Canberra Attractions for Children
(Canberra, Australian Capital Territory - ACT, Australia)
There is certainly plenty in the way of children's attractions all around Canberra. Attractions include the outstanding Canberra National Zoo and Aquarium, which stands on the western side of Lake Burley Griffin and is filled with exotic creatures and marine life. You may also like to spend time checking out the huge lizards and snakes at the Australian Reptile Centre, zooming down the water slides at the Big Splash Waterpark, or learning about the solar system at the Canberra Space Centre.
Of note, the city's tourist information centres contain useful leaflets and factsheets about family attractions, entitled 'Children's Activities, Parks and Playgrounds in Canberra'.
National Zoo and Aquarium
Address: 999 Lady Denman Drive, Weston Creek, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2611, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6287 8400
The National Zoo and Aquarium is the perfect attraction for children and families, being located within the westerly suburb of Yarralumla, close to Government House, Yarramundi Reach and the Equestrian Park. Home to a wealth of sealife, attractions at the Aquarium include newly hatched baby sharks, adult sharks, an underwater tunnel, friendly stingrays, marine fish, lobster tanks and numerous landscaped aquariums. The adjacent National Zoo and Wildlife Park features many indigenous Australian animals and more exotic creatures, such as dingoes, koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, lions and tigers - perfect for a family day out.
Open hours: daily - 10:00 to 17:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for seniors, children and families
Canberra Reptile Zoo
Address: 29 O'Hanlon Place, Nicholls, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2913, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6253 8533
The Canberra Reptile Zoo, formerly the Australian Reptile Centre, in the Gungahlin district, is always a popular attraction for children visiting the Canberra area. There are many enormous snakes, giant lizards, informative displays and much more besides, all grouped into different temperate zones.
Open hours: daily - 10:00 to 17:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for seniors,
Big Splash Waterpark
Address: 1 Catchpole Street, Macquarie, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2614, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6251 1144
The Big Splash Waterpark is located in the Belconnen area, just across from the Jamison Enclosed Oval, where it is the perfect spot to cool down on hot days. Ideal for children of all ages, highlights include fun water slides, swimming pools, water toys and play areas for younger children. Afterwards, you may like to take a stroll to the neighbouring Aranda District Playing Fields.
Open hours: mid-November to mid-March, Monday to Friday - 10:00 to 18:30, Saturday and Sunday - 10:00 to 18:00
Canberra Space Centre (CSC)
Address: 421 Discovery Drive, Paddys River, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2620, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6201 7880
The exciting Canberra Space Centre, on the northerly outskirts of the city, is a popular attraction for children and families. Featuring many noisy and lively hands-on displays, visitors can expect regular films about space travel, a theatre area, artefacts from outer space and a gift shop. There is also a popular cafe serving tasty food, with seating areas overlooking a playground. Although it can often get rather busy at the weekend, the staff are always very organised and helpful.
Open hours: daily - 09:00 to 17:00
Cockington Green Gardens
Address: 11 Gold Creek Road, Nicholls, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2913, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6230 2273
The Cockington Green miniature village is a charming attraction and is based on an actual English village, with model houses, tiny manicured gardens and fascinating miniature replications. Cockington Green is situated within the Gungahlin district, on the northern side of the city, where it stands right alongside the National Dinosaur Museum, the Gold Creek World of Learning, the George Harcourt Inn, the Walk-In Aviary and the Aarwun Gallery. Tired mums may like to spend a little pampering time at the nearby Well Retreat Day Spa.
Open hours: daily - 09:30 to 17:00
Admission: charge, discounts available for seniors, children and families, children three years old and under are free
Canberra Walk-in Aviary
Address: Unit 13, 26 O'Hanlon Place, Federation Square, Gold Creek Village, Nicholls, Australian Capital Territory (ACT), 2913, Australia
Tel: +61 (0)2 6230 2044
Visitors have the opportunity to interact with 52 species of birds from all over Australia and the rest of the world. Children will be thrilled to feed the birds with the possibility of the feathered creatures landing on them.
Open hours: September to April, daily - 10:00 to 17:00; May to August, daily - 10:00 to 15:30
Admission: charge, discount available for seniors and children