Gallery of innovative local attractions

Canberra’s many national institutions including Parliament House, Museum of Australian Democracy (Old Parliament House), Questacon, the High Court, the National Library, War Memorial and National Archives, National Gallery and National Museum, are all well known.

But in recent years various innovative local attractions have emerged.


Known for many years as a light industrial area of car yards and mechanical services, “grease monkeys” and hamburger joints, Braddon’s Lonsdale Street is now a hub of bakeries, cafes, restaurants and funky gift, old wares, clothing and homewares shops.




New Acton on the city’s western edge has centred on the redevelopment of historic buildings such as the iconic Hotel Acton (now the elegant Peppers Gallery Hotel). Along with the nearby Hotel Hotel (in the Nishi Building), Peppers provides upmarket accommodation, though Nishi also houses apartment living, office space, the Palace Cinema and restaurants.



Known mainly as the home of the Old Bus Depot Markets and the Canberra Glassworks, the Kingston Foreshore is a vibrant arts, cultural and recreational precinct. Apartment blocks, eateries and even a marina feature as does a peaceful promenade along the lake shore.




Established by the ACT government, the 250-hectare award-winning National Arboretum boasts many notable plantings, including a eucalyptus forest, and activities such as school holiday and gardening information programs. Great views across Canberra, an open-air stage and amphetheatre, a café, restaurant, gift shop and interpretive exhibition are among the attractions.