As our capital city, Canberra is steeped in the history and culture of Australia. It’s also unique amongst the big smokes by virtue of being the only city in its territory. While geographically located within New South Wales, Canberra is similar to America’s Washington D.C. in that it is part of a unique territory (Australian Capital Territory, or ACT) that was specifically created to house government. Canberra is also the nation’s largest inland city, which means that there are plenty of directions that you can drive in to find some of the ACT’s most interesting places. It may not have the size or the popularity of its very close neighbours Sydney and Melbourne, but there’s a lot more to see off the beaten track, so rent a car in Canberra and experience this unique territory for yourselfEmbassy drive One of the most interesting drives in Canberra is through the suburb of Yarralumla. As Australia’s capital, the city is home of nearly 80 international embassies, with countries from all over the world represented. While some of them are spread out, the most impressive collection is to be found in the historic diplomatic estate of Yarralumla. The embassies and commissions in this suburb consist of some truly grand buildings, some dating back over 50 years, with incredible architecture that reflects each individual nation. Recommended self-driving routes can be found online, but for a great day of exploring you’ll do just as well to take a leisurely drive around the area and stop in at a few of the embassies that are open to the public for a poke around. Highlights include the American, Japanese and French headquarters, as well as Australia’s own Government House. The incredible range means there’s something to satisfy architectural thirsts of every variety in this stunning neighbourhood.Visit Mugga-Mugga For a slightly older slice of history, head just out of the city to the beautifully preserved Mugga-Mugga cottage. Canberra itself is only a little over 100 years old, having begun its transformation from rural area to the seat of Australian government in the early 1900s. Before then, the region was mostly known for agriculture and there were very few buildings or settlements of note. One of the few surviving, and certainly the best preserved, is the cottage at Mugga-Mugga. Built in the 1870s for a local shepherd, the small estate is made from local stone and stands as one of the best examples of what life would have been like on the vast Limestone Plains before the explosion of Canberra brought rapid growth to the region.Mount Stromlo Observatory by car From the annals of history to the more recent past; Mount Stromlo may not have the age of Mugga-Mugga, but it’s just as interesting. Just under 20 kilometres from Canberra, the Observatory is home to the Australian Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, and was at one time the home of a collection of renowned telescopes. Unfortunately, in 2003, the devastating Canberra bushfires destroyed most of the observatory, leaving little in their wake. The site has since been restored and is open to the public, playing host to community astronomy nights and a heritage trail around the area which guides visitors through the history of Mount Stromlo and explores the plans for the Observatory’s future. These are just three of the great places to drive to and explore in Canberra, but there are countless more waiting for an intrepid traveller to discover them. So contact us to find out about the best car rental options and start planning your trip!
Mar 21, 2016 at 2:17am PDT
Mar 19, 2016 at 3:34pm PDT