Gold Creek Village is a popular Canberra attraction for families and people of all ages. 12kms north of Canberra's CBD, this village is a collection of quaint Cafes, restaurants, galleries, gift shops, privately run museums and tourist attractions.
As you drive in, you can't help but notice the lifelike dinosaur statues outside the National Dinosaur Museum. With brontosaurus on the side of the road, a T-Rex on the roof and dozens of others at the entranceway as you walk in, it is guaranteed to make everyone in your car "ooh" and "aah" as you drive in.
You can spend a lot of time out the front of the Museum admiring all the replicas as well as inside the shop, which sells a huge variety of toys, gemstones and fossil displays. The Museum itself upstairs isn't large, however it is jam-packed full of information and displays guaranteed to please dinosaur-loving kids. They have been updating the Museum of late with an outside deck and more dinosaurs, to turn it into a more modern facility.
Across the road is an English pub called the George Harcourt Inn. Popular with locals, it has a large beer garden, live music and huge meals served on wooden chopping boards.
Inside is cosy with all the attributes of an English pub with low ceilings, wood panelling and English food items on the menu (bangers and mash, Guinness pot pie and Ploughman's Lunch to name a few).
When you drive up further you find Cockington Green, which is a model village of meticulously crafted miniature buildings set in landscaped gardens. Not just for the kids, the model village has some amusing scenarios incorporated into the village, to the delight of the adults.
The children love pressing the buttons in the International display area to turn on the model trains and watch them move around the tracks.
The highlight for our daughter Miss Four, was the real miniature steam train that children and adults can ride on around a part of the gardens. Costing $3, the train runs between 10am and 4:45pm continuously in busy periods or every 45 minutes at other times.
If you love birds there is the Canberra Walk-In Aviary. When you walk in the owners provide you with a bowl of fruit and a plate of worms to feed the birds with. The range of bird varieties is astounding, as you wander through under the netting with birds flying all around you. Every once and awhile they turn on the sprinklers which makes the birds all fly at once, literally just above your head!
There is also the Canberra Reptile Zoo, a small zoo where staff members walk around with crocodiles, snakes and other reptiles for you to touch and ask questions about. With displays of over 50 different reptile species, kids love getting up so close to the action.
Gold Creek Markets also runs on the 3rd Sunday of the month from 10am to 3pm.
Gold Creek village is also known as Ginninderra Village. The current location of Gold Creek used to be a village established in the late 1800's with a schoolhouse, police station, church, blacksmith, pub and other community buildings which serviced the local community until the early 1960's. Some of the original buildings still remain today, used as quaint cafes and shops.