My toddler is a runner. He doesn’t sit still for long, he is always exploring, jumping, and running. So it was eerie and wonderful to see him sitting still in his little apron, patiently shaping, cutting, and rolling his clay. We were at the Bendigo Pottery Centre and Jacob was playing with his own little block of clay.
Bendigo is a large country town just under two hours from Melbourne. Bendigo is a prosperous town, made famous and rich by the gold rush. Gold is still being discovered here, in the same mines, but at deeper levels. Bendigo makes a great base to explore the rest of the Gold Fields area, and its also full of great activities for children.
Our first stop was the Bendigo Discovery Science and Technology centre. The centre features a planetarium and tons of educational games and interactive exhibits. Kids can learn about everything from optical illusions, how sound works, mechanics and physics. There is even a section for the under 5’s.
We easily spent about three hours there, which impressed us as Jacob is too little to understand many of the exhibits. If he was a little older we probably would have easily been able to spend the whole day there.
On our second day in Bendigo we enjoyed a leisurely breakfast at our hotel, the Quality Resort All Seasons, and had one last swim in the heated pool. On the outskirts of Bendigo is a hub of art studios and centres. The jewel in the crown being the Bendigo Pottery Centre. This is Australia’s oldest working Pottery. You can watch the master potters at work, tour the facilities, check out some finished product, and even try your hand at shaping your own masterpiece on the potters wheel.
The Bendigo Pottery Centre offers wheel throwing lessons. There are six lessons a day, and cost $15 per half hour lesson. During your lesson you will get the opportunity to create two articles. Dan did one of the lessons and created two vases. If you want to have your creations fired and glazed you need to pay extra – about 25$ per article plus postage.
For the little ones there is Clay Play. For $2 you get a little box full of clay. There are aprons and tables and all sorts of tools to create all sorts of art work. I have never seen Jake more focused than when shaping his little ball of clay.
Our stay in Bendigo was made possible by Choice Hotels. Want to win your own Aussie Road Trip Adventure? Check out the Tom Williams Aussie Adventures competition for your chance to win.