If you want to experience Canberra, there’s no better way to do it than hitting all of the best sites. You’ll never worry what to do in Canberra because we’ve rounded up the top 10 things that the entire family can enjoy. Canberra sightseeing is some of the most breathtaking in Australia, and we’ll help you make memories that can last a lifetime!
Why Canberra Excursions Are so Popular
Australia’s capital city, Canberra, offers a host of unique and memorable experiences combined with a diverse community of residents that come from larger cities throughout Australia. There’s also a large student population since Canberra is home to some of Australia’s most prestigious universities. You’ll see a large number of museums, galleries and businesses that turn Canberra into a smaller cosmopolitan city. They’re no shortage of creative flair, and the culinary scene is fantastic.
Canberra is also a hub for many large festivals throughout the year, each of which attracts thousands of visitors. There are several music venues where you can see live music all year round, and it has a thriving social scene. All of these smaller things make this a very family-friendly area to enjoy.
10 Things to Experience in Canberra
This is a bustling city, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and find yourself wondering what to do in Canberra. This is especially true if it’s your first time visiting. However, we’ve rounded up the best Canberra sightseeing opportunities, as well the best ways to experience Canberra, and listed them for you below. This way, you can pick ones that work best for your tastes, and your time constraints.
1. Shop in the Old Bus Depot Market
The large student population, coupled with a thriving media industry ensures that Canberra has a flourishing creative vibe. One of the best ways to experience this festive atmosphere is with the Old Bus Depot Market on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. You’ll be able to buy everything from homewares and hipster clothing to excellent coffee and organic produce. They’re a wonderful place to get to know the locals, and there’s loads of things to sample, buy and eat throughout the market. You’ll also find locally designed jewellery and art.
2. Parliament House
The Parliament House is a stunning example of sleek and modern architecture and was first unveiled in 1988. You can see democracy in action and take a free guided tour every day of the week. The guided tours run at 9:30 a.m., 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. When Parliament is in session, you want to be there from 2 p.m. onwards to watch Question Time. During this time, government ministers field questions from other parliament members. There are also a number of public galleries and exhibitions.
3. National Arboretum
If you want to appreciate nature’s beauty, the National Arboretum is a must-see. It is a 250-hectare patch of land that was decimated by fires from 2001 to 2003. The newly redesigned area features 100 gardens and 100 forests that all focus on rare, threatened and culturally significant trees. These trees come from around the world, and the location also features the national bonsai tree collection of Australia. There are several public art pieces, a restaurant, cafe, and more to explore. There’s also a pod playground for the kids to enjoy climbing around in.
4. National Zoo & Aquarium
In Canberra, you’ll find Australia’s only combined aquarium and zoo facility. Since this zoo is in Australia’s capital city, the city has gone to great lengths to make it a memorable experience. You can take the whole family on a ZooVenture tour at the National Zoo and Aquarium where you’ll be able to pat a rhino, feed bears, feed giraffes and take a two-hour tour behind the scenes of the zoo. You can stay in the Jamala Wildlife Lodge, and you’ll get a special safari itinerary that includes one to three nights of exciting, exotic entertainment opportunities.
5. Namadgi National Park
For a short day trip just 40km outside of Canberra, you can’t pass up the chance to visit Namadgi National Park. You’ll find a host of stunning fauna, all of which is native to Australia, as well as rugged granite mountains and a beautiful habitat that shifts from lush forests to alpine meadows. It’s an Australian National Heritage-listed Park, and it’s one of 11 protected areas that make up the Australian Alps National Parks and Reserves. You’ll experience scenery that will leave you breathless.
6. Revisit History at a Museum
There are dozens of high-quality galleries and museums scattered throughout Canberra that are worth a look. They contain several exhibitions that you won’t find anywhere else in Australia, and they draw large crowds from all over. If you want to learn about Australia’s geography, history and culture, visit the National Museum of Australia. For art lovers, you don’t want to miss the world-class Aboriginal art on display at the National Gallery of Australia, while the Australian War Memorial is not something to miss.
7. Australian National Botanic Gardens
If you want a beautiful introduction to Australia’s plant life, the Australian National Botanic Gardens are a great place to start. This is an excellent place to walk through and in which to have a picnic. If you want a more in-depth look at the area, you can take a 45-minute bus tour of the Gardens. This tour gives a brief history of the Gardens themselves, along with all of the different types of flowers you can see, all in an air-conditioned coach.
8. Australian Institute of Sport (AIS)
Australia is a famously sports-mad country, and you can experience this huge part of Aussie culture in the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS). This is one of the most-visited tourist attractions in Canberra, and welcomes domestic and international visitors alike. You can take a 90-minute tour that gives you a great introduction to Australia’s sporting past, present and future. While you’re here, why not challenge yourself at Sportex? This is a state-of-the-art sports exhibit that is seriously hands-on and great fun.
9. Jerrabomberra Wetlands
Billed as one of the best-kept secrets in Australia, the Jerrabomberra Wetlands are worth a stroll through. Located in the heart of Canberra, these wetlands are a natural getaway, and are perfect for relaxing in, away from the typical hustle and bustle of the city. You’ll see rich diversity in the local the birdlife, that includes both local and migratory species. The wetlands also play host to events all year round, including large Indigenous cultural events. If you’re a nature lover, put the lush greenery and charming environs of the wetlands on your list, and don’t miss them the next time you come to Canberra.
10. Truffle Farm
If you are someone who loves gourmet foods, you’ll find the Truffle Farm, just on the outskirts of Canberra, to be perfectly suited to your tastes. It’s a homestead farm that features an on-site restaurant, with a chef who is a veteran of several Michelin star restaurants around the world. The farmer, Jayson, is a Canberra native and brings truffle hunting pigs and dogs out on the hunt in search of the latest delicacies. You can join them if you visit between June and August. If you come outside of these three months, you can still enjoy a delicious dish and take in the stunning views of the Majura Valley. Don’t miss out; check out the truffle farm on your next visit.
Take a Canberra Excursion with a Tour From Tours R Us
Take a Canberra day trip from Sydney and completely immerse yourself in a vibrant and thriving Australian culture with Tours R Us’ Canberra Day Tour! We specialise in giving our guests the complete Canberra experience, with a host of sightseeing opportunities.
We’ll take you to see some of the most important sights in Australia, and it all starts in Sydney. We’ll pick you up and take you on a day tour that encompasses Australia’s historical landmarks and buildings. People who routinely use our services adore our tours as a top-notch way to experience Canberra because we focus on variety and diversity, and we make the past, present and future come alive in a fun and interactive way.
Additionally, our local guides know some of the best Canberra sightseeing opportunities available, and we can’t wait to share them with you at Tours R Us. We bring over 20 years of experience of sharing Australia’s rich history to all of our tours, and our luxury coaches bring you to destinations all over Canberra and the surrounding area in style and comfort. We’ll work hard to ensure that you get a top-notch experience from the first point of contact until you finish the tour.
If you’d like to know more about our exclusive Canberra Day Tour or what to do in Canberra, reach out and get in touch with our staff! We’re happy to describe our itinerary, address any concerns you may have and answer your questions. We can even help you book the perfect day! All you need do is reach out!0