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    Normandy Nugget
    by Kate-Me
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    Normandy Nugget 2

    by Kate-Me Updated Jan 30, 2006

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: The Normandy Nugget was found close to the surface by a prospector with a metal detector at Coolgardie in Western Australia, only recently, in 1995!

    Some find!

    It was on temporary display in 2005 at the Gold Museum.

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    Heritage housing

    by Kate-Me Written Sep 20, 2004

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    Favorite thing: One of my favorite things about Ballarat (in its oldest streets - the ones with heritage streetscapes) is its heritage housing/architecture.
    The most predominant styles are Victorian houses/cottages with wrought iron lace work on the verandahs, Edwardian (which this house in Drummond Street would fit into), Californian Bungalow and there are still some Victorian terraces remaining in streets like Lydiard Street.
    Well worth taking a bit of a drive or walk around to see the different styles, usually painted in heritage colours.

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    Gold Museum: Normandy Nugget on loan display

    by Kate-Me Written Jun 17, 2004

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    Normandy Nugget

    Favorite thing: Currently at the Gold Museum the Normandy Nugget is on display until the end of July.
    It is owned by Newmont Australia, one of the largest gold mining companies in Australia (and the world).

    It weighs 819 oz (about 25 kgs)
    It is the 26th largest nugget ever found, and is the second largest intact nugget in the world (as almost all the others have been melted down, apart from the Welcome Nugget (2217 oz, found in Ballarat in 1858 and living on display in a casino in Las Vegas)

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    Swans II

    by Kate-Me Written Aug 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: A trip to Lake Wendouree isn't complete without paying the swans a visit (the birds prefer it if you bring food!)
    Beware though driving around the lake. The speed limit is 50 km/hr but at times you may need to go a lot slower, and to watch out for swans (there are some Aussie 'swan crossing' signs) as they do cross the road to forage around in people's front gardens or on nature strips.

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    Swans I

    by Kate-Me Written Aug 25, 2003

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    Swans floating serenely by

    Favorite thing: Lake Wendouree is very picturesque and you can have very different views of it, depending what side of it you're on.
    The lake itself is always different, and is home to an abundant array of birdlife, including many different species of ducks and water birds (some of which are seasonal) and of course Australia's famous black swans. I find their numbers here far greater than at any other lake I've been to in Australia. Try feeding a couple and watch the others swim in from all directions.

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    Trash and Trivia

    by Kate-Me Written Aug 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: The Trash and Trivia Market at the Ballarat Showgrounds (affectionately known by locals as 'Trash') is Ballarat's large Sunday market.
    It sells predominantly secondhand goods, though more and more these days it is expanding into the clothing and new goods line. Much of it is outdoors, but it is so popular that hundreds of locals brave the cold to go there each week in winter anyway. There are also some sheltered sheds containing goods, and two of the Show pavillions are also in use.
    It's also a great place to pick up secondhand books, often very cheaply. A really good spot to find unusual items and barter with stallholders to get yourself a bargain.
    I highly recommend the great snacks (including Samosas and Pakoras) at the Curry Delight Indian food caravan, which is there each week. At other vans you can also buy fairy floss, hot dogs, chips, or BBQ food, and often there is a Dutch pancake stand in one of the pavilions as well.
    Sometimes there are rides (like the jumping castle) for the children.
    Entry is a 20c donation which goes to the Rotary Club of Ballarat charity, who run the market. It runs from about 8 am - 1 pm each Sunday. Address: Creswick Road, Ballarat (not far from the railway line)

    Fondest memory: Trash is one of my very fondest memories of Ballarat. I've been going there ever since I was very young, and had a couple of fun turns at having a stall there along with my family when I was much younger.

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    Lake Picnics

    by Kate-Me Updated Aug 25, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Favorite thing: Lake Wendouree is also a very popular spot for picnics. There are playgrounds, picnic tables and BBQ's at several points around its circumference, or you can just sit on the grassy shores and admire the views...

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    • Hiking and Walking
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    Lake sports

    by Kate-Me Updated Aug 25, 2003

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    Lake Wendouree on a blue day

    Favorite thing: Lake Wendouree is ever popular, with many runners, joggers, cyclists and walkers of all ages taking advantage of the well made 6 km circuit.
    Ballarat's Olympic marathon runner Steve Moneghetti holds the lap of the lake record.
    It's a great focal activity point of the city.

