Credits: © Brett Ritchie
Credits: © Ms Batterhams & Leon Schoots
A cultural destination filled to the brim with soul-affirming attractions, charming streetscapes, enticing eats and heritage icons, Bendigo inspires a journey of exploration characterised by contemporary offerings seeping through historic facades.
The jewel in Bendigo’s crown, the Bendigo Art Gallery is one of the most renowned regional galleries in Australia. Especially regarded as a leader in fashion and textile exhibitions, the attraction welcomes droves of fashion lovers to the city every year. The historic building also houses significant gilt-framed colonial works, as well as an evolving indigenous collection and bold, vibrant and abstract contemporary pieces. Spend your visit wandering through and admiring the prestigious works before settling into the cafe for a warming coffee and treat.
Credits: © 1. + 3. Martin Shew 2. Brett Ritchie
Located next to the Bendigo Ernest Hotel, Rosalind Park is the heart of Bendigo city. The park features 60 acres of sprawling grassy spaces, lush leafy trees, ornate statues, a historic fernery and conservative, as well as its own playground. Rosalind Park also hosts festivals and events on a year-round basis, bringing life to the centre of the city and drawing crowds from near and far. Immerse yourself in the serenity with a coffee and book, gather with friends for a spring picnic, take a morning jog or evening stroll, or simply find your place amidst the calm as you while the day away.
Credits: © 1. Leon Schoots 2 & 3. Brett Ritchie
Explore Bendigo’s charming purveyors of eclectic goods along the city’s View Street strip. Frequent the quaint boutique shops as you discover everything from children’s fashion to stationery, flowers to homewares, jewellery to ceramics. Must-visits include Gathered Bendigo, SB Libris Bookbinder and Stationer, Blumetown and Grounded (where you can also snap up a smooth, warming barista coffee).
Spaces and places for wining and dining are not hard to come by in the UNESCO Creative City of Gastronomy. Cafes, restaurants, eateries and wineries abound for those who travel with their taste buds.
For handmade pastries, delectable brunch, and an enticing delicatessen of local goods.
For succulent steaks and generous sides matched with the region’s finest tipples.
For a satisfying brew to kick start the day.
For your morning pick-me-up and accompanying sweet treat.
For an award-winning dining experience showcasing the finest in local fare.
For authentic Italian fare serving pizza, pasta and seafood, and reminiscent of a true European dining experience.
For a diverse dining experience defined by its vast repertoire of dishes that can be enjoyed within its historic walls or in the tranquil outdoor courtyard.
For a bustling yet moody dining experience certain to awaken the senses.
Toasties and bagels packed with punch and tasty goodness.
For a generous brunch or lunch with tantalising gluten free and vegan options to boot.
For a mouthwatering brunch, delectable lunch options and equally tempting coffee.
For a seasonal menu of brekky, lunch and sweet treats to satisfy a yearning palate.
For Japanese cuisine with signature ramen dishes, serving up share plates, craft beer, Japanese drinks and radical vibes.
For a smorgasbord of authentic Turkish, contemporary Asian, tantalising Thai, and rich Indian cuisine.
Credits: © 1. Ms Batterhams 2. Woodhouse 3. Woodhouse + Leon Schoots
Operating for more than 150 years, Bendigo Pottery is Australia’s oldest working pottery. Offering lessons in history, hands-on clay workshops, demos, as well as access to an interpretive museum and café, the space is a rich retail experience to delight ceramic lovers everywhere. The site also houses a number of galleries showcasing the work of artists-in-residence, and features an adjoining antique and collectables centre – a tourist destination in and of itself. With more than 40 stallholders, each selling hundreds of goods from bygone eras, this attraction is a paradise for ardent foragers of vintage and history.
Credits: © Bendigo Pottery + Leon Schoots
Discover the rich Chinese background embedded within Bendigo and the surrounding region at the Golden Dragon Museum. Built on the historical site of one of Bendigo’s Chinatowns, the museum delves into the culture and history of Chinese Australians. Wander through and admire the historic relics, explore the vast regalia collection, and meet the museum’s most significant artifact – the Dragon Loong. The precinct also features the serene Chinese Gardens and a commanding temple to Kuan Yin – the Buddhist bodhisattva of compassion.
Credits: © Brett Ritchie
Descend into a guided, subterranean tour of Bendigo’s historical Central Deborah Gold Mine, and take a literal deep dive into the underground tunnels of the gold rush era. Experience life as a 1900s miner, witness traditional mining equipment in action, see gold in its natural state, and test out your own gold panning skills. Having operated from 1939 to 1954, the mine holds the stories and treasures that fashioned a city built on gold.
Previously titled Australia’s Cultural Tourism Attraction of the Year, Bendigo’s vintage talking trams further solidify the city’s position as a champion of history. Offering history tours across the city, the restored 20th century trams provide travellers time to admire Bendigo’s significant landmarks and cultural icons.
Located a 20-minute drive from the CBD, Bendigo’s Great Stupa of Universal Compassion is a pagoda serving as one of the most sacred buildings in Buddhism. Surrounded by serene gardens showcasing symbols from faiths including Catholic, Baha’i, Islam, Hindu and Buddhist, the 50-metre high Stupa is a place of Buddhist pilgrimage and aims to inspire people along a spiritual and peaceful path.
Credits: © Brett Ritchie