Map &
Directions

Hours
mode_edit
Been here?
Rate it
chevron_left
 
chevron_right

Top Tours

 
"3infun Canberra Attraction Pass Including the Australian Institute of Sport
3infun Ticket"Whether you want to size yourself up against some of Australia’s elite athletes at the Australian Institute of Sport venture into the delightful miniature world of Cockington Green Gardens or try your hand at some of the 200 exhibits and experiences at Questacon 3infun is serious fun for all ages.The Australian Institute of Sport (The AIS)Australia's premier elite sports precinct. A place that cannot be found anywhere else in Australia. Throughout the year the AIS opens its doors to over 200000 visitors from Australia and overseas. Only minutes from Canberra's CBD with plenty of free car and coach parking
From AUD45.00
 
"National Museum of Australia: A History of the World in 100 Objects
"National Museum of Australia: A History of the World in 100 Objects An Exhibition from the British Museum""The major international exhibition A History of the World in 100 Objects provides an exceptional opportunity to witness compelling human stories expressed through a unique and beautiful collection of artefacts drawn from across the globe. Each object featured in the exhibition marks a poi from two million years ago until the present.During your visit to the National Museum of Australia you also have the opportunity to discover where Australia's stories come alive. Located on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin in the centre of Canberra the Museum's stunning architecture offers an extraordinary place to explore the rich and diverse stories of Australia and its people. Explore the Museum's permanent galleries and see some of the nation's most popular and important objects all in one plac
From AUD20.00
 
National Museum of Australia: Ultimate Museum Experience
"Located on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin in the centre of Canberra the Museum's stunning architecture offers an extraordinary place to explore the rich and diverse stories of Australia and its people. See some of the nation's most popular and important objects all in one place from Phar Lap's heart and the Holden Prototype No.1 to bark paintings and ochre used by Aboriginal artists over 50000 years ago. The Ultimate Museum Experience offers a private tour with a guide. The tour is flexible and is tailored to how you would like to experience the Museum. You will be greeted in the Hall and offered refreshments in the e brunch or lunch before or after your tour. Tour duration is just over an hour.""""Discover where Australia's stories come alive at the National Museum of Australia. The Ultimate Museum Experience offers an exclusive personalised tour of the Museum with a dedicated tour guide
From AUD50.00

New Parliament House Tips (52)

Sorry

The State of Victoria’s Aboriginal Protection Act 1869 included the earliest legislation authorising the removal of children from Aboriginal parents. Other states and territories soon followed suit.

These rather odd, by today’s standards, Acts were motivated by various things including a desire to protect children from neglect and abuse, a belief that Aboriginal people would die out given a significant decline in their numbers post contact with white people and the belief that full-blooded Aboriginal people resented miscegenation and the mixed-race children fathered and abandoned by white men.

It was for this latter reason that most of the children removed from Aboriginal Communities between 1869 and 1970 were half-castes.

The exact number of children removed is unknown and estimates made have been widely disputed.

As my reader might imagine this policy of removing children from their families and communities was extremely contentious. It remains contentious to this day.

Over time the children removed under the various Acts became known as the Stolen Generations and demands for an apology (and indeed compensation) for their removal grew. After decades of political and public debate, on 13 February 2008 the then Prime Minister of Australia, Kevin Rudd, apologised to the Stolen Generations and said ‘sorry’.

The apology was by way of a motion put before the House of Representatives (Lower House) in Parliament. The motion had bipartisan support and was passed, though the Leader of the Opposition’s speech included many qualifications and was met by protests. An identical motion was later passed by the Senate (the Upper House).

The actual ‘apology’ document, depicted here, signed by the Prime Minister, can be seen in New Parliament House.
A transcript of the document can be seen here - http://www.australia.gov.au/about-australia/our-country/our-people/apology-to-australias-indigenous-peoples.

It is important to note that while the Prime Minster tendered the apology on his own behalf, on behalf of the Government and the Parliament, he stopped short of claiming to speak on behalf of the Australian people.

While many of the people supported the apology many did not, wondering at the value of an apology by individuals who did nothing wrong – taking on the sins of their fathers, as it were – if indeed they were sins at all as opposed to misguided good intent. Others saw the apology as an indulgent stunt by the Prime Minister for his own political purposes.

