State of the Art
Think creativity, think eclectic, think Castlemaine
Famous for its art scene, Castlemaine boasts an eclectic community of artists, writers, actors and designers offering a host of galleries, theatres, festivals, bookshops and boutiques for you to enjoy. There is something to capture your imagination on every corner.
Read on for ways to spend these Winter months immersing yourself in the culture of our area. Grab one of our fantastic deals here.
Arts and Culture
The Mill Castlemaine is a vibrant 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. 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.
Offering independent cinema and a diverse music program, the Theatre Royal continues a tradition since 1854 as the social and cultural hub of Castlemaine. Built during the Gold Rush as an entertainment venue, the Theatre Royal is one of Australia's oldest continuously operating theatres.
Castlemaine Art Gallery and Historical Museum
Founded in 1913, the Castlemaine Art Museum has a unique collection of Australian art and fascinating historical artefacts reflecting the early history of the district. The beautiful art deco building, dating from 1931 with several extensions since then, is a work of art itself, with purpose-built galleries.
Victorian Goldfields Railway
The Victorian Goldfields Railway Steam Train runs between Castlemaine and Maldon on Wednesdays, Sundays and public holidays. A beautiful way to see historic Maldon. Departs Castlemaine at 12.00am and leaves you in Maldon for 2 hours which is just enough time to walk the main street and have some lunch or a picnic with the extended family. Then departs Maldon at 2.45pm arriving back at Castlemaine at 3.30pm. Keep your eye out for special events like Steam Trains for Kids during school holidays, Ales on Rails, and you can also arrange to drive the steam train yourself. A great family day out. BIG4 members book through us for a 10% discount.
Buda Historic Home and Garden
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
Art Studios and Galleries
The townships of Castlemaine, Newstead, Maldon, Chewton and beyond are home to over 90 professional painters, printmakers, jewellers, sculptors, multimedia artists and craftspeople. Wander through galleries open studios and shopfronts and revel in the unique opportunity to meet the artists our region is renowned for, witness the spaces in which work is created, gain insights into the creative process and purchase work directly from the artists.
Spend some time browsing through Castlemaine's bookshops including the Mount of Alex Bookshop, an antiquanarian bookshop and unique space showcasing old, rare and interesting books from around the world, the beautiful and historic Stonemans Bookroom and a large array of interesting second hand and rare booksellers.
EVENTS AND FESTIVALS
Castlemaine Jazz Festival
A fantastic weekend of jazz, held over 4 days on the Queen's Birthday long weekend in June. Bringing you all the jazz you have come to know and love as well as exciting new elements to discover. The annual Castlemaine Jazz Festival takes place right in the heart of Castlemaine at a number of historic venues each within walking distance and all especially selected to create the ideal environment to enjoy the weekend of jazz.
Maldon in Winter
Maldon turns on its winter charms bringing delight and warmth to visitors old and new. The Maldon Art Exhibition, blues and jazz performances, Maldon winter wonderland themed shop window displays, craft demonstrations, winter dinners, a dog walk and parade, tarot readings, steam train rides, gold mine tours, movie screenings, Maldon Market, art installations on the main streets and much much more.
The Castlemaine Documentary Film Festival
The Castlemaine Documentary Film Festival is an annual three day event held in July at the iconic Theatre Royal in Castlemaine, central Victoria, Australia. It features an international programme showcasing a series of fascinating worlds populated by even more fascinating characters and includes Australian cinema premieres plus live and broadcast Q&A sessions.