Lonely Planet has a great guide for the things to see and do in Australia’s Capital – Canberra.
Here’s an excerpt:
Some capital cities almost define the country they represent. What would France be without Paris, Italy without its Eternal City or England without London?
Canberra, on the other hand, is so obscure many overseas visitors have never heard of it. The unloved offspring of a disagreement between Sydney and Melbourne is a meticulously designed made-to-order metropolis that suffers from some of the same flaws that other purpose-built capitals possess: an over-supply of bureaucrats and students, and a slight under-supply of urban chic.
But a closer look at the capital reveals that Canberra’s quirks are, in fact, a fitting testament to Australia’s history and culture. Unlike Washington, DC, with its imposing neo-classical edifices, Canberra’s public buildings are all understated modernism. Parliament House is built under a hill, which perhaps hints at Australians’ distaste for political pomp and circumstance, while Canberra’s connection to the striking natural surrounds has lent it the moniker of Bush Capital.