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Mount Ainslie
Vacation Travel Guide

See Canberra as its designer intended it to be seen, from the dramatic lookout point at the top of this picturesque mountain. 

Reach the top of beautiful Mount Ainslie by bike, car or on foot. The tracks and roads up to the summit provide for all three options. But whichever way you get there, be prepared to spend some time at the lookout point, which offers stunning panoramic views as well as a unique insight into the grand plan behind the design of Australia’s capital city.

Canberra was designed by American architect William Burley Griffin. In 1911, the Australian government launched a competition to find a design for the country’s new capital city. Burley Griffin’s vision for the city was declared the winner. Look out across the cityscape below from the top of Mount Ainslie and see many of the city landmarks laid out exactly as in his original architectural plans.

See if you can find Parliament House, which Burley Griffin intentionally placed in a direct line from the Mount Ainslie lookout. This was the center point of his vision for the city, shielded by mountains offering the ideal viewing point for his creation. Make sure you also spot beautiful Lake Burley Griffin, named after the great man himself.

Remember to bring a camera when you head up the mountain, not only to photograph the stunning views from the top, but to capture images of any wildlife you see along the way. The mountain is populated by a wide range of interesting animals, especially birds.

To walk to the summit of Mount Ainslie, set out on the Kokoda Memorial Track, which begins near Treloar Street’s Australian War Memorial. Leave around an hour to reach the top. This should be slightly more than you need if you are moving at a steady pace. The track, though steep, is clear and well-marked, and most older children should have no trouble with the walk. Sunset is a particularly wonderful time to see the view from the summit. Be sure to leave lots of time to linger at the top, as this stunning bird’s-eye view is one that you won’t want to leave behind.

Top things to do in Mount Ainslie

Top Hotels Close to Mount Ainslie

Deco Hotel
Deco Hotel
4 out of 5
214 Northbourne Avenue, Braddon, Braddon, ACT
The price is $97 per night from Apr 26 to Apr 27

Located in Braddon, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Canberra Museum and Gallery, Canberra Centre, and Australian National University. National Convention ...

4.7/5Exceptional! (770 reviews)

"Fantastic hotel! Close enough to the centre and amazing room!!"…"

Reviewed on Apr 6, 2021

Deco Hotel
Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
4 out of 5
1 Binara Street, Canberra, ACT
The price is $121 per night from Apr 18 to Apr 19

Located in Canberra City Centre, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Glebe Park and National Convention Centre. Canberra Centre and Commonwealth Park are ...

4.2/5Excellent! (946 reviews)

"Can be very noisy. Building is getting old and in need of renovations. Lifts with no / limited stair backup is frustrating and time consuming."…"

Reviewed on Mar 21, 2021

Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
Pavilion on Northbourne
Pavilion on Northbourne
4.5 out of 5
242 Northbourne Avenue, Dickson, ACT
Free CancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $78 per night from May 9 to May 10

Located in Dickson, this hotel is within 2 mi (3 km) of Canberra Museum and Gallery, Canberra Centre, and Australian National University. National Convention ...

4.2/5Excellent! (1,925 reviews)

"Fantastic people. very reasonable. Highly recommended"…"

Reviewed on Apr 7, 2021

Pavilion on Northbourne
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Mount Ainslie

Deco Hotel
Deco Hotel
4 out of 5
214 Northbourne Avenue, Braddon, Braddon, ACT
The price is $97 per night from Apr 26 to Apr 27
Deco Hotel
Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
4 out of 5
1 Binara Street, Canberra, ACT
The price is $121 per night from Apr 18 to Apr 19
Crowne Plaza Canberra, an IHG Hotel
Pavilion on Northbourne
Pavilion on Northbourne
4.5 out of 5
242 Northbourne Avenue, Dickson, ACT
The price is $78 per night from May 9 to May 10
Pavilion on Northbourne
Madison Capital Executive Apartments
Madison Capital Executive Apartments
3.5 out of 5
108 Northbourne Ave, Braddon, ACT
The price is $80 per night from May 2 to May 3
Madison Capital Executive Apartments
Avenue Hotel Canberra
Avenue Hotel Canberra
5 out of 5
80 Northbourne Avenue, Braddon, ACT
The price is $119 per night from May 2 to May 3
Avenue Hotel Canberra
Mercure Canberra
Mercure Canberra
3.5 out of 5
39 Limestone Avenue, Braddon, ACT
The price is $89 per night from Apr 26 to Apr 27
Mercure Canberra
Pacific Suites Canberra
Pacific Suites Canberra
4.5 out of 5
100 Northbourne Avenue, Braddon, ACT
The price is $116 per night from May 12 to May 13
Pacific Suites Canberra
The Sebel Canberra Civic
The Sebel Canberra Civic
4.5 out of 5
197 LONDON CIRCUIT, Canberra, ACT
The price is $124 per night from Apr 25 to Apr 26
The Sebel Canberra Civic
Mantra on Northbourne
Mantra on Northbourne
4.5 out of 5
84 Northbourne Avenue, Braddon, ACT
The price is $110 per night from Apr 18 to Apr 19
Mantra on Northbourne
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.