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White Night Ballarat

On Saturday, I headed into Ballarat for the first time in around 20 years. The trip was a lot easier than expected, I just had to make my way into Southern Cross station and jump on the V-Line. My everyday Myki card works for the trip and ended up only costing like $6 (each way). I had never been on a V-Line train and I was impressed. It was super comfortable and quite spacious with fold down tray tables and toilets in every carriage.

White Night Ballarat

It took around an hour and a half to get to Ballarat. We strolled around the streets a little and stopped by an Irish Pub before heading to our Air BnB. I actually got lost and we ended up on a bit of a detour, but I really enjoyed that as I LOVED looking at all the houses. It really is so beautiful there and as someone who loves architecture and interior design, it was a great place to visit, if just for the buildings and houses.

White Night Ballarat

We had dinner booked for 7, but turned up early, you can read about the amazing meal in my last post HERE. By the time we waddled out, it was getting darker and White Night had starting to get going.

White Night Ballarat

At first, the crowds were kind of mellow, but as it got darker, it became very crowded. Walking up Lydiard Street was a tricky time and I found the crowds a little anxiety inducing. That being said, the reason why I decided to go to White Night Ballarat instead of White Night Melbourne was because the crowds in Ballarat would be a lot tamer than Melbourne. Ballarat had an estimated 40,000 whereas Melbourne had close to 600,000. I would love to see the Melbourne one, but it will have to be at a time when my anxiety is much better.

White Night Ballarat

We wandered around rather aimlessly, we didn’t have a plan and just wanted to experience it. I think my favourite thing was the art projected onto the buildings. The colours were so vibrant it would have been easy to watch the changing scenes for hours.

White Night Ballarat

Fibre Lane was AWESOME, you can watch a short video of me walking through it over on my Instagram. It was what I imagine walking through a room full of jellyfish would be like. I kind of want something similar for my home!

White Night Ballarat

Above and below are scenes from ‘More than 1 Nation‘, a projection film about Aboriginal history, the cultural misappropriation from European colonists, the strength and resilience of Aboriginal people and a reminder that Australia is a land of huge culture diversity. It was a breathtaking display, if somewhat harrowing.

White Night Ballarat

The featured image and the image below is of the White Night Messenger. A 5.5m tall puppet that was strolling around the event. Totally fascinating to watch!

I ended up walking around 12km and had a blister on my foot (my favourite boots are dying, noooo). We found a pub and had a drink (Lemon, Lime & Bitters for me) and people watched for awhile. I actually was on the verge of a panic attack, but thankfully managed to calm down before it fully hit. I think we made it back to our Air BnB around 11ish, so not as late as we expected to be out. All in all I really enjoyed the night.

White Night Ballarat

A few extra things. It was really clean, we noticed people going around with bins and cleaning up constantly. We left early the next day and at 6am the streets were clean of any rubbish. They had portable toilets set up at a few places and I was super happy to see that they had disability/wheelchair port-a-loos. There were White Night volunteers around everywhere, and whilst people watching at the pub later in the night, 6 mounted police walked by! I was excited by seeing horses!

Have you been to White Night or an event like it?

Where to eat in Ballarat – Meigas – The best Tapas I’ve ever had!

When my BFF and I found out that Ballarat was hosting it’s own White Night (more on that later), we decided to head out country for the night and experience what Ballarat had to offer. We booked an Air BnB and asked the host where they would recommend to eat. We decided on Meigas, a Spanish Resturant with some outstanding looking Tapas.

Meigas Ballarat

We chose the ‘Feed Me’ option, which basically meant they would keep bringing out plates until you told them to stop. I didn’t take pictures of all the dishes, these are only a handful of, gees, around 13 or 14. We got to a point where we were SO full, we had to stop them bringing dishes & had the last one, which was dessert.

Meigas Ballarat

When you order, they ask if there is anything we wouldn’t eat or dietary requirements. We said we’d try anything, and that I couldn’t eat nuts, which thankfully was only in one dish. They were really good about that, which I loved.

