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близу City, ACT (Australia)
An easy walk or ride around the Parliamentary Triangle for those who have already hit the big tourist spots. You will still see the War Memorial, the Galleries, and the two Parliament Houses but the attention here is on the smaller, often overlooked features of the Parliamentary Triangle. The story of RG Menzies' role in getting thes lake built, the quiet vista from Commonwealth Park across the lake to High Court, the lively pedestrian and cyclist right-of-way areas of the Civic Centre, the European style of Glebe Park and the outside sculptures of the National Gallery and the Aboriginal and science centric walk over to the National Library. All this and more.
Inside the beautiful European style Glebe Park, Gandhi's statue always draws the casual visitor or two.
Keep an eye out to the right for the pedestrian tunnel running down to Commonwealth Park and the Lakeside. It isn't easy to see through the parked cars off Constitution Avenue
Dedicated in July 2004 it commemorates fire and emergency service personnel who have died in the line of duty.
Outlining one of Prime Minister Menzies' more personal contributions to the beauty of Canberra. About a kilometer back along the shoreline is a lifesize bronze of the man.
Built as a workers cottage, this small home was pressed into service as a guest house during the building of Canberra. The inside has been fitted out appropriately with the kind of furnishings such a place would have had during particular times. Good if one of the volunteer guides is around to tell you stories.
Reaching dramatic heights with a brand new set of pumps deep underground, the fountain is run daily. If it is a special day, the pressure is increased to become one of the tallest fountains in the world. Be watching for an photo angle that can pick up a rainbow
The lakeside is a favourite place for Canberra mums to push their children in strollers and meet up with friends.
On 9 August 1942, HMAS Canberra was struck by the opening Japanese shots of the Battle of Savo Island, and was hit 24 times within less than two minutes - 84 seamen were lost.
The order to abandon ship was given the next day and the crippled Canberra was sunk by a torpedo from a United States ship.
The memorial is comprised of two components: the bow of the ship and five-tonne anchor and chain typical of those carried on the Canberra.
The United States Navy Baltimore-class cruiser USS Canberra was named in honour of the Australian ship, and is the only American warship named for either a foreign warship or a foreign capital city.
Wednesday and sunday for free concert the best of which is probably the annual "May the 4th" Star Wars concert when Canberra's fans turn out as their favourite characters.
Use the righthand side pedestrian lane of the Kings Avenue Bridge for a fine view west to the City. Ahead you will see the giant flag flying from the Parliament House on Capital Hill. After crossing you will peel off to the right looping under a road towards the southern side of the lake. Take care around the numerous lunchtime runners on this narrow path.
The long lazy loop from the Kings Avenue Bridge back to the lake shore is one of the visual highlights of the route. Don't rush it and enjoy the unfolding scene
Don't be tempted to miss the National Sculpture Garden hiding behind the wall on your right as the path narrows. In the trees is a wonderland of beautiful international and local works. Warning though: in Summer, you will get the odd snake.
The route between the Gallery and Constitution Avenue along the southern side of the Lake is teeming with interest. There is a small kiosk at the midpoint but if you need real food, hit the National Gallery's cafe, my personal favourite, the National Portrait Gallery cafe or the National Library of Australia's cafe. They all have good places to lock up your bike.
Don't miss the line of winners of the Australian of the Year prizes strung along the foreshore as you approach the Commonwealth Avenue Bridge
Newly opened but temporary display located on the Lakeside and the axis running to the flag of Parliament House. Will go once the exhibition on Regatta Point across the water is refurbished.
Keep going and you will make a line through the Old Parliament House and then to the flag surmounting the New. The chasm approach is sensational and on the grassy knoll at the end you will have a spectacular view up to the old and new parliaments and turning to return to the shore, you will get an even better view to the War Memorial.
Good cafe called Bookplate but, if you are on a budget, you can get cheap at the unassuming but comfortable Paperplate downstairs.
Best way of crossing by bike is the lefthand side which has been set up as a cyclepath. The righthand is usually too crowded and you are faced with crossing a busy road on the other side. Be warned that the approach loop from under shoreside road is very steep and you may find it easier to push your bike. The views towards the Australian Museum are worth it.
The newly completed waterside park has good exercise and BBQ facilities. Unfortunately, the nearest toilets are a good half a kilometre away to the West along the lakeside.
A sharp turn in the Western cycleway takes you away from the lakeside and into the City's Hipster area of New Acton. Just at the turn are toilets. Watch for cars and pedestrians as you zoom down from the top of the bridge.
Between New Acton and the centre of Civic is a concentration of finance and legal offices with many sculptures, small lunchtime and pocket parks. To the West is the sprawling campus and numerous residences of the Australian National University. A temporary food village has been set up along University Avenue and is worth the detour if you would like to sample some good street food. It also has a very good bike shop if you have problems.