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Smith's Alternative

Band onstage at Smith's Alternative in front of an audience
Band onstage at Smith's Alternative in front of an audience


Smith's Alternative is a cafe and art gallery by day, with fine coffee, teas, in-house baked treats, and hand-made toasted sandwiches.

By night it's a cosy bar and performing arts cafe, with a good selection of wines, beers, cider, the odd cocktail and events most nights. Including all genres of music, comedy, poetry, cabaret, burlesque, performance art, anything that Canberra's and the world's creative community throws up, they'll host it.

Open from midday till at least 9pm (later if there's a gig on, which there usually is!) every day.

Map of the venue locationMap of the venue location
76 Alinga St, Melbourne Building, Canberra City, Australian Capital Territory, AustraliaGet Directions

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating

TripAdvisor ratingBased on 30 reviews

“The Ukulele Man - A fabulous rendition of George Formby's fabulous career”

TripAdvisor ratingReviewed 9mos ago by StephenR285

We went to Smiths to watch a show called the Ukulele Man. It was the first and only performance in Canberra prior to debuting at the Sydney Fringe Festival and it was excellent. A few first night...

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“Alternate- Yes”

TripAdvisor ratingReviewed 2yrs ago by Wollundry

Good coffee, pleasant staff. Lots of quirky objects occupying different spaces. The band playing was Gypsy Jazz styled on the Django sound of the 30's- 40's. Small venue, right up close to the...

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“Don't look like you can pay your bill”

TripAdvisor ratingReviewed 3yrs ago by danrE4913RE

This minuscule fascist dictatorship caters only to the homeless and welfare recipients . All others are beneath them. the decor may lead you to believe the owners are freethinkers and accepting of...

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  • Bar
  • Entertainment
  • Family Friendly
  • Gallery / Museum
  • Live Music
  • Non Smoking
  • Outdoor Dining Area
  • Pet Friendly - Enquire
  • Takeaway Available
  • Bistro/Cafe/Deli
  • Between $20 and $40
  • Fully licensed
  • Under $20