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Summer in Ballarat for the big kids

Visit Ballarat

18 Nov 2021

Filed underMade of Ballarat

Many of us have fond summertime memories as a kid; splashing around in your favourite local swimming hole, barbeque dinners that went on long after your bedtime, and the creamy taste of your favourite ice-cream that melted quicker than you could eat it.

But just because your childhood is behind you doesn’t mean you can’t have the same sort of fun as an adult.

So, for those looking for some summer fun, here’s our favourite ways to experience Ballarat as a big kid.

Enjoy cocktails in the sun

Get the crew together for a boozy afternoon in the sun. From French Martinis from Clara – a cocktail caravan in the charming courtyard at The Provincial – to cider and cheese boards from Airstream bar Little Sid and floral-infused gin in the sun at Johnny Alloo, your options are endless.

Some of our other favourite venues serving delicious cocktails include The North Star, Mitchell Harris Wines, 18th Amendment Bar and Renard.

Sit back and listen to live music

Order a cold brew and relax to the sounds of local musicians who take to the stages at local brew pub Aunty Jacks and beer hall Hop Temple every Sunday.

For those who prefer their music over wine and cheese platters then you can’t go past RJM’s Wine Bar.

Blues, brews and BBQ Sundays are back at Hop Temple from 1.30pm. Image: Matt Dunne.

Sign up for a workshop

Take part in this hands-on experience and learn about the craft of brewing at Aunty Jacks. But if beer isn’t really your thing, then ceramics might be. Regular hand-built ceramic workshops are held in the very cool loft at The Green House Ballarat.
We hear they’re also opening a bar in their newly-renovated outdoor space, so watch this space.

Take advantage of balmy summer days and dine outdoors

Ballarat’s outdoor dining game is strong, so why opt for eating indoors when you can soak up some fresh air over a plate of fresh seasonal produce prepared by one of the region’s exception chefs.
You’re not short of options in Armstrong Street, with Pancho, Meigas, Saigon Allee and the Forge Pizzeria all great locations. By Lake Wendouree, the Ballarat Yacht Club and Lake View are always popular, and in Buninyong you can’t go past The Shared Table or The Red Door Pizzeria.

For brunch there’s Drive, Yellow Espresso, Webster’s Market and Café, and Higher Society, just to name a few.

Cool down in a local swimming holes

Located 20 kilometres west of Ballarat, Lake Burrumbeet is a large freshwater lake. Renowned as a good carp fishing spot, the lake is also perfect for swimming, boating, kayaking and jet skiing.

A popular spot for all ages, St Georges Lake was once a mining dam but today serves as a great summer base for water activities. Another Creswick swim spot, Calembeen Park and its tranquil surrounds are a firm local favourite.

And, of course, we can’t forget ice-cream

It’s hot, you’re bothered, and all you want is something cold and delicious. It’s at this point you need to head on over to Il Piccolo for the best artisan gelato in town.


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.