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The Convent Gallery

Home > Daylesford > Family | Day Trips | Cafes | Bars | Art
by Jo Ferguson (subscribe)
I am a freelance writer, editor and photographer.You can view my hubgarden Photo Wow Factor at See my photos at or on my website at
Published May 5th 2014
Altar your Bad Habits at Daylesford Convent Gallery
Looking for something a little different to do when the weather is cold and rainy? Feel like a drive out of Melbourne to blow the cobwebs away? Want to spend a day exploring somewhere unique that will appeal to everyone? Then it's time you checked out the Daylesford Convent Gallery.

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Daylesford Convent Gallery

Daylesford Convent Gallery is located high up on Wombat Hill, and is definitely worth dropping in the next time you're in Daylesford.

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High on the Hill

The Convent was originally built as a private residence for the Gold Commissioner, during the Gold Rush in the 1860s. It was named Blamey Castle. During the 1880s it was purchased by the Catholic Church and by the 1890s had been converted into a residence for the Holy Cross Convent and a boarding school for girls.

By the 1970s the house had fallen into disrepair. The boarding school had closed, and more suitable accommodation had been sought for the nuns. It was bought by artist Tina Banitska in 1988. Tina had a vision to transform it into a community place that could be enjoyed by all.

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Original Chapel Still Beautiful

Fast forward 25 years and Tina's original expectations have been surpassed as the Convent now encompasses gallery spaces, a Mediterranean cafe restaurant, a penthouse accommodation suite, function rooms, a hip and contemporary lounge bar, a gift shop, a museum, a restored chapel, and picturesque gardens with scenic vistas over Daylesford and Hepburn Springs.

My favourite thing about the convent is exploring with my camera in tow. The interior is sprawled across three levels and bursting with history. There are works of art in every nook. It's worth allocating a few hours simply to explore. With its meandering halls, hidden stairways and pitched balconies; hidden treasures are everwhere.

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Hidden Gems in every Nook

Imagine what life was like for the nuns when you enter the original upstairs living quarters. Explore historic treasures in the basement museum.

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Museum Treasures

Don't miss the opportunity to enjoy a leisurely stroll in the gorgeous gardens. The winding pathways hide a myriad of sculptures and quiet corners to sit and contemplate life.

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Garden Sculptures

Grab a bite at the Bad Habits cafe, open from 10am to 11.30am for breakfast or from 12 to 3pm for lunch. Fresh scones are also available for morning and afternoon tea from 10am to 4pm.

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Convent Cafe Comfort

Your hunger satisfied, why not seek out a unique present from the gift store. There is huge variety of crafts, jewellery, home wares and everything in between.

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Gift Shop

One of the latest editions to the Convent Gallery is the chic and trendy Altar bar. Decorated with fixtures made from wood and metal, including remnants from the original convent chapel, It's a great place to relax and enjoy a cocktail or a yummy cake; perfect for a girly get together or romantic interlude.

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Altar Bar

If being terrified out of your wits sounds like fun then you should consider booking a Convent Ghost Tour.

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Convent Ghost Tours

Whatever your interests, Daylesford Convent Gallery has something to offer every taste.
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Why? There is something to please everyone.
When: Monday 10am-4pm Tuesday CLOSED Wednesday CLOSED Thursday 10am-4pm Friday 10am-4pm Saturday 10am-4pm Sunday 10am-4pm
Phone: 03 5348 3211
Where: Daylesford Victoria
Cost: $5 admission
Your Comment
The cafe is really nicely decorated.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|12626) 2595 days ago
I'm heading to Daylesford for a weekend stay in a few weeks. I must remember to pop into the gallery! Thanks for the article :)
by Fiona Anderson (score: 2|998) 2594 days ago
Hi Bryony, it is gorgeous isn't it. They have artwork decorating the whole building which makes it look relly cool, but they also use lovely vibrant decor and of course the open fire makes it so cosy. :)
by Jo Ferguson (score: 2|179) 2595 days ago
Hi there, the Convent Gallery is open 7 days 10am-4pm! Just confirmed
by liam (score: 0|2) 2488 days ago
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