Canberra lies at the eastern base of an alpine national parks system covering an area extending through New South Wales and into Victoria. Over half of the land area of the ACT lies within Namadgi National Park, adjoining Kosciuszko National Park. The region gained world fame when the Snowy Mountains Scheme, the largest engineering project undertaken in Australia's history, was built to provide hydroelectricity and irrigation to southeastern Australia.
The Snowy Mountains
Drive a three-hour scenic trip from Canberra to the Snowy Mountains, and discover beautiful alpine flowers in summer, ski resorts in winter, meander along trout-filled rivers, hike the high country, take a horse riding trek, visit the Snowy Mountains Hydro Scheme and much more.
Hike the highest mountain in Australia, Mt Kosciuszko, as a summer walk to experience the alpine flowers and endless views of range upon range of mountains.
Alpine sports and recreation
Discover a region alive with seasonal activities. In winter, ski at top resorts including Thredbo, Perisher Blue and the family-friendly Mt Selwyn resorts. In spring and summer, the snowmelt feeds clear alpine streams with superb fishing. The lakes of the Snowy Mountains hydro scheme fill for boating, fishing, paddling and sailing. Bushwalks abound with spectacular displays of wildflowers across the Main Range and Mt Kosciuszko walks start from Charlotte Pass or Thredbo. Mountain bikers will thrill with the downhill and cross-country trails on offer throughout the region.
In a place steeped with legend and fame of the Man from Snowy River, you may see a brumby (wild horse) on a bushwalk along with countless kangaroos, wallabies, wombats and birds.
Drive holidays through Australia's alpine regions
Drive the Monaro Highway from Canberra to the town of Cooma and then onto Jindabyne to access the main alpine areas. Visit quaint towns like Bredbo, Berridale and Numeralla, explore gold mining relics at Kiandra, cast a lure or a fly rod for superb trout fishing in Lake Eucumbene and Lake Jindabyne. Drive the Snowy Mountains Highway from Cooma to Tumut and explore Blowering and Talbingo Reservoirs, meandering through alpine grasslands and streams. At the Yarrangobilly Caves, take a journey into the earth to view stunning frozen waterfalls, limestone caves and underground pools.
Snowy mountains accommodation
Accommodation deals are everywhere with resorts, luxury bed and breakfasts, backpackers and hostels and fantastic camping and caravan facilities. The best place to start your research is to visit snowymountains.com.au