Canberra, Australia's capital city is located in the ACT and is home to many of Australia's most important public buildings, art works and institutions. It's a great place to tour and enjoy, with its well-planned city, parks, gardens and surrounds.Canberra is the young, yet vibrant capital city of Australia. After the federation of Australia in 1901, both Melbourne and Sydney tried to claim national capital status. In 1908, a solution was found by selecting a location midway between Australia's two largest cities. Canberra was built between 1915 and 1920 on modernist principles and fans out in flat, streamlined streets from Lake Burley Griffin and pristine bushland.
Canberra's centrepiece is Capital Hill - the site of Parliament House and the home of the Federal Parliament. Today, a giant Australian flag - supported by an enormous four-footed mast dramatically emerges above the peak of the hill. You can picnic on the hillside, which acts as the parliament's roof, sit-in and watch parliament at work, or admire the 3,000 or so pieces of artwork in the building's galleries.
More than 30 Australian artistic and cultural institutions are located in Canberra, ranging from the Australian War Memorial to Parliament House.
Canberra's long list of attractions include the Australian Institute of Sport, Australian National Library, National Science and Technology Centre, the High Court and Old Parliament House. The former parliament house now houses the National Portrait Gallery and Australian Archives Gallery.
Other places to tour include Australian National University, ScreenSound Australia (the National Film and Sound Archive) and All Saints Church in Ainslie.
National Gallery of Australia
The National Museum of Australia is big, bold, and colourful, with as many curves and corners as the Museum of Modern Art in Bilbao. The museum has displays in excess of 200,000 objects representing Australia's rich history and cultural heritage.
Spreading itself over the shore of Lake Burley Griffin, the museum is the first true landmark to house the stories of Australia's past, present and future. On display is everything from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artefacts to a carcass of the extinct Tasmanian Tiger. Find hotels near the National Gallery of Australia at Webjet.
Many of Canberra's top attractions are family holiday oriented, including Questacon - the National Science and Technology Centre - popular for its hands-on exhibits; Telstra Tower on Black Mountain, for its incredible views across the city and surrounding countryside; and the Australian Institute of Sport, where many of Australia's top athletes train.
Other top flight attractions include the Australian National Botanic Gardens - home to one of the best collections of Australian plants anywhere; and the Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex, with its fascinating space-related displays and huge working tracking dishes.
In the middle of Lake Burley Griffin, the impressive Captain Cook Memorial Jet shoots a six-tonne column of water 147 metres into the air.
Wine and Dine
Canberra's cool climate produces some award-winning wines grown around the townships of Murrumbateman, Hall and Bungendore. Local produce and creative chefs ensure a well-matched dining experience.
The Great Outdoors
Canberra is often called the Bush Capital because of nearby Canberra Nature Park and Namadgi National Park. Almost half of the Australian Capital Territory is parkland or bushland, making Canberra a natural spot for an escape into the Great Outdoors. Sightseeing can be done through organised tours, or it is easy to hire a car and explore for yourself.
Walking options include hiking through Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve, on the edge of the city, where you can see kangaroos, wallabies, koalas, platypus and plenty of birds in their natural environment. Namadgi is a surprising landscape of high plateaus, thick forest and grasslands dotted often with wildflowers and roamed by hundreds of kangaroos.
Golf is another popular option with locals and visitors, as well as with the city's plethora of diplomatic staff. There are 11 challenging golf courses scattered throughout the city and green fees are generally inexpensive.
The Australian capital is filled with great places to explore so make sure your accommodation needs are taken care of by booking at Webjet. With accommodation including hotels, bed and breakfasts, motels and hostels for backpackers, there's options to suit any traveller. Find hotels in Canberra today.
Easily navigate your way around Canberra Airport with Webjet's guide to airport car hire, public transportation, parking facilities and nearby hotel accommodation.
Flying to Sydney
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