Canberra is the National Capital of Australia located within the Australian Capital Territory (ACT). It contains about 325,000 residents in a number of satellite cities, which are divided by greenbelt areas. Queanbeyan (see Google Map) has a population of 46,000 and is located only 10 kilometres to the south east of Canberra and Yass (see Google Map) (population 12,000) is only 55 kilometres to the north west, with both cities in New South Wales (NSW).
Canberra (see Google Map) is situated within a series of valleys and is bordered to the west by the Brindabella Ranges - part of the Great Dividing Range, with a number of higher peaks covered with snow in winter.
The Canberra region has a temperate climate, but can be very hot in summer (up to 42C/105F degrees) and very cold in winter (down to –5C/28F degrees). Spring and Autumn (or 'Fall') are usually magnificent in Canberra. Until recently rainfall has never been an issue, but recently, like most of Australia, the long dry weather has forced permanent water restrictions upon Canberra residents, and the city is not quite as green and beautiful as it used to be. Currently we have water restrictions in place (as do many cities in Australia at this time). For more information on water restrictions click here.
In late Winter (August) and early Spring (September), trees in our region blossom back to life after losing all their leaves, and look fantastic with the pinks, reds and whites of cherry blossoms and the yellow of our native wattles (not a good time for hayfever sufferers though!). That's when we have our spring floral festival, "Floriade", which is open to the public, at no cost to enter.
For more information on Canberra, surf to the Canberra Tourism website. For population statistics, visit the Australian Bureau of Statistics website or for weather details, the Bureau of Meteorology. For lots more interesting community links, visit our local radio station's website: http://www.valleyfm.com (Valley FM 89.5).
Our region is in the (AEST) timezone of UTC (GMT) +10 hours, but has daylight saving time (AEDST) from late October until late March, when our clocks go forward by one hour. For more information on this visit: Bureau of Meterology Time Information.
Shopping hours in Canberra are generally from 9am to 5:30pm on Mondays to Fridays; 9am to 5pm on Saturdays; 10am to 4pm on Sundays; late night shopping is on Fridays until 9pm (some shops and supermarkets open earlier and close later, but this varies from suburb to suburb). In Queanbeyan, shopping hours follow the New South Wales timings, with late night shopping until 9pm on Thursdays instead of Fridays.
There is so much to see and do in this magnificent region, and much of this is included in this BDS Website, so please 'surf' around this website and we hope that you will come to visit our region very soon.
Here are some photos of the local region - from left to right: Canberra's Carillon, Canberra City, and Old Parliament House (all photos used with the photographer's permission). Click on the photos to enlarge, and click on the icon (bottom right corner of each photo) to enlarge even further.