Similar apologies have been given to Aboriginal people in New Zealand and Canada.

For details on entry to, opening hours etc of Parliament House see my separate review - Parliament House (Interior)


Next July 2016 Review
Or
Next Review
This is the last review in this Parliamentary Triangle – South Side Part B section. I invite you to return to my Canberra page and leave some feedback. I welcome your feedback as it helps me improve my reviews and lets me know someone is reading them, and hopefully appreciating them. On my Canberra page you can also select another block of my reviews to read - assuming you wish to, of course!


wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Jul 18, 2016

See the Magna Carta in Parliament House

The most notable document you will find in Parliament House is from a time when Australia was unknown to the rest of the world. It is one of four surviving originals of the 1297 Inspeximus issue of Magna Carta. The other surviving originals can be found in the National Archives, London, in the Guild Hall of the City of London and in the National Archives in Washington DC.

The original Magna Carta or Great Charter of 1215/16 was a message (albeit not entirely optional or of his own volition) from King John affirming that no one in society is above the law: not the King nor his subjects, not the government nor the governed.

Via the Magna Carta King John accepted that authority was subject to law derived from the community and as such the Magna Carta became a foundation stone of constitutional and parliamentary government.

John, as a feudal British king, held absolute power and occupiers of his vast estates, being tenants, held their land and this position in return for allegiance to the crown which, in turn, required them to provide military support, taxes, etc at the behest of the king.

King John, who for much of his reign was at war with France, abused and exploited his position with increasing demands for money and soldiers from his subjects. The barons started rebelling and by 1215 rebel barons outnumbered loyalists. The rebellious barons united, marched upon London, and captured the Tower of London on 17 May 1215.

In June 1215, the barons and the king met at Runnymede, near Windsor and just outside London, and agreed to terms which were recorded as a Charter of liberties, later (1216) known as Magna Carta. The barons pledged fealty to the king, and the king swore that he and his heirs would abide by the conditions of the Charter, ‘in all things and places forever’.

Within ten weeks of John broke his promises given in the Magna Carta and civil war resumed. Three amended (though broadly similar) versions of the Magna Carta were issued by John’s successors (John died in Oct 1216) in the 20 years following Runnymede.

This copy of the Magna Carta here in Parliament House, issued by King Edward I in 1297, was sent to the Robert de Glamorgan, Sheriff of Surrey to be proclaimed in the country court. Edward also had it written into English law where to this day it remains, albeit in a much reduced form. John’s original Charter had not offered the protection of law to his subjects. Over time Magna Carta came to be seen as a law of laws, and a measure of the legality of all other laws.

So fundamental are some of the provisions of the Magna Carta (e.g. Chapter 29, 1297 version, relating to personal freedom) that echoes thereof can be seen in the United States Constitution and the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

At some point this copy of the Magna Carta came into the possession of King’s School in Bruton, Somerset from which the Australian Government purchased it for GBP 12,500 in 1952, from which date it has remained the property of the Australian Parliament.

For those interested in such things this copy of the Magna Carta was valued at A$15 million in 2006 – a A$25 million write-down on Sotheby's 2002 valuation of $A40 million. Bargain it may be, but I understand it is not for sale.

On 12 October 1997 - the 700th anniversary of the sealing by King Edward I of the 1297 issue of Magna Carta the Magna Carta Monument was opened, adjacent to Old Parliament House, “as a commemoration of Freedom under the Law". This monument, while not stunning, is worth a visit – see my separate review - Magna Carta Place and Monument- which provides additional detail on the Magna Carta and its place in law.

Apologies for the quality of the image of the Magna Carta attached – subdued lighting and the protective display cabinet do not make for easy or quality photography. The second image attached is of the Magna Carta Monument located in the vicinity of Old Parliament House.

