CAPITALISING ON CANBERRA’S WONDERS
RICH HISTORIES AND LUSH COUNTRYSIDES THAT WILL LEAVE EVEN A NON-AUSTRALIAN GOING “CRIKEY”
Rich histories and lush countrysides that will leave even a non-australian going “Crikey
For an “ace” education in the histories and simple lifestyles of the Aussie folk, give Canberra a burl! No experience would be more “dinky-di” than a visit to the nation’s capital, also named the world’s most liveable city in the world according by OECD.
Start your day when visiting Canberra with Lake Burley Griffin, the centrepiece of the city used for many leisurely activities such as yachting, kayaking and windsurfing. Perhaps one of the best ways however to experience the 35 kilometre perimeter of this manmade wonder is to have the winds bellowing through your hair while cycling around. After a morning of physical activity, find out about the origins of Canberra at the National Capital Exhibition through interactive displays and multimedia models. The exhibition also offers several LEGO models of important landmarks around the city. If one misses the toll of church bells, the National Carillon situated on Aspen Island with its 55 chiming bronze bells would be sure to fill one’s longing. The carillon was a gift from the British government to the people of Australia to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Canberra. While the
appreciation of art maybe subject to individual tastes, locals in unison have called the National Gallery the nation’s finest collection of Australian art. This year, the gallery will have the gracious honour of hosting more than 100 rare treasures from the Palace of Versailles in France including personal items from French royalty like Louis XIV and Marie Antoinette. Those interested will have to visit Canberra in December. To be able to take in the whole of Canberra, the most scenic views can be found a top the Telstra Tower. Rising some 195 metres atop Black Mountain, the tower offers panoramic views of the city and its surrounding countryside from an indoor observation deck. A revolving restaurant is housed within the iconic tower which allows visitors to experience the entire changing view of Canberra in 81 minutes.
If one experiences enough of the concrete jungle and wishes to return to nature, then comfort can be found in the form of Namadgi National Park. Just a brief 45 minute drive away and one can be experiencing the company of kangaroos, wallabies, crimson rosellas or northern corroboree frogs amongst the wet gullies and woodlands. Namadgi National Park offers unparalleled scenic greenery. If the notion of a simpler life give you pause, then take the opportunity to find the old campsites of the Ngunnawal people whose language has since gone extinct. It’s not quite Australia if one neglects to visit wine villages of Murrumbateman located on the outskirts of Canberra. Remarkably, with a population of less than 3,000 people, the village has developed as a grape growing area producing a variety of wines which include sangiovese, riesling, chardonnay and shiraz. The area is also known for its many antiques and country-styled home wares which make for a fine collection which would be the envy of your house guests. Further ignite your spirit of adventure by travelling to the town of Yass which is home to the Yass & District Museum that pays tribute to the life and work of explorer and grazier Hamilton Hume. The legendary explorer had led the first of the European expeditions to help discover the Darling River, Australia’s third longest river which measures some 1,400 kilometres. Another not to be missed sight in the humble town is the Cooma Cottage which is listed as the oldest surviving rural houses in New South Wales. The landmark is listed on the NSW register and is managed by the National Trust. The Cooma Cottage was actually the home of Hamilton Hume which was purchased after he concluded his expedition and decided to live a new life as a pastoralist. The sight is perfect for afternoon picnics and a mid evening siesta.