Meigas Ballarat

I don’t know what all of the dishes were called, but we had a mixed meats/cheese board, calamari with the softest most amazing batter. Chorizo, mushrooms in garlic, prawns, and the crazy padron peppers. Pork, spicy potato chunks, and what I think was beef cheeks in the most delicious mash. I know i’ve missed a couple of dished from that list too. Dessert was Churros with chocolate sauce, alongside peaches and ice cream.

Meigas Ballarat

To be honest, i’m already trying to figure out when I can plan to visit Ballarat next, just to visit Meigas again! I also tried Sangria for the first time and quite enjoyed it! Now, the thing that got me, was the price. The feed me option is $50pp, which is SO cheap for everything we were served. All up, including a jug for 2 of sangria, and a coke, it was $120 (then we threw on a tip).

I was impressed with the service, we booked way in advance, as we figured that it would book up due to White Night. I was a little concerned we might get rushed for the table, but the meals came out pretty steadily and we weren’t pressured to move. We did actually turn up over half an hour early, and they still managed to accommodate us. Oh, and all the staff were gorgeous and so very friendly. I kind of just wanted to befriend them all.

Meigas Ballarat

Where – 33 Armstrong St N, Ballarat, Victoria.
Check them out on Facebook.

Have you tried Tapas before?

Giant horses, huge dogs & puppies, OH MY!

You’ve heard me rave on about Anatolian Shepherds a lot on the blog, it’s easy to say they are a breed I feel strongly about and absolutly adore. I’m lucky that Melbourne has a pretty amazing community surrounding these dogs and on Tuesday I went and helped out on the Takas Volkodav property. By help out I mean, play with all the animals.

Horse!

This is Geronimo, he’s HUGE! It takes a lot to make me feel small and standing next to him, well, I felt pretty small! There is a picture where his head is in front of my body and it’s pretty much the size of my torso. He was absolutely stunning and so friendly! I fed him a hay brick and then some bread from my hand! It’s true, I turn into an excited 7-year-old around animals.

Anatolian Puppies

PUPPIES! I’d never actually met any Anatolian puppies before, so it was a lot of fun getting to baby sit them! They are crazy cute little terrors who tried to eat all my clothes and hair. I’m not sure of their exact age but they were born in October.

Georgian Shepherd

This is Sunny, who nearly bowled me over with her beauty and her strength, seriously, I couldn’t walk her, she was a bit too strong for me. She is a Georgian Shepherd imported from Georgia. I stupidly asked ‘As in America?’ because I really do suck when it comes to geography. No, as in Georgia, the country in Europe. It then clicked in my head, because while I didn’t know about Georgian Shepherds, I did know about the Caucasian Shepherd/ Ovcharka.

Georgian Shepherd

She was super friendly, I am still surprised when you meet such a friendly huge dog. Not that large dogs aren’t friendly, it’s just that a lot of these dogs are guardian dogs and so much of the research i’ve read points to them being very protective and somewhat standoff-ish. Nope, not Sunny!

Horses

Central Asian Shepherd

This is Shamash, who I got to walk, she was very strong too and at one point was dragging me along the path. It was gravel and I couldn’t get a good enough grip on it. Once he got all her excitement (& pee) out he calmed down a lot and was easier to walk. This was my first time meeting a fully grown Central Asian Shepherd, I’d previously met Baby Sham Sham who is one of Shamash’s progeny. I got to meet a couple more CAS through windows as they aren’t as friendly and loving as Shamash.

Anatolian puppies

Puppies again! George, the brindle (lower left corner) will be heading off on a new adventure to Italy soon! Jicky is now protecting thousands of free range chickens on an organic chicken farm & Rajah will be a working dog on a farm in Dubbo!

It was such a wonderful day and my idea of heaven. Horses, dogs, beautiful land and a view. I learnt that hay gets everywhere, I came home with more hay in my bra than boobs! I’ve learnt that while I love huge dogs, I think Anatolians are still the right choice for me. The CAS are gorgeous, but I think too much of a strong dog for me, strength wise and personality wise.

What’s your favourite farm animal?