27 September 2023

Summer of holiday ideas in Canberra

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By Rama Gaind.

The National Arboretum Canberra.

With the festive season just around the corner, many of us may want to venture too far for a holiday this year. Celebrating at home with family and friends is the next best thing.

In particular, there’s an endless stream of events in Canberra all summer long, from exhibitions exploring feminine power and world-class art shows (including at the National Gallery of Australia and National Museum of Australia) to sunset cinema and street machines at Summernats. For those seeking a more leisurely experience, take a cruise, catch a ferry or simply enjoy the water views from one of the many lakeside cafes and restaurants.
Go on a self-propelled boat cruise around Lake Burley Griffin, the masterful centrepiece of the nation’s capital. The lake is an ideal water playground, whether you’re into rowing, sailing, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding or fishing. Cyclists and walkers are well catered for along the 40km shoreline, and nothing beats a picnic in its numerous parks and gardens.

Enjoy a unique adventure, exploring Canberra’s famous lake and all its waterside attractions. Take time out from the flurry of activity and enjoy the fresh air on your very own Scandinavian electric picnic boat on Lake Burley Griffin. Rent a boat for a special occasion, a quiet picnic or an outing with a group of friends.

Why not climb, splash, slip and slide through a giant inflatable obstacle course as the Black Mountain Peninsula transforms into an epic inflatable world.

Lake Burley Griffin Canberra.

Escape from the city among the beautiful collection of Australian plants at the Australian National Botanic Gardens, located minutes from the hustle and bustle of Canberra’s city centre. Offering a breathtaking array of native plants in a spectacular bushland setting, this is the only place in the world you’ll see this diversity of Australian native plants in one location. Alternatively, bask in balmy weather at the Botanic Gardens as you enjoy an outdoor movie night under the stars at Sunset Cinema until 25 February 2023.

Many choices

Take in the breathtaking views of the Canberra skyline across the Brindabellas from the top of the National Arboretum Canberra. With over 44,000 rare and endangered trees across a 250-hectare site, the Arboretum is a place of beauty, conservation, scientific research, education, tourism and recreation.

Learn from expert guides with Ngala Tours, which combines the cultural and scenic sites within the Arboretum to provide insight into Indigenous interpretation of the landscape.

The National Arboretum Canberra is a mosaic of living forests and gardens offering breathtaking views, unique experiences, and a world-class entertainment and events hub including the award-winning Margaret Whitlam Pavilion, the popular Village Centre and the National Bonsai and Penjing Collection of Australia.

Australian National Botanic Gardens Canberra.

Otherwise, get up-close-and-personal with some of the world’s most amazing creatures at the National Zoo & Aquarium in Canberra. Guided tours through the zoo allow you to pat a cheetah, feed a bear or get friendly with a meerkat during some of the best hands-on animal experiences in Australia.

From lions, tigers, and bears to giraffes, penguins and monkeys, the Zoo features a variety of native and exotic animals you can interact with, as well as the largest inland saltwater tank in Australia.

Being in Canberra enables you to explore some of the endless ways in which to enjoy the best that’s on offer – in and around – one of the few planned cities in the world!


Visit Canberra

Canberra and Region Visitors Centre

1300 554 114

+61 2 6205 0044


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