Top 10 Places to Visit in Canberra

Canberra, Australia’s capital, is becoming a popular tourist destination in its own right, despite being overshadowed by Sydney and Melbourne.

It is the nation’s capital and features several outstanding civic monuments and sites, as well as extensive areas of lovely wilderness, innumerable gardens, and verdant woodlands.

Top 10 Places to Visit in Canberra

Canberra, Australia, was established in 1913 as a completely planned metropolis, including the creation of Lake Burley Griffin. Canberra has grown from a small town populated primarily by politicians and government workers to a bustling metropolis with a wide variety of attractions.

Top 10 Places to Visit in Canberra

In addition to its various cultural institutions and scenic areas, it also boasts excellent commercial and entertainment districts. The urban centre provides something for everyone, from its many parks and outdoor activities to the adjacent scenic mountain ranges.

1. Cockington Green

Cockington Green has been one of Canberra’s top tourist destinations for decades thanks to its collection of magnificent scale models of architecture from all around the world. Its grounds are a treat to explore, filled with miniature buildings, gardens, and figures and located on the northern outskirts of the capital.

When it first opened to the public in 1979, the displays exclusively included British cottages and rural scenery. Later, however, displays of architecture from Australia, Chile, and Argentina were included.

Guests can also take a ride on the miniature steam train, relax in the beautiful gardens, and peruse the countless dollhouses in the Rose Room.

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2. National Portrait Gallery

The National Portrait Gallery, which is right next door, is a must-see for anyone interested in Australian history. You can find portraits of famous authors, musicians, and politicians mixed together with depictions of native Aboriginals and the Founding Fathers.

The museum has been open since 1998, and its remarkable, ultra-modern architecture has many bright exhibit halls and striking architectural details. There are probably approximately three thousand portraits on display, each accompanied by a multimedia presentation that describes the person’s significance to the country.

It features not just hundreds of photographs and paintings but also magnificent sculptures, digital works, and even fabrics.

3. Australian National Botanic Gardens

The stunning Australia National Botanic Gardens may be found on the lower slopes of Black Mountain. A tranquil and beautiful setting, it covers a vast area and, astonishingly, contains the world’s greatest collection of surviving native Australian flora.

More than 4,300 plant species are spread across its rolling hills and winding ravines in the form of rock gardens, water features, virgin bushland, and steamy rainforest.

Its lovely paths wind past vibrant flowers, plants, trees, and shrubs, and its terrain varies from wild to meticulously manicured. While informative presentations and guided tours reveal the secrets of the gardens’ verdant interior.

4. Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex

The legendary Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex is well worth visiting because it is one of only three such stations in the world. Located about forty minutes outside of town to the southwest, this cutting-edge NASA facility maintains constant communication with a wide variety of orbiting satellites and suborbital experiments.

It went live in 1965, and its massive antennae, the largest in the Southern Hemisphere, are hidden away in the Paddys River Valley. Visitors can learn more about space travel, astronauts, and NASA, as well as marvel at the enormous size of the facilities, by exploring the complex and viewing models of spacecraft.

5. Australian War Memorial

The Australian War Memorial, with its art deco design, stands out among the city’s many other impressive buildings. The huge Byzantine-style monument was unveiled in 1941, during World War II, and it honours all Australian military personnel who perished in any major combat.

Located on the foothills of Mount Ainslie, this serene and beautiful location features a pool of remembering, a plaza for commemoration, and the Hall of Remembrance, which houses the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.

In addition to the memorial, there is a museum with displays and memorabilia from Australia’s military history. Other notable monuments and military memorials line the adjacent Anzac Parade which leads up to the Australian War Memorial but are not technically a part of the complex.

6. Mount Ainslie Lookout

The best aerial view of Canberra may be had from the peak of adjacent Mount Ainslie, which towers over the city. From this vantage point, the city’s layout, down to how closely spaced its major landmarks are, is plain to observe.

Its peak, at an altitude of 843 metres, is comparable in popularity to that of the Telstra Tower to the west of the city. Hiking and cycling through the mount’s pristine bushland and visiting the sombre Australian War Monument are all great ways to spend time after taking in the breathtaking panoramas from the viewpoint.

7. National Gallery of Australia

The National Gallery of Australia has one of the best collections of artwork in all of the city’s institutions. Large galleries filled with fascinating paintings, photographs, and sculptures by famous painters like Jackson Pollock, Salvador Dali, and Claude Monet make for a delightful stroll.

The purpose-built gallery was established in 1967 and is located on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin; its striking Brutalist-style, angular shapes, and concrete surfaces make it a sight to see in the middle of the beautiful gardens that surround it.

Its impressive collection of almost 160,000 works includes awe-inspiring examples of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art as well as substantial parts of Western and Eastern works, and outdoors is a lovely sculpture garden.

8. National Museum of Australia

The National Museum of Australia is a must-see, and it’s located at the very tip of a peninsula that juts out into Lake Burley Griffin. Its wealth of art, architecture, and archaeological finds not only tell the story of the country’s development up to the present day, but also spark lively debate and conversation about the country’s potential future.

Having opened its doors in 1980, the museum is now housed in a remarkable structure designed specifically for that purpose. Its knotted rope motif and circular design represent the binding of many Australian experiences.

The museum’s interior is just as captivating, thanks to its extensive collection of over 200,000 artefacts that shed light on Australia’s history and culture from the time of the first European settlement in 1788 until the present.

9. Questacon

The wonderful Questacon is another of Canberra’s main tourist attractions, located just near to the Old Parliament House and the National Portrait Gallery.

The fascinating interactive displays and hands-on activities at this museum provide visitors with a unique opportunity to explore the fascinating worlds of science and technology. It has been a family favourite since it opened in 1986, and its galleries cover topics as diverse as art and innovations, ancient mythology, robotics, and space travel.

In addition to experiencing earthquake simulators and conducting their own experiments in the lab, visitors can also enjoy fantastic live science shows and informative discussions on the newest developments in technology.

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10. Telstra Tower

One of Canberra’s most recognisable landmarks, the massive Telstra Tower, can be found atop Black Mountain, providing breathtaking views of the city and botanical gardens below.

Its cafe, indoor observation deck, and outdoor viewing platforms provide some of the best and most stunning views in town thanks to its lofty perch over the surrounding countryside.

The unique telecommunications tower is at 195 metres in height and features a slender spire topped with numerous satellite dishes for communication. Visitors can get a sense of the tower’s evolution since its 1980 debut at the base, and then ride the lift up to the observation deck for breathtaking views in every direction.