Canberra does struggle to present an exciting and alluring image as a place to want to visit, much like its American counterpart. It's likely you've heard that it's full of dull politicians and is about as exciting as boiled cabbage, that there's too many parks and the city has no feel of spontaneity about it.
And although there's no escaping the fact that there is a ring of truth about these gripes, Canberra, on the other hand would also have a claim on being something like the Netherlands of Australia. Marijuana has been decriminalised. It's the only place in the country to have a bill of rights to protect its citizens' civil liberties. And it also is the pornographic capital of the nation.
Obligatory visits, if you should find yourself in this part of the country, would be to the Parliament House for a wander around the halls of power; to the Australian War Memorial, which commemorates Australian involvement in the various wars the young soldiers participated in over the years and has some interesting exhibitions from time to time; and, Lake Burley Griffin, where the Zooquarium and National Museum of Australia are situated.
Getting out and about, the countryside surrounding Canberra is quite lovely and varies from rolling grasslands to alpine mountain regions which have barely been disturbed by the recent construction of the territory's capital city.
You can cruise on up to the northern parts of the Australian Alps to the reserves of Tidbinbilla and NamadgiNational Park. These areas are lush with diverse wildlife, profusions of native flora, and are rich in Aboriginal heritage. Once you've had your fill, take a jaunt over to CanberraNational Park and luxuriate in the wild flowers and indulge in a spot of bird watching.
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