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Guide to Canberra's urban parks, nature reserves, national parks and recreational areas

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Explore-Your free guide to Canberra's urban parks, nature reserves, national parks and recreational areas.


Contents 1

Explore-Your free guide to Canberra's urban parks, nature reserves, national parks and recreational areas. 1

ACT land management–caring and sharing 2

Volunteers–from the heart 3

Protecting our precious natural environment 3

Minimal impact code of conduct 3

Park categories 3

Want to know more? 4

MAP 1–Your guide to the Territory's urban areas 4

MAP 2–Your guide to the Territory's non-urban areas 23

Murrumbidgee River Corridor 34

Pine Forests and Recreational Spaces-for the ride of your life 36

Googong Foreshores-experience your heritage 38

Useful contacts 39

Welcome to Ngunnawal Country

As I walk this beautiful Country of mine I stop, look and listen and remember the spirits from my ancestors surrounding me. That makes me stand tall and proud of who I am–a Ngunnawal warrior of today.”

Carl Brown, Ngunnawal Elder, Wollabalooa Murringe

About this guide

The ACT is fortunate to have a huge variety of parks and recreational areas right on its doorstep, ranging from district parks with barbeques and playgrounds within urban areas through to the rugged and majestic landscape of Namadgi National Park. The natural areas protect our precious native plants, animals and their habitats and also keep our water supply pure. The parks and open spaces are also places where residents and visitors can enjoy a range of recreational activities in natural, healthy outdoor environments. This guide lists all the parks within easy reach of your back door and over 30 wonderful destinations beyond the urban fringe. Please enjoy these special places but remember to stay safe and follow the Minimal Impact Code of Conduct (refer to page 6 for further information)


ACT Government, 12 Wattle Street Lyneham ACT 2602


Canberra Connect Phone: 13 22 81


English as a second language

Canberra Connect Phone: 13 22 81

ISBN 978-0-646-58360-0

© ACT Government 2013

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that information in this guide is accurate at the time of printing. The ACT Government accepts no responsibility for inaccuracies resulting from subsequent changes to the Territory’s parks and open spaces or any inconvenience or loss resulting from the use of this guide.

Note: Reserve sizes are indicative only and are based on the Territory Plan.

Traditional custodians–a time to reflect

Please take a moment to reflect as you explore the parks and reserves of the ACT. You are walking in the footsteps of the ancestors of the traditional custodians, the Ngunnawal people. They have managed this landscape for tens of thousands of years and their relationship to the area is still held strong today.

The region was also a significant meeting place for neighbouring nations, including the Ngarigo, Wolgalu, Gundungurra, Yuin and Wiradjuri people. Ceremonies, trading and marriages between people of different clans took place during such gatherings.

When Aboriginal people care for the land they also care for their culture. Working on land management projects not only gives Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people a sense of personal pride, it also affirms their identity through a cultural belonging and connection to the land, and has direct benefits on the health and financial wellbeing of their community. Customary obligations and the cultural management of the land often take priority for an Aboriginal person working on Country and, when developing community partnerships and projects it is vitally important to respect this interconnected relationship between nature, people and the spirit of the land through their ancestors.

Country is an area to which Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander people have a traditional attachment or relationship. It includes the plants, animals, water, air, earth, rocks, stories of their ancestors, and the persona of that landscape – people speak on Country and visit, care for and long for Country. Caring for Country is the Indigenous concept of natural resource management which includes the nurturing and management of the land as well as the cultural responsibility to protect the sites, values, stories, and ancestral obligations of that Country. Connecting to Country refers to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people being on or remembering Country, acknowledging the specific localised knowledge of that area’s natural and cultural landscape and ancestral stories.

ACT land management–caring and sharing

The ACT Government manages the entire spectrum of open space in the ACT except for the Parliamentary Zone and Lake Burley Griffin which is managed by the National Capital Authority (NCA).

The management of town and district parks, lakes and urban waterways includes providing recreational opportunities for visitors and safe play spaces for children, protection and enhancement of urban catchments, controlling environmental pest plants and protecting biodiversity and heritage sites.

The management of the ACT’s national park, nature reserves and forests includes protecting heritage sites, controlling pests plants and animals, managing significant ecological communities and species, maintaining forestry plantations and managing captive wildlife populations. The ACT Government is also responsible for reducing the risk of wildfires through fuel reduction burning, slashing and grazing – refer to page 35 for further information.

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