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The Adventure Side Of Canberra

Whether by water or by air, on two legs, two wheels or even on a horse, there seems to be an endless number of ways to explore Canberra's wild side.

Soaring by hot air balloon, Canberra, ACT © VisitCanberra  Soar by hot air balloon over Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

Where else is wilderness and adventure so accessible from the capital? Canberra's unique location between alpine mountains, raging rivers and vast bush provides a beautiful contrast to its accessible roads, stunning lakes and breathtaking views to behold. The city's many activities make it easy to try something different and enjoy some exercise, fresh air, or fun encounters with friendly animals.



The impressive lines of this planned city, together with its natural beauty, combine beautifully as you view Canberra from above, in a hot air balloon. Balloon Aloft and Dawn Drifters will have you flying in peace over the newly built city. It is one of the few places in the world where you can fly right over Parliament House. Visit during the Enlighten Festival to see the Canberra Balloon Spectacular, where you can fly between dozens of balloons. Alternatively, watch the breathtaking sight of balloons flying en masse across the Old Parliament House grounds each morning during this festival.

Read more about the Enlighten Festival


Commonwealth Place, Canberra, ACT © VisitCanberra  Commonwealth Place, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

Canberra was made for cycling, with a network of cycle paths throughout the city and connected to outer suburbs. But two wheels can also take you on a more adventurous journey. Rent a bike from one of the many shared bike stations outside the city's major hotels, or rent from the Southern Cross Yacht Club on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin (the town's majestic attraction) for a 35-kilometer (22 mile) round scenic lake path. miles). Alternatively, rent a mountain bike from Capital Bicycle Hire and follow the world-renowned 50 kilometers (31 miles) of trails in Stromlo Forest Park.

Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra, ACT © VisitCanberra  Lake Burley Griffin, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory


Kayak through the mirror-clear waters of Lake Burley Griffin, or catch up on Canberra's booming trend, standing on a paddle. This lake of serenity is a fantastic place to try this sport. With so many attractions and monuments to see from the city's favorite water park, you can sightsee and exercise at the same time. Rent a kayak or paddle board during spring and summer from The Paddle Hub at the YMCA Aquatic Recreation Center right by the lake.


Burnelee Excursions, Canberra, ACT © VisitCanberra  Burnelee Excursions, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

Experience a bit of country life on the outskirts of Canberra, grazing cattle and sheep, observing wildlife or simply enjoying Australia's vast open bush on horseback. Everyone is welcome at Burnelee Excursions on Horseback, from beginners to experts, from the age of six, with a variety of rides and horses to suit all levels of horse riding skill. Ride the horse for two hours in the morning or evening, or ask to ride the whole day for a really fun experience.


Jamala Wildlife Lodge, National Zoo and Aquarium, Canberra, ACT © Jamala Wildlife Lodge  Jamala Wildlife Lodge, National Zoo and Aquarium, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

For another kind of adventure, why not approach and pet one of Canberra's wild inhabitants? Award-winning tours, the National Zoo and Aquarium provide a fun interactive tour where you can hand feed a brown bear, lion or tiger, touch the nose with a giraffe, see a cheetah in its cage, or even pat a shark. For a complete safari adventure without leaving the city, stay at Jamala Wildlife Lodge, the Zoo's five-star inn, which provides more exclusive animal viewing at Giraffe Treehouses, Ushaka Lodge or Jungle Bungalows.


Alpine River Adventures, Murrumbidgee River, ACT © Alpine River Adventures  Alpine River Adventures, Murrumbidgee River, AustAustralian Capital Territory

The mighty Murrumbidgee River, getting its water from above, the Snowy Mountains and flowing directly through the Australian Capital Territory, provides excellent opportunities for thrilling adventures as you navigate the rapids. The Murrumbidgee River Alpine River Adventures Tour cuts through the scenic Red Rock Gorge, exposing classic Australian bushland, and also provides a great rafting tour. The forty rapids on the tour are rated 2 to 4 in class, meaning that even visitors who have never ridden can try them. Your guide can help pinpoint wildlife, such as birds and newts.


Namadgi National Park, ACT © VisitCanberra  Namadgi National Park, Australian Capital Territory

Australia's bushwalking hobby has a rich history in Canberra, with many well-known hikers and explorers taking their first steps at famous sites, such as Booroomba Rocks in Namadgi National Park (an easy half day walk). Namadgi occupies nearly half of the Australian Capital Territory, stretching from the suburbs through the snowy area that borders Kosciuszko National Park, where Australia's highest peak, Mount Kosciuszko is located. Explore this part of the Australian Alps on a variety of itineraries, from day trips to camping and overnight adventures. You can ride a mountain bike or even a ski tour in winter, or simply take a ranger guided trek to hear local stories and secrets about this immensely attractive and vast national park.