Canberra may not get as much attention as Sydney or Melbourne, but that just makes exploring it all the more satisfying. The heart of the city is packed with art galleries, speciality coffee shops brewing the perfect cup and restaurants serving global street food – as well as the sprawling Lake Burley Griffin, which you can cycle around or paddle across on a boat trip. Venture outside the city and you’ll discover even more – the Australian Alps are within easy reach here. With so much going on, you might be hunting for cheap accommodation in Canberra to preserve your cash for the important stuff, so take a look at our top cheap picks – bookable on Culture Trip.
Golf fans should tee up a stay at this modern apartment hotel – found on the edge of Capital Public Golf Course. Even if you’re not one for golf, it’s still a great venue thanks to well-equipped rooms, which all come with a kitchenette and washer/dryer, plus STAYCAST streaming – so you can stream straight from your phone or laptop to the TV in your room. Being outside of the city centre means there’s plenty of nature around you – nearby Jerrabomberra Wetlands Nature Reserve houses over 170 bird species – but it’s only a 10-minute drive if you do want the hustle and bustle.
Working travellers will feel at home in this casual apartment hotel, thanks to its location close to Canberra’s central business district – as well as an on-site business centre and meeting rooms. But fear not if your only business is to relax and sightsee, as there’s a whole lot to tempt holidaymakers – such as spacious rooms that all come with a kitchenette and washing machine. If you don’t fancy cooking, the hotel restaurant and bar won’t disappoint – especially with the daily Happy Hour and a Half from 4.30pm-6pm, giving you more time for discounted drinks. Nearby amenities will also keep you busy, including a gym, escape room and great views over Canberra from Red Hill Nature Reserve lookout point.
This boutique venue is as chic as they come, but cosy as well. The arty rooms boast either lots of natural light or views of the internal atrium filled with Tasmanian tree ferns – and all rooms offer thoughtful ecofriendly features, such as restored furniture and sustainable building materials like cork and clay. Tons of other perks make Ovolo Nishi an even more appealing stay, like a 24-hour gym, laundry, free breakfast and in-room treats – and a Wine and Pintxos Hour for snacking and socialising. The Canberra Central location is also a big plus thanks to the National Museum of Australia and sweeping riverside views, alongside multiple art galleries a short hop south of the river.
Slick and stylish, Avenue is a plush hotel in a suitably cool neighbourhood overflowing with coffee shops, hip bars and creative restaurants. Choose from huge rooms with balconies, apartments – if you want even more space – or spa suites for a real treat. Get a cultural fix at the Canberra Theatre and Canberra Museum and Gallery, catch up on retail therapy at the Canberra Centre – all just a 10-minute walk away – or simply lounge around in your plush room, making the most of the luxe amenities including a rainfall shower, bathrobes and even a pillow menu.
Take relaxation to a new level with a steam room or sauna built into your own private suite. With such attention to detail, it’s no wonder this acclaimed hotel has hosted famous names over the years, including former US President Lyndon B Johnson. But the Canberra Rex isn’t one to dwell on the past, as demonstrated by its high-end features – including a heated indoor pool and classy cocktail lounge – and its surrounding hip neighbourhood, Braddon. A short stroll from the hotel is Lonsdale Street, full of cool cafes and eateries – while essential attractions like the National Gallery of Australia and National Arboretum are just 10 minutes away.
Sick of airport transfer times? This eye-catching pick – thanks to its distinctive glass-wrapped exterior – is just 50m (164ft) from the terminal of Canberra Airport. As such, it’ll appeal to business travellers, as will the conference facilities, free high-speed wifi and express checkin/out. There’s also a 24-hour gym, work desks in every room and an on-site cafe-restaurant – so you can cut down on excess hanging around at airport cafes. The in-house bar is the place to unwind, or there’s a nearby golf course and nature reserve if you prefer relaxing al fresco.
Style is high on the priority list at this venue, as you’ll find out in any of the cool and kooky rooms – especially in the grand State Suite, which houses a full kitchen, laundry and your own personal bar. Even if you’re not splashing out, all rooms have elegant touches and there’s a speakeasy bar in which to sip a sazerac. You’re also in a prime location for sightseeing – with Commonwealth Park, Old Parliament House and the National Portrait Gallery all nearby.
Set in the town of Belconnen, this Mercure is perfectly located for anyone visiting the University of Canberra, the Australian Institute of Sport and the GIO Stadium – home to the Canberra Raiders rugby team. Inside and out, there’s a smart, modern feel to the hotel, which offers spacious, clean rooms, family suites if you’re travelling with children and a fully equipped apartment if you want something special. Canberra’s central business district – and its many restaurants and bars – is only a 10-minute drive away, and is also easy to reach on public transport.
Whether you’re in Canberra for business or pleasure, basing yourself in the heart of the central business district in this stylish apartment hotel has lots of pros. For starters, you’re surrounded by great restaurants, cafes and bars – and there’s first-rate shopping to be had at the boutiques and stores in Canberra Centre. Top city sights and attractions are also within easy reach, such as the National Gallery of Australia and Parliament House. As you’d expect from apartment-style accommodation, all rooms have plenty of space and come with a kitchenette or full kitchen – and you can even get supplies delivered straight to your door through a grocery service.
This sleek, ultra-contemporary pick is a classy choice, full of bold design and elegant touches, such as the free in-room minibar and the dimly lit, industrial-style cocktail bar. The hip credentials are further boosted by its location in Braddon – an arty neighbourhood crammed with vibey cafes and microbreweries. You could easily spend your whole trip eating, drinking and shopping your way through Braddon, but if you want to venture further out, nearby Mount Ainslie Nature Reserve has walking trails with great views. Other city highlights like Canberra Theatre and the National Portrait Gallery are also within easy reach.
For more great hotel options in Canberra, check out our pick of the best hotels in Canberra, Australia, for every traveller, bookable on Culture Trip.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Volcanic Iceland Epic Trip
meet our Local Insider
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I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.