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Top 25 Things to do For Kids in Canberra's North

Home > Canberra > Fun for Children | Family | Rainy Day | School Holiday Activities | School Holidays | Lists
by Sue W (subscribe)
Lover of exploring, family, food and fun!
Published June 15th 2018
More ideas for this weekend, or the next school holidays
Each school holidays, parents and carers are looking for fun things to do with the kids - preferably close to home or where they are staying. Particularly if you have smaller kids, it is much easier to spend the morning somewhere near to home, just in case you need to duck home quickly for a change of clothes, naptime or if everyone is getting a little tired and cranky!

After writing about all the fun things there are to do for kids in Canberra's South, this list below focuses on all the activities there are to do are in Canberra's northern suburbs - and there are many! Scroll down this list and see which ones you have been to before - or want to check out this weekend or the next school holidays. All of them are guaranteed to put a smile on their faces, a mile wide!

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Run through the forests at the National Arboretum. Image: National Arboretum Facebook


1/ The National Arboretum is located north west of the city and has one of the best playgrounds - if not the best playground in Canberra - Pod Playground. Kids climb through a series of net tunnels to wooden pods that are suspended high up in the air, before sliding down a long twisty slide at the end. There is also a toddler area, café, views over the city, gardens, the National Bonsai and Penjing Collection, a scenic BBQ area, lookouts, walks and school holiday activities. See here for details.

2/ Telstra Tower, located in Acton, is a 195 metre tall tower that sits on top of Black Mountain and can be seen from all around the city. There is a small entry fee to get in and then kids will enjoy the lift ride up and looking at the city from all angles - particularly from the outdoor viewing platforms - just hang onto your hat! See here for details.

3/ Big Splash Waterpark, located in Macquarie, is only open in the warmer months but it is one of the most popular attractions for families on the north side of Canberra. There are thrill-seeking waterslides and also a toddler area with splash park for the littlies. See here for details.

4/ The Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) is located in Bruce and has a wide range of school holiday sports programs for all ages. They also have family tours, which includes time in Sportex interactive sports exhibit. See here for details.

5/ Club Blue (CISAC) swimming pool is also located in Bruce and has a popular indoor water slide into the pool all year around. There is also an AquaCastle in the school holidays and a variety of pools and toddler areas. See here for details.

6/ Belconnen Westfield Shopping Centre is located in Belconnen Town Centre and has a range of school holiday craft activities, iPlay amusement arcade, Hoyts movie cinema, two toddler play areas, Build-A-Bear Workshop and a host of family friendly eateries. See here for details.

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Get a strike at iPlay, Belconnen Westfield shopping centre!


7/ Belconnen Arts Centre is located diagonally opposite the Westfield, on the shores of Lake Ginninderra. This art centre has kid's art and dance workshops throughout the term and school holidays. Get your hands messy and try a wide range of art forms - for all ages! See here for details.

8/ Emu Bank Skate Park, by Lake Ginninderra, is a popular skate park for kids with their skateboards and scooters each afternoon, weekend and school holidays. Try out new tricks, learn some skills and make new friends. See here for details of the Canberra Skateboarding Association.

9/ Zone 3 Laser Tag is also located in Belconnen, for kids aged 6 and over. Players wear computerised vests and handheld "phasers" and try and zap their opponents. It is particularly popular for birthday parties and on rainy days! See here for details.

10/ Zone Bowling (previously called AMF), also in Belconnen, have 32 lanes, arcade games, birthday party options and deals to get you through the school holidays. It is another popular rainy day option! See here for details.

11/ John Knight Memorial Park is located further around Lake Ginninderra, just a short distance along the lakeside walking path. This playground has a tall red tower to climb with a long slide to whizz down from the top. There is also a flying fox, another smaller park, picnic areas and bike paths to ride along nearby. See here for details.

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Fun for kids at John Knight Memorial Park, Lake Ginninderra


12/ Learn to Ride Centre is located on the other side of Lake Ginninderra, where smaller kids can learn the road rules while riding their bikes and scooters. See here for details.

