Best things to do in Canberra
Find out more about those top places in Canberra
Canberra is not like most capital cities in the world, it has easily been outshone by Sydney and Melbourne – this often leads to bit of skepticism among travelers but contrary to popular belief, it is a very exciting place.
Made the capital of Australia after several disputes, the city is the largest inland city in the country and holds most of the nation’s government houses like the parliament house. With its ever welcoming citizens and many attractions, visiting Canberra is often an unforgettable experience.
There are quite many museums in Canberra, with all telling an important part of Australia’s history. One of such is the Australia’s War Memorial. Situated in Treloar Cres, it was built to commemorate members of the country’s armed forces who died or participated in wars involving the commonwealth of Australia. Opened in 1941, it is the best place to get the full details of most of Australia wars – it is divided into 3 parts; the Hall of Memory with the tomb of the unknown soldier, Research Center and the Commemorative Area (Shrine).
Regarded as Canberra's most important structure, the Parliament House was opened on 9 May 1988 by Elizabeth II Queen of Australia, it was designed by Romaldo Giurgola and has fast become a symbol of Australia. Sitting atop Capital Hill, it contains 4,700 rooms including a marble staircase that leads to the Great Wall which is known for its lovely tapestry. Visitors are allowed to explore most of the rooms, and although tickets might be needed to access some areas they are also free but must be booked online.
Located at the end of the lake Burley Griffin in Yarralumia is the two in one special for lovers of wildlife. The National Zoo and Aquarium set up by Geoff Da Deppo covers an area of 19 hectares making it one of the biggest in the country. Privately owned the zoo relies on support from volunteers and ticket sell to stay functional - its main attractions include its large collection of big cats, penguins and endemic plants. For visitors there are several interactive tours to make the visit a memorable one.
If you love nature and don’t mind a little hiking, then Black Mountain is a place for you. Rising to 812 meters, it offers the best flora and fauna attractions, with over 500 species of plants, 5,000 species of insects and 100 species of birds. The hike to summit usually begins at the end of the Frith substation behind the CSIRO, Acton and may take about two hours - on your way watch out for the iconic Black Mountain Tower.
The Lake Burley Griffin is now firmly a part of Canberra, which makes it so hard to remember that it is an artificial lake. Named after renowned architect Walter Burley Griffin, the lake was formed after the Molonglo river was dammed – it is located at the approximate geographic center of the city. There are several cruises available to take visitors round the lake while they get to see most of its surrounding major attractions.