For details on entry to, opening hours etc of Parliament House see my seperate review - Parliament House (Interior)


Next Review - Parliamentary Triangle - South Side

wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Mar 14, 2016

Go and look at the flagpole

At 81metres high, the flagpole on New Parliament House is one of the world's largest stainless steel structures. The sheer size of it is not easily appreciated from a distance, but get up close and it becomes more obvious. Although security now precludes going to the top of the grassed roof of the building, you will still be able to get sufficiently close to appreciate it fully. [Update: See the note in comments below from VTer 'wabat' on limited access now being again possible.]

The flag on top may not look large, that is because of its height and the dimensions of the pole supporting it: the flags are actually about the size of a double-decker bus! Flags of differing fabric weights are used, depending on the wind conditions - if winds will be light, a gauzy flag is flown, if they are strong, a flag made from heavier fabric is used. The flagpole designers overcame the design problems of how to raise and lower the flags by consulting some of Australia's top yacht designers. There also is a small carriage on one of the sloping legs, to take maintenance workers up, should that be necessary.

tiabunna's Profile Photo
tiabunna
Mar 03, 2016

The ivory tower on the Hill?

The New Parliament House began with controversy, because of long arguments about where it should be sited. When the hill finally was agreed as the site for the New Parliament House, a contest led to the design of the current building complex, with the main building appearing to be built into the hill (actually the hill was entirely removed, then the roof grassed over).

The building complex consists of a large central area with grassed roof, an imposing facade, long curved walls on either side, with inter-connecting passages to separate office buildings on the outside. It cost what was considered a huge sum at the time, but that needs to be considered in the following context. Considered as a whole it is a very large building, additionally it is one of the very few buildings in Australia built with a design life of hundreds of years, so all materials and construction had to be first class.

The problem is that the large scale of the building and its layout means that Ministers can largely avoid contact with anyone should they wish. So the hurley-burley of the Old Parliament House no longer occurs and Parliament is the poorer for it. Maybe with time it will change, but having worked there briefly I have my doubts. If I sound negative, it is only about the workings of the building. In itself it is, indeed, a very impressive 'must see', of which Australia can be very proud and I do recommend a visit.

Join a free guided tour of the building (every 30 minutes 0900-1600), you will learn far more than could ever be presented here. The building is open 0900 -1700 daily except Christmas Day, there is a shop open the same hours as the building, and a licensed cafe open daily 0930 -1630.

Main photo New Parliament house from above (low elevation)
Second photo A high elevation view shows the building's form and the circular roads
Third photo Ground level view, with Old Parliament House in the foreground.

tiabunna's Profile Photo
tiabunna
Mar 02, 2016
 
 
Sponsored Listings

Hotels Near New Parliament House

Hotels
30 National Circuit, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, 2603, Australia
Show Prices
Hotels
National Circuit, Barton, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, 2600, Australia
Show Prices
Hotels
18 National Circuit, Barton, Canberra, 2600, Australia
Show Prices
Hotels
Cnr Canberra Ave and National Circuit, Canberra 2603, Australia
Show Prices
Hotels
42 Manuka Road, Hobart, 7150, Australia
Show Prices
Hotels
Cnr Canberra Ave. & Dominion Court, Forrest, Australian Capital Territory, 2603, Australia
Show Prices

The Queen in Parliament – well a sort of!

There are not many statues of Queen Elizabeth II around the world. If Wikipedia is to be believed - nine, and two of these are in Australia. One is in Brisbane and is rather unique in that it is the only statue in the world of the Queen holding a handbag. The other one is here in Parliament House or rather on a Terrace outside the main building (accessed from within the building).

I have to say I actually find it a bit odd, even wrong, when I see statues of living people as I normally associate statues as memorials to the dead. I suspect most people hold this view and hence the lack of statues of the reigning Queen compared to those of her predecessors.

Statue-wise, I like it and think it a rather fine piece of bronze work. It is the work of Australian Sculptor, John Dowie, and was unveiled by the Queen, herself, when she opened Parliament House on 9 May 1988.

On the face of it, it seems rather peculiar that this statue is stuck out on a terrace beside the café and has not been given pride of place in the foyer or some other central location within Parliament. A stark contract to the placement of a statue of George V in Old Parliament House.

Clearly, to me at least, this is a classic example of political correctness gone mad. Notwithstanding that the Queen is Head of State of Australia and a referendum a in 1999 confirmed the desire of Australians that she remain so her statue remains on the Terrace and as far as I can see it doesn’t even rate a mention on the Parliament House website.

