Castlemaine is located 120 kilometres from Melbourne. It has a population of about 8000 and economically it is doing better than the rest of regional Victoria. Unlike the buildings in other gold mining towns in Victoria, the public buildings in Castlemaine are in the Georgian style.
Castlemaine enjoys a temperate climate with warm-hot summers; spring and autumn are balmy and mild and the winters are cool.
Gold was discovered in 1851 in the Mt Alexander Diggings, and Castlemaine became the centre of the goldfields market place. Today, however, Castlemaine is a laid back town set amongst beautiful countryside.
Castlemaine's historic streetscapes are a reminder of its rich gold mining days, with many magnificent public buildings such as the Theatre Royal, the Castlemaine Market, the red-brick town hall and courthouse. Several historic churches and hotels can also be found around Castlemaine's town centre.
There are several things to do around the town from visiting the wonderful castlemaine Art Gallery and Historical Museum, to touring around the Old Castlemaine Gaol. Castlemaine is also home to the State Festival, which is an arts festival held on odd numbered years in April.
There is a wide range of accommodation in Castlemaine including a caravan park, several hotels, and motels. There are also several places to eat out, with some of the pubs also serving food. You can get to castlemaine on the train from Melbourne, or by bus from the other towns within the mid west Goldfields.