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A Guide to Canberra, Australia

Canberra Introduction

Australia’s capital, Canberra, is a city The New York Times says has ‘big-sky beauty, breezy civic pride and a decidedly hipster underbelly’.

The site of Canberra was selected for the location of the nation’s capital in 1908 as a compromise between rivals Sydney and Melbourne, Australia’s two largest cities. The city’s design was heavily influenced by the garden city movement and incorporates significant areas of natural vegetation that have earned Canberra the title of the “bush capital”. It is also the location of many social and cultural institutions of national significance, such as the Australian War Memorial, Australian National University, Australian Institute of Sport, National Gallery, National Museum and the National Library. The Australian Army’s officer corps are trained at the Royal Military College, Duntroon and the Australian Defence Force Academy is also located in the capital.

While this evolving capital city may be better known as Australia’s political hub, it’s also the place to discover Australia’s stories through an array of national attractions that hold and tell the nation’s story. Canberra’s food scene is red hot and its people laid back. You may need to dig a bit deeper to uncover the city’s gems but you’ll be rewarded by discovering a thriving local arts scene, a city with an abundance of outdoor activities, emerging precincts and plenty of family friendly attractions that both entertain and educate.

So what are you waiting for? Delve in and explore the capital

Museums & Galleries

Unearth the treasures of a nation at our national attractions. From our ancient Indigenous past and colourful colonial history, to the modern multicultural country of today, our nation’s capital holds and shares the essence of Australia.

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Family Fun

Deciding what activity to save for next time will be your biggest dilemma when it comes to a family visit in your capital. From toddlers to teenagers, there’s something that will appeal to every kid. With plenty of free or low admission options, it’s a short break destination that won’t break the bank

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National Zoo & Aquarium

The National Zoo and Aquarium is a privately owned 25-acre (10.1 ha) zoo and aquarium in the Australian capital city Canberra. It is located in Yarralumla at the western end of Lake Burley Griffin alongside Scrivener Dam. The National Zoo and Aquarium is the only combined zoo and aquarium in Australia.

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Canberra & The Great Outdoors

Whether it’s discovering our clean, green and wide open spaces or getting the heart pumping with more active endeavours, you’ve come to the right place. Our landscaped capital is designed to transform with the four distinct seasons and offers parks, gardens and natural expanses perfect for relaxing or exploring your adventurous side.

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Canberra Nature Trails

Take a journey across Australia from the lush green rainforest to the arid Red Centre. Set on 35 hectares of landscaped gardens, the Australian National Botanic Gardens features 6300 native plant species — more than a third of all Australian plants.

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