15 reasons to bring the fam to Canberra during the spring school holidays

15 reasons to bring the fam to Canberra during the spring school holidays

Wanting a spring school holiday without spending the big bucks? Put Australia’s capital on your radar with our top picks of ideas to keep both you and your kids entertained.

Your kids will have lots to report at show-and-tell on the first day back at school with Canberra's interactive exhibitions, Insta-worthy events and outdoor adventures.

  1. 1

    Learn about the creative process behind DreamWorks Animations' films

    See your favourite DreamWorks movie characters Shrek, Toothless and Po at the National Museum of Australia’s DreamWorks Animation: The Exhibition (12 September 2019 - 2 February 2020). This fascinating exhibition will offer a rare glimpse into the studio’s collaborative, artistic and visionary approach.

  2. 2

    Challenge your kids to a retro game

    Relive your childhood and explore retro games at the Game Masters exhibition at the National Film and Sound Archive ( 27 September 2019 - 9 March 2020). Take a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process of popular franchises dating back from where gaming began 50 years ago and pick up a controller to test your skills – there’s more than 80 to play.

  3. 3

    See planes, helicopters, rockets and tanks up close

    If you love seeing big military objects up close, then the Australian War Memorial’s Big Things in Store annual open day (5 October) at its warehouse is one not to miss. From aircraft to rockets and tanks, this is an exclusive opportunity to see inside the Memorial’s storage annexe that’s not normally open to the public.

  4. 4

    Join KidzKlub at Floriade

    Floriade comes alive with a World in Bloom theme in Commonwealth Park (14 September - 13 October). Best of all, it’s free and packed full of plenty of family friendly activities. The theme is integrated across 21 flowerbeds and 189 portable raised flowerbeds positioned throughout the park. You’ll find a brimming program of live entertainment, food, drinks and market stalls plus KidzKlub.

    see the full program
  5. 5

    Cheer on the Socceroos

    GIO Stadium will be a sea of green and gold when the Caltex Socceroos take on Nepal (10 October) on their road to FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ qualification. Who will you be cheering for?

  6. 6

    Swap 5 star ratings for a sky full of a zillion stars

    Spend a night under the stars family glamping at the Wildfest Pop-Up Wilderness Family Camp (27 September - 12 October) at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve over the school holidays. With ranger talks, dinner by the campfire and much more, you’ll have a new appreciation for this area on the northern edge of Australia’s Alps.

    BOOK NOW
  7. 7

    Visit the moon without leaving Canberra

    Lay back on a bean bag and gaze at The Moon at Questacon – The National Science and Technology Centre. At 7 metres in diameter, The Moon is based on a high-resolution photograph taken from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter camera and was designed by UK artist Luke Jerram.

  8. 8

    See the lake on two-wheels

    Hire a bike and cycle around Lake Burley Griffin. The Canberra and Region Visitors Centre at Regatta Point hires out a Brompton Bike, complete with helmet and lock, so you can stop off at the various cultural attractions dotted around the lake.

  9. 9

    Discover Floriade's dark side at NightFest

    Explore Floriade’s dark side at Floriade NightFest from 3-6 October. This ticketed event has a changing line-up of entertainment each night, including The Veronica’s, Dave Hughes, Urzila Carlson and more. With foodie experiences and interactive light displays, there’s something for everyone at this popular event.

    buy tickets
  10. 10

    Visit a land where dinosaurs rule supreme

    Take your little ones to the National Dinosaur Museum in Gold Creek where they’ll learn about the Muttaburrasaurus and see one of the largest permanent displays of dinosaurs and prehistoric life in Australia. Guided tours are a great way to explore this Museum - they are offered daily at 11am, 12pm, 2pm and 3pm. 

  11. 11

    Be captivated by Women In Vogue at the National Portrait Gallery

    Play spot the famous face at the National Portrait Gallery that reopens to the public on 14 September. There’s plenty of activities for kids over the holidays including Art Cart, Portrait Play and Little Faces. Big kids will love the Women In Vogue exhibition (11 October - 24 November) featuring artworks of Australian women who have graced Vogue magazine.

    buy tickets
  12. 12

    Enjoy a floating picnic on a GoBoat

    For a fun family experience, consider packing a picnic and hiring an electric GoBoat from the Kingston Foreshore to sail Lake Burley Griffin. They’re environmentally friendly and easy to use, and you’ll get a new perspective on Canberra’s lakeside attractions.

  13. 13

    Immerse yourself in new cultures at Windows to the World

    Have you ever wanted to check out what’s behind the gate of many of Canberra’s embassies and high commissions? During Windows to the World (5, 12-13 & 19-20 October) you’ll be able to do just that but make sure you book when the program is announced shortly.

  14. 14

    Glide around the capital on a segway

    Bored teens? Keep them engaged with a guided segway tour around Lake Burley Griffin with some freestyling allowed on the grass between Questacon and the National Portrait Gallery. You’ll find SegGlideRide located on the southern side of Lake Burley Griffin near the International flag display.

  15. 15

    Find the secret treehouse at the Australian National Botanic Gardens

    Watch dragon lizards lazing in the sun as you skip across rocks in the Australian National Botanic Gardens and walk the many trails. Climb the treehouse made from wood salvaged from Baz Luhrmann’s Australia film set and fuel up with brunch at the Hamptons-inspired Pollen Café.

With a jam-packed calendar of events the hardest decision you'll have to make these school holidays is what to do first.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Canberra and Region Visitors Centre

The knowledgable staff and volunteers at the Canberra and Region Visitors Centre know everything there is to see, do, eat and explore in the territory and the surrounding region. A visit to the Canberra and Region Visitors Centre will ensure your holiday to Canberra is full of one good thing after another.