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Australian Capital Territory Travel Guide

orange bulletAustralian Capital Territory Highlights

  • Parliament House
  • National Gallery
  • National Parks
  • National Botanic Gardens
  • National Science & Technology Centre
  • Australian War Memorial
  • Royal Australian Mint

orange bulletACT At A Glance

The Australian Capital Territory, or ACT as it is generally known, is an 88 km long and 30 km wide area that contains the town of Canberra, the national capital.

Canberra was specifically planned and built to be the home of federal parliament, the serving politicians, ministeries and associated public servants. The majority of foreign embassies and consulates are located there. Canberra is the political and cultural hub of the nation and is home to some of Australia's finest exhibitions and architecture.

Parliament House, the High Court, National Science and Technology Centre, National Library, Royal Australian Mint and the Australian War Memorial are some of the better known attractions. Canberra has been described as a city scattered through a park, being a reference to the natural surroundings.

The northern part of the ACT is dominated by Canberra, its man-made features such as Lake Burley Griffin and surrounding suburbs. The southern region consists mainly of the Namadgi National Park and the adjoining Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve. The southern boundary of the ACT is close to the New South Wales high country and the Snowy Mountains ski fields.

orange bulletWhat Will I Be Able To Do?

Large numbers of visitors are attracted to Canberra to view the nations treasures. The most popular attractions and activities are:

  • Parliament House
  • The National Gallery
  • The Australian War Memorial
  • National Science & Technology Centre
  • The National Mint
  • Cultural centres & exhibitions

orange bulletWhen Is The Best Time?

The ACT can be visited all year round. Winter in the ACT is June - August with maximum temperatures around 20° C and minimums that can drop to - 6° C. Summer is December - February where temperatures will generally range between 15° C and 30° C. With many popular holiday areas there is always an increased demand for bookings during the the school holiday periods.

There is a fine selection of excellent Canberra hotels to suits all visitor needs all year round.

orange bulletHow Do I Get Around?

Canberra is a 30 minute flight from Sydney and about one hour from Melbourne. Flights also operate to the other capital cities. A train service operates to Sydney and several bus transport companies service the ACT. A local commuter bus network is available which also provides sightseeing and downtown special services. All major car rental companies are represented. Tour operators provide itineraries that cover all popular sites.

Driver information, maps and travel planning guides are available from the NRMA in downtown Canberra.

Some typical road distances are:

  • Canberra to Sydney = 290km (181 miles)
  • Canberra to Melbourne = 650km (406 miles)
  • Canberra to Adelaide = 1209km (755 miles)
  • Canberra to Brisbane = 1267km (792 miles)
  • Canberra to Perth = 3930km (2456 miles)