Whether your children are adventure seekers, budding scientists or creative types there’s something that will appeal to every kid in Canberra during these winter school holidays.
Play in the snow
Experience the beauty of winter in the heart of Canberra on an open air ice skating rink for Skate in the City. This month-long event from 26 June to 26 July features dress up nights for the whole family, markets with food and kid’s activities, and ‘come and try days’ for ice hockey and broom ball. Kids will also love playing in the snow box in Garema Place.
Corin Forest Mountain Resort transforms into a winter wonderland, the perfect alpine setting for Canberra’s only snow experience with snow play. Build a snowman, go tobogganing and start a snowball fight at Corin Forest in the Tidbinbilla Mountain Ranges, a 45-minute drive from central Canberra.
Go behind-the-scenes at the National Zoo & Aquarium with a Zooventure or Family Tour. Be brave and take part in an animal encounter to get up close and personal with some of the world’s most amazing creatures like cheetahs, sharks, sun bears, white lions and red pandas. During the school holidays the Zoocation program offers a unique experience for primary aged children. On a fun-filled day, children will get up close and personal with many of the zoo’s animals, play games, make toys for the animals, and maybe even learn something along the way.
Inspire your little sporting dynamo with an athlete-guided tour of the Australian Institute of Sport and learn what elite athletes undertake to make it in their sport. Test your sporting skills at Sportex, an interactive sports experience that will have you kicking footballs, playing wheelchair basketball and racing a friend in a simulated ski race.
Be amazed on an afterDARK Lantern Tour of the Australian National Botanic Gardens on 5 July. Take part in a lantern making workshop then embark on a fascinating night tour of the Gardens with your own ranger guide; what a wonderful way to spend a winter evening in the nation’s capital.
Roar with the dinosaurs at the National Dinosaur Museum in the Gold Creek Village these school holidays. You’ll find lots of animatronic dinosaurs as well as models and skeletons on display and your children can touch a 150-million-year-old dinosaur bone. Join one of their expert staff to experience a journey through time on a fun and educational weekend tour.
Take some time with the family and explore the collection at the National Portrait Gallery. Experience the gallery while participating in activities like Drawn in, Portrait Play and Story Time that the whole family can enjoy together. Children aged 9-13 years can also take part in a photography workshop and create a photographic self-portrait experimenting with pose, expression, costume and symbols.
At the Royal Australian Mint you can see one of the world’s strongest robots make Australian coins. Count the 5 cent coins in the staircase and marvel at the giant colourful coins above your head. See fascinating coins from way back in history including tricky forgeries. You’ll be inspired to start your own coin collection and you can even make your very own coin in the Mint Coin Shop.
Try something new
Kick back with the family at Braddon’s newest niche The Hamlet and take your pick from a range of delicious food vans like BrodDogs, Mr Papa and April’s Caravan. The new urban village on Lonsdale Street has become home to a fantastic array of street food vendors and foodies have been beating a path toThe Hamlet’s door since they set up shop on the vibrant street.
Drop in to the National Library of Australia’s kids’ space to read, write, illustrate and imagine.WordPlay offers a range of fun activities exploring the shape, meaning and use of language from 13-19 July. Take your children or grandchildren to the new monthly Friends of the National Library of Australia Storytime, 18 June and 16 July, where they will delight in hearing some of their favourite books and discovering new ones.
And no family trip to Canberra is complete without experiencing the excitement of Questacon, home to more than 200 hands-on exhibits. At Questacon – The National Science and Technology Centre you can free fall down a six-metre slide, experience an earthquake and star in a Spectacular Science Show. Explore colour, movement, light and sound in the Wonderworks gallery where you can freeze your shadow, make beautiful light patterns by dancing, or create your own unique Harmonograph artwork to take home.
Canberra should also be your destination of choice this winter to experience everything from indulgent dining and wine tasting during Fireside Festival and the Canberra Region Truffle Festival to theatre, sport, markets, events and exhibitions.
For more great school holiday ideas and places to stay in the capital, visit www.visitcanberra.com.au.