Canberra | Australian Capital Territory
Canberra is planned around Lake Burley Griffin and a 'parliamentary triangle' consisting of Parliament House, the High Court and other important public buildings. It extends more than 40km from the satellite towns of Tuggeranong in the south to Gungahlin in the north.
The best way to explore Canberra is by car, but make sure you have a good map. The city's attractions are quite spread out, but parking in Canberra is easy to find and inexpensive.
If investigating by foot is appealing, then wander along King Edward Tce, or the Lake's shore and find the National Library, Questacon; The National Science and Technology Centre, Old Parliament House, High Court, Aboriginal Tent Embassy and the National Gallery of Australia; all within close proximity of each other.
Australian National University
Occupying 145ha of Canberra City, the ANU was the first Australian research-based university; it was inaugurated in 1946. By 1960 ANU had begun to award undergraduate degrees. Three Nobel Prizes have been won by ANU researchers, and the ANU Library holds around 2 million books. Wander the landscaped campus dotted with native and exotic tree species, or perhaps drop into the Drill Hall Gallery and see some free exhibitions.
Australian War Memorial
The Australian War Memorial; the most popular museum in the country; commemorates the sacrifices the men and women who served this country in war and in peacekeeping efforts made. The memorial is internationally recognised for its exhibitions. The Hall of Memory, the Tomb of the Unknown Australian Soldier, the Pool of Reflection and the Roll of Honour are the focal points of the memorial. The ANZAC Hall, completed in 2001, showcases a large technology collection. The redeveloped World War II Gallery and the Bradbury Aircraft Hall should not be missed.
For more than 30 years this cottage has been a genuine museum of life before the city's existence. It was built in 1860 on the Molonglo River, and was originally part of the Campbell family's 'Duntroon' estate of 119km.
Built in 1927, Calthorpes' contains original furnishings, appliances and memorabilia, which reflect early life in Canberra. It is only open for tours at certain times.
Hyatt Hotel Canberra
The Hyatt Hotel is Canberra's premier address, opened in 1924, it was originally named 'Hotel Canberra'. Today it is a sympathetically restored showcase of original Art Deco architecture. Surrounded by landscaped gardens, the Hyatt boasts comfort and luxury, modern casual cuisine and sophisticated restaurants, and also provides business and conference facilities.
This historic station homestead is surrounded by gardens and outbuildings, with guided and audio tours available. The Sidney Nolan Gallery is also located here and features the artist's works and changing exhibitions of modern Australian art. Enjoy a picnic in the garden or light meal in the cafe.
National Archives of Australia
A visit to the National Archives is an exploration into the past; a place that holds the memories of the nation. Take a look at the evolving exhibitions, peruse original files, photographs, posters, maps and paintings in the reading room, or perhaps enjoy a film or audio recording. Located just behind Old Parliament House, the secrets of the nation are just waiting to be discovered.
National Dinosaur Museum
Located in Gold Creek Village off the Barton Hwy, the National Dinosaur Museum displays full-sized dinosaur replicas, information panels, fossils of plants and fish dating to 500 million years ago, and a discovery area where children can build a dinosaur and investigate the process of their extinction.
National Museum of Australia
Opened in March 2001 for the Centenary of Federation celebrations, the National Museum of Australia is an architecturally striking configuration of structures. Located on the Acton Peninsula it showcases the history of the nation, and has an outdoor amphitheatre, an Aboriginal Gallery, and evolving exhibition halls.
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