Such is the paucity of official information about this statue that fork-lore and urban myth has suggested that the sculpture is, in fact, a reject from a UK sculptor who dumped it on Canberra and then committed suicide when he realised he had, apparently, made it with the left foot / leg forward instead of the right – a big no no!

The statue is located on the Queen's Terrace outside the café and is certainly worthy a look on your visit to Parliament House.

Details on Parliament House opening hours and how to get there can be found on my Parliament House (Interior) review. As noted there, the entrance to Parliament House is free of charge.


Next Review - Parliamentary Triangle - South Side

wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Dec 22, 2014

The Great Hall Tapestry - Parliament House

When you enter the Great Hall at Parliament House your eyes will be immediately drawn, hopefully not in the “Oh my god, what’s that" sort of way, to the massive tapestry covering most of the back wall of the Hall.

The tapestry measuring some 20m by 9m and thus one of the largest in the world is based on a painting by renowned Australian artist Arthur Boyd.

Boyd’s painting (my picture 5) is on permanent display upstairs just before you come to the House of Representative entrance.

Boyd’s painting and the resultant tapestry depicts a dense forest of eucalypts in the Shoalhaven River valley, in south-eastern New South Wales of the type which features in many of Boyd’s works.

The architectural vision for the Great Hall is outlined on the Parliament house website as being:

“that it would convey a sense of the Australian land, emphasising the importance of the physical environment in shaping Australian values. Boyd’s subject matter complements the native timbers used throughout the Hall. His design also emphasises the immensity of the landscape, with the horizon obscured and the trees continuing both above and below the canvas, and to each side. The tapestry surrounds the southern doorway of the Great Hall, giving people passing beneath a sense of moving through the landscape.”

While I believe this vision has been captured and I understand the concept of passing through the landscape to the southern doorway I cannot help believing that it would have been much better to have covered the doors of the southern exit with tapestry too. Every time I look at the tapestry my eye is distracted and drawn to the “missing bit”.

Notwithstanding my concern the Great Hall, also known as the room of the land, certainly conveys a sense of how the physical environment has shaped Australia.

The Tapestry was woven in four pieces in Melbourne and took the equivalent of 14 full time weavers two years to complete. The likeness with the original painting is striking though there is one significant if not glaringly obvious difference. When the tapestry was being woven Haley’s comet was visible from Australia and if you look carefully you will see it has been depicted in the final tapestry. Can you spot the comet and the cockatoo amongst all the trees?

Entry to Parliament House is free.

Rather then repeat all the opening hours and other practical details associated with visiting Parliament House please refer to my separate tip where all this detail is provided. Alternatively visit the Parliament House website as provided below.


Next Review - Parliamentary Triangle - South Side

wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Dec 22, 2014

Parliament House (Interior)

Once you have had a look around outside Parliament House (and I recommend you do that before going inside) go inside noting that you must go through airport style security so please, dear readers, no bombs, guns, nail files and the like☺).

Once you have passed through security you will immediately be in the very grand entrance hall/foyer (picture 1) where you can pick up a free map/ brochure. Free guided tours leave from the information desk here so just ask when the next one leaves. I highly recommend you take one. After the 45mins tour (30 mins if Parliament is sitting) you can return to see things that have particularly taken your fancy.

While 90% of materials used in the Parliament building are Australian sourced much of the marble you see in the foyer is from overseas – gifted by Belgium, Portugal and Italy. Look our for fossils in the marble.

Anyone who has been out in the Australian bush or seen pictures of it will not fail to notice how the blue/green coloured marble columns resemble Australia’s native blue gum trees. Life your head and admire the wonderful inlaid woodwork right around the foyer.

Prior to going upstairs to the main Parliament area, have a look in the Great Hall which is accessed from the back of the foyer. You can also look down into the Great Hall from the next level up. This hall is used for state banquets and indeed can be hired out by anyone – for a rather hefty fee. It was in this hall that Queen Elizabeth II opened this building on 9 May 1988. The most notable feature in the Great Hall is a quite remarkable tapestry covering most of the back wall (why it wasn’t extended to cover the back doors, beggars belief). See my separate review on the Great Wall Tapestry.

