Thursday, August 3, 2023

A Touch of Europe in Central Victoria: Castlemaine and Maldon

There's something for everyone here! Ideally located between Bendigo and Melbourne, the Castlemaine, Maldon and surrounding towns have held onto their gold rush charms, while also welcoming a whole new generation of creative residents and visitors who have injected fresh life to an area already blessed with natural beauty and history.

The Castlemaine Diggings National Heritage Park is a history lesson just waiting to be told. There are many scenic walks that reveal relics and mines from our fascinating gold mining past. For the energetic there are numerous cycling and walking tracks and outdoor adventures to be had.

Experience first-hand the region’s epicurean culture where delicious dishes from across the globe can be found in the many cafes, pubs and restaurants. Meet the locals to hear their stories — many leading the way in art, environmental sustainability, hot rod manufacturing, even musical instrument making — all adding to the eclectic offering of our destination.

Origini Café
213 Barker St Castlemaine
PH 5472 1766 
Open 11-3 Mon-Fri

Origini serves up delicious and classic authentic Northern Italy cuisine, with classic Italian hospitality in a unique atmosphere. Owner Luca is a local personality known for serenading his clientele!

With a beautiful alfresco dining area, come experience a slice of Italy in Castlemaine.

Buda Historic Home & Garden
42 Hunter St Castlemaine 
PH 5472 1032 
Open daily 12-4pm

Home to the creative Leviny family for 118 years, it houses their significant intact collection of furniture, artworks and personal belongings. An authentic goldfields villa house and garden named after Budapest by its Hungarian owner.

Rike Design
54 Mostyn Street, Castlemaine 
PH 03 5470 6014

A boutique, run by renowned Austrian costume designer Ulrike Barbara von Radichevich, selling unique European pieces.

Oakwood Smallgoods

Shop 10/1-9 Walker St, Castlemaine
PH 0449 857 212

“My grandfather was a butcher, my father was a butcher and I’m a butcher!”

So starts a great story about, Ralf Fink, a German artisan Fleischmeister bringing the best of flavourful European charcuterie and smallgoods to Australia.

Love Shack Brewery

26 Hargraves St Castlemaine
PH 0403 886 419 (03) 5472 1196

Castlemaine’s newest bar and brewery located in the historic heart of Castlemaine. A pale ale, IPA and lager are pouring year-round, while the remaining taps rotate between seasonal brews. Plenty of fabulous locally made wine and the kitchen pumps out delicious burgers and fries.

Northern Arts Hotel
PH 0491074340

Built in 1873 as the Brighton Hotel and Store.

What was once a country pub is now a beautiful guesthouse featuring nine rooms, the result of a restoration in 2012 by furniture maker, Nicholas Dattner. In August 2020, this beautifully restored establishment was purchased by Maggie Fooke, former owner of the iconic Brooklyn Arts Hotel in Fitzroy. Maggie brings her own quirky style and flair to this grand dame, creating an oasis – one of those places you’ll be glad you found!

Johnny Baker
46 Forest Street, Castlemaine
03 5472 2072

Enjoy a breakfast of delicious French pastries and coffee.

John Stekerhofs was a co-owner and chef at The French Lettuce in Melbourne, and when the pastry chef or cake finisher occasionally didn’t turn up for work, he’d have to step in. These days he’s crafting addictive pastries in Castlemaine.

Castlemaine Botanic Gardens
2 Walker St Castlemaine

Enjoy a brisk walk around a classic European style botanic garden.

Long Paddock Cheese
The Mill 9 Walker St Castlemaine 
PH 0432 813 958

A local fromagerie that uses traditional European production methods. View shop and kitchen for manufacturing and cheesemaking workshops.

Das Kaffeehaus
The Mill 9 Walker St Castlemaine
PH 03 5470 6270

A Viennese cafe and specialist coffee roastery run by Austrian owners.

Theatre Royal Castlemaine
30 Hargraves St, Castlemaine PH 5472 1196

Italian-style pizzeria serving cocktails, beer on tap and an extensive selection of local and European wines. Cinema showing mainstream & arthouse films and music in an 1850s theatre with art deco details.

Cabosse & Feve Chocolates  
The Mill, 9 Walker St Castlemaine 
PH 0423 442 572

A Swiss chocolate producer making ethical, bean-to-bar chocolates, with seasonal specialities.

Le Sel
12 Main St, Maldon
PH 0417 329 776

French Deli selling a selection of French products. Owners Serge and Claudine hail from France and created this little French Deli in 2015.The idea came after both decided they needed a change of life style and moved to Maldon.

The vision was to create a typical French style café/deli where people could come and enjoy the flavors of France and absorb the sound of French music and great hospitality.

Enfilade Plus
79 High St, Maldon VIC 3463
PH 0419 380 457

A boutique selling imported French linen, lace and homewares. Owner, Diane Tunks, pictured. 

Open 10am – 5pm daily


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