The miners of Ballarat, fed up with paying high mining fees, pledge their allegiance to the Eureka Stockade flag on 1 December 1854.
Artist: Charles Doudiet.
Ballarat is a beautiful provincial city that was originally settled in 1838. It grew at an amazing rate once gold was discovered in the area in 1851.
More than a quarter of the gold found in Victoria during and after the gold rushes came from the fantastically rich gold reefs of Ballarat.
The gold supply was finally exhausted in 1918; but there is still much evidence of Ballarat's rich mining past, as in the magificent 19th century architecture that the gold mining profits paid for. This architecture includes: the former Mining Exchange (1888), Her Majesty's Theatre (1875), over 50 hotels from the 1800s, and many houses and shopfronts of the era.
The principal tourist attraction of Ballarat -- also related the town's gold mining past -- is Sovereign Hill, an interesting reconstuction of a 19th century goldmining town.
Other Ballarat attractions include:
-- the Botanical Gardens (situated beside Lake Wendouree)
-- the Ballarat Fine Art Gallery
Statue of the Scottish warrior king and patriot, William Wallace, in the Botanical Gardens, Ballarat