48 hours in…Canberra You’re in town with only a weekend at your disposal. What to do? Our speed guide.

Canberra has a mysterious shadow cast over it when people sit down to plan their weekends and family trips away. The perceived “sleepy hollow” is rarely considered. That said, AT decided to explore some of the lesser-known spots in our nation’s capital.

Ginninderry //
Situated on a 70ha property, this gracious homestead has elegant suites for the traveller who wants to stay on the outskirts of town. Each room looks onto mountain ranges and French doors open up onto wide verandahs. Guests are spoiled with fresh scones on request, food hampers for picnics and the comforts of farm stay hospitality. www.ginnindery.com.au

YHA Australia //
Some view this little gem more as a 5-star hotel than a hostel. It’s squeaky clean and has a sunny rooftop terrace, modern eatery, spa, sauna and pool. www.yha.com.au

Poachers Pantry //
What was once a rustic farmhouse cottage 26km from the city is now the award-winning Smokehouse cafe, attracting folks from all over. The smoked meats, poultry, game and veggies sold on the estate compliment its winery, Wily Trout. Try the smoked chicken breast with tarragon and lemon with their chilled Chardonnay. www.poacherspantry.com.au

Alto //
Revolving high above the capital in Black Mountain Tower, Alto turns a languid cycle once every 90mins, offering views, seemingly, of the whole country. The décor is chic and compliments the Mod-Oz cuisine with a subtly French influence. www.altotower.com.au

Lake Burley Griffin //
Hire a kayak (www.lakecruises.com.au) and hop into the waters of Canberra’s manmade centerpiece.You’ll pass significant institutions as you paddle the lake. If you’re not a water baby, jump on a bike from Mr Spokes bike hire ([02] 6257 1188) and cycle around the lake’s lip.

Sightseeing Tours //
Canberra offers visitors an array of museums to choose from. The National Museum of Australia is a favourite among visitors but from an architectural standpoint the building visible from most of inner Canberra, New Parliament House, is at the top of AT’s cultural excursion list. Free walking tours run daily every 30min from 9am-4pm.

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