When the Summer months come to a close and the overnight temperatures start to plummet, Canberra prepares itself for the next chilly season ahead. Autumn in particular is a shock for many, as the shorts and thongs get packed away and are replaced with fleecy trackies and worn-in ugg boots - the same combination we couldn't wait to pack away last Spring. Despite the sudden change in temperature, the Capital City is a beautiful place to be in Autumn, with the leaves on the trees turning a range of burnt orange and the cool mornings warming up into glorious Autumn days.
Each morning, thousands of Canberra locals and visitors pound the pavements around Lake Burley Griffin to get in some early morning exercise and experience the first light of a new day. The most popular fashion accessory on the walking paths at this time of year is the humble takeaway coffee cup. People walk with them, ride with them or stop to pick up one at the end of their walk. So where can you buy a takeaway coffee around Lake Burley Griffin? Check out the following 12 coffee outlets around the lake this Autumn, or at any time of the year...
Grab a takeaway coffee from Elixir kiosk, just in front of the International Flag Display
1/ Elixir would have to be the most popular takeaway coffee venue around Lake Burley Griffin, located right on the water's edge in front of the International Flag Display. It was previously called "Doms" with gelatos and coffee on offer, however in 2016 new owners arrived and they specialise mainly in takeaway coffees. No website is available. See Google Map here. Open at 7:30am - 8am, 7 days a week (at the time of writing).
2/ Portrait Cafe is located to the side of the National Portrait Gallery and is just a short walk up from the lake in the Parliamentary Triangle. It is a popular cafe with walkers, bike riders, visitors and local gallery workers. The Portrait Cafe has outside seating along a verandah if you feel like a rest, before continuing on. See Google Map here. Open at 9am, 7 days a week (at the time of writing).
3/ The Street Cafe, outside The National Gallery of Australia, is located across the road from the Portrait Cafe above. After buying a takeaway coffee from the Street Cafe, why not sit nearby in the Sculpture Garden or wander through it on the way back to the lake. See Google Map here. Open at 8am weekdays and 10am weekends (at the time of writing).
The popular Street Cafe outside the National Gallery of Australia
4/ The Kingston Foreshore is a modern stretch of restaurants, cafes and gastropubs at the Eastern end of Lake Burley Griffin. As the foreshore is part of the Eastern Loop cycling and walking path, local coffee takeaway outlets do a roaring trade with people going by each weekend. Popular outlets include Remedy, 38 Espresso, Paleo Perfection, Local Press and 7th & Bake Patisserie Cafe. See Google Map here. Most outlets generally open between 7:30am - 8am (at the time of writing).
5/ Burley Grind is a coffee cart located between the National Carillon and Boundless Playground in Kings Park. The cart is only open on weekends and is is an ideal spot to stop and enjoy a coffee with a view. Burley Grind also has a range of light food options to enjoy with your coffee, if you choose to rest for awhile. See Google map here. Open at 8am weekends (at the time of writing).
Burley Grind, with chairs and tables to rest with a view
6/ The Deck at Regatta Point is a cafe and function venue overlooking Lake Burley Griffin, next to the Canberra Region Visitors Centre. The Deck has one of the best views in Canberra and also has a takeaway coffee window so people can order their takeaways and pick them up quickly. Just behind the cafe is the sprawling and scenic 34 hectare Commonwealth Park to take your coffee afterwards, or continue walking around the lake. See Google Map here. Open at 9am, 7 days a week (at the time of writing).
7/ The New Acton Precinct is a cafe and restaurant district just a short walk over a pedestrian bridge from Acton Wharf. This architecturally stunning precinct, with the award-winning Nishi Building towering overhead, has many popular cafes including Mocan and Green Grout, which is the closest takeaway coffee outlet to the bridge. Twenty One Cafe and Groceries, a few doors up, is also is popular with walkers and nearby hotel guests. See Google Map here. Mocan and Green Grout is open at 7am, Monday to Saturday and 8am on Sundays (at the time of writing).
Walk over the bridge to the NewActon takeaway coffee outlets
8/ The Museum Cafe is located further around the lake, to the side of the National Museum of Australia. This scenic cafe overlooking the lake sells takeaway coffees and they also have a range of sweet treats and lunch items you can also takeaway. The Museum and Museum Cafe are open every day of the year except for Christmas Day. See Google Map here.Open at 9am, 7 days a week (at the time of writing).
9/ Ivy and the Fox cafe is located in the grounds of the Australian National University, just a short walk up from the lake. The cafe is located inside the grand Old Canberra House and is a leafy spot to stop and pick up a takeaway coffee, or stay for awhile and enjoy the grounds. Ivy and the Fox are occasionally closed when they have a wedding function, so check their website first before you visit. See Google Map here. Open at 8am weekdays and 8:30am weekends (at the time of writing).
10/ Yarralumla Gallery and Oaks Brasserie is located inside Weston Park - a peninsula that juts out into Lake Burley Griffin. If you are walking the Western Loop around Lake Burley Griffin, then the Yarralumla Gallery and Oaks Brasserie is located just next to the path, however if you are driving into the park to start your walk, take the first left to the cafe and plant nursery. See Google Map here. Open at 10am weekdays and 8:30am weekends, depending on the weather (at the time of writing).
The leafy and quaint Yarralumla Gallery and Oaks Brasserie, Weston Park
11/ Snapper on the Lake fish and chip outlet is located on the ground floor of the Southern Cross Yacht Club, overlooking Lake Burley Griffin. Snapper sells their own blend of the locally-owned Lonsdale Street Roasters coffee - as well as tasty fish and chips! See Google Map here. Open at 11am weekdays and 8am weekends (at the time of writing).
12/ Bookplate cafe is located inside the National Library of Australia, however you can also enter from the terrace to the right of the building. They offer takeaway coffee as well as cakes and light meals. Bookplate Cafe has an extensive outside dining area on the terrace to sit with your coffee and enjoy the view, or continue on with your walk. See Google Map here. Open at 7:30am weekdays and 9am weekends (at the time of writing).
With 12 takeaway coffee outlets to enjoy around Lake Burley Griffin, walkers can tick off a different one each weekend and take 3 months, or the whole of Autumn, to get back to the start again. But why finish there? Why not start the list again in Winter and Spring and warm up with a hot, delicous coffee on every brisk morning you go for a walk.
Exercising through the seasons - Canberra style!
Takeaway coffees and views at the Bookplate cafe, the National Library
Number 1 Elixir is extremely popular but not just for take away coffee, there are tables and chairs for people to sit so effectively it is like a cafe. My issue is they rely solely on disposable cups, plates and cutlery and not a recycling bin in sight - so much landfill waste!!!!! When I asked the person who worked there about recycling bins she said it was up to the government. I would think that any business should critically reflect on their practice and impact on the environment and make the phone call to have a recycling bin delivered to the service for free - how hard is it?????!!!!!!!