Canberra City precinct

Canberra City precinct

The centre of attraction

Whether pining over designer buys in boutique stores, taking a ride on a magical carousel or enjoying some of the best national and international cuisine in Canberra, Civic is a real crowd-pleaser. 

Retail therapy

Located in the heart of the city, the Canberra Centre boasts Myer and David Jones, as well as a stunning range of more than 260 specialty stores including Zara, sass & bide, Hugo Boss and R.M.Williams. The redeveloped Monaro Mall includes a dedicated beauty and wellness precinct on the ground floor and a lifestyle precinct above. With beauty offerings including a mega-sized Mecca Maxima, Jurlique, Perfect Potion, Lush, Aveda, L'Occitane and a nail salon, Monaro Mall is a mecca for beauty buffs. Step upstairs and lifestyle lovers will be in bliss with brands Top3 by Design, Le Creuset, Nespresso, Pepe's Paperie, Robinsons Bookshop, Parisian jeweller Les Nereides and Haigh's Chocolates. 

Three women hold their shopping bags in the Canberra Centre.
You’re bound to find what you’re looking for at the Canberra Centre, in the heart of the Canberra City.

Step outside the Canberra Centre and you’ll find boutiques, street fashion, alternative music and independent book stores in arcades in City Walk and Garema Place. In nearby Petrie Plaza you’ll find the famous 1914 merry-go-round which has been sending kids into circles of delight in Canberra since 1974.

City dining

After a busy day in the city, treat yourself to a delicious meal at one of the many exciting restaurants and cafes that call Civic home.

The Canberra Centre offers a range of national and international cuisine choices along its alfresco dining strip known as the North Quarter. Try RAKU for modern Japanese dining, Sammy’s Kitchen, Kinn Thai, Gami Chicken and Beer, Soi Noodle Bar, and Papparich for Asian dishes or popular Mexican restaurant Guzman y Gomez. CBD Dumpling House, around the corner on Bunda Street is a haven for all dumpling devotees and you must check out the buzzing ambience at award-winning AKIBA.

Enjoy a fusion of Asian-inspired flavours and cooking techniques at AKIBA in Canberra
Enjoy a fusion of Asian-inspired flavours and cooking techniques at AKIBA in Canberra's city centre.

The nearby Melbourne and Sydney Buildings offer all sorts of superb fare. From Japanese at Iori Japanese Restaurant to Italian at Mezzalira, these historic buildings have plenty to offer the hungry traveller. Head to Verity Lane Market for a food hall with a difference - enjoy chef-driven ramen, pizza and south-east Asian eats in an inviting setting. 

Bar Rochford is a must-visit for all wine and sour beer connoisseurs, offering delectable bar snacks as well. Canberra City is also home to some of Canberra’s most upmarket fare including Temporada, known for its quirky take on all your favourite cuisines.

Fit for culture vultures

While in the city, take in a show at the Canberra Theatre Centre or The Street Theatre. Wander through the Canberra Museum and Gallery, a vibrant space in the heart of the city that celebrates the region's social history and visual arts with dynamic exhibitions and events.

People admire paintings by Sir Sidney Nolan at the Canberra Museum and Gallery.
The Canberra Museum and Gallery, centrally located in the Canberra City, is home to The Foundation Collection of Sir Sidney Nolan’s paintings.

Movie lovers can catch a flick at the independent Dendy Cinema, conveniently located within the Canberra Centre and screening the best in international film, blockbusters and family-friendly films.

Bars and night spots

Why not dance the night away at the city’s hottest nightclubs and bars? Garema Place is home to a variety of popular cocktail lounges and wine bars – many offer delectable cuisine too – including jungle-inspired Kokomos and Hippo Co. Nearby King O’Malley’s is another Garema Place go-to for live music, pub food and local entertainment.

People enjoying a drink and a meal at The Highball Express.
Head upstairs to The Highball Express for good times and great drinks.

The Sydney and Melbourne Buildings boast numerous nightlife spots including the multi-levelled Mooseheads, Treehouse, 65 Northbourne, the hidden speakeasy Molly, and The Highball Express as well as the Irish pub PJ O’Reilly’s. For something completely different, visit the White Rabbit Cocktail Room on Northbourne Avenue, an Alice in Wonderland-themed hideaway for those who like their tea parties with a twist.

Hidden in the basement of a building in Hobart Place in Civic, 88mph is Canberra's first dedicated '80s bar. True to the 80s, 88mph has karaoke rooms, arcade games, a light-up dance floor, constant '80s tunes, themed food and cocktails, and plenty of neon lights.

You can even have a flutter at Casino Canberra on Allara Street, with its fantastic dining venue and wide range of games, or drop into one of the many licensed clubs in the area.   

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