    Related to:
    • Cycling
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    The Eureka Flag

    by Kate-Me Written Jun 27, 2003

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    Eureka Flag

    Favorite thing: This is a copy of Ballarat's famous Eureka Flag, made and first raised during the 1854 goldfields Eureka Rebellion Uprising in Ballarat.
    What remains of the original flag is on display in the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery.
    Australian states each have their own flag, and the Aboriginal people have their own flag, but I don't know of any other Australian city which has its own flag like this. It's rather special and our city is proud to fly it. Ballarat even has issued a limited number of its own car number plates bearing the Eureka Flag.
    The flag represents the southern cross star constellation.

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    St Patrick's Catholic Cathedral

    by Kate-Me Written Jun 20, 2003

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    St Pat's

    Favorite thing: St Pat's Cathedral stands on the corner of Dawson St Sth and Sturt Street, in the city.
    It's one of the few landmarks in the city where you can actually see Palm trees (normally they don't grow in this area, so these are special).

    Related to:
    • Religious Travel
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    Sovereign Hill of course...

    by Ronald_T Written May 28, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    U.S. hotel and Victoria theatre...

    Fondest memory:
    That was the big reason I went there and trust me, you will have a great time and will be wiser as well ;-)

    Sovereign Hill is an open-air museum, or historical park, situated in a early gold diggings area. It is often referred to simply as 'the park'. It portrays the way of life on the goldfields from 1851, when gold was discovered there, to 1861. The 1851 to 1861 decade saw great changes in the Ballarat district. These are shown in different parts of the park. Think about that the park will be open from 10 am until 5 pm. It is only open till 5 pm because there are special prices for the evening show: "Blood on the Southern Cross". Even staying overnight is a possibility in the Sovereign Hill Lodge.

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    Kryal Castle

    by Kate-Me Written May 24, 2003

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    Favorite thing: Many years ago, a man, Keith Ryal (hence the Kryal) wanted to build his own Castle, and managed to get permission to build it on Mt Warrenheip, approx 15 kms out of Ballarat.
    In the beginning there were all types of mediaeval displays, tournaments, events, even lions, but things changed when lions were no longer allowed to be kept there. There are still mediavel displays, but I don't know about the events any more. In recent years the place has changed - it has become less known as a tourist attraction and more known for its Mediaeval weddings and, more recently, twice a year or so they stage huge rave parties here and thousands gather to party big time.

    Related to:
    • Arts and Culture
    • Music
    • Castles and Palaces

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    Camp St redeveloped Arts Precinct

    by Kate-Me Updated Apr 26, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Camp Street Old and New

    Favorite thing: Camp Street is one of Ballarat's most historically significant streets. Buildings there include the old Municipal Library, Law Courts and Police Barracks.
    The whole street has recently finished its redevelopment into an arts precinct housing the new Arts buildings of the University of Ballarat.

    Ultra modern buildings have been incorporated into the streetscape, filling the spaces between and around and even onto the old buildings, creating an interesting blend.
    I found it pleasant and relaxing to stroll along the once merely business street and now see young people relaxing on benches or nice lawns near modern art sculptures with the old and the new all around them. Trendy bars and cafes have seen their opportunity to be part of it all and moved into historic buildings opposite the university.
    Some other university courses take place at SMB (School Of Mines, originally the old Ballarat Gaol) buildings in Lydiard St Nth, while the bulk of the University remains at Mt Helen, about 8 kms away, in a nice rural setting but a little far out of town for students to visit the city during breaks.

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    Bandstand Monument in Sturt Street

    by Kate-Me Updated Apr 26, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Titanic Bandstand

    Favorite thing: This is the Titanic Rotunda (Bandstand) in the Sturt St median strip (200 block)
    It was erected as a memorial to the sinking of the Titanic (and is one of only 2 Titanic memorials in Australia, the other being in Broken Hill)
    On top of the weather vane on the bandstand is a small iron replica Titanic ship.
    I also enjoy the design and colours of this Rotunda.

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    • Architecture
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    History, Nature and more.

    by Kate-Me Written Feb 25, 2003

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    Swan with signets

    Favorite thing: Sovereign Hill would be the first place I'd recommend to any arriving visitor. It's the best place to start and learn about how the city was founded.

    Fondest memory: When I'm away from Ballarat I miss seeing Lake Wendouree with all its activities: walkers, joggers, runners, cyclists, people with dogs, families with prams. I miss seeing all the black swans and ducks and generally the nice surroundings of the lake.

    Related to:
    • Family Travel

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