National Arboretum Canberra

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What's On

    Friends Winter Seasonal Talk - Tuesday 10 July from 12.30pm - 1:30pm

    Visual artist Dr Cathy Franzi will speak about the way she explores her fascination with Australian plants and the environment in her ceramic work. Field work on location and research with scientists informs her conceptual and studio approach. Activity details.

    Warm Trees drop in knitting, 30 June - 29 July, 10am - 2pm

    All ages are invited to join a knitting circle held each day in the Village Centre. Bring your own creation or use our materials and contribute to Warm Trees. This is a free activity brought to you by the Friends of the Arboretum. Activity details.

    Endangered Trees Walk, Sunday 15 July, 9:30am – 11:30am, Free

    This month we will focus on the endangered species grown at the Arboretum. Join an experienced guide to walk through several forests of endangered species, learning why they are classified as endangered and how the Arboretum is working to conserve the species. Activity details.

    Walking with the Wollemi – School holiday program

    16, 17 and 18 July 2018, 10:30am – 12:00pm daily

    Some of the trees at the Arboretum have been growing on earth since the time of the dinosaurs. Rug up for a guided walk through some ancient trees and discover the fascinating story behind these survivors. Make your very own botanical fossil to take home with you. Please dress appropriately for the weather as we will be walking outside. Meet at the Terrace Room in the Village Centre. Activity details.

    Stories in the Forest – School holiday program

    11, 12 and 13 July 2018, 10:30am – 12:00pm daily

    Join us on a story quest through our hundred year old Cork oak forest. As we walk through the forest, help discover what has happened to winter (Hint: Winter has been stolen) and why our forest needs winter to thrive. Rug up warm and wear sturdy, closed shoes. The program will still run in light rain. Please meet at the Cork oak car park. (Free parking). Activity details.

    West Side Stories Forest Walk, Sunday 17 June 2018, 9:30 – 11:30am

    Join an experienced guide for a walk on the little-explored western side of the Arboretum and hear stories about our trees including three of our rare eucalyptus forests. Activity details.

    Universal Penjing Conference, 18 – 20 September 2018

    Penjing Masters from around the world have gathered for the first time in Australia at the inaugural National Arboretum Canberra, International Bonsai Art & Culture Biennale and International Penjing Creation Conference 2018. Activity details.

    Mother’s Day Harvest Stall, Saturday 12 May , 10am - 12pm

    Delicious jams, preserves and pestos made from fruit, vegetables and herbs harvested stright from the gardens and forests of the Arboretum. The perfect gift for any Mum who loves fresh, quality and handmade goodies! All produce is picked and preserved by volunteers from the Friends of the Arboretum Harvest Group. All proceeds support Arboretum projects. Activity details.

    Weddings and functions

    For more information about weddings and functions go to Ginger Catering. Activity details.

    Hug a Tree Day

    Free hugs at the Arboretum! Hug a Tree Day brings people together to celebrate the special relationship between people and trees. At this inaugural event, we remember Adam Burgess, the founding curator at the Arboretum who was passionate about trees. Meet on the Events Terrace at the National Arboretum at 11:30am and be led to the Camden White Gum forest where we will set our first record for the number of people simultaneously hugging trees at the National Arboretum. This is a free event but registrations prior to the event are required. This event is part of Canberra Tree Week. Activity details.

    Avenues of Honour Exhibition

    For the past nine years, Sarah Wood has been proactively raising the awareness of Australia's unique and historic Avenues of Honour throughout Australia through photographic documentation and gallery exhibitions. The 'Avenues of Honour' photographic exhibition is a national project to preserve and promote Australia's Avenue of Honours as we commemorate the centenary of ANZAC, the Gallipoli landings and World War I. On display in the Village Centre daily between 9am - 4pm from Saturday 21 April - Sunday 27 May 2018. Activity details.

    Canberra Tree Week, 30 April – 6 May 2018

    Canberra Tree Week is an annual celebration of all things trees and encourages the community and visitors to appreciate, admire and enjoy our beautiful trees. This year’s celebrations at the Arboretum includes a variety of events ranging from guided walks, hug a tree day and a morning of art. Activity details.

    Thank you Canberra – Rainbow party at the National Arboretum

    To celebrate marriage equality we’re offering you the chance to 'Win a Wedding Ceremony Package' at the National Arboretum’s iconic Margaret Whitlam Pavilion. The lucky winner will be announced on Saturday 14 April at the 'Win a Wedding Ceremony Package' free community event, 10:30am- 2:00pm at the National Arboretum. Enter now for your chance to win. Activity details.

    Fungal Wonders Workshop

    Learn about the fascinating, diverse and curious world of fungi with ecologist and environmental photographer Alison Poulit PhD. Engage with hands on identification sessions and a foray into the field Activity details.

