Things to do, Fairs and festivals
ChillOut Festival
Photograph: Michelle Dunn

Check out Australia's biggest country LGBTQIA pride festival

While the capital cities have Mardi Gras and Midsumma, out in regional Victoria, Daylesford has ChillOut. The festival is Australia's biggest country LGBTQIA pride festival, taking place in March every year. 

The festival hosts around 40 events each year, including a pride parade, a family carnival, stalls, talks and a dance party. Daylesford and its twin town of Hepburn Springs have the highest percentage of LGBTQIA residents in rural or regional Australia, and the festival attracts many more to the spa town for the ChillOut celebrations each year.

The ChillOut festival has been going for more than two decades thanks to the work of its parent organisation, also called ChillOut. The festival aims to reduce homophobia in regional schools and groups as well as instil a sense of pride throughout the community regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

Highlights of the 2019 ChillOut line-up include the Shake Your Tail Feather disco, Bent (an adults-only circus show) and Rainbows, Cocktails and Art – ChillOut's launch event and fundraiser art auction. The annual ChillOut Parade will also return on Sunday, March 10. 

Those looking to stay in or around town are advised to book accommodation early as it fills up fast.

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