Winterlude Sovereign Hill

Winterlude Sovereign Hill

There really isn’t much I can add to our 2014 review of Sovereign Hill’s Christmas In July event – but as part of Ballarat’s Winterlude Sovereign Hill is a definite stand out.  The adults and children of all ages in our party all LOVED returning to Sovereign Hill a year later for more winter fun.

When:  Until 12 July 2015

Where:  Sovereign Hill, Bradshaw Street BALLARAT

Cost:  Adult $52.50, child $23.80, family pass (2 adults, 4 children) $132.00  BOOK NOW


This is our third Meetoo review of Sovereign Hill and I know that if I asked the kids if they wanted to go again they’d be jumping up and down with excitement.  The team at Sovereign Hill have a great formula – plenty of roving staff in authentic dress to set the atmosphere, plenty of things to do and see (from special school holiday performances through to the evening Winter Wonderland light show as well as all the usual facets of Sovereign Hill itself).

And yes it’s bitterly cold at this time of year in Ballarat, but if you dress appropriately and make the most of the big fires dotted along main street (and even lit in some of the display houses and shops) you will have plenty of moments to warm your hands.

The kids never tire of the gold pour, an underground mine tour, dipping candles, boiled sweets and playing in the bowling alley.  We also managed some panning for gold and if we’d arrived a bit earlier we would have totally taken a horse and cart ride.

There really is a happy vibe at Sovereign Hill – the 5.45pm light show (preceded by Christmas carols by the choir at 5.30pm) is a great way to end your day on a high.  Oh and a cup of mulled wine for the grown ups is a great way to keep hands and throats warm while you’re carolling.

We stopped and said hello to the town crier in the street at one point and he remembered us from last year – we had spent about 15 minutes making small talk with him in 2014 as Immi was invited to turn the Christmas lights on and we had to wait behind the wings with him.. even so I can only imagine how many families he must meet every day.  That really impressed me (probably because if he wasn’t wearing his big red coat, and that moment last year hadn’t been kinda special for us, I doubt I would have remembered him off the bat like that).  I don’t know why but the idea that so many of the staff at Sovereign Hill have been there for so long and still love their jobs seems to give the place a genuinely warm feeling to it – don’t you think?  Or is that just me?

After the Christmas light show kicked off and we’d seen enough we jumped in our cars and headed into central Ballarat for some dumplings at Fu Man Lou.

Check our review from 2014 for a more in depth description of the Christmas in July event.

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Disclaimer:  Meetoo travelled to Ballarat in July 2015 as guests of Visit Ballarat and we were provided with a Ballarat Pass to review.  All views are our own.  All details were correct at time of publishing.