Ballan is a small agricultural and pastoral township in the state of Victoria. Situated along the banks of the Werribee River, the community is located some 83.1 kilometres north-west of Melbourne, the state capital. One of its early settlers, Robert von Steiglitz, named the area after the Irish village, Ballan. It has an estimated population of 1,807 residents.
Part of the Local Government Area of the Shire of Moorabool, Ballan is the LGA's main administrative centre. The community is within the State District of Ballarat East (in the Victorian Legislative Assembly) and the Federal Division of Ballarat (in the Australian House of Representatives).
In 1851, gold was discovered in the area, thereby contributing to the Victorian Gold Rush. A huge influx of fortune hunters immediately followed this discovery. As such, Ballan was soon transformed into an important staging point for transporting people and gold to and from the goldfields.
While Ballan is a small township, it nonetheless has its share of attractions that draw people into the area. Two of the community's popular annual festivals are the Vintage Machinery and Vehicle Rally (February) and Ballan Autumn Festival (March). It also has its very own mineral spring, which is open to visitors all throughout the year.