Discover one of Australia's finest regional art collections in Hamilton, a gracious city in Victoria's western district renowned for its grand buildings, majestic homesteads, manicured gardens and a vast and beautiful landscape.
Hamilton was built on a booming wool industry and was once known as the 'wool capital of the world'. Its settlement grew as a result of the area's strong pastoral development. The squatters and their wool were of great economic and social importance to the growth of the town, and this is reflected in its impressive architecture. Many treasures from the homesteads are now part of the rich and diverse collection at the Hamilton Art Gallery, a must-see attraction on any trip through Hamilton.
Set off on one of the many historic walks through town and don't miss the beautiful William Guilfoyle-designed Botanic Gardens. Heritage-listed, the gardens include a native animal enclosure, bird aviary, band rotunda and decorative fountains. Learn about the local wool industry at the Big Woolbales and Hamilton Pastoral Museum, and get up to speed on aviation history at the Sir Reginald Ansett Transport Museum.
Take advantage of Hamilton's proximity to the Henty wine region, and enjoy a glass of sparkling wine with a meal at one of the town's eateries.
Hamilton is surrounded by the Grangeburn River, Lake Hamilton and a vast and beautiful landscape of green rolling hills, ancient red gums, extinct volcanoes and the impressive Wannon and Nigretta waterfalls along the Glenelg Highway. Explore the Volcanic Discovery Trail and the Byaduk lava tube caves for more volcanic activity. Enjoy fishing and water sports at Lake Hamilton or the nearby Rocklands Reservoir.
Hamilton is 285 kilometres west of Melbourne and is a three-and-a-half hour drive along the Henty, Glenelg or Hamilton highways. Coach services are available from Melbourne.