When you go upstairs, taking the stairs behind the information desk, turn right at the top. Between here and the entrance to the house of Representatives ( equivalent to the British house of Commons and the lower house in other Parliaments) you will pass by various works of art, including that upon which the tapestry in the Great Hall, is based. This display in this area varies from time to time.

At the end of this area and to the left you can enter the House of Representatives (picture 2), Australia’s lower house of Parliament and the one in which the Prime Minister (currently Tony Abbott) sits. If parliament is sitting you can watch from the visitors gallery (don’t come expecting a high quality of debate!) The layout, colour, and accouterments of this house will be familiar to anyone who has visited or seen pictures of the House of Commons in Westminster, London though I hasten to add the lighter green colour is not due to fading induced by the hot Australian sun. It, and the lighter red in the Senate (upper house), are however representative of a sunburnt Australia. You will also note that the chambers are also somewhat more roomy than the respective Chambers in Westminster.

Having seen enough of the House of Representative you should at this point take the lift up to the roof. Up here you can have a stroll on the lawns that cover Parliament - as far as I know, a unique experience. Great views from here as well. If its cold and or windy bring a jacket!

Having returned from your sojourn on the roof, across the lobby from the House of Representative is the Senate (picture 3), which I find a nicer looking chamber and well worth a visit. Having said that, apart from a few of our better-known senators, most of the senators (all elected, albeit by a most peculiar type of proportional representation) will be unknown to even most Australians.

As you cross to the Senate do stop to have a look at the portraits in this area. Here you will find portraits of Queen Elizabeth II - Queen and Head of State of Australia; the Governor-General – the Queens representative in Australia (appointed by the Queen on the advice of the Prime Minister); all of Australia’s past Prime Ministers though I did notice last week (mid September 2013) that recent Prime Ministers Gillard (Australia’s first and only female Prime Minister) and Rudd have not yet been added to the collection.

In the centre of this area, if you look down to the lower level, you will see a water feature (picture 4). While this is reasonably aesthetically appealing that is not its purpose. Members of Parliament gather in this area and the purpose of the noisy water feature is to drown out their conversations from prying press members and nosy members of the public who would otherwise be able to listen in from above. Look up and through the glass roof you will see the rooftop flagpole (picture 5).

Having visited the Senate, continuing on in a clockwise direction you will enter into a “parliamentary history” museum area. The most notable document you will find here is one of four surviving originals of the 1297 Inspeximus issue of Magna Carta. The other surviving originals can be found in the National Archives, London, in the Guild Hall of the City of London and in the National Archives in Washington DC. I have prepared a separate review on the Magna Carta.

When you are finished here, do not be tempted to take the stairs down to the lower level exit but, rather, continue on this level to the front of the building for an amazing view towards Old Parliament House, Anzac Parade, the Australian War Memorial and Mt Ainslie (see picture on my Parliament House (Exterior) review. Next up you will come to the Queens Terrace - pop out on the Terrance to see a statue of Queen Elizabeth II. Here you will also find a reasonable café – the Queen’s Terrace Café’ if feeling peckish.

Again, carrying on in a clockwise direction and before going back down the stairs you ascended at the beginning of your tour you will come across a post office. Stamps on letters, post cards, etc posted from here will be cancelled with a Parliament House stamp – evidence to your friends that you were here or a nice cheap souvenir for yourself.

Talking about souvenirs, having descended the stairs you can visit a small souvenir / gift shop just before you exit the building.

While visitors have access to about 20% of Australia’s Parliament (much higher than most countries) if you are lucky enough to be in town when special openings are held you can see lots more and indeed access the Prime Minister’s office. If you miss out on the extended tour, as most people will, do pop down the road to Old Parliament House (which closed when this one opened in 1988). There you can visit the former Prime Minister’s Office, Cabinet Room and much, much, more. Highly recommended.

Opening hours:

9.00am – 5.00pm on non-sitting days 9:00am on Monday and Tuesday and from 8:30am on Wednesday and Thursday to House rise on sitting days.

