If you are planning a road trip to the Australian Capital Territory, or ACT, you'll find motels within easy reach of Canberra's downtown core and the meticulously designed Capital Hill.
What is the ACT?
The Australian Capital Territory is the seat of the Federal Government of Australia. The country's capital, Canberra, is included, as is national parkland and a large swath of agricultural land. The ACT sits within New South Wales and is roughly a 3-hour drive southwest of Sydney.
Motels and Points of Interest in Canberra
- Motels near Capital Hill are off of Route 5, east of State Circle Drive. This part of the city is on the south end of Lake Burley Griffin. Properties here will put you close to Parliament House, Stirling Park and the National Portrait Gallery. The Jerrabomberra Wetlands is to the east. This nature reserve offers hiking trails and is a great place to do a bit of bird watching.
- Canberra City Centre is on the north end of the Commonwealth Avenue over-crossing. Motels and hotels are set up outside the core, which is devoted to the Canberra Theatre Company, the Canberra Museum & Gallery and the Supreme Court of Australia. Parking is available nearby. In the middle of it all is a circular park, filled with trees and plants laid out in a pattern, much as they do in your typical English garden.
Getting around in Canberra
Motels tend to be located along major roadways. You probably won't be within walking distance of the federal buildings or the city centre but you do have public transportation options. The ACTION bus service has routes throughout the ACT. Pay by the ride or buy a pass. Exact change is appreciated by not necessary. Or, you can rent a bicycle and take to the bike lanes, just like the locals. Bike racks are available at most points of interest and shopping centres. Most ACTION buses have bike racks on the front of the bus, so it's easy to combine the two options.
Driving is an option, and most attractions within the city do not charge for parking. The roadways are not as congested as those in Sydney, but it's still wiser to skip the morning and afternoon commutes. Watch for speed limit signs. ACT has speed cameras set up almost everywhere.
About Lake Burley Griffin
Named for the architect that designed Canberra's layout, Lake Burley Griffin is the waterfront playground of Canberra. Most of the shoreline is open space and government owned. Hiking trails are available on both the south and north shores. The path from Commonwealth Park to the Canadian Memorial Flagpole at Regatta Point, on the north shore, is one of the most popular.
The ACT and Canberra are great additions to any road trip through New South Wales. You have the convenience and lower cost of staying at motels, but still have the excitement of Australia's National Capital within easy reach. Wherever your travels take you, you can contact a motel, such as Burswood Lodge, to learn more about the area and its attractions.