HOT: Kryal Castle, Leigh Creek

Knights in shining armour, damsels in distress, wizards and witches – Kryal Castle has it all!

kryal castle

You would never expect to find a castle Ballarat way – but we are invited to visit the Ballarat castle‘s Magic of Merlin school holiday showcase over summer. It features five main performances interspersed with the castle’s regular activities, including archery, potion making and calligraphy.

Kryal Castle Reviews

Entering the castle through the drawbridge is a terrific experience for youngsters and many parents will remember doing this themselves when they were small.

The Dragon’s Labyrinth, a regular feature through which you enter the castle grounds, was a little spooky for five-year-old Lightning but would pose no problems for slightly older or bolder children.

kryal castle

Lightning and El Guapo enjoyed playing among “baby dragons” and exploring Bravehearts Playground until the first performance.

Lightning tried his best to pull the sword from the stone, but sadly he was not the true king of England.

Henchman Number 43 anchored the show and worked hard to involve the small, hot audience, who were quickly introduced to the principal characters of Merlin, Guinevere, Mordred, Morgana and King Arthur.

Lightning really enjoyed the narrative arc of the performances, each of which lasted 10-15 minutes in different locations around the grounds. The time separating the performances was sometimes a little awkward as it was hard to fully explore other attractions before it was time to rejoin the performers.

There was enough time for a visit to Fairies and Goblins, where Lightning was thrilled to wield his own sword in the form of a painted Excalibur on his arm courtesy of the face painter (a bargain at $2).

Other highlights included the stone maze, Ogglewatch Tower and the Wizards’ Workshop, where a delightful young lady was making perfumes.

By the time the audience gathered in the main arena for the finale, there were plenty of loud cheers of “Huzzah” for King Arthur and theatrical booing for the dastardly Morgana and Mordred.

Find Hotels and Airbnbs near Kryal Castle, Leigh Creek

kryal castle

The jousting display was the highlight of the day for young and old – there were audible gasps as lances splintered and horses pranced. The performers posed for pictures after the show and Lightning happily met King Arthur and Queen Guinevere, as well as showing off his sword to Henchman 43.

kryal castle

Kryal Castle first opened in 1974 and, despite a major renovation in 2012, some parts of the operation still lack a little polish. The Kryal Castle food offering was basic and cold drinks were pricey, while some areas such as the Blacksmith’s Shop were not open.

However, the overall experience of visiting a castle in Ballarat was a lot of fun. Lightning enjoyed his basic introduction to the characters of Camelot and we comfortably spent four hours in the grounds. If El Guapo hadn’t been desperate for his nap we would have stayed longer so Lightning could practise sword-fighting with the knights.

The green-screen photos are also a hit – our family rarely if ever buys photos at attractions but couldn’t resist the shot in which El Guapo appears to be facing sacrifice to a fire-breathing dragon. It’s a wonderful memory of our trip to Kryal Castle Ballarat!

To extend your experience Kryal Castle offers castle stays in Ballarat. For accommodation options around Kryal Castle near Ballarat, I recommend researching on Airbnb.

More things to do in Ballarat with kids

Tips for Kryal Castle:

  • Keep an eye on the website for special Kryal Castle events, especially around school holidays;
  • Activities are included in general admission;
  • school holiday program is best suited for children aged 5+;
  • There are some stairs so not all areas are pram-friendly; and
  • Cafe on site but basic offering only;
  • Kryal Castle offers Ballarat castle accommodation;
  • Look out for Kryal Castle discount tickets which are sometimes available on coupon sites such as Deals.com.au. Just Google ‘kryal castle deals’ before you buy your Kryal Castle tickets.

This post contains affiliate links. If you book using the links there is no extra cost to you and I earn a small commission that helps me to provide free, valuable and useful information for you!

About Erika Jonsson

Erika Jonsson is a communications specialist, former journalist and mother of two boys aged 5 and 9 years old. She lives in inner-city Melbourne and loves running, travel, cooking and reading.

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