Check web site more details including access to Question Time.

Entrance fee: free

Getting there:

By Car - Free, though timed, car-parking is available under the building – follow the signs. Don’t get lost on the roundabouts!
By public transport – ACTION Bus.
On foot - a reasonably short walk from the lake and Old Parliament House.


Next Review - Parliamentary Triangle - South Side

wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Dec 22, 2014

New Parliament House (Exterior)

For me this is one of the most architecturally interesting and satisfying buildings not only in Australia but in the world and certainly a major contrast to the previous building – Old Parliament House - which was only ever intended to be a temporary home for the Australian Parliament, albeit a temporary home that lasted 61 years. It would be quite unfair to compare the two buildings.

New Parliament House was opened on 9 May 1988 by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and is located “atop” Capital Hill. The building axis runs from North to East and South to West, and is situated perfectly in line with Old Parliament House, the Australian War Memorial and Mt. Ainslie on Burley Griffin’s imaginary line between Mount Ainslie and Mount Bimberi in the distant Brindabellas. I strongly recommend that you go up to the top of Mt Ainslie take in this quite stunning alignment though you also get a good view towards Mt Ainlslie from within Parliament House - see my last photo attached.

To say Parliament House is located “atop” Capital Hill is not quite true. It is more accurate to say it is located within Capital Hill.

Australia’s ensemble of politicians in the 1970s and 1980s were a much more modest collection than the current self-serving, opinionated, grandstanding suite of mediocrity (and I’m being kind). I say this because it was decided that as Parliament was elected to serve to people and not the other way round, it would send the wrong message by building a parliament on top of this hill lauding over the rest of Canberra. Consequentially the hill was removed, Parliament built and the hill replaced back on top of it. Being very conscious of VT's policy regarding political comment I hasten to add that my descriptions of politicians above apply equally to all sides of politics in both eras. One can imagine if the same building was constructed today the hill would be raised prior to commencement of work!

The building was designed by New York based architects Mitchell/Giurgola who won a design competition which attracted 329 entries from 28 countries.

Before going into the building and while admiring the outside of the building, which from above is in the shape of two boomerangs, do pay special attention to the following:

The Forecourt Mosaic – Picture 2 - located about 50 metres back from the main entrance. This mosaic represents a Possum and Wallaby Dreaming and is made up of around 90,000 hand-cut granite tiles of seven different colours. It is based on a Central Desert dot-style painting by Nelson Jagamara, a leading Aboriginal artist from the Papunya community of the Northern Territory. While it is perfectly acceptable to walk on the mosaic it is not acceptable to rest your camera tripod there-on!

The roof – Access to the roof is now (for security reasons) only via a lift inside the building. As I indicated earlier Parliament is built into the hill and as a result has a grass roof with rather nicely manicured lawns. While you are welcome to walk on the grass your dogs are not. Recalling that you can walk over both houses of parliament imagine the indignity (and your amusement) if your dog were to lift its leg, or worse, as the honourable members debated directly below!

The Flagpole and Flag - when you access the roof you can get up close to the 81-metre high stainless steel flagpole and its 12.8 x 6.4 metres flag (equates to a double decker bus). Do have a look up before you visit the roof – you can see it from lots of locations in Canberra.

Australian Coat of Arms - Picture 3 - Above the main entrance door.

The building is one of Canberra most visited attractions with about 1 million visits each year. Despite this, I have been there numerous times and never had a feeling that the place was overcrowded.

Opening hours-

Outside of building - 24hrs Daily though you can only access the roof during building opening hours

9.00am – 5.00pm on non-sitting days 9:00am on Monday and Tuesday and from 8:30am on Wednesday and Thursday to House rise on sitting days.

Check web site more details including access to Question Time.

Entrance Fee- Free

Getting there -

By Car - Free, though timed, carparking is available under the building – follow the signs. Don’t get lost on the roundabouts!
By public transport – ACTION Bus.
On foot - a reasonably short walk from the lake and Old Parliament House.


