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The Australian Capital Territory (ACT) is the smallest entity in Australia, only measuring 2,366 square kilometres. Although many travellers avoid the area, if on purpose or not, there are some areas of interest. Half of the territory is protected as national park or reserve and is a mix of mountain ranges and hills covered in bushland, so plenty to keep hikers, campers and nature-lovers busy for a few days. And of course there is also Canberra, the capital city of Australia to visit, with many interesting museums and Parliament house to visit.
The ACT is a landlocked enclave in New South Wales, conceived during the federation conventions of the late 1800s as neutral location for a new National Capital.
The ACT's only city is Canberra.
Summer in Australia is much about Outdoor Music Festivals. With single day events, camping festivals out of town and week long festivals, there is definately a music festival to suit all tastes. Further reading in Outdoor Music Festivals in ACT.
ACT's summermonths are from November to March, when average daytime temperatures are between 25 and 28 degrees Celsius, sometimes rising to over 35 degrees. Nights are relatively cool, averaging around 10 to 14 degrees Celsius. During the wintermonths of June to August nights are only around zero on average, rising to 10-12 degrees during the day.
Rainfall is fairly even throughout the year, but usually is a little less than average during winter with the highest rainfall in October and November.
Canberra International Airport is served by Qantas and Virgin Australia. Destinations include Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide. Brindabella Airlines serves Albury Wodonga and Newcastle. There are no regularly scheduled international flights.
The southern services of Xplorer (CountryLink) provide sercives between Sydney and ACT/Canberra. Train services to Melbourne are provided by way of a CountryLink bus service which connects with a rail service between Sydney and Melbourne in Yass, about one hour's drive from Canberra.
Well maintained roads lead into ACT from New South Wales and there are easy connections to Sydney and Melbourne.
From Sydney: Travel along the Hume Highway and turn off at the Federal Highway near Goulbourn. Travel time is roughly 3 hours.
From Melbourne: Take the Hume Highway and turn off at the Barton Highway at Yass. Travel time is roughly 7 hours.
Greyhound has services to Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney.
ACTION buses run all across Canberra. Bus timetables can be collected from the offices in the bus interchanges in Civic (city), Woden, Tuggeranong, and Belconnen. Alternatively, they are all available on the ACTION website. The best option for travellers would be to purchase a Travel Ten card from a Canberra Newsagent. The ticket system is based on time - each ticket is valid for 90 consecutive minutes of travel, regardless of where you travel in the network.
The bus to the Airport is not operated by Action. Check the Canberra International Airport website for more information on this.
If you want to make the most of Canberra, consider buses or hiring a car as the landmarks are too spread out for walking to be a viable option.
There are plenty of companies you could choose to hire a car from, including Avis, Budget, Europcar, Hertz and Thrifty. Car hire is often not available to drivers under 25, or if it is, it's more expensive for younger drivers.
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