National Gallery of Australia
The nation’s extraordinary art collection is showcased in a suitably huge purpose-built gallery within the parliamentary precinct. Almost every big name you could think of from the world of Australian and international art, past and present, is represented. Famous works include one of Monet’s Waterlilies, several of Sidney Nolan’s Ned Kelly paintings, Salvador Dali’s Lobster Telephone, an Andy Warhol Elvis print and a triptych by Francis Bacon.
Australian Parliament House
Opened in 1988, Australia’s national parliament building is a graceful and deeply symbolic piece of architecture. The building itself is embedded in the Australian soil, covered with a turf roof and topped by a spindly but soaring 81m-high flagpole. The same detailed thought has been applied to the interior and there’s plenty to see inside, whether the politicians are haranguing each other in the chambers or not.
Museum of Australian Democracy
The seat of government from 1927 to 1988, this elegantly proportioned building offers visitors a taste of the political past. Displays cover Australian prime ministers, the roots of democracy and the history of local protest movements.
You can also visit the old Senate and House of Representative chambers, the parliamentary library and the prime minister’s office. Kids will love the Play Up area including dress ups and a play room based on the UN’s Right to Shelter, while those with a thing for bling will enjoy the replica crown jewels.
This kid-friendly science centre has educational and fun interactive exhibits. Explore the physics of sport, athletics and fun parks; cause tsunamis; and take shelter from cyclones and earthquakes. Exciting science shows, presentations and puppet shows are all included.