Where to go in Canberra

From world-renowned galleries and museums to snow-laden adventures in the Snowy Mountains, there’s much more to Canberra than you might think.

Updated

Fact checked

We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!

Whether you want to dive into the nation’s history or you’re looking for an active weekend away, Canberra offers a little something for everyone.

It's packed full of national monuments, museums and galleries built around a large and beautiful lake. Canberra’s also a great place to enjoy the outdoors, with excellent bushwalking, cycling, gardens, parks and nature reserves.

Best places to visit in Canberra

1. Lake Burley Griffin

The centrepiece of Canberra, Lake Burley Griffin, is an ideal water playground. You can come here to bike or stroll along the waterfront paths, fish, paddle or sail the sparkling waters and picnic along the parks.

Many of the city's top tourist attractions lie along its shores, and it's also the home of annual festivals such as Floriade.

  • Best for: The history buff
  • How to get there: This is the hub for the action in Canberra so you can easily get around on foot, by bus or even bike.
  • Top five things to see/do: Questacon, National Portrait Gallery, Parliament House of Australia, National Gallery of Australia, Old Parliament House
  • How long do I need? Full day.
  • Recommended tour: Canberra's Capital City Landmarks tour covers all the top landmarks while allowing you to take in the beauty of Lake Burley Griffin.

2. Snowy Mountains

Around two hours south of Canberra, Australia's high country is home to dramatic peaks, sparkling mountain streams and a slew of natural attractions for any outdoors enthusiast.

Rising to a height of 2,228 meters, the mountains are popular year-round. In the summer try your hand at hiking, water sports, horseback riding and fishing. In the winter, skiers take over its resorts.

  • Best for: The active traveller
  • How to get there: We suggest hiring a car to easily get around the area but you can also access the Snowy Mountains by coach or train.
  • Top five things to see/do: Explore and hike Mount Kosciuszko National Park, visit the Snowy Hydro Discovery Centre, river sled at Lake Crackenback, go horseback riding, conquer the slopes at Thredbo or Perisher
  • How long do I need? Weekend
  • Recommended tour: Enjoy the thrill of horseback riding on this full day horse ride tour taking you through some of the most diverse and rugged mountain terrain.

3. Molonglo Valley

This district on the west of Lake Burley Griffin is surrounded by nature reserves, large, modern parks and the popular National Zoo and Aquarium where you can have some up-close animal encounters.

  • Best for: Nature lovers
  • How to get there: Driving is the easiest way to get around the region but you can also get there by public transport.
  • Top five things to see/do: National Arboretum, Cotter Reserve, Royal Australian Mint, National Zoo and Aquarium, Mount Stromlo Observatory
  • How long do I need? Full day
  • Recommended tour: A two-hour behind-the-scenes tour at the National Zoo offers you the opportunity to feed a variety of animals and experience a slew of rare and close-up encounters.

4. Canberra Central

The hustle and bustle of this compact centre packs a punch for sightseeing and experiencing the trendy growth of Canberra.

If you’re keen for some retail therapy during the day or dancing until sunrise then this is where you should base yourself.

  • Best for: The all-rounder
  • How to get there: Canberra Central is found at the north of the lake and is easy to get by foot, bike or public transport, depending on where you're coming from.
  • Top five things to see/do: National Museum of Australia, Australian War Memorial, Australian National Botanic Gardens, National Capital Exhibition, Mount Ainslie Lookout
  • How long do I need? Weekend
  • Recommended tour: View all of Canberra's top attractions floating gently over the city with a hot air balloon experience.

5. Belconnen

Canberra's great city of the north-west offers an insight into Canberra’s suburban life with some fun attractions surrounding the city.

  • Best for: The off-the-beaten-track traveller
  • How to get there: Located northwest of the lake, Belconnen is easily accessed by public transport.
  • Top five things to see/do: Australian Institute of Sport, Black Mountain Tower, Belconnen Arts Centre, Lake Ginninderra, National Bonsai and Penjing Collection
  • How long do I need? Half day
  • Recommended tour: Go behind the scenes at Australia’s premier elite sporting precinct on a comprehensive 90-minute tour through the world-class facilities to see where Australia’s top athletes train.

