Canberra

Canberra

Overview

An energetic, creative and cultural hub with world-class restaurants, spectacular artworks and outdoor adventures on your doorstep, Canberra is no longer the political bore.

Immaculately designed by Walter Burley Griffin, Australia's 'Bush Capital' is the ideal destination for a weekend away or a short-stay holiday. With the artificial Lake Burley Griffin at the centre it's easy to navigate yourself around the city, going from art gallery to museum to shopping hotspots with a heap of fun activities for the kids. Rug up in winter when the temperatures get cold or enjoy the pleasant summers with longer days and the host of outdoor activities on offer. 

 

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Travel Insider

Read our article by Kate Phillips on 'The Best Markets in Canberra'.

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Flights to Canberra

* Prices in USD. Seats are limited and may not be available on all flights or days. Price stated is for the least expensive itinerary. Total price for other itineraries may be higher due to higher taxes. Restrictions on baggage and additional baggage fees may apply

Don't miss

Whether you're in town for the weekend or longer, you'll find plenty of things for adults and kids, indoors or outdoors, the list goes on...
  • Visit the icons that tell Australia's story; Parliament House, the National Museum of Australia, National Gallery of Australia and the Australian War Memorial. Entry is generally free to the city's major attractions. 
  • Take a trip to the region's wineries, with 140 vineyards and 33 cellar doors and most within a 30 minute trip from the city. 
  • Discover Lake Burley Griffin and make like a local spending an hour walking the hour-long 'bridge-to-bridge' path. Hire a paddleboard or take a segway tour if you're feeling adventurous.
  • Visit the heart of the Australian political scene, Parliament House. The architecture and scale make an impressive selfie backdrop.  
  • Take the kids for an exciting day out at Questacon - the National Science and Technology Centre. Get some air on a six-metre slide, experience an earthquake or challenge a robot to a game of air hockey.  

Summer highlights

Versailles: Treasures from the Palace 

(9 December to 17 April) 

The National Gallery of Australia’s exclusive exhibition brings the world’s greatest treasures from the Palace of Versailles to Canberra this summer, bringing to life the reigns of three kings, their queens and mistresses—from Louis XIV to Marie-Antoinette. This is the first time these objects have been viewed outside France. 

Children 16 and under free. Buy your tickets

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Canberra in pictures

Spend time exploring Canberra’s national attractions, culinary delights, natural wonders and family friendly experiences. Browse the photos below to see a few of the goodies on offer.

Where to go

Canberra is made up of seven districts which are further divided into suburbs. The city centre - also known as 'Civic' - is the main commercial centre. Each has it's own dining, shopping and entertainment scene and only 20 minutes drive from the next.

Manuka and Kingston

One of the most historic and fashionable suburbs, Manuka is close to Capital Hill on the southern shore of the lake. Home to cool bars and cafes, a range of restaurants, boutique shopping, sports plus arts and cinema options.

Conveniently, the small 1920s shopping centres of Manuka and Kingston are only a five minute walk apart. In Kingston, watch artisans at work at Canberra Glassworks, housed in the historic Powerhouse, and pick up regional wine and produce or fresh-ground coffee from the Old Bus Depot Markets, held every Sunday in an old industrial building. The Kingston Foreshore, on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin, is a growing and vibrant waterside community, complete with fantastic food, art, live music and events.

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Braddon

One of the city's oldest suburbs, it's becoming increasingly recognised for its vibrant mix of pop-up art, fashion and design shops, stylish interiors stores and restaurants. You'll also be reminded of the area's more industrial beginnings with the local few remaining car yards. 

Just a short walk from the city centre, maybe a few minutes depending on your pace, you'll find the hip Lonsdale Street. Head here for boutique shopping, cool cafes, bakeries, bars and more. The area is a haven for small independent businesses, including artists, florists and hairdressers so you'll be sure to find something unique. 

If you love a market, and let's face it who doesn't, don't miss The Hamlet, Canberra's dynamic and creative heart with a buzzing atmosphere, one-of-a-kind-wares and tasty street food. 

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Close to the city, NewActon precinct is one of the most exciting places in Canberra for adventurous dining in a modern setting with artistic flair. It's known for its restaurants and cafes, as well as its dynamic design and outdoor art collection.

At the heart of this urban village is the intriguing Nishi building, home to new kid on the block, Hotel Hotel. This architectural gem features Monster Kitchen and Bar, a hatted restaurant drawing on seasonal local produce, as well as a cinema, a studio, lots of public art, hair salons and a range of public festivals throughout the year.

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Canberra City

A visit to Canberra wouldn’t be complete without stopping in to the city centre, otherwise known as Civic. You’ll find plenty of shopping, entertainment, dining and nightlife options for every taste. 

Head to the city’s Canberra Centre on Bunda Street, for some serious retail therapy. Offering over 300 shops, plus cinemas and alfresco dining and café strip known as the North Quarter. Surrounding this are boutiques, fashion, music and independent book stores, and when you’ve had enough shopping, retreat to the cafes, restaurants and bars in City Walk and Garema Place.

Don’t miss out on the theatre while you’re in town. See what’s playing at the Canberra Theatre Centre then try one of the delicious restaurants that call Civic home. If you’re still not ready for bed, you’re not far from some of the cities hottest nightclubs and bars. 

Quick facts

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Currency

Australian Dollar (AU$)

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Electricity

220-240V / 50Hz

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Population

392,000

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Seasons

Winter (June to August) is cold but sunny, with average lows of 1°C/33°F with frost and fog and average highs of around 12°C/54°F. Summer (December to February) can be hot but has low humidity with average temperatures around 27°C/81°F.

Getting around

From the airport

The Airport Express shuttle bus offers airport-city-airport services daily during peak periods and can be pre-booked or purchased from the airport. Alternatively why not rent a car or take a taxi from the fully undercover taxi rank (complete with indoor waiting area) on the ground floor of the terminal building.

In and around the city

With the city's infamous roundabouts and plenty of parking, Canberra is one of the easiest cities to get around by car. Either hire your own or get around with the help of taxis and ride sharing services such as Uber. Canberra's public bus service, ACTION Buses, services major tourist sites (and there’s a free city loop bus), or take advantage of some of Australia's finest cycle paths by hiring a bike (or bring your own!).  

 

Canberra car hire

Enjoy great rates with Avis, Budget, Hertz or Thrifty and no booking fees. Qantas Frequent Flyers can also earn Qantas Points^ with Avis and Budget. 

Getting you there

Your flight with Qantas

Find out more about flights to Canberra.

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Complimentary meals, entertainment and baggage included on every Qantas flight.

Pack more into your trip with complimentary checked baggage allowance on every flight.

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Complimentary meals, entertainment and baggage included on every Qantas flight.

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Important Information

* Prices in USD. Seats are limited and may not be available on all flights or days. Price stated is for the least expensive itinerary. Total price for other itineraries may be higher due to higher taxes. Restrictions on baggage and additional baggage fees may apply. Prices may change at any time and are not guaranteed until payment is made. There may be other travel dates available but not enough seats to allow us to advertise. If your travel dates are flexible, use “Flexible with dates” to find the best airfare. Before booking any fare, please check the rules for that fare for applicable travel dates and for restrictions and any applicable fees, including, but not limited to, service fees and fees on refundability, date changes, and no-shows.

^ You must be a Qantas Frequent Flyer to earn and redeem Qantas Points. A joining fee may apply. Membership and points are subject to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program terms and conditions.

** Prices are per room, per night and vary depending on date of check in, length of stay and room type. Conditions apply.

~ Qantas activities are provided by Viator. Conditions apply.