Discover the best top things to do in Castlemaine, Australia including Castlemaine Botanical Gardens, Castlemaine Cemetery, Rod Hadfields Hot Rod Museum, Castlemaine Art Museum, Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park, Old Castlemaine Gaol, The Mill Castlemaine, Buda Historic Home and Garden, Castlemaine Historic Market Building, Theatre Royal.
Restaurants in Castlemaine
4.5 based on 193 reviews
5 based on 3 reviews
I visited the cemetery to try to find my ancestors from the 1850's.
Luckily I ran into Wendy, the secretary of the Cemetery Trust.
She was helpful and amazingly found the family graves I was looking for. They were unmarked but she was able to work out the right ones.
Thanks Wendy. Your help was wonderful.
5 based on 8 reviews
We went here with mates and it was heaven. It is full on awesomeness & of course filled with Rods fine collection of hot rod cars. It cost $5 per person to enter and it is worth every cent.. You get to walk around the big shed full of hot-rods and trophy. It's a amazing hour or two out. And Rod himself let's you in and then you can walk around on your own. He is a legend in his own lifetime so many awards for all the races he won.. its just amazing well worth 5 bucks
4.5 based on 95 reviews
Founded in 1913, Castlemaine Art Museum specialises in Australian art. The Gallery's remarkable permanent collection a strong emphasis on traditional landscape painting and includes major works of the late 1800s, and the Edwardian era. Modern and contemporary artists are also well represented. The Museum’s thematic exhibition displays historical items including photographs, costumes, decorative arts and artefacts from the Mount Alexander goldfields district.
Visited today and heard that private benefactors had donated $250k+ and that this would enable the gallery to stay open for 2 years with reduced opening hours - still to be worked out.
Housed in an attractive art deco building just off the main street, this gallery was the result of a group of like-minded citizens to promote the arts in Castlemaine back in the early 20th century.
There are many excellent examples of Australias iconic names such as Williams, Bunny, McCubbin, the Fox's, Drysdale etc. Apparently only about 15% of their collection is on show at any one time.
There is also an excellent collection of pottery on exhibition including several by Shigeo Shiga.
Don't miss downstairs as it contains some excellent locally made enamels and a rather interesting history of the area in particular regarding the goldfields.
They have apparently have a very good Koori collection some of which is currently at NGV.
Lovely lady at the front desk gave us an excellent introduction.
4.5 based on 10 reviews
From the remains of house sites and puddling machines to the gold mines and gullies that yielded up fortunes, Australia's first national heritage park harbours fascinating tales of a golden past and retains much of its gold-rush character. It is the largest non-indigenous protected cultural landscape in Australia. The Park is popular for Spring wildflowers, scenic drives, bushwalking, cycling, picnics, guided tours and gold fossicking. Visit 19 heritage sites in and around the park on a journey through one of the most remarkable periods in Australian history. Self-guided and guided tours are available through the Castlemaine Visitor Information centre. Picnic facilities are located at Kalimna, Vaughan Springs (with toilets and mineral springs), Garfield Waterwheel, Spring Gully Junction and Eureka Reef. Camping is available at Vaughan Springs, Warburtons Bride and Chokem Flat Campgrounds. Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park is about 120kms north of Melbourne. Turn off the Calder Highway at Elphinstone and travel 13kms through Chewton to Castlemaine. The Park can also be accessed via the Pyrenees and Midland Highways. A regular rail service runs between Melbourne and Bendigo stopping at Castlemaine. Vehicles, including motor bikes, may only be used on formed open roads.
If you want to see some well preserved relics from Victoria's gold rush of the 1850's you should visit this heritage park just outside Castlemaine. Parks Victoria website has a detailed map you can print off, alternatively you can pick information up at Castlemaine visitor centre.
One of the most remarkable ruins is the Garfield Water Wheel. If you are coming from Melbourne you need to turn right at North Street as you pass through Chewton and continue uphill for 1km until you reach a car park. A short signposted walk will bring you to the towering remains of the wheel that appears like a mirage amongst the trees. It was built in 1887 and was 24m in diameter with 220 buckets attached. Old photographs at the site help you visualise what it must have been like back in its heyday.
Back on the main road you pass more gold mine remains at Forest Creek Digging Site on your left as you head towards Castlemaine.