Top travel deals in Canberra

I Want That FlightI Want That Flight

Australia flights from $80 return

Available on flights until June 2021 with Jetstar. Destinations include Gold Coast, Brisbane, Sydney, Ballina, Uluru, Townsville and more. Sample fare is Melbourne-Hobart. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

SkyscannerSkyscanner

Australia-wide flights from $65 return

Available on select flights in 2021 to Sydney, Hobart, Gold Coast, Canberra, Newcastle and more. Sample fare is Adelaide-Melbourne with Jetstar. Other airlines include Virgin Australia and Qantas. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

TourRadarTourRadar

Up to 25% off Australia and Oceania tours

Available on select travel dates until 2022 to Adelaide, Hobart, Sydney, Wellington, Fiji and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

HertzHertz
FLASH SALE

Get up to 20% off 3+ day rentals

Available on rentals from 1 February - 15 December 2021 across Australia, including Sydney, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Cairns, Adelaide, Darwin, Hobart and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Qantas flights from $111 each way

Available on select travel dates until December 2021 to Adelaide, Hobart, Cairns, Brisbane, Perth, Canberra and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Melbourne. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Looking4ParkingLooking4Parking

Up to 15% off with code

Available on select rental dates across Australia, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Up to 50% off Australia getaways

Available on stays until 30 April 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Cairns and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

HomestayHomestay

Australia-wide homestays from $4 per night

Available on select stay dates in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Brisbane and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

RedBalloonRedBalloon

Australia: Romantic getaways from $150 + an extra 10% off with code

Available on select travel dates when you buy 2 or more vouchers. Destinations include Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Canberra, Cairns, Yarra Valley and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Priceline.comPriceline.com

Up to 30% off Budget car hires

Available on select rental dates across Australia, including Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Up to 28% off Australia-wide staycations

Available on select stay dates in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Brisbane, Perth, Cairns and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Virgin Australia flights from $78 each way

Available on select travel dates until December 2021 to Gold Coast, Adelaide, Brisbane, Hobart, Canberra, Cairns, Hamilton Island and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Melbourne. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Virgin AustraliaVirgin Australia

Free flight change fees and cancellation fees

Available on flights until 30 June 2021 to Sydney, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Perth, Canberra, Adelaide, Hobart, Darwin, Broome, Cairns and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

AvisAvis

Free upgrade on car hires

Sign up your email and receive the best car rental offers across Australia, including Sydney, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Brisbane and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Hotels.comHotels.com

Up to 40% off Canberra stays

Available on select stays until December 2021. Sample stay is Rydges Canberra. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

OneTravelOneTravel

Up to USD$30 off flight booking fees

Available on select travel dates to Sydney, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Darwin and more. Applies to bookings up to 6 persons. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

OneTravelOneTravel

Up to USD$20 off flight fees

Available on all dates on flights to Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Hobart, Canberra, Adelaide and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

OneTravelOneTravel

Up to USD$10 off flight fees

Available on select travel dates to Sydney, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Darwin and more. Maximum of 2 travelers. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

AdrenalineAdrenaline

Up to 85% off land adventures

Valid on select dates and adventures like quad biking, sandboarding, bridge climbing, canyoning, horse riding, abseiling, soccer training and more. Destinations include Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney, Canberra, Cairns and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Cheap FlightsCheap Flights

Australia flights from $98 return

Available on select 2021 flights to Gold Coast, Sydney, Ballina, Cairns, Brisbane, Canberra and more. Sample fares are Avalon-Adelaide and Melbourne-Hobart with Jetstar. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Cheap FlightsCheap Flights

Canberra flights from $227 return

Available on select flights until August 2021. Sample fare departs from Sydney with Virgin Australia. Other airlines include Qantas Airways from $383 and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Trip.comTrip.com

Up to 28% off + guaranteed flexibility on Australia stays

Available on select stay dates in Melbourne, Hobart, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Perth, Darwin and Gold Coast. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Motorhome RepublicMotorhome Republic

