Make sure you visit all the world-class national attractions that call Canberra home at least once, including the National Museum of Australia, Australia's Parliament House, the National Gallery of Australia and the Australian War Memorial. Entry to most of the city’s major attractions is free.
For the best view of Canberra, take a scenic hot air balloon flight over the nation’s capital. Take off at sunrise and drift gently with the wind as you experience breathtaking views and see the nation's capital come to life beneath you.
Spend your Saturday morning shopping up a storm at the Capital Region Farmers Markets, where you can buy fresh produce direct from the growers and enjoy a delicious local breakfast or brunch. Then take part in a Sunday tradition in Canberra by visiting the Old Bus Depot Markets. Pick up some tasty treats, a bunch of flowers, some fashion gems and local artwork.
At the heart of Canberra is Lake Burley Griffin, surrounded by galleries and museums that house Australia’s art and historical collections interspersed with parks and open spaces as well as walking and cycling paths. Do as the locals do and spend an hour walking the ‘bridge to bridge’ path around the lake, stopping off for a coffee along the way.
Canberra’s three cool-climate wine regions offer a spectacular range of experiences, from wine-tasting and fine dining to truffle hunting. Traditionally, Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir and Shiraz varieties have thrived here at the 140 vineyards and 33 winery cellar doors, most within 30 minutes’ drive of the capital.
Indulge at some of the capital’s top-rated restaurants for incredible culinary experiences. Wander through foodie precincts like Braddon, NewActon and the Kingston Foreshore for an eclectic mix of cafes, restaurants, bars, pop-up stores, galleries and people watching.
Explore Canberra's thriving cafe culture and hit up some of the city's many hot spots, which are perfect for catching up with friends, enjoying a weekend brunch or relaxing over a long lunch. Be sure to drop into The Cupping Room, Highroad, ONA Manuka or ONA Coffee House, where you might run into ONA Coffee founder and 2015 World Barista Champion Sasa Sestic or perhaps the reigning Australian Barista Champion, Matt Lewin.
Set yourself the challenge on a visit to Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve to spot five famous native Australian animals that call the area home: the koala, platypus, kangaroo, emu and wombat. Then embark on the ultimate animal encounter at the National Zoo & Aquarium’s luxury accommodation, Jamala Wildlife Lodge, where you can take part in behind-the-scenes tours and share a jungle bungalow with lions, tigers and bears for neighbours.
This is just a taste of what you can try to pack into your trip to Canberra. For more suggestions, check out the Visitor Guide, available here.