Canberra. She’s tiny, but mighty. With vast green spaces and geometric patterns galore (yes, those roundabouts), the city cuts some seriously cool shapes into its surrounding bushland. Add some architectural spectacles, a floral festival, a world-class culinary scene and some mind-bendingly cool art, and you’ll end up with too many options for your Instagram feed. (Don’t you hate that?)
Here are 10 of Canberra’s most photogenic spots. Get snapping.
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Three words: One. Million. Flowers. One more word: Dogs. If you truly want to #breaktheinternet, head to Floriade – the Southern Hemisphere’s largest floral display – on its Dogs’ Day Out. As well as snapping adorable doggos as they frolic through rows of blooming fields, you can get involved in some seriously snappable events, like a handcrafted flower crown workshop, a hands-on breadmaking class, and a tutorial on making cordial from fruit and flowers. Floriade is on this year from September 14 to October 13.
#2 Mount Ainslie
This is Canberra! Most colorful city in Australia. Not believe? Let see from Mount Ainslie Lookout. _________ Inilah Canberra yang berwarna-warni di musim gugur. Sungguh elok dipandang dari ketinggian puncak gunung Ainslie. #CanberraGembira #Diaridiaspora #SeeAustralia #Australia #VisitCanberra #Canberra #TravelBlogger #kedubesAustralia #travelphotography #sony #sonyalpha #sonyaustralia www.iqbalkautsar.com
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Your next port of call should be the short trip up Mount Ainslie (a 1.5-hour return hike or a quick drive) for a panoramic view of the city’s grid laid out before you.
From the summit, you’ll be able to spy plenty of Canberra’s landmarks – including Parliament House, Anzac Parade and Lake Burley Griffin – within the frame of the surrounding mountainous hinterland. It’s lovely any time of the day, but it’s particularly photogenic at sunrise and sunset.
#3 Ovolo Nishi’s grand stair
Ovolo Nishi is one of Australia’s most celebrated boutique hotels, and for good reason.
More than 50 designers and architects contributed to the eco-friendly designer digs, and its polished appearance is a spectacle. While the whole place is thoroughly ‘grammable, we’re singling out the lobby’s wood and steel wonder, the ‘grand stair’, which manages to coax order out of chaos. The staircase is an intricate arrangement of over 2000 pieces of reclaimed timber sourced from, among other places, a basketball court. It’s a thing of beauty.
And even better? The grand stair leads to Monster Kitchen and Bar, which serves up an ever-changing menu of seasonal dishes that are as delicious as they are pleasing to the eye.
#4 Space Kitchen
It’s not your average eggs benedict at @space.kitchen ! have you tried it? #spacekitchen #canon #vsco #canberra #cbr #canberrafood #food #50mm #cookbook #moodyfood #foodstyling #foodphotography #feedfeedprops #lightlovers #eggs #benedict #breakfast #canberrabreakfast #flatlay
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For fun food that’s been pushed to its limits, stop into Space Kitchen in Canberra’s south side suburb of Phillip.
The food here is a mix of theatre and art, without the tight collar. Take, for example, the Space Benedict, which comes with a pulled pork croquette disguised as a Golden Gaytime, a green pea puree, and poached eggs, hollandaise and toast. Instagrammable? You bet – and delicious to boot.
#5 James Turrell’s Within Without
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You might know this one from social media already. The National Gallery of Australia’s immersive installation from the artist who supposedly inspired Drake’s iconic Hotline Bling video is bound to bend your mind in the best ways.
The walk-in chamber with a view to the open sky is a photographer’s dream: think ochre walls, turquoise water, and perplexing perspectives. The best part? It’s open 24 hours a day.
#6 Bar Rochford
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The stylish interior of Bar Rochford pays homage to Canberra’s history. The cosy green banquettes use the same vinyl you’ll spot on seats in the Senate, and you’ll even find a coat of arms on the loo roll holders in the bathrooms. Add in a roaring fire, picturesque ‘70s-style lampshades and Art Deco detailing, and it’s a feast for the eyes.
The menu doesn’t disappoint either, featuring share plates that place sustainably farmed local produce at centre stage. And we’re not the only ones taken by Bar Rochford’s allure: it’s been named Australia’s best bar in the past.
#7 Little National
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Floor-to-ceiling windows partition the raised platforms of Little National’s super king-sized beds. The result? Plenty of airy, light-soaked mornings where you can pull up the doona and enjoy biscuits and tea in bed, looking out over Mount Ainslie, flipping through a copy of the hotel’s own local broadsheet.
When life’s this relaxing, Instagram will be an afterthought (but a thought, nonetheless). The entire hotel is understated and stylish, but comfortable enough to feel lived in. Warm up beside its fireplaces, in its sauna and steam room, or with a drink at one of its five onsite bars and restaurants.
#8 Canberra’s wine region
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Picture this: you, your best mates, rows of grapevines, and a glass of vino in hand. Head just out of town to Canberra’s surrounding wine district – basically its backyard – for some truly ‘grammable scenes, plus some tasty cold climate drops to take home with you. You can find a list of the wineries here. BYO floppy hat to complete your #blessed moment.
#9 Wide Brown Land
You may know the phrase ‘wide brown land’ from Dorothea Mackellar’s famous poem, My Country. What you may not know is that the poet’s words have been immortalised in sculptural form at the National Arboretum’s Himalayan cedar forest.
The sculpture was based on Dorothea’s own handwriting and was created by Marcus Tatton, Futago Design Studios and Chris Viney in 2010. 35 metres long and 3 metres high, it’s a sight that’s sure to blow up your Instagram feed.
#10 Gibraltar Falls
If you’ve had enough of the city, take a hike. Literally, that is. Head to the popular Gibraltar Falls in Namadgi National Park, a 40-minute drive from the city centre, where you can follow a short gravel path to the top of the 50-metre high cascade.
At the summit, there’s a natural infinity pool, with views over rolling green hills, dense with trees – the perfect photo opp.[qantas_widget code=CBR]Check out Qantas flights to Canberra to begin your next adventure.[/qantas_widget]
(Lead image: Carolelvin/Instagram)
Do it for the ‘gram. Find out more about what’s on in Canberra here and plan your next getaway to the capital.