the lives of ordinary people, this show will have you yearning for a Parisian life of calm, romance and delight. Following your gallery visit, pop into the adjoining Kittelty's café and grab yourself some lunch. The café menu sources local ingredients and serves up a wealth of homemade goodness.


Ballarat offers world class spas to warm you up and relax the muscles. Choose one of the Couples spa packages from Ballarat Sanctuary Day Spa or Elysium Day Spa, sit back and enjoy!  Afterwards, drive to our award-winning attraction Sovereign Hill where you’ll spend the rest of your day. Try your luck gold-panning, stroll down the Main Street hand-in-hand, watch live performances or indulge in a bag of iconic Raspberry Drops. The museum will also host its magical Christmas in July: Winter Wonderlights activities during the Winter Festival. A magical event not to be missed.


Ballarat has some of the best food and wine offerings in the Western Highlands. Check out the latest from Moon and Mountain. If you are feeling adventurous hit up one of several live music venues such as Karova Lounge or The Lost Ones Basement Bar to catch some of the country’s biggest music acts or some of Ballarat’s most talented musicians. The Winter Festival program will also feature The Jazz Series events, bringing the night to life with a diverse range of smooth jazz tunes.


Take a morning stroll around the iconic Lake Wendouree and Ballarat Botanical Gardens before settling into Webster’s Market and Café for a fine coffee and brunch experience. One of the local favourites, this café looks out onto one of the city’s most romantic streets with some seriously romantic dishes to match!


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