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Inner North Day and Night Guide"


Flip the switch below and discover Canberra by day or night
By Concrete Playground
March 16, 2022
By Concrete Playground
March 16, 2022

It's no surprise Canberra's inner north has become a popular area for both locals and visitors to spend time. Not only does it boast a thriving arts and culture scene but it also has top-notch food and drink options at every turn.

This pocket of Canberra has something to interest all types of traveller. Want to spend a day mooching about the boutique shops and sipping expertly poured coffee? Perhaps you’re a culture vulture on the hunt for the next big thing in contemporary art? Or maybe you want to get back to nature. You can do it all here.

Flick the switch above, and we’ll dim the lights to show you the best things to do once the sun goes down. You can also explore more Canberra suburbs and plan your trip here.

It's no surprise Canberra's inner north has become a popular area for both locals and visitors to spend time. Not only does it boast a thriving arts and culture scene but it also has top-notch food and drink options at every turn.

If we can give you one tip for spending an evening in the inner north, it’s this: go hungry. The city and Braddon have fine dining options aplenty, plus a fancy, buzzing dining hall in Verity Lane Market. And the night needn’t end there, with plenty of options for post-dinner entertainment and drinks.

Flick the switch above, and we’ll turn on the lights to show you the best things to do pre-6pm. You can also explore more Canberra suburbs and plan your trip here.


Over 70 percent of the ACT is open, green space. Following suit, the inner north of Canberra has a number of beautiful spaces and parks with trees, plants, shrubbery, birds and wildlife to explore. It’s a good place to take in a breath of fresh air.


Save driving for after dark and spend the daylight hours exploring on two wheels. The Share a Bike scheme has self-service bike rental stations at multiple spots around the area, including the Crowne Plaza and QT Canberra, and prices start at just $1.50 per hour.


The Australia National Capital Artists Inc (ANCA) puts the works of local artists on display at its gallery and studio space in Dickson and supports them through the artist-run initiative. Head there to check out the local talent.


When the weather’s fine, locals flock to Haig Park, an expansive 19-hectare nature that sprawls across Braddon and Turner. It boasts over 2000 trees, plus tennis courts, a bowling club, an off-leash section for pups, a fitness track and barbecues for lazy Sunday lunches.


The north of Dickson harbours a hub of Asian eats. Grab noodles from Two Sisters Lao Thai Cuisine, homemade dumplings from Dickson Dumpling House or pho from Pho Phu Quoc. You’ll also find a number of Asian supermarkets specialising in fresh produce and hard-to-find ingredients in the area.


When nighttime hits, you have two decent options for exploring the inner north. The first, of course, is by car or your ridesharing service of choice. The second is the light rail, which basically cuts through the centre of Dickson, Turner and Braddon and terminates at Alinga Street.


A visit to Bentspoke Brewing Co in Braddon to taste its award-winning craft beer is a must. In 2021, its IPA, the Bentspoke Crankshaft, took out the number one spot in GABS Hottest 100, the nation’s largest craft beer poll. Oh, and three of its other brews also nabbed places in the top 20.


The residents of Canberra’s inner north don’t mind a good venue hop through many of the area’s beloved pubs and bars. If you’re looking for a place to start, Hopscotch in Braddon will serve you a fine beer with a pizza to prime your stomach.

What to check out in Braddon, Dickson, Acton and the CBD

Do as the locals do.


Canberrans take their coffee very seriously and nowhere is it clearer than in the inner north.

1. Highroad

A slick all-day cafe from the Ona team.

2. Barrio Collective Coffee

Go for the specialty coffees, stay for the creative combinations of 'stuff' on toast.

3. Kyo Coffee Project

This tucked-away Braddon cafe has made a splash with great coffee and a Japanese-inspired menu.

4. Intra Specialty Coffee

This cool coffee joint serves up top-quality cups of joe in the capital.

5. ILY

This place will have you hollering its namesake phrase after you try its simple and comforting dishes.

Arts, Culture & Leisure

Spend the day admiring the work of up-and-coming creatives — or get the blood pumping.

1. Gallery of Small Things

Don't let its size fool you — it's housing some of Canberra's best artworks.

2. National Film and Sound Archive

Learn about Australia's rich history in sound and film at this not-for-profit institution.

3. Mount Ainslie to Mount Majura Circuit

Conquer two of Canberra's best peaks on this challenging trail.

4. Ainslie and Gorman Arts Centres

These twin arts centres showcase work from artists of all disciplines.

5. Craft ACT

This not-for-profit art and design centre supports local artists via exhibitions, events and a retail space.


Forget high street. The inner north offers a boutique shopping experience from one-of-a-kind gifts to luxe booze.

1. Shop Girl Flower Girl

This Ainslie boutique specialises in beautiful posie bouquets and whimsical homewares.

2. Hive

Retail collides with art at this charming little Braddon store.

3. Bisonhome

Nab some of the high-end ceramics that Canberra's local restaurants, cafes and shops all love to use.

4. Blackhearts & Sparrows

Braddon's top-notch outpost of the Melbourne boutique bottle-o chain.

5. Landspeed Records

Thumb through rare vinyls at this CBD independent record store .

What to check out in Braddon, Dickson, Acton and the CBD

Do as the locals do.


Cheap and cheerful takeaway? Or an all-out, wear-your-stretchy-pants feast? Either way, you're sorted.

1. Pilot

A small-seater eatery dishing up refined — and deceivingly simple — dishes.

2. Grease Monkey

Head to this former mechanics workshop for a big ol' burger and stay for the famous milkshakes.

3. Eightysix

Visit this modern Australian fine diner for a bustling vibe and an unmissable mango cheesecake.

4. Lazy Su

Try creative twists on old favourites at this bright and buzzing Asian eatery.

5. Rebel Rebel

An unapologetically cool restaurant in the capital's NewActon precinct.


Hop tip: some of the best spots to enjoy a tipple in the inner north are hidden in plain sight.

1. Bentspoke Brewing Co.

You can't leave the capital without visiting its most awarded microbrewery.

2. Bar Rochford

Standout bar snacks in one of Canberra's oldest buildings.

3. Molly

This 1920s-inspired speakeasy is worth a visit — if you can find it.

4. Rizla

Braddon's new wine bar dedicated entirely to riesling.

5. White Rabbit Cocktail Room

A hidden cocktail bar with inventive cocktails and tipsy high teas.

Arts, Culture & Leisure

The fun doesn't stop when the sun goes down — the inner north is a hive for after-dark action.

1. Assembly

Visit this all-day pub for Berocca-spiked brekkie cocktails or a late-night boogie.

2. 88mph

Head here for an 80s nostalgia-fest complete with karaoke, neon signs and a light-up dance floor.

3. Canberra Theatre Centre

A performing arts centre playing host to productions for all tastes and ages — from Bluey to Metallica.

4. Here

A wellness space dedicated to yoga, pilates, physiotherapy and psychology.

5. Sideway

Catch live tunes from local acts at this cosy live music venue.

CP Picks

Here is how our team loves to spend a few hours in the inner north.

Find Your Way Through the Inner North

Track down the must-visit local haunts.


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

Words by: Marnie Vinall

Top images: Barrio Collective Coffee, VisitCanberra; Assembly

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