5% off Britz campervan rentals

Available on rentals until 31 March 2021 when you book a minimum of 21 days. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Hobart, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide and more.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

AdrenalineAdrenaline

Up to 42% off Australia activities

Available on select activities best as birthday gifts like skydiving, hot air balloon flights, quad biking, off road v8 race buggies and scuba diving. Destinations include Sydney, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Expedia.com.auExpedia.com.au

Canberra flights from $125 each way

Available on select dates in 2021. Sample fare departs from Sydney with Virgin Australia. Other airlines include Qantas from $193. T&Cs apply

Last verified

Deal ends

Hotels.comHotels.com

Up to 63% off Australia-wide stays + Extra 8% off hotel bookings

Available on select dates until December 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Canberra, Newcastle, Melbourne, Brisbane and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Lastminute.com.auLastminute.com.au

3+ nights Australia holiday escapes from $339

Available on select travel dates in 2021 to Canberra, Hobart, Brisbane, Perth, Sydney and more. Sample rate is for a 3-night getaway from Melbourne to Adelaide. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Lastminute.com.auLastminute.com.au

Up to 30% off luxury hotels

Available on select stay dates in 2021. Destinations include Brisbane, Melbourne, Gold Coast, Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Motorhome RepublicMotorhome Republic

8% off daily rental rate

Available on rentals until 31 March 2022 with Mighty Campers in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth and more. Minimum of 21 rental days. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Coupon code ends

RedBalloonRedBalloon

Up to 30% off Australia experiences + Extra 10% off with code

Available on select travel dates when you buy 2 or more experiences such as sightseeing cruises, hot air balloon flights, day tours and skydives. Destinations include Brisbane, Adelaide, Hunter Valley, Gold Coast, Sydney and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Booking.comBooking.com

Up to 20% off Australia getaways

Available on stays from 5 January - 31 March 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Darwin, Adelaide and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Virgin AustraliaVirgin Australia

Australia-wide flights from $89 each way

Available on flights from January - September 2021 to Gold Coast, Brisbane, Cairns, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart, Townsville, Darwin and more. Sample fare is Sydney-Ballina. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

AirbnbAirbnb

Australia stays from $13 per night

Available on stays until 2021 in Sydney, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast, Canberra, Adelaide, Perth, Darwin, Melbourne and more. Sample fare is for a private room in Victoria. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

IHG AMEAIHG AMEA

Up to 40% off Australia getaways

Available on stays until 30 June 2021. Destinations include Sydney, Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne, Perth, Adelaide, Hobart and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

Accor HotelsAccor Hotels

Canberra hotels from $107/night

Available on select stay dates. Sample stay is at The Sebel Canberra Civic. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Deal ends

TripAdvisorTripAdvisor

Up to 30% off Australia hotels

Available on select stay dates across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Cairns, Perth, Canberra, Adelaide, Hobart and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Priceline.comPriceline.com

Up to 60% off Australia getaways

Available on select stay dates on Express Deals. Destinations include Sydney, Adelaide, Byron Bay, Thredbo Vollage, Sunshine Coast, Jindabyne, Perth, Gold Coast and more.

Last verified

Priceline.comPriceline.com

Up to 38% off Canberra stays

Available on Express Deals on select stay dates. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

WotifWotif

Extra 10% off hotels

Subscribe your email to receive discounts. Destinations include Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Hobart and more. T&Cs apply.

Last verified

Popular Top Canberra travel deals coupon codes

Last checked Code description Code
22 Jan 2021 Get up to 20% off 3+ day rentals 210****
21 Jan 2021 Up to 15% off with code PAP****
20 Jan 2021 Australia: Romantic getaways from $150 + an extra 10% off with code PLU****
12 Jan 2021 Up to USD$30 off flight booking fees HOL****
12 Jan 2021 Up to USD$20 off flight fees PRE****


Latest travel headlines

More guides on Finder

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms of Use, Disclaimer & Privacy Policy and Privacy & Cookies Policy.
Go to site