Lake Burley Griffin Canberra (iStockphoto)

Parliament House Canberra (iStockphoto)


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What to do in Canberra

Canberra, the Australian capital, was designed from the ground up in 1913 by contest-winning Chicago architects, and its spoke-and-wheel layout is primed for walking from museum to gallery to national treasure. The National Museum of Australia includes 19th-century Aboriginal artifacts and renowned seaman Captain James Cook’s navigational instruments. Just across downtown’s Lake Burley Griffin sits Questacon, a science and technology center where visitors can feel a free fall, take a virtual roller coaster ride, launch a hydrogen rocket, and experience an earthquake. Depictions of important Aussie artists, politicians, and royalty are on display nearby at the National Portrait Gallery. For some fresh air, hit the Australian National Botanic Gardens, which displays plants, both odd and lovely, to the sound of native birdsong.

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