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Take a not-so public holiday in Ballarat

Visit Ballarat

11 Jul 2022

Filed underSee & Do

Craft your own not-so public holiday in Ballarat this winter and experience the best our city has to offer.

A not-so public holiday is just like a public holiday but available now – so there’s no waiting until the AFL Grand Final holiday on 23 September or Melbourne Cup Day on 1 November.

All you need to do is add a day or two of annual leave to your weekend away to enjoy an extended stay in Ballarat.

Then milk the benefits of midweek travel, including less people and traffic, better accommodation deals and restaurant availability, and more time to go off the beaten track.

Convinced yet?

Here’s how we would spend our self-made long weekend in Ballarat:



There’s a lot of buzz right now about the town’s newest hospo players – Peasant, Goldmine Restaurant and Bar, Pencilmark Wine Room, and Wayward Winery.

Lauded as “Ballarat’s newest and oldest dining experience”, the European-influenced Peasant (opening 22 July) will soon be plating up degustation menus of peasant-style food.

Each five-course menu will be unique to that day, with no two subsequent offerings the same.

Continuing with the Euro-inspired theme is Goldmine Restaurant and Bar in Victoria Street.

At the helm is head chef Sukhdeep Singh, who previously worked under Ian Curley at The European and Kirk’s Wine Bar.

Pencilmark Wine Room is home to an ever-changing roster of exceptional wines sourced from far and wide by its resident wino Anthony Schuurs.

A specially-curated menu by Underbar head chef Derek Boath showcases both local and international produce.

Continue your vino adventures at Waubra’s new Wayward Winery.

Formerly Quoin Hill Vineyard, this destination winery boasts sweeping views of the Pyrenees Ranges, along with eight acres of vines plus a cellar door (with plans for a restaurant in the not-too-distant future).

Moon and Mountain

For tried and tested Ballarat favourites, make a beeline for fine dining Asian eatery Moon and Mountain, modern Italian diner Ragazzone, Spanish tapas bar Meigas and South American hot spot Pancho.

Or check out one of the city’s contemporary cafes, such as Webster’s Market and Cafe, Hydrant Food Hall, Drive Cafe, Higher Society and Clothesline Cafe.

Art Gallery of Ballarat


If we’re talking bucket lists, no visit to Ballarat is complete without a visit to Sovereign Hill, the Ballarat Wildlife Park, the Art Gallery of Ballarat or Kryal Castle.

Or for something new, try Flying Chillies’ Malaysian and Indonesian cooking experiences, a Wax and Wine workshop with Backyard Beekeeping Ballarat or admire the work of Australia’s best filmmakers at the inaugural Poco Film Fest at Regent Cinemas.

Lal Lal Falls


If you’re craving wide open spaces, pack a coat and beanie and explore the beauty of Lal Lal Falls, Mount Buninyong, the Ballarat-Skipton Rail-Trail, Lake Wendouree and the nearby Ballarat Botanical Gardens.

And while you’re at the gardens, wander through the Robert Clark Conservatory‘s new winter display – an enchanted world of giant toadstools, butterflies and flowers including cyclamen, primula and cineraria.

The Provincial Hotel


For somewhere a little bit different to rest your weary head, take your pick from vintage 1970s caravan Jean-Claude, former churches Grayling’s Gift and Battista, the one-of-a-kind Cash Butcher, medieval wonderland Kryal Castle or an Unyoked tiny house at Warrenmang’s Peerick Wines.

And you can’t go wrong with a night or two at The Provincial Hotel, Quest Ballarat Station, Craig’s Royal Hotel, Mercure Ballarat Hotel or Sovereign Park Motor Inn.

Main image: Jean-Claude as captured by Shannyn Higgins


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.