Running in Canberra (ACT, Australia) Part 1

So one of the best things about running for me, is that I get to explore new places.

This week I’m in Canberra (Australia’s Capital City) for work, and there’s no better way to see the city than running. I knew I’d have time constraints with my work commitments and running is a great way to see the sights in a brief space of time.

Canberra is a runner’s paradise. There are a lot of flat areas, but if you feel like tackling a trail, there’s plenty of nature parks within a few kms of the city centre.

I’m planning 3 runs here in Canberra (or 4 if I can get up early enough before my plane leaves!), so for my first run, I thought I should see some sights. This was my favourite type of run. One where you set out in a general direction of something you want to see, but one where you allow yourself to get completely off course and end up seeing something else amazing.

Canberra part 1 run map

I had decided to head in the direction of Parliament house and Lake Burley Griffin. Many friends had told me they enjoyed great runs around the lake, so I thought it might be a good place to start. Lake Burley Griffin is made up of three basins and apparently it is quite popular to choose one of the basins for a circuit run. The central basin (between the two bridges) is the most popular, being around 5km. I knew I didn’t have time to do a whole basin run, so instead I just headed along the lake.

Soon I came to the National Museum of Australia which is an amazing piece of architecture that has to be seen to be believed. Designed by Howard Raggatt, it is so multi-faceted that running around it was incredible. Every time you turned a corner, something new and interesting was revealed. Most interesting to me was the braille that adorns the exterior walls. I had to look it up when I came home to find out what it says. According to Wikipedia, the braille translates to some common Australian sayings, such as ‘She’ll Be Right’, but also includes more controversial sayings relating to the white occupation of Australia. The controversial phrases have since been obscured by metal discs placed on top, making them illegible.

Here’s an aerial view.


By the time I had marvelled at the museum, I realised I was 2km further than I really had time for, so had to high-tail it back to my room to get ready for work. It still wasn’t all business, I managed to stop and watch some lignets on the way back.

LignetsAll up, a nice 7km run to start my week in Canberra. Stay tuned for my next Canberra run, which I’m hoping will be a trail run in one of the nature parks.

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