When we were last in Canberra we went twice to the National Arboretum, which is fast becoming one of Canberra’s star attractions. It was conceived of and established during Jon Stanhope’s time at Canberra’s helm following the 2003 Bushfires. Arguably, it was his governments greatest achievement. Policy comes and goes and changes, but trees tend to hang around for a bit longer. Generally. We hope.
Apart from the many tree plots within the park which showcase a variety of trees from around the globe, there is an outstanding visitors building. I love this building because it is full of elegantly curving wood and is spacious and airy.
I love wood.
I love wood when it’s in a living tree.
So I love the Arboretum. Or, I love what it is growing into.
Pod Playground. That is the new kids area next to the visitors centre. It is, hands down, the best playground I’ve been to or at least taken my kids to. It is not completely adult friendly – which is what makes it totally amazing for kids. It takes the kids up into the sky, away from the adults below, through kid-sized tunnels and acorn rooms and down a couple of steep slides.
The Banksia seed pod rooms house dingy-dongy things for kids to bang on. It again is kid friendly rather than adult friendly with doors only so high. Perfect.
After getting exhausted with the kids we went and had a coffee at the overpriced cafe. I guess you are paying for the view and it is worth it, I think. The Visitors centre has got the mix between rock, timber, concrete, steel and space just right and even though it can absolutely fill with people voices float up into the ceiling and we didn’t find ourselves raising voices at all.