If you are visiting the nation's capital and want to see it at a slow pace - why not walk Canberra. On my first visit for 20+ years I put on the walking shoes and spent a weekend seeing the city from the walking trails. If you also like to see a city this way - here are a few suggestions to see Canberra.
Telstra Tower a top Black Mountain
One of the iconic landmarks of Canberra - you can drive to the Telstra Tower - but there is also a great walking track. The Telstra Tower actually closed in July 2021, and has not been very cared for since, however it is still an iconic piece of the landscape and worth a closer look.
There is a good walking track that takes you through the National Park up Black Mountain to the iconic tower, you walk through bush and it is a decent climb requiring a moderate level of fitness.
We enjoyed this walk but were a bit disappointed that the bush land was quite overgrown so there wasn't any fantastic views of the city to speak of when we got to the summit.
Mount Ainslie Circuit
On the opposite side of the city from Telstra Tower is Mount Ainslie. There are a number of walks you can take to reach this summit - we took the Mount Ainslie Circuit for the up route and got a broad view of the city suburbs as we wrapped around the mountain.
There are walking trails and bike trails - the signage is minimal we had to check google maps a couple of times to make sure we were heading in the right direction. It is not a spectacular walk - but you get views of the suburbs and then upon arrival at the summit you are rewarded with the perfect view of the parliamentary triangle.
Kokoda Track - Mount Ainslie
If you visit the Australian War Memorial, do yourself a favour and walk behind it to find the base of the Kokoda Track. This walk will take you to the summit of Mount Ainslie for the most spectacular panoramic views of Canberra.
The track is well maintained and sealed for the majority of the way. It is a constant incline so again requires a moderate level of fitness - when you hit the stairs near the summit your legs will let you know they are there!
The panoramic views at the summit however are spectacular - there are a number of viewing platforms, picnic tables and a water fountain. And on the day we climbed there was an ice cream van!
If you want to take in the top sites of Canberra - you can walk the Parliamentary Triangle. The three apices of the triangle include Parliament House, Defence Headquarters at Russell and City Hall.
This walk will take you along Lake Burley Griffin, across the Bridge on Kings Road to Parliament House and then back across the Lake on Commonwealth Avenue. It is a fair walk - but one that will provide you with an opportunity to see some of the great iconic landmarks of Canberra.
City to National Museum of Australia
The National Museum of Australia is a free attraction in Canberra and a pleasant walk to get there from the CBD.
This walk takes you along Lake Burley Griffin on a stretch that has recently been developed into what looked like is going to be a City Beach area. Not sure I would swim in the Lake - but the development in this area certainly looked like that was what was being intended. If you visit after me (Dec 2022) leave a comment on this space as it develops.
Upon arrival the National Museum of Australia is hours of viewing for a complete history of Australia. Stop for a coffee at the cafe after your 2km stroll from the city and then enjoy the exhibits on offer.
Itchy Feet Family