Located very close to the geographical centre of Victoria and approximately 150 kilometres north west of Melbourne, Bendigo is the fourth largest inland city in Australia and fourth most populous city in the state. The discovery of gold in the soils of Bendigo during the 1850s made it one of the most significant Victorian era boom towns in Australia. News of the finds intensified the Victorian gold rush bringing an influx of migrants to the city from around the world within a year and transforming it from a sheep station to a major settlement in the newly proclaimed Colony of Victoria. Once the alluvial gold had been mined out, mining companies were formed to exploit the rich underground quartz reef gold. Since 1851 about 25 million ounces of gold (777 tonnes) have been extracted from Bendigo's goldmines, making it the highest producing goldfield in Australia in the 19th century and the largest gold mining economy in eastern Australia. It is also notable for its Victorian architectural heritage. The city took its name from the Bendigo Creek and its residents from the earliest days of the goldrush have been called "Bendigonians".
Bendigo is a vibrant contemporary regional centre, boasting beautiful streets created from one of the world’s greatest gold rushes. Experience the wonderful contrasts of Bendigo as you explore its vibrant arts hub and flourishing food and wine scene set against its rich history, grand architecture and magnificent gardens. Sample stunning contemporary cuisine in historic buildings, admire modern art in venues new and old, and explore the city's fascinating history at museums, gardens and galleries.