The Australian Capital Territory is an inland enclave of New South Wales, its terrain consisting mostly of hills, mountains and rugged plains. It is the capital territory of the Commonwealth of Australia and the smallest self-governing internal territory. Its capital is Canberra, which is the capital city of Australia. The ACT has sizeable agricultural and wine regions.

Notable attractions in the ACT are Namadgi National Park, with its dense forests, mountain ranges and rivers and the Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve. The Canberra Deep Space Communication Centre, which is part of the Deep Space Network by the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration, operates in Tidbinbilla.


Australia’s capital city, Canberra, is in the northern end of the Australian Capital Territory. Its site was selected in 1908 as a compromise between Sydney and Melbourne, which were both competing for the status of capital. Canberra is an entirely purpose-built and planned city.

As the seat of the nation’s government, Canberra’s national buildings include the Parliament House and the High Court of Australia. Its cultural institutions include the National Gallery of Australia, the National Museum of Australia, and the National Library of Australia.

Canberra is also known as Australia’s “Bush Capital” because of its ingenious incorporation of urban residential and commercial areas into the region’s natural vegetation.