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With its laid back atmosphere, easy-going locals and mild temperatures, there are plenty of things that you can do in Canberra. If you are a Kiwi who has recently moved to the city, there is plenty to do as you explore your new home. With a proliferation of natural reserves, museums, and galleries, Canberra celebrates much of what it really means to be Australian.

Let’s explore the top five things you can do while in the city – a great way to start your new life here and begin to understand the culture and history of Canberra.

1. Take a tour of Parliament House

The Parliament House is synonymous with Canberra. It’s also one of the first things that pop into mind when you mention the city to an Australian. Being the central hub of all the nation’s political activities since 1988, the building replaced the Old Parliament House which operated from 1927.

The iconic structure itself is quite breath-taking and will fascinate you. Even though it remains open every day from 9 am to 5 pm, it’s best that you plan your visit. This way you can skip the crowds and have the entire place almost to yourself. A great place to bring kids as the tours offered also serves as a detailed history lesson of the various facets of Australia’s unique political system.

The interiors are very tastefully decorated with a lot of Australian art adorning the walls enabling you to explore the country’s art history along with its political history.

2. Explore the rich wildlife at the National Zoo and Aquarium

Being an Australian city, there is no dearth of strange and unique animals, flora and fauna. Get ready to say hello to species you never even knew existed as this is the only combined zoo and aquarium in the country. So it’s not surprising that Canberrans have gone to great lengths to ensure that the enclosures are the best in the world.

You can take part in the tours that are available, but it’s best to go for the ZooVenture ones as it allows you to get up close and personal with the animals. Have fun feeding a giraffe or a bear by hand, or patting a rhino, and much more as the tour lasts for about two hours. This behind-the-scenes look will change the way you think about conservation and will enrich your knowledge about some of the rarest species of animals on the planet.

The zoo has a luxury safari lodge and a Jamala Wildlife lodge as well which offers accommodation to visitors along with special itineraries for safaris. These generally can last from a day to three nights where you can have non-stop fun.

3. Soak in some fantastic views at the Namadgi National Park

Making up nearly 46 percent of the Australian Capital Territory, the Namadgi National Park is 106,095 hectares of pure unbridled wilderness. Interestingly, the evidence here suggests that Aboriginal people were living in this area over 21,000 years ago.

While hiking in the area, you (hopefully) will be able to see wombats, kangaroos, wallabies, and several species of birds. Spend the day trekking on foot as it will give you far more sights than it would if you took a car. If you want to travel authentically however, you can take a horse and explore as the Australian ancestors did. Other activities which you can do here involve rock-climbing, fishing, and camping, making a trip here an absolute must.

If you want a break from the wilderness then you can head over to a nearby town called Tharwa where you’ll find a visitor’s centre. With a theatre, supply shop and a few cafes and restaurants, a visit to this park will definitely be an unforgettable one for you and your family.

4. Relax and unwind at the National Botanic Gardens

If you don’t already know it, Australia is famous for its beautiful wildflowers. A visit to the National Botanic Gardens will rejuvenate you and introduce you to some strange plants which only grow in the continent. You can also explore the sheer versatility of Australia’s flora and fauna while observing how the region’s flora has played an important role in the country’s traditions and culture.

Plan out some time in the day for a relaxing walk through the garden, and if you are into horticulture, you will never want to leave. If you are a layman when it comes to plants, then there is a 45-minute bus tour that you can take. It winds through the garden so you can learn in-depth about each species and their importance from an air-conditioned vantage point. It’s a wonderful place to take your kids to help them burn off some energy.

5. Go hunting for truffles at the Truffle Farm

Who doesn’t love truffles? Synonymous with a rich and luxurious lifestyle, if you are in Canberra, you can be a part of the truffle story too. Located on the outskirts of the main city, the Truffle Farm is a gourmand’s happy place. The property is a homestead farm and has an in-house kitchen headed by a chef who has worked in several Michelin star restaurants globally. Having relocated to Canberra in order to share his passion for the brilliant potential of these culinary mushrooms, he enjoys introducing the unique flavours to visitors.

The farm is run by a Canberra born-and-bred farmer called Jayson who employs several friendly truffle-hunting pigs and dogs who keep him and the visitors company. It’s recommended that you visit the farm during the months of June to August as that’s the season for truffle hunting so you can join in the fun too. If you can’t, then head over for a visit nonetheless as the restaurant is definitely unique. The entire farm is surrounded by gorgeous oak trees and looks over the scenic Majura Valley, making it a great spot for some fantastic photographs.

Although there are many more things you can do in Canberra like hot-air balloon rides, a visit to the Australia War Museum, a cruise over Lake Burley Griffin, and many more, these five are definitely a great way to start. Don’t forget to speak to the locals to find out other fun things you can do which only a Canberran can tell you about. Go forth and explore!

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Should you wish to add or remove any items, we will adjust our fixed quote accordingly. Hence, no nasty surprises at the end of the move process.

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Free In-Home Consultation:

Free In-Home Consultation:

If you are moving the majority of your household items from New Zealand to Australia, one of Ausmoves experienced relocation consultants will visit your home to establish your specific packing requirements and any unique moving needs. Learn more about moving to Australia from NZ.

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