Museums and galleries
Discover the Australian story at Canberra's national museums
Canberra is well-known for its national attractions, but culture lovers also thrive within the city's local arts scene and heritage sites.
The city is home to 12 of Australia’s most iconic cultural attractions, museums and galleries. Each showcases a unique perspective of Australia's story from First Nations history to contemporary times.
See the largest collection of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art at the National Gallery of Australia and discover where the big decisions are made at Australian Parliament House. Pay your respects to those we lost at a Last Post Ceremony at the Australian War Memorial and explore the treasure trove of rare books, maps, manuscripts and photographs at the National Library of Australia.
There are exhibitions, events and experiences to interest anyone at the National Museum of Australia. See famous Aussies at the National Portrait Gallery and learn about the wonderful world of science at Questacon. Laugh at the best political cartoons of the year at the Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House and watch coins be made at the Royal Australian Mint. Catch a classic film at the National Film and Sound Archive and learn intriguing stories from Australian history at the National Archives of Australia.
Many attractions offer free entry to their impressive permanent exhibitions. Make time to refuel at their cafes and pick up a souvenir to remember your trip at their beautifully curated stores.
Australian War Memorial
Bringing together a world-class museum, shrine and research centre, the War Memorial tells the stories of men and women who have served, and continue to serve our nation in war, conflict and operations. Through exhibitions, artworks, large technology objects and personal records, we share personal experiences of military service.
Visitors to the Australian War Memorial need to book free, timed tickets to view their galleries and to attend the daily Last Post Ceremony.
Uncover Canberra's art scene, local history, and heritage sites
From immersive heritage trails to intimate galleries where you can see the makers in action, discovering Canberra's history and creative community is a must on any trip to the capital.
Will you watch glassmakers create masterpieces in the hot shop at the Canberra Glassworks or see Sir Sidney Nolan's iconic paintings at the Canberra Museum and Gallery? Take time to explore the art galleries nestled throughout the suburbs that specialise in everything from photography to screen printing. With exhibitions regularly changing, there's always something new to see.
A city with a rich heritage, Canberra’s local history is on show at more than just museums. Take a self-drive tour of historic sights, visit original cottages and homes, and see the city plans come to life with augmented reality.
Canberra Glassworks is Australia’s leading centre for contemporary glass art, craft and design - the only one of its kind in the nation. Housed in the historic Kingston Power House, visit the hot shop to see glass artist in action before seeing masterpieces in the gallery and shop.
Why not try your hand at making a glass tumbler or paperweight at an interactive workshop? There's event school holiday programs for young aspiring glass artists.
Must-see local galleries
Popular historic sites
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