Ballarat Winter Festival


A melting pot of art and culture, Ballarat is home to some of the finest, oldest and most contemporary art in regional Australia. Explore the huge offering of galleries and museums, admire the architectural wonders and historic cobbled laneways, and immerse yourself in a winter wonderland of artisanal delight.


Check-in to one of Ballarat's stunningly-renovated historic apartments such as Twelve Errard or Earle Ballarat Lascelles Terrace. As well as providing a luxurious home base, you'll also receive a complimentary bottle of wine on arrival if you mention the Ballarat Winter Festival upon booking.


Get set to rock the night as part of the 4th annual Ballarat Winter Festival Laneways Lumieres. This year’s offering is a uniquely Ballarat DubStep immersive light and sound installation igniting all of Alfred Deakin Place and Police Lane. Experience the Lumieres explode to life every hour on the hour, and dance the night away with the beat of some of Ballarat’s favourite musicians.

Every Wednesday in July, Ballarat's Hop Temple will also be celebrating Christmas in July with a series of entertainment accompanied by warming mulled wine and cider. Experience the magic of the festive season with carols by the moonlight and fairy lights, before indulging in a Hoppy Christmas Burger and some ales!


The Art Gallery of Ballarat - Australia's oldest and largest regional art gallery - will be hosting the French exhibition Into Light. Running through to September, this exhibition gives audiences the exclusive chance to view some 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, culture and delight.


Continue with the artsy theme of the day, and venture on your own gallery trail. Stop in at The Lost Ones Contemporary Gallery, Post Office Gallery and Backspace Gallery, and immerse yourself in the work of artists from near and far. As you wander through the city streets, explore the cobbled laneways of Police Lane, Hop Lane and McKenzie Street and see what other wonders you can unearth.


Head along on one of the Winter Festival hot chocolate historical walking tours, bringing the city's history, architecture and beauty to life. Walk among the gardens, statues and heritage buildings before warming up with a hot chocolate at Craig's Royal Hotel.


Drive to our award-winning tourist attraction Sovereign Hill where you’ll spend your day. Australia’s number one outdoor museum, the award-winning tourist attraction provides you with a detailed glimpse into 19th century life. Try your luck gold-panning, stroll down the Main Street, take a mine tour, 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 featuring the mystical Winter Wonderlights. A magical event not to be missed.


Ladies, pamper yourself with a special day of champagne, fashion, retail and sweet treats as the finest independent retailers from Ballarat and surrounds come together under the one roof for a relaxing afternoon soiree as part of Ballarat Boutique (July 8). Held at the Mining Exchange, this is the me-time you’ve been waiting for. If you’re unable to make it for the boutique, head on a Hattie and the Wolf shopping tour and explore the unique retail experiences scattered across the city.


Use the winter holiday period to indulge in the gastronomic delights that await. The winter festival will see the return of the Ballarat Potato Festival (June 30) celebrating the spud in a variety of dishes and forms, as well as the inaugural Salumi and Charcuterie Festival (July 21), with both events showcasing the best produce and freshest ingredients of the region! Local eateries will also be serving up their very own warming pies during winter as part of the Ballarat Pie Competition, so eat your way around the town as you partake in some beautiful pastries during your stay.


The sweet sweet sounds of jazz are sure to warm you up during this winter season as part of The Jazz Series. Featuring several jazz performances presented by a diverse range of performers, these shows will include music from the giants of jazz from the 20th century through to today, plus some numbers and original compositions from local and national artists.

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