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Get into the festive spirit this Christmas in Ballarat

Visit Ballarat

18 Nov 2021

Filed underFamily Friendly

It might be a little cliché but Christmas truly is the most wonderful time of the year in Ballarat.

In 2021, the city’s festivities will feature old favourites like the floral reindeer and giant bauble along with new additions including a Christmas Art Trail and Santa’s workshop.

So, this Christmas, come to the Ballarat CBD for the festive spirit, dine in at your favourite foodie spot then wander the city’s retail treasures to find the perfect gift.

Head to christmasinballarat.com.au for the full December line-up.

CLICK HERE for a printable version of the Christmas in Ballarat map

Santa’s workshop

Head down to the bottom of Sturt Street and check out the magic that is the Albert Street green space (between Parent Place and Grill’d).

Take a peek inside Santa’s workshop and see how many busy elves you can find.

The green space is the handiwork of the City of Ballarat’s parks and gardens team.

Kids’ workshops and storytelling sessions

From magical nutcrackers to musical elf chimes and bauble bling, Ballarat is getting its craft on this Christmas.

Throughout December, the Albert Street pop-up will host free kids’ workshops with Letter Gems plus Ballarat artists Emily Van Der Molen and Margie Balazic.

Spots are limited, so book now at bit.ly/3kIXmib for Margie’s sessions, bit.ly/3kPhCit for Emily’s sessions, or bit.ly/3kKsjTa for the Letter Gems sessions.

Ballarat storyteller Renee Price will also be hosting free Storytelling with Mrs Claus sessions throughout the month at Santa’s workshop, Collins Booksellers on Lydiard and Coltman Plaza.

Christmas Art Trail

Ballarat’s new Christmas Art Trail features artworks by five local artists – Lucy Frith, Sally Gregory, Caroline Keys, Dillon Naylor and Tegan Crosbie.

From 1 December, follow the trail through the Ballarat CBD, snap a selfie with Santa, pat the reindeer or stand under the mistletoe. 

And don’t forget to take a photo and share your festive experience on social media with the hashtag #christmasinballarat

CLICK HERE for a printable version of the Christmas Art Trail map

Floral reindeer and sleigh

It wouldn’t be Christmas in Ballarat without the city’s beloved floral reindeer and sleigh.

This is the 12th year the display has been a festive fixture in Sturt Street and it always makes for a memorable photo opportunity.

Christmas stars

While you’re in Sturt Street, make sure you check out the giant shooting star in the 400-block plus the magical crystal star opposite the Ballarat Town Hall.

Both stars were designed by Ballarat artist Zlatko Balazic and made their shiny debut last year.

Giant bauble

Another yuletide favourite in Ballarat is the giant walk-through bauble in the Bridge Mall.

As beautiful as the bauble is by day, it truly sparkles at night.

Live music and roving entertainment

This December in the lead-up to Christmas, the Ballarat CBD will be bustling with live music every Friday from 6.30pm and Saturday from 11am-1pm and again from 6.30pm courtesy of:

You can also enjoy roving entertainment every Saturday from 10am and Sunday from 11am thanks to:

Christmas markets and shops

Start or finish your Christmas shopping at one of Ballarat’s upcoming markets:

Ballarat Carols by Candlelight

After a COVID-enforced hiatus, Ballarat Carols by Candlelight will make its highly-anticipated return on Sunday 19 December at Mars Stadium.

From 3pm, an exciting line-up of family fun will include soccer clinics with Western United, an outdoor screening of Christmas classic Elf on the stadium’s scoreboard, Paw Patrol meet and greets plus a masterclass with MasterChef alumni Tim Bone.

Carols by Candlelight will then take to the stage from 7.30pm with a cast of talented local performers plus Opera Australia’s Jason Wasley and musical theatre star Sarah Landy.

Tickets are free and must be booked online at bit.ly/2YymUab

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The City of Ballarat acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land we live and work on, the Wadawurrung and Dja Dja Wurrung People, and recognises their continuing connection to the land and waterways. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging and extend this to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.