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Crammed with cultural treasures, Canberra, in the ACT (Australian Capital Territory), is the carefully crafted capital of Australia. It's no accident that the city lies between Sydney and Melbourne. The site of the capital was chosen as a compromise between these two rival cities in 1908. American architects, Walter Burley Griffin and his wife, Marion Mahony Griffin, won an international competition for the city's design, which incorporates vast greenbelts and geometric shapes.
Lake Burley Griffin, at the city's center, is its sparkling jewel and many of the city's top tourist attractions lie on its shores, including the National Gallery of Australia, Questacon, and the National Library. The parliament buildings as well as some of the city's other main attractions lie within the Parliamentary Triangle formed by Kings Avenue, Commonwealth Avenue, and Lake Burley Griffin. The city's streets are laid out on a generous scale, with many flanked by gardens.
Australians love to hate their capital, dismissing it as lacking in soul and being filled with self-serving politicians and petty bureaucrats. Don't let them put you off. Canberra is a wonderfully green little city, with a lively and sophisticated dining and bar scene, interesting architecture and a smorgasbord of major institutions to keep even the most avid culture vulture engrossed for days on end.
Canberra features expansive open spaces, broad boulevards, aesthetics influenced by the 19th-century Arts and Crafts Movement, and a seamless alignment of built and natural elements.
During parliamentary sitting weeks the city hums with the buzz of national politics, but it can be a tad sleepy during university holidays, especially around Christmas and New Year.
Address: 15 Moore St, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6249 6683
Creative dishes with pan-Asian flavours in a modern venue with steel and recycled wood finishes.
Address: 40 Bunda St, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6162 0602
Airy restaurant with dark wood tones and slatted partitions, for inventive Southeast Asian dishes.
Address: 3 Blamey Pl, Campbell ACT 2612, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6249 6889
Contemporary space overlooking a walled garden, for Modern European dining and fine wines.
Address: 54 Marcus Clarke St, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6247 4042
French cuisine served in a relaxed, exposed-brick bistro with plush striped chairs and a courtyard.
Address: Braddon ACT, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6248 8119
Seasonal dishes, plus homemade bread, in an edgy setting with distressed walls and an open kitchen.
Address: 15 Edinburgh Ave, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6287 6150
Address: 1/17 Garema Pl, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6247 7555
Tex-Mex mains and snacks in a funky, laid-back bar with outdoor seats and craft beers on tap.
Address: 17 Garema Pl, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6262 6968
Glamorous cocktail and tapas venue with polished floors and patterned wallpaper, hosting DJ nights.
Address: 65 Northbourne Ave, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia. Phone:+61 2 6257 7779
Address: Llewellyn Hall, William Herbert Pl, Canberra ACT 2601. Phone:+61 2 6248 0171
The bus system in Canberra is one of the best in Australia. With minimal traffic on the road buses are almost always on time. During the week buses are very frequent to most locations and even on weekends enough buses run to make getting to anywhere in Canberra easy.
The bus services are based around four town centre bus interchanges - City, Woden, Tuggeranong and Belconnen. The 300 series runs every 10 or so minutes from Belconnen to Tuggeranong.
Almost all attractions in Canberra are serviced by a bus route. While buses are not the quickest method of travel unless you have a car the only other public transport option will be taxis.
The bus is also a cheap option of travel. At only $3 (adult) for any single trip (with a 90 minutes tansfer option at no extra charge) travelling from one end of the ACT to the other is very economical. For very short trips it can be more economical to just walk.
Address: Treloar Crescent (top of ANZAC Parade), Campbell . Phone: +61 2 6243 4211
Address: Parliament House, Canberra Phone: +61 2 6277 7111
Address: 18 King George Terrace, Parkes Phone: +61 2 6270 8222
Address: King Edward Terrace, Parkes Phone: +61 2 6102 7000
Address: King Edward Terrace, Parkes Phone: +61 2 6270 2800
Address: Clunies Ross Street, Acton Phone: +61 2 6250 9588
Address: 999 Lady Denman Drive, Western Creek, Yarralumla. Phone: +61 2 6287 8400
Address: Lawson Crescent, Acton Peninsula Phone: +61 2 6208 5000
14 Black Mountain Nature Park - Address: Black Mountain Drive, Acton\