Visual feast in mountain village

LIONS, lanterns and a moon gate are among attractions brightening up the region’s historic mountain township as part of this year’s Chinese-themed light festival.

The fourth annual Walhalla Vinter Ljusfest will continue throughout August, with coloured lights and a range of tours for visitors.

“The Chinese people who lived here in the gold era weren’t really involved in mining, but they were certainly merchants and market gardeners,” Walhalla and Mountain Rivers Tourism Association president Michael Leaney said.

“This is a bit of a tribute to them.”

A traditional moon gate has been set up at Stringers Park and was blessed by the Bendigo Chinese Association Lion Team on the weekend.

“We’re asking people to come to the Ljusfest cart and grab a pen and paper and they can write a message of peace or harmony or remembrance and tie it on the moon gate,” Mr Leaney said.

“We also give them a fortune cookie to give them good fortune for the month.”

On Saturday nights this month there are light train tours and ghost tours at Walhalla, while on Wednesday evenings there are Chinese lantern heritage tours and on Friday nights mine tours will run.

The lights are switched on at 6.30 every evening and Chinese food is available.

For a full festival program, go to