    Bonsai for beginners - six week course

    This six week course for beginners covers the essentials of creating, styling and maintaining bonsai. By the end of the course, students will take home five potted bonsai and be confident in how to nurture their creations. This course is perfect for those wishing to gain experience in different styles, including informal upright, cascade, forest and literati. Held each Wednesday from 5.30pm to 7.30pm for 6 weeks. Suitable for ages 8+. Activity details.

    Pied Piper - 25 April 2018, 1.30pm and 3pm

    Let the whole family enjoy the Canberra International Music Festival with a musical walk across the hills of the Arboretum with Mr Tim and the Fuzzy Elbows. Recommended for children aged 6-12. Walk takes approx 75min. Two walks available and bookings essential. Activity details.

    Bonsai Workshops - 23, 24, 26, 27 April 2018, 10am - 12:00noon

    Is there a budding Bonsai artist in the family? Be inspired by the National Bonsai and Penjing Collection of Australia and pot up and start creating your own personal bonsai! Suitable for 8 years + . Workshop includes wiring. Bookings essential. Spots are limited for all activities so book early! Activity details.

    Mini Beasts and Mushrooms - 16 - 20 April 2018, 10.30am - 12 noon

    These Autumn school holidays, let the kids awaken their senses at the “Mushrooms and Minibeasts" forest walk. Meet the guide at the Himalayan Cedar car park for this nature walk through the forest. Look for small animals and a range of plants and fungi. There is also a craft activity included. Suitable for children ages 5 - 7yrs. Bookings essential. Parents are welcome to join in! Activity details.

    Kids Mini Garden Rake Workshop - 15 April 2018, 2pm - 3:30pm

    Sign the kids up for an hour and a half of some old timer fun! Using a few old bits of wood, some hand drills and a caveman club or two we'll go about making some mini garden rakes the same way the pioneering settlers did. Jeff Donne is one of Australia's best known spoon carvers with many years of carving and teaching under his belt. He teaches the traditional method of spoon carving where a small axe and a sharp knife are used to slice away layers of wood from a freshly cut log. It's pure analogue bliss! Suitable for kids aged between 7-12. Parents are welcome to stay and join in the fun. This workshop is kindly sponsored by The Friends of National Arboretum Canberra. Bookings essential. Activity details.

    Canberra Balloon Spectacular - Sprout Café open early on weekends

    Bright and colourful balloons will fill the morning skies between Saturday 10 March – Sunday 18 March 2018. Activity details.

    Autumn school holiday fun!

    These school holidays let the kids discover 'Mini Beasts & Mushrooms', create their own bonsai or join a wood craft workshop to make thier own garden rake! Activity details.

    Christine Manfield spices up Ginger - for one night only!

    Christine Manfield spices up Ginger - for one night only! Hosted by Janet Jeffs from Ginger Catering and Genevieve Jacobs, enjoy a four course dinner with matching wines prepared by a stellar all-female Chefs of Canberra line-up. Thursday 22 March 2018. Activity details.

    Discover Bonsai Week 19-25 March - a week of special events and activities

    Think global bonsai. A week of special events and activities, including displays, workshops, demonstrations, artists' floor talks, tours of the National Bonsai and Penjing Collection and presentations by international guest artists, Yannick Kiggen from Belgium, Ofer Grunwald from Israel and Carlos van der Vaart from Holland. Learn how to create and maintain your own bonsai at an introductory workshop and join us for a special evening event, 'Bonsai After Hours'. Activity details.

    Dairy Farmers Hill Sunset - Book now for new Enlighten event, Thursday 8 March

    Enjoy a guided walk to Dairy Farmers Hill and watch the sunset over the Brindabella Ranges. Return by torchlight to the Margaret Whitlam Pavilion for live music, delicious canapés and a cool drink. See the Arboretum's new colourful light show and watch the laser spectacle over Canberra. 8 March at 6pm. More information from ticketek on 132 849.

    Book at:

    Activity details.

    Guided morning walks every Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday at 10am to 11am

    Enjoy a short morning walk with a friendly and knowledgeable guide and discover some of the Arboretum's forests. Learn about the trees and their stories. One hour long and free of charge. Moderate walk, uneven ground in places. Please wear sturdy shoes and a hat and bring drinking water. Meet at the Information Desk in the Village Centre a few minutes before 10am. For more information, call 02 6207 8484. Activity details.

    Complete our survey and WIN

    Tell us about your visit to the National Arboretum and help us to improve our services. We would like to hear all your comments and ideas! Enter the monthly draw for a $50 gift voucher from The Curatoreum Shop. The survey should take about 5 minutes and your answers are confidential. For information, call 02 6207 8484 or email: Activity details.

    Free introductory talks

    Enjoy a free introductory talk about the Arboretum, 20 minutes long. Departs regularly between 10am and 3pm daily. Meet at the 'free talk' sign in the Village Centre. Wheelchair and stroller friendly. Activity details.

    Every day activities

    There are a range of other activities for people to enjoy on a daily basis at the Arboretum. Activity details.

    Guided group tours

    Guided bus tours are available for groups of 30 people and up while guided walking tours are available for groups of 10 to 16 people. Activity details.

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