The Best Hotels to Book in Canberra, Australia, for Every Traveller

The stunning design of the Vibe Hotel Canberra makes it one of the best hotels in Canberra
The stunning design of the Vibe Hotel Canberra makes it one of the best hotels in Canberra | Courtesy of Vibe Hotel Canberra / Booking.com
Laura Hampson

Founded in 1913, Australia’s capital city of Canberra has only recently started to find its feet. Purposefully created as a political hub, the capital has long been bypassed by travellers for the allure of nearby Sydney. However, those in the know are keeping quiet about the city’s foodie scene, spritely nightlife, expansive vineyards and diverse wildlife. From tours of the National Gallery of Australia and Australian Parliament House to outdoor excursions at Mount Ainslie Lookout, Lake Burley Griffin and Jerrabomberra Wetland, Canberra has something for every type of traveller. If you want in on Australia’s best-kept secret, read on to discover the best hotels and places to stay in Canberra, from design-led gems to Art Deco splendours – all bookable with Culture Trip.

1. Midnight Hotel, Autograph Collection, for deep-soaking relaxation

Hotel

Indoor pool with dark blue tiles, LED lighting and tall windows at Midnight Hotel, Autograph Collection in Canberra
Courtesy of Midnight Hotel, Autograph Collection / Expedia

Set in the beating heart of the Australian capital, Midnight Hotel is ideal for exploring the city by foot, with plenty of breweries and coffee shops just outside the door. The hotel’s moniker is fitting: once you step foot into the rooms, sleek dark hues and minimal daylight give a night-time impression. Opt for a suite if you can; you’ll get lost in its deep soaking tub.

2. Hyatt Hotel Canberra, for a Gatsby-esque vibe

Chain Hotel

Lobby area with patterned upholstered chairs, beaded light shades and wooden flooring at Hyatt Hotel Canberra
Courtesy of Hyatt Hotel Canberra / Expedia

With the National Rose Garden just across the way and Lake Burley Griffin next door, the Hyatt Hotel Canberra is perfectly placed to enjoy the city’s natural beauty. Built in 1927 to house visiting politicians, the hotel has a Gatsby-esque vibe enhanced by its Art Deco trimmings. Rooms have muted hues with Italian marble bathrooms, but you’ll only retreat to them when you can pull yourself away from the lulling piano player in the Tea Lounge.

3. Jamala Wildlife Lodge, for a safari in the city

Safari Lodge

An elevated lodging with a wooden deck overlooking the trees at Jamala Wildlife Lodge in Canberra
Courtesy of Jamala Wildlife Lodge / Expedia

There aren’t many other places where you can watch lions, bears and cheetahs from the comfort of your four-poster bed. Whether you fancy bathing next to a tiger sanctuary, gazing at your in-room shark tank or feeding a giraffe from the comfort of your hotel balcony, Jamala Wildlife Lodge has you covered. It sits inside Canberra’s National Zoo and Aquarium, and those who book overnight stays receive unique experiences, such as an exclusive guided tour.

4. Burbury Hotel and Apartments, for sleek sophistication

Hotel, Apartment

Sleek, monochrome restaurant with high tables surrounding a circular open fire pit at Burbury Hotel and Apartments
Courtesy of Burbury Hotel and Apartments / Expedia

Burbury’s unassuming facade makes way for one of the sleekest hotels in Canberra. Monochrome is the lay of the land here – expect bright white walls and gleaming black fixtures throughout the hotel’s rooms and expansive one- and two-bedroom apartments. Large windows make the space bright and airy. Be sure to make a beeline for the in-house Asian fusion restaurant, Chairman & Yip, delighting taste buds since 1992.

5. Hotel Realm, for fitness fanatics

Hotel

A seating area with a minimalist black fireplace, charcoal armchair and wooden coffee table at Hotel Realm, Canberra
Courtesy of Hotel Realm / Expedia

The sister property to the aforementioned Burbury Hotel and Apartments, Hotel Realm is near the Parliamentary Triangle, which connects the most important political buildings in Canberra. You’ll be greeted by marble floors gleaming from the light, and an airy, three-storey atrium above. Monochromatic rooms offer pillow menus, guaranteeing a good night’s slumber, and the basement health club features a heated lap pool, a sauna and group spin and boxing classes.

6. Hotel Kurrajong Canberra, for aspiring politicians

Hotel

Lobby with a patterned rug, velvet sofa, reception desk, and Art Deco-style rug at Hotel Kurrajong Canberra
Courtesy of Hotel Kurrajong Canberra / Expedia

Designed in 1926 by John Smith Murdoch, the Commonwealth chief architect who also created the Old Parliament House, Hotel Kurrajong is brimming with old-world Art Deco touches. Home to Australian prime minister Ben Chifley in the 1940s, it features little odes to the capital everywhere, including framed political portraits and rooms named after politicians. If you’re checking in on a Friday afternoon, stop by the Acoustic Friday session, featuring local musicians.

7. Vibe Hotel Canberra, for flying visits

Airport Hotel, Chain Hotel

The contemporary, pill-shaped bar in the soaring atrium lobby of Vibe Hotel Canberra
Courtesy of Vibe Hotel Canberra / Expedia

Just 50m (165ft) from Canberra’s airport terminal and a 10-minute drive from the city centre, Vibe Hotel is a brilliant design-led option, whether you’re travelling for business or leisure. Upon entering, you’ll be greeted by a soaring atrium and an impressive marble-clad fireplace. Rooms are smart, and many come with waterfall showers and separate tubs. The hotel’s in-house restaurant doubles as an airport lounge, so you won’t need to go far to relax before your flight.

8. Little National Hotel, for understated luxury

Boutique Hotel

A minimalist seating area with a long sofa and large windows revealing mountain views at Little National Hotel, Canberra
Courtesy of Little National Hotel / Expedia

You might expect the moody, dark-metal facade of this hotel to continue indoors, but its interior is anything but drab. A polished lobby gives you a glimpse of the understated, intimate rooms above, where the super-king beds are the obvious stars, illuminated by floor-to-ceiling windows. The high-pressure rain showers are a nice touch, too. Remote workers will appreciate finding a quiet nook in the library where a beverage service is available. Moët & Chandon, anyone?

9. East Hotel, for playful pops of colour

Hotel

The lobby atrium of East Hotel, Canberra, with colourful chairs and ottomans, a magazine stand and a retro red lamp
Courtesy of East Hotel / Expedia

In the Inner South neighbourhood of Canberra, East Hotel is primed for visiting local parks, swimming pools and coffee shops. Rooms here are generous – most feature full kitchens and spa tubs – while the decor is minimalist but fun, with clashing pops of colour. Bikes are available for hire, but if you’d rather stay close by to eat, the in-house Italian restaurant, Agostinis, makes the best home-made gelato in town.

10. Knightsbridge Canberra, for a luxury home-from-home

Apartment

Pared-back bedroom with dark wood bed frame, Art Deco-style lamps and soft grey carpet at Knightsbridge Canberra
Courtesy of Knightsbridge Canberra / Expedia

The one- and two-bedroom apartments at Knightsbridge Canberra feel just like home – that is, if your home happens to have an infinity pool, state-of-the-art gym, and barbecue terrace begging for a cookout. This Canberra boutique hotel also has floor-to-ceiling double-glazed windows, giving you all the natural light you need without ever setting foot on the balcony. You’d do well to make the short walk, though; it’s an unbeatably pleasant place to sip a drink from your minibar.

Nick Dauk contributed additional reporting to this article.

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