Trip Start Sep 30, 2013
Trip End Oct 16, 2013

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Where I stayed
Manuka Park Serviced Apartments Canberra
Read my review - 4/5 stars
What I did
Australian War Memorial Canberra
Read my review - 5/5 stars
Parliament House Canberra
Read my review - 4/5 stars
Telstra Tower Canberra
Read my review - 3/5 stars

Flag of Australia  , Australian Capital Territory,
Sunday, October 6, 2013

A quick drive up the road and you'll find Canberra. 170km but takes a bit longer than you'd expect due to the twisty uphill bit between Batemans Bay and Braidwood. Which is most enjoyable and was the first time we had to change down from 6th gear to take a hill! Second gear actually. It gets steep. But the Fozza loved the twisty bits even though we were held up by a Hyo 650 for awhile...

Stopped in Braidwood for a break. Braidwood has all the character that Canberra missed out on!

Found our way to our accommodation in the quite nice suburb of Manuka. Was shocked to find that our apartment didn't have free wifi. Like any Maccas, HJ's or local coffee shop does! That's why I'm typing this on my phone. Grrrrr.

Went for a drive around the place to get our bearings. We were staying quite close to Parliament House so drove around that a bit. It's a lot more impressive than in the photos! From the outside anyway..

Managed to regularly get lost around Canberra. How a city that was designed by an architect from the ground up can be so hard to navigate is beyond me!!! :(

Next day went to Floriade in the morning. Free parking and free admission - yay!!! Despite having a nasty warm windy day before most of the displays still had plenty of life left in them. If you're into your gardening you really should see this one year.

After lunch we headed to The Australian War Memorial. It's an absolute must see. Huge. There's an amazing quantity (and quality) of material. We took a 2 hour guided tour and that only just touches the surface. You ideally need 2 half days to do it any justice.

Isaac was very pleased to find an ME163 and ME262, Kittyhawk, P51, Lancaster bomber, Spitfire (Isaac so dissapointed it was only a Mk1!) and heaps more. Don't touch the planes. An alarm sounds. Except the BF109, which you can touch from the upper level if you have long arms - and is not alarmed cos I guess most people don't have long arms!!

While in the aircraft area the guide recognised that Isaac was a WWII plane freak and actually got him to stand out front and regale the rest of the tour with intricate details about the aircraft!

Naturally there are also displays for every conflict we've ever been involved in. Truly amazing place. A trip there should be compulsory for every Aussie. It even instilled a bit of national pride in me!!!

Next day we went for a tour of Parliament House. It's actually pretty uninspiring inside. I found the architecture dubious at best. I dread to think how much we paid the American firm who designed it. That's right - designed by Americans. Oh the shame.

It was nice to see the upper and lower houses though, and get a slightly better idea of how the processes work. Great to look out the front doors of Parliament House and look directly down to old parliament house and then onto the War Memorial. In some parts of Canberra the planning really does pay off. To plan something on that scale is awe inspiring.

Then off to Questacon. What can I say - seen one science and technology exhibit - seen 'em all. Good for the kids I guess. Mia enjoyed it. $70 for family admission. :(

Got totally lost getting back from Questacon to Manuka. Should have been an easy 10 minute drive. Nek minnit - on the highway to Cooma in a 100kph zone. What the??!!

Eventually was able to turn around and work our way back to Manuka where we got to know the place a bit more. Seriously nice suburb. Classic wide tree lined streets. Manicured gardens. Nice.

Decided to take it a bit easy today. I think we're suffering "tourist fatigue"! Got up a bit late and did another visit to the War Memorial. There's just so much to see there. We saw some exhibits that we didn't have time for the first time. Walked around until my back could take no more!

We then moved onto Old Parliament House. Wow - it's really old. They've left it all totally unrestored. You can wander around all of it though. Which was pretty cool.

Those old offices as used by Bob and Little Johnny were seriously dingy. More beige than I was comfortable with!!!

Went to a place called Mecca Bah for dinner. Middle Eastern food. Awesome. Went to one on the Gold Coast once and it was great too.
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