It always surprises us how many travellers you see trying to explore a place from the comfort of their car or tour bus, when there are so many better ways to really get out and feel the vibe of a place. Thanks to our friends at Visit Canberra for sharing with us how to experience Canberra without a car.
"Eight ways to experience Canberra without a car
Visiting Canberra without a car? There’s plenty of ways to explore Australia’s capital whether you like to fly high or glide across the water with the wind in your hair or tackle it on two wheels. Leave the car parked and see Canberra from a new perspective!
Our top eight ways to experience Canberra without a car…
Hot air ballooning
You don’t have to wait until the annual Balloon Spectacular, to take to the skies and enjoy sweeping views of Canberra and all its iconic monuments. With a changing carpet of seasonal colours and daily balloon rides available (subject to flying conditions), the geometric architecture of Canberra, rolling green hills and Lake Burley Griffin are always ripe for aerial viewing. For happy snappers and pro photographers seeing Canberra from the skies won’t disappoint!
There are several balloon operators in Canberra: Balloon Aloft and Dawn Drifters. For more details click here
For those who prefer a casual approach to culture with none of the traipsing round attractions for hours on end, zipping along on a Segway is the ideal way to explore the Lakes’ shoreline. With tours, starting at Lake Burley Griffin, that combine twists, turns, ramps and challenges for even the most elite ‘segwayer’, as well as a good glimpse of the National Gallery of Australia, High Court of Australia, Reconciliation Place, The Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House and the National Rose Garden, Canberra offers a thrilling cultural ride for all!
To book yourself on a tour or venture out on your own click here
Just a stone’s throw away from the city centre you can explore the rolling hills of Murrumbateman and what better way to do this then by putting your feet up – quite literally, as you ease into the saddle of your ride.
At Burnelee Excursions on Horseback, as well as exploring the 3500 acre grazing property and viewing Australian wildlife in 1000 acres of natural bushland, you can channel your inner countryman and have a go at mustering sheep or cattle.
Canberra is the cycling capital of the nation with some of Australia’s finest network of cycle paths and off road trails – whether you prefer to go trail riding in forests, practise your tricks or explore urban attractions you will find unlimited cycling to suit you.
There are more than 20 bike trails and cycling culture is rife so you can expect cafes with bike racks, hotels with complimentary bike hire and kilometres of connected bike paths that weave through the city and beyond.
To find out more about Canberra’s world class cycling facility at Stromlo Forest Park, where to hire bikes and which routes to explore click here
For aquatic lovers and those who like to get in their daily workout whilst on a short break getaway, paddle boarding is the perfect way to explore Lake Burley Griffin and take in the views of the attractions dotted around the shoreline.
To find out more about paddle boarding click here
Sailing and cruising
Those wanting to dust off their boat shoes and practice their sailing knot technique whilst taking in many sites along the shoreline, look no further than an afternoon of yachting on Lake Burley Griffin.
At the Canberra Yacht Club you can hire a range of sailing vessels to suit you, whether you are more of a champagne cruiser or a deft dingy hand. If you prefer to sit back and relax, book yourself on a cruise and enjoy the view whilst you learn about the lake and history of the area.
Want to kick back and enjoy the view from the lake with minimal effort? Take one lake cruise such as the MV Southern Cross or the smaller Canberra Lake Cruises offerings.
To find about more about sailing and cruising in Canberra click here
For those who want to combine their love of the water and adventure canoeing or kayaking is the ideal way to explore Canberra’s urban and natural landscapes.
You can hire kayaks/canoes and explore Canberra’s extensive waterways solo or by one of many tours available which explore Lake Burley Griffin and the wetlands, offering fantastic views of many major monuments and bringing you up close and personal with a variety of birdlife.
To hire a kayak or book a tour click here
Pavement pounders, avid trail walkers and casual strollers can all enjoy the walkways and trails of Canberra. Whilst you can’t explore the whole city in a day by foot, many of the best and lesser known attractions are best seen or reached by foot.
Serious walkers will enjoy the 145km of Centenary Trail that journeys through the city and into the countryside, for happy snappers the bridge to bridge walk takes in many of Canberra’s iconic attractions and the walk to the top of Mount Ainslie gives stunning panoramic views over the city and surrounding mountain ranges. For those who like to keep walking to the minimal the National Gallery of Australia and National Portrait Gallery are just 394 steps or 300 metres apart!
To find about more about walking in Canberra click here
If you still prefer four wheels or want to mix and match but prefer not drive, Uber has begun in Canberra so download the app and get booking!
For more information you can check out Visit Canberra by clicking here"