Explore Canberra for Australian culture and history at superb monuments and galleries in this city surrounded by parklands and native bushland. Visit Parliament House, the Australian War Memorial, National Gallery of Australia and Questacon. Experience the Balloon Fiesta in autumn, Fireside Festival in winter, and Floriade in spring. Explore the Australian Alps or Tidnbinbilla Nature Reserve and Murrumbidgee River Corridor, just a short drive away.
What you can see in Canberra
Explore Australia's culture and heritage at the many galleries and museums.
Top 10 Things to Do in Canberra
Not only is Canberra Australia's youngest capital city, it's also the most surprising. The federal capital houses many of the country's cultural institutions but also supports a thriving arts community and a lively food and bar scene. With its diverse mix of man-made and natural attractions, Canberra is a place of discovery, learning and fun.
The Murrumbidgee Corridor
You can't ignore the call of the great outdoors in the Murrumbidgee River Corridor, easily accessible from Canberra. All kinds of natural communion are possible along this short, lovely section of the river's epic 1,600km journey from the mountainous Australian Alps. Take short walks near Uriarra Crossing or Tharwa or tackle the 27km Murrumbidgee Discovery Track. Swim, kayak and picnic at Casuarina Sands and play cards in the shade of Cotter campground. Fish for Murray cod and listen to native birds warble in the bushland. Pick your day destination from Canberra or combine a few scenic spots on a riverside camping trip.
Canberra’s Science and Technology Attractions
13 September – 12 October 2014 Commonwealth Park, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory Canberra’s famously frosty winters provide the perfect nurturing conditions for the million tulips and annuals that bloom right on cue each spring in a park overlooking Lake Burley Griffin. Once a daytime-only event, the Floriade festival now includes NightFest, with cutting-edge light installations and entertainment over five magical evenings in September.
Three Great Days in Canberra
Take a crash course in Australian history and culture in Canberra, Australia's political and administrative centre. The national monuments and galleries of this planned, spacious city are all within easy walking distance of each other, radiating out from the shores of Lake Burley Griffin. Peer into Australia's political past and creative culture as you circle the lake, then get up close to its native vegetation in the gardens and bushland. Discuss your Australian discoveries over dinner in Dickson, Civic, Manuka or Kingston. Then nurture your love of nature in Namadgi National Park, where you can hike, bike, horse-ride, rock climb and follow a fascinating trail of Aboriginal and European history.
Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve
It's only 40 minutes from Canberra to this heavily-forested valley, which sits nestled between the Gibraltar and Tidbinbilla Ranges in the northern Australian Alps. Like neighbouring Namadgi National Park, this relatively undisturbed pocket teems with wildlife and traces of Aboriginal history. You'll feel a long way from civilization when you pick up a map at the visitor's centre and see the strutting emus, grazing kangaroos, wallabies and cockatoos. It's a great place to spend a summer's day.
Aboriginal Art in Canberra
Immerse yourself in a rich array of Aboriginal art in the National Gallery of Australia. A total of 13 galleries now showcase more than 7,500 works, from dot and bark paintings to watercolours, textiles, prints, ceramics and sculptures. Meander through different rooms, learning about the landscapes, Dreaming legends and historic events entwined with each art tradition. This important collection is a living, evolving expression of the world's oldest living culture.
Canberra's home-grown shopping scene
In Canberra, mega-malls and international labels take second place to a vibrant home-grown shopping scene. The city features markets, boutiques and retail spaces selling regional handicrafts and food and wine fresh from the nearby countryside. Hunt for locally-designed art, jewellery, home wares and fashion along lively Lonsdale Street or trawl hundreds of stalls in the award-winning Old Bus Depot Markets. Wherever you shop in Canberra, you'll find an abundance of local treasures.
Take a look at what's happening in and around Canberra.
What you can see near Canberra
Head to Namadgi National Park or travel on to explore the Australian Alps from Canberra. You can hit the coast at Jervis Bay in two hours.
Explore Namadgi National Park, a section of the Australian Alps just near Canberra.
Head to the coast from Canberra to Jervis Bay.
Take in some of the Australian Walking Track in the Australian Alps.
See Australia's capital city by foot, and take in its history.
Take a leisurely three-day drive along Poacher's Way food and wine trail.
Enjoy a driving tour - start the loop from Canberra, and stop off at Mittagong, Yass and Young.
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