4 based on 130 reviews
Looming atop the western horizon in Castlemaine sits a symbol of justice for the Goldfields. First built in 1861 and active for over 130 years, the Old Castlemaine Gaol has seen men, women and children of all ages pass through its imposing wooden gates, the last prisoners were transferred to HM Prison Loddon in 1990. Don’t miss out on the chance to experience for yourself this piece of Australian history. Guided tours of the gaol run Friday 2pm, Saturday and Sunday at 10am & 2pm. Self-guided tours run every day between 9:00am and 4:00pm. Private tours are available by request. The Governor's Cafe is located in the former governor's house and is open for breakfast and lunch, Thursday to Sunday (closed Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday).
We booked for a guided tour at 2pm on a Sunday and our tour guide was Christine Sayer. It was obviously not just a job for Christine, her passion and interest shone through. Our hour tour went for about an hour and forty minutes(she did check that nobody was in a hurry). Christine really brought the place to life and answered all of our questions that she could. It's not the most tourist friendly gaol I've been to with respect to displays, tours available and theatre but the dedication to it shone through. You can do a self guided tour at $10pp or the guided tours are at 10am on Fridays or 10am and 2pm on Saturdays and Sundays. They are also willing to do special tours if you have a group that would like to go. There are often live music events outside near the governors café and posters around the town advertising these. Well worth a visit. Thankyou Christine.
4.5 based on 29 reviews
The Mill Castlemaine is a creative hub for foodies, artisans and seekers of collectables and curiosities. Located opposite the Botanical Gardens the site, which started as the Castlemaine Woollen Mill in 1875, has been transformed into a go-to zone for tourists and locals alike.Experience a slice of Viennese opulence at Das Kaffeehaus, where lovingly-prepared sausages, goulash, schnitzels and European cakes are partnered with rich brews whipped up using beans from the on-site roastery. Enjoy a fresh and frosty treat at the Icecream Social scoopery, where flavours range from the traditional to the avant-garde. Browse through the vintage precinct—home of Castlemaine Vintage Bazaar and Platform No. 5—where a multitude of stallholders sell vintage, re-purposed, hand-made and second-hand goods. Meander around the artisan precinct where metal craftsmen and furniture makers create bespoke pieces destined to become treasured heirlooms. Observe artists at work in quirky art spaces. Opening hours and days vary by business. Visit the Mill for creativity at its best.
We knew very little about this place but took a gamble by stopping in on a Sunday morning, we arrived and were a bit confused and underwhelmed and were unsure what it was or if it was even open.
To our delight we found the most amazing coffee house! Completely out of the way and even more out of character, the place took us by a huge surprise; there is chandeliers, jazz music, impeccably dressed Waitstaff, a massive variety off special coffees and a great food menu! Amazing!!
We ventured into the vintage bazaar and were blown away by the size of the place and the amount of stock - you could get lost in there for hours!
Well worth a visit!
4 based on 77 reviews
'Buda' is an authentic house and garden surviving from the gold rush era in Castlemaine, Victoria, lovingly named after Budapest by its Hungarian owner, Ernest Leviny. It was home to the creative Leviny family for 118 years and houses their significant intact collection of furniture, art works and belongings. Come to Buda and enjoy walking through the historic house where you will be transported to another era, in this Museums Australia accredited museum. Wander three acres of heritage garden containing original plantings and structures, including the bird aviary, tennis pavilion and outbuildings, including many original garden sculptures created by the Leviny family. Jewellery and homewares featuring Leviny designs and souvenirs and local craft are available from the Buda Giftshop. Heritage plants plus a variety of fruit trees are available from the Buda Nursery
an interesting house historically but I was expecting a lot more. It all feels a little unloved and the Gardens were very uncared for but I do realize these places take enormous amounts of time and money to upkeep so don't mean these comments as a criticism but purely as observation.
4.5 based on 22 reviews
It's always good to speak with a local and get the inside knowledge! The Castlemaine Visitor Information Centre can assist with brochures, accommodation booking and travel advice. Located in our magnificent Market Building, we offer a great range of locally made products, regular art Exhibitions and you can hire bikes or ipod tours to add to your visit.
The old Market Building is now the Tourist Information Centre. All the local and regional brochures are there, covering accommodation and sights to visit. I love this old building.Thanks so much for your feedback and photos. We hope to see you again in this beautiful building and town.
4 based on 31 reviews
This beautiful old theatre has recently been taken on by new owners and in a short time what a difference they have made. Great tapas accompanied by sangria and a relaxed atmosphere. Just the place to visit for a whole range of entertainment and food. Don't miss it. Thanks to the new owners for reinventing this gem. Keep up the good work!!
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