Next Review - Parliamentary Triangle - South Side

wabat's Profile Photo
wabat
Dec 22, 2014

Top 5 Canberra Writers

wabat's Profile Photo

wabat

"Wonderful, immoral, tempting and terribly ........"
View Member
balhannah's Profile Photo

balhannah

"CANBERRA - Aboriginal for "MEETING PLACE""
View Member
tiabunna's Profile Photo

tiabunna

"The Bush Capital..or..a good sheep paddock wasted?"
View Member
iandsmith's Profile Photo

iandsmith

"A Capital Idea"
View Member
fachd's Profile Photo

fachd

"Canberra Our Home"
View Member
 
 

The Magna Carta Museum

There is Magna Carta Museum inside the Parliament House of Canberra.
In 1952 the Australian Government was able to purchase one of the very few still existing original 1297 copies of the Magna Carta for just £12,500 from King's School, Bruton, England.
This copy is now on display in the Members' Hall of Parliament House, Canberra and there you will also be able to learn about the mystery of it's appearance in 1936 in a Sommerset School and how it was possible to buy it for just 12500 GBP, while the Magna Carta is now worth 12.000.000 AUS$ or even more ! You will also learn about the preservation work that is done by the scientists.

globetrott's Profile Photo
globetrott
Nov 03, 2014

take a guided tour of the Parliament

This is what you see when you take a guided tour through the new Parliament of Camberra: you will see the most sensitive places of this building, the big halls for assemblies and you will learn a lot about this place and the history of the Country.
There are various areas inside the building, where you can walk on your own but of course when you want to see the parliament-hall itself you need a guide and you have to book a guided tour. Guided tour numbers are limited and are provided on a first-come first-served Basis, so be there ahead of time, reserve a ticket and explore the free part of the building while waiting for the tour !
-----------------------------------------------------
Public tours within Parliament House are free of charge !
and they take place daily at 10.00am, 1.00pm & 3.00pm

globetrott's Profile Photo
globetrott
Nov 02, 2014

INside the parliament

There are endless corridors, a ´cafe and Restaurant and even a souvenirshop inside the parliament and there are some terraces and nice places to relax a bit after the guided tour of the buildings. You will even meet Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II up there as a Monument in the middle of a place on top of the parliament-house, like in my main Picture.
Calculate at least 2-3 hours for this building when you intend to go on a guided tour as well (and that is also the only way to walk through the official halls and rooms of the parliament)

globetrott's Profile Photo
globetrott
Nov 02, 2014

the new parliament

Yes, I have been there and it was impressive and it was worth to take a guided tour of the building but would I do it again ? I dont think so ! It is very modern, almost "steril" and it is not really the kind of sight that I came to and have payed a lot of Money in order to get to Australia.
I made some photos and was glad that they had a great Aircondition inside the building that was partly built into the ground in quite a clever way.

globetrott's Profile Photo
globetrott
Nov 02, 2014

Things to Do Near New Parliament House

Things to Do

National Capital Exhibition

Having visited the Canberra and Region Visitors Centre next door, a great place to get your bearings and learn something of the story of the national capital through a combination of audio-visual...
View More
Things to Do

National Gallery of Australia

The National Gallery of Australia, contains a very varied collection of work ranging from art as in pictures to fabric, jewellery, sculpture, etc. Its collection is divided into a number of geographic...
View More
Things to Do

National Portrait Gallery

The latest addition to the Parliamentary prescient and located next to the High Count of Australia and the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery was opened in 2008. In contrast to the High...
View More
Things to Do

High Court of Australia

Two buildings in Canberra rank high in the stakes for being the most hideous looking buildings in Australia – both these buildings are beside each other. One is the High Court of Australia and the...
View More
Things to Do

Questacon

Questacon, Australia’s National Science and Technology centre, is one of Canberra’s top attractions, much loved by children in particular though it offers plenty to stimulate the curiosity and...
View More
Things to Do

St John the Baptist Anglican Church

See my separate (related) tips for: St John the Baptist Church includes history St John the Baptist Church – Interior St John’s Schoolhouse – Canberra’s first school I have to admit to having a...
View More

Getting to New Parliament House

Address

Capital Hill

Hours

  • Sunday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Monday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Tuesday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Wednesday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Thursday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Friday 09:00 to 17:00
  • Saturday 09:00 to 17:00

Map