Your dawn to dusk guide on how to spend Anzac Day in the nation’s capital.
2016 marks the 101st anniversary of the landing of the Anzac troops in Gallipoli, and while many will be travelling to Turkey to pay their respects to the soldiers who fought for Australia in the war for the occasion, many of us will be celebrating locally.
If you’re thinking of making it an event, there’s no better place to head to than Canberra. Being just 2.5 hours from Sydney and just under 7 hours from Melbourne, it's just close enough to take a road trip to the nation's capital over the three-day weekend.
Being the nation’s capital and the home of the Australian War Memorial, it’s the ideal location for anyone wishing to immerse themselves in the full Anzac Day experience.
Here’s a rundown of all the events you can (and should) attend on Monday, April 25:
6:30am: The Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commemorative Ceremony
Following the Dawn Service is a commemorative ceremony to honour the Indigenous Australians who have served in the Australian forces since 1901. It is held at the Aboriginal memorial plaque beside Mount Ainslie at 6:30am.
12pm onward: Two-Up at the local
With the ceremonies complete for the day, the next stage of your day should be to hit up your local pub to play two-up. Briefly, this is an Aussie gambling game that was played by soldiers during WWI and involves a “spinner” tossing two coins (traditionally pennies) into the air and punters betting on how the coins would fall. It’s since become a tradition to play on Anzac Day.
These pubs and clubs hold two-up games on Anzac Day in Canberra:
- The Canberra Irish Club: 6 Parkinson Street, Weston
- The Duxton: Corner Mcpherson and Sargood streets, O’Connor
- The Dickson Tradies & Quality Hotel: 2 Badham Street, Dickson. Breakfast at 6am. First toss at 11am hosted by the legendary Bruce Thornton/
- Ainslie Football Club: 52 Wakefield Avenue, Ainslie
- Labor Club Belconnen: Chandler Street, Belconnen
- Siren Bar & Restaurant: 30 Anthony Rolfe Avenue, Gungahlin. Gunfire breakfast available from 6am, two up from noon).
- Gungahlin Lakes Golf Clubs: Gundaroo and Gungahlin Drives, Nicholls
- Canberra Services Club: Manuka Oval, Manuka Circuit, Griffith
- Vikings Erindale: 6 Ricardo Street, Waniassa
- Vikings Chisholm: Benham Street, Chisholm
- The Hellenic Club: Matilda Street, Woden
Where to stay in Canberra over on Anzac Day
Stay close to the action at these hotels and homestays, located near the Australian War Memorial.
Day tours of Canberra from Sydney
Coming in from Sydney? Make it easy for yourself. These day tours to Canberra are available on the April 25. While you won't make it for the dawn service, you will get a personalised guide throughout the city on this fundamental day in Australian history.
Images: Visit Canberra