Six Epic Experiences That'll Make You Want to Book a Trip to Canberra This Spring

Drink award-winning craft beer, take a glass-blowing class and ride around Lake Burley Griffin.
Marnie Vinall
April 22, 2021

Six Epic Experiences That'll Make You Want to Book a Trip to Canberra This Spring

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Drink award-winning craft beer, take a glass-blowing class and ride around Lake Burley Griffin.

There is plenty to see and do in Canberra at any time of year, but a strong case can be made for visiting between September and November. The city really blossoms in spring (see what we did there?) — so there's no wonder why it's home to one of Australia's biggest and best annual flower festivals. Can't make it to Floriade this year? Never fear, there are still plenty of epic experiences to have in the nation's capital during spring.

Whether you're planning a trip with mates, a significant other or solo, this list of activities will help you emerge from your winter hibernation with a spring in your step.

Please stay up to date with the latest ACT Government health advice regarding COVID-19.
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    When winter begins to thaw, with leaves growing back on trees and flowers coming into full bloom, we want to celebrate the warmer weather and the world’s annual rebirth. And, come September, Australia’s biggest festival of spring will roll around.

    Now in its 34th year, Floriade will once again fill Canberra’s Commonwealth Park with more than one million blooms.

    But this month-long flower festival is more than just smelling the tulips. After a successful introduction last year which saw more than 80 community groups plant a stunning tulip trail through Canberra’s suburbs, the Floriade Community initiative will return with an additional 300,000 bulbs and annuals providing a burst of colour across the city.

    Top image: Martin Ollman Photography

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    Capital Paddle

    Head down to Regatta Point at Lake Burley Griffin on a weekend to rent a paddleboat with Capital Paddle and explore the sights surrounding the lake via the water. As you pump those legs and take in the view, you may even pass a swan or two.

    Back in the 90s, these boats were the activity of choice for tourists wishing to explore the city from a different angle — and, due to popular demand, were recently reintroduced for those looking for a little dose of nostalgia.

    A boat can be rented for $25 for 30 minutes or $35 for a full hour and fits two, so it’s perfect for a romantic date or paddle with a mate. The availability of the boats depends on the weather, so make sure to head down when the sun is out in full force.

    Image: @snapsbysal, VisitCanberra

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    Spring is all about new life, so why not celebrate the season by picking up a new skill? Tap into your inner artist by signing up for an introductory class on the art of glass blowing at Canberra Glassworks, located in the historic Kingston Power House. After a short 20 to 40-minute one-on-one guided session with a skilled artist, where you’ll be working up-close with the 180-degree kilns, you’ll walk away with your own paperweight, bird, vase or tumbler.

    Alternatively, you could join a creative workshop on engraving, bead making, casting or kiln forming. You can also view exhibitions on display and peruse contemporary glass art by established and new artists from across Australia. If you don’t have time to join a class, pick up a beautiful abstract piece from the recently renovated retail space to take home with you — think sustainable glass straws, earrings and vinaigrette bottles.

    Image: VisitCanberra

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    At Bentspoke Brewing Co, you’ll find 18 beers and ciders on tap to try. One of the most popular pours, Crankshaft, was awarded Australia’s number one craft beer in the GABS Hottest 100 Aussie Craft Beers list earlier this year. Comparable to a West Coast IPA, it’s a full-bodied beer with citrus and pine notes and a good punch of hops.

    As you sip away on a pint or two, you can enjoy a decent feed. The brewpub has plenty of elevated pub fare on offer, including grilled swordfish with smoked butter, baby squid tacos and spicy cauliflower bites with blue cheese chilli sauce. Plus, you can leave with a two-litre ‘traveller’ in a custom-made insulated vessel.

    Image: VisitCanberra

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    Tallagandra Hill Winery

    Take to Tallagandra Hill, just 30 minutes from Canberra, for a wine-filled weekend in a picturesque rural setting. You can stay overnight next to the vines at boutique cottage accommodation, located at the vineyard.

    The winery specialises in cool-climate wines, including the likes of tempranillo, shiraz, cabernet franc, viognier and rosé. Here, you can choose your own adventure — opting to stop in for just a glass or a wine flight. Or you could sign up for the lunch package, which pairs four drops with a cheese and charcuterie platter, for $40 per person.

    The venue also holds a range of events throughout the year, including live music and one-off dinners, so keep an eye on what’s coming up when planning your trip.

    Image: Camilla Duffy

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    Lake Burley Griffin is the glistening centrepiece of Canberra. It’s a popular spot for locals and tourists alike for rowing, sailing, paddleboating, kayaking — or any other water sports you can think of — as well as walking and riding around it.

    With the introduction of e-scooters in the city, you can now hire an electronic scooter from the Canberra and Region Visitors Centre to zoom around the water’s edge, enjoy the fresh air and take in the sights of the lake. Hire costs $15 for one hour or $25 for two. There are also plenty of lakeside eateries to refuel at along the way, including The National Museum of Australia’s Museum Cafe and Snapper on the Lake.

    Image: VisitCanberra

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Discover more spring experiences to have in Canberra at VisitCanberra and start planning your next city break.

Top image: Legoland, VisitCanberra

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