13/ ActewAGL Royal Canberra Show is held each February in Mitchell, at the Exhibition Park in Canberra (EPIC). This huge show brings the country to the city with animal shows, wood chopping, rides, horse demonstrations, sideshow alley, fireworks and much more. See here for details.

14/ Indoor Play Centres in the north of Canberra include KidCity (Mitchell), Funland Canberra (Mitchell) and Let's Play (Nicholls). Each of them caters to pre-schoolers with soft areas to jump, birthday party rooms and cafes to have a snack afterwards.

15/ Flip Out in Mitchell is another popular spot for kids in the area, especially with older kids who can flip off the walls and show off new tricks. They also hold Ninja and Little Ninja classes during term-time. See here for details.

16/ Canberra Indoor Rock Climbing is another Mitchell attraction, where kids of all ages are encouraged to give it a try. See here for details. Whilst in Mitchell, check out VR Canberra for virtual reality rides and games!

17/ Franklin Recreational Park, located in the Gungahlin suburb of Franklin, is a huge and colourful playground with picnic areas, table tennis, a caged sports area, toddler area and even a skate bowl! See here for details.

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Swings, sports, slides & skateboarding at Franklin Recreational Park


18/ Cockington Green Gardens
is located in Gold Creek Village in Nicholls. Marvel at the intricate detail and humorous scenes amongst the little village scenes. There is also a miniature steam train ride around the property. See here for details.

19/ The National Dinosaur Museum
is also located in Gold Creek Village in Nicholls, with realistic dinosaur statues out the front for little kids to run around and fascinating exhibits in the small museum upstairs. See here for details.

20/ Canberra Walk In Aviary, also in Gold Creek Village, is a must-see for all bird lovers, with over 500 birds flying freely (and swooping above your head!). Pick up a plate of worms and fruit as you walk in, so the birds come closer for a meet and greet. See here for details.

21/ Canberra Reptile Zoo is also located in the popular Gold Creek Village, with a wide range of reptiles on display and handlers walking around with snakes so you can get a better look! See here for details.

22/ George Harcourt Inn, also in Gold Creek Village, is the perfect spot for lunch when visiting all of the attractions in the area. This English-style pub has a large beer garden, kids meals, live music on the weekends and a cosy fireplace in winter. See here for details.

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Get up close and personal at the Canberra Walk-In Aviary


23/ Moncrieff Community Recreation Park, located in Gungahlin, is easily the biggest playground north of the city. There is a large tower to climb, slides, toddler area, hamster wheel, bike paths, table tennis tables and heaps more! See here for details. Whilst in the area, also check out Moncrieff Neighbourhood Park and Throsby Playground, a short drive away.

24/ Mulligans Flat Nature Reserve
is located in Forde and is a fascinating place to kids to learn about native Australian animals and see them in the wild. There are walks to do around the protected property, however the best way to view the animals is on a night tour with a ranger using spotlights. They offer specialised Kids Walks in the school holidays. See here for details.

25/ The Canberra Wine District can be found in Murrumbateman in NSW, a 40 minute drive north of Canberra. Many Cellar Doors have small kid areas with books, toys or somewhere to rest. Robyn Rowe Chocolates in the district, is particularly family friendly and has hot chocolates and areas to run around on the grass. They also have lawn games to play outside. For lunch, why not pop into Four Winds Vineyard for a wood-fired pizza (always a family favourite!) and a run around on the grass. See here for details.

Have you found something to do for this weekend, or for the next school holidays? If you have more ideas, feel free to make a comment in the box below. Have fun exploring!

four winds vineyard, canberra, murrumbateman wine district, NSW, families, wood fired pizza, lunch, wines, cellar door, kids, families,
Family friendly pizza and areas to run around at Four Winds Vineyard

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Why? Have an adventure, in the north of the city!
When: See individual websites for details
Where: North of Canberra - from Acton to Murrumbateman!
Cost: See individual websites for prices
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