Time Out says
Now’s the time to experience the dazzling display of Ballarat’s Winter Wonderlights at Sovereign Hill
To walk down Sovereign Hill’s Main Street is a unique experience at any time. But right now, between June 25 and July 18, Winter Wonderlights offers a whole new dimension – with colourful projections lighting up the streetscape accompanied by a rousing musical score telling a story of celebration and togetherness.
Think Christmas in July in a 19th-century country town with all the trimmings – complete with snowfalls, decorations, tasty treats, performances and hands-on activities.
In addition to the nightly display of colour starting at dusk, highlights include the Wonderlights Dinner – rib-sticking two-course dinners inspired by Charles Dickens’ story ‘A Christmas Carol’ with vegan and kids’ options available (New York Bakery; adults $49, child $20, booking essential).
Drop in on Sovereign Hill’s famous lolly makers Brown’s Confectionery to watch them make Raspberry Drops from scratch. Or head to the Victoria Theatre to laugh along to a production of the pantomime Beauty and the Beast (free with your Sovereign Hill entry ticket).
Fairylight Fun has the gardens of Sovereign Hill illuminated by jaw-dropping kilometres of fairy lights. Kids can make their own candle with Candle Dripping in the Candle Works ($4-$5, bookings essential), get in on the bowling action at the Empire Bowling Saloon (included in your ticket) or learn about life on the goldfields at Diggings After Dark.
During the day, you can expect hands-on activities for children, a full theatre program, faux snowfalls four times a day, and all of the regular daily activities and demonstrations including gold panning, coach rides, candle-dipping, bowling, sweet-making, the Redcoat Soldiers, gold pour and much more.
The recent restrictions have been a dampener on regional travel, so it’s a good time to get out of town and make the most of winter at Sovereign Hill. Tickets are $58 for adults, $27.80 for kids, $146 for a family and $99 for a single-adult family. Sovereign Hill is open 10am-7pm during the Winter Wonderlights, which lasts until July 18.