An Australian accommodation guide
Researched and written by travel writer Tim Richards
Sovereign Hill Lodge, Ballarat, Australia
It’s not every day you wake up on the outskirts of an 1850s goldmining town, but that’s what you get at this hotel attached to Ballarat’s premier tourist attraction. Perched atop a hill, the Lodge has sweeping views over the bustling regional city, but it’s surprisingly quiet at night.
The rooms are contained within a fascinating jumble of weatherboard buildings of different shapes and sizes, each a simulation of a typical edifice of the gold rush era. The result is a pleasant village masquerading as the Government Camp, centred on a parade ground with a flagpole flying a Union Jack.
The four-star rooms are conservatively decorated in earthy tones, avoiding the ‘twee cottage’ feel you often get with heritage accommodation, and you receive a copy of The Sovereign Hill Times (an 1850s-style wrapper around the local newspaper) under the door each morning, to continue the historical illusion.
It’s a quick walk down to a side gate which leads into Sovereign Hill itself, a enjoyable and complex attraction with its recreation of a historical mining town and diggings, and its actors in period costume.
Further afield, there’s Ballarat’s Eureka Centre, retelling the story of the Eureka Stockade, and the city’s excellent Fine Art Gallery. There are places to eat within Sovereign Hill, and plenty of cafes and restaurants in the city centre.
Tim Richards received complimentary accommodation at this hotel.
Just the Facts:
Sovereign Hill Lodge
Note: Though this information was correct at the time of research, the author takes no responsibility for any changes since that time.
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