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Canberra and Region Heritage Festival 2016

Home > Canberra > Community Events | Exhibitions | Festivals
by Sue W (subscribe)
New to Canberra, I love exploring this city and the secrets that it holds with my family.
Event: -
Spooky ghost tours & World War 1 trenches
The 35th annual Canberra and Region Heritage Festival is a celebration of the rich and varied history in Canberra and the surrounding region. Running between 2nd-18th April, the theme of this years festival is "Discovery and Rediscoveries" - signifying Canberra's ever-evolving history and new findings made each year. There will be events held in each corner of the region and over the border into Queanbeyan, Goulburn, Cooma and Gundaroo. With a variety of exhibitions, open days, garden talks, train rides and night time spooky history tours planned, there is something to suit everyone's interests - if you dare!

heritage festival, canberra, 2016, parliament house, history, tours, talks, exhibitions,
Source: Canberra and Region Heritage Festival website

With indigenous history going back thousands of years, this whole region has a fascinating and culturally significant past. From the 19th century onwards, there are also remnants of the first colonial settlers who moved to the area and then later, wartime events which have left their mark. If you enjoy local history, then involve yourself in this celebration and learn more about what makes this area so fascinating for historians.

There are over 100 events organised at the time of writing, with more to come. If you enjoy hearing about Canberra's spooky and haunting past, why not join local historian Tim the Yowie Man on his Weird Canberra Tour on April 1st. This three hour experience will visit sites of crimes, hauntings and murder in Australia's capital. Hear tales about the poltergeist that regularly wreaks havoc in the War Memorial, find out about missing coffins in Lake Burley Griffin and learn why some security guards refuse to work at Old Parliament House. Meet Tim the Yowie Man in Braddon at 8pm to begin the tour, finishing at 11pm. See here for more details and how to book.

tim the yowie man, canberra, ACT, heritage festival, 2016, ACT, events,
Source: Canberra and Region Heritage Festival website

The spooky tours continue across the border in Queanbeyan on April 16th with Ghost Train of Limestone Plains. Local legend tells of an old train that runs the rails of this region late at night, but where it comes from and where it goes, no one knows. Hear the stories and then board a train into the unknown before enjoying a light supper, beverages and more surprises! The cost is $110, see the Heritage Festival website for more details and how to book.

A popular event will be the Feel the Heritage Tours at Parliament House, with a behind the scenes look at this unique building. Tours will be held each day of the festival and the cost is $25. Tours are held at 10am, 12pm and 3pm, lasting for one hour. It is important to arrive early and take photo ID for security purposes. Book your tickets here for this opportunity to learn more about Canberra and Australia's most iconic building.

parliament house, canberra, heritage week 2015, ACT, events, history, tours,
Learn more about this iconic building

Another event held for Heritage Week will be the Interactive Walking Tour of WW1 Training Trenches on April 2nd, held at the Jerrabomberra Wetlands in Fyshwick. Join history writer Mark Butz for a tour of the recently discovered Jerrabomberra Wetlands World War I training trenches, and he will explain the history and significance of the area. Also learn about the history of Jerrabomberra Wetlands and Lake Burley Griffin before lunch at the Learning Centre. Tickets cost $35, see here for details.

world war two trench, jerrabomba wetlands, heritage festival, canberra, ACT, 2016,
Source: Canberra and Region Heritage Festival website

Take the opportunity to join a National Carillon Tour and learn more about the bells that chime every quarter of an hour over Lake Burley Griffin. Held on April 3rd, 13th, 17th and 20th, join the tour and talk to one of the dedicated team of carillonists who play this unique instrument. The free tours are at 11.30am-12.15 and 1.30-2.15pm. Bring a picnic and enjoy a concert from 12.30-1.20pm. Although this is a free tour, bookings are essential, see the Heritage Festival website for details.

national carillon, concerts, tours, heritage week, canberra, 2016, ACT,
Take a tour at the top of this iconic landmark, with 55 bronze bells at the top.

If you see hundreds of period-dressed ladies and gentleman making their way along Lake Burley Griffin to historic Albert Hall, rest assured it is also part of the Jane Austen Festival (April 14th - 17th) which is another highlight of the 2016 Canberra and Region Heritage Festival. This festival is for serious Jane Austen fans, with elaborate Balls and period activities held over the three days.

This is just a taste of what is planned for the 35th Canberra and Region Heritage Festival for 2016. Why not scroll through the Canberra and Region Heritage Festival 2016 Event List and find an event near you. Meet like-minded people and learn something new about the city and region that we live in. With such a depth of history in our own backyard, it will be a fascinating festival for all to enjoy.

jane austen festival, 2016, canberra and region heritage festival, 2016, canberra, ACT,
Source: Canberra and Region Heritage Festival website

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Why? Learn more and have fun in the surrounding region
When: See websites for individual details
Phone: 13 22 81 or contact the organisation - phone numbers provided on heritage festival website
Where: All over the ACT and surrounding NSW historical towns
Cost: Free & cost
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