What's on

There is always something new and exciting to see and do at the Australian National Botanic Gardens. Our calendar of events is changing all the time.

  • Dinosaurs in the Gardens

    1 - 16 July 9.30 am - 4.30 pm

    Experience what Australia was like when dinosaurs ruled!  Discover life-sized dinosaurs among the flora and landscapes that they once inhabited as you travel from the rainforest to the Red Centre, Learn about the supercontinent of Gondwana and patterns of distribution of living organisms revealed through fossils.

    • Explore the 8 dinosaur-some things to do!


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  • Dino Stampede - a night time adventure

    Friday 14 July; 5.30pm – 8.30pm

    Experience the dinosaurs in the dark as you travel from the rainforest to the Red Centre following the specially-lit path. Join specialised staff from the Gardens and the National Dinosaur Museum on this rare opportunity to explore the Gardens at night and learn about prehistoric beasts and plants.


    • Cost: $10 adults, $5 children/concession. Bookings essential.

      Book Dino Stampede Friday 14 July

      Gates open at 5.30 pm and close at 8.30 pm. 

      At the end of the trail grab a hot chocolate or coffee, crack open a fossil or discover dinosaur remnants at the dino-dig.

      Bookings essential - booking close at 6pm on 13 July 2017.

      Please wear flat shoes and warm clothing - gloves, coats and beanies recommended.

      Brought to you in partnership with the National Dinosaur Museum.


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  • Aboriginal Craft Workshop

    3 July; 9.30am – 11.00am or 11.30am – 1.00pm

    Learn how Aboriginal people use art to express their culture and traditions. Kids can paint a clapstick, do a dot painting and weave a bracelet in this hands on workshop.  


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  • Indigenous Plant Use Walks

    Thursday 6 July 1.30 pm – 3.30 pm

    Enjoy an easy walk with  an Aboriginal guide along our Aboriginal Plant Use Trail. You will discover how Indigenous people from across Australia use plants for food and medicine, to make tools and weapons, and for ceremonial practice. This is a great activity for the whole family. Engage your senses!


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  • Traditional Weaving Workshops

    Sun 9 July, 10 am – 3.30 pm

    Enjoy a hands-on workshop which inspires a connection to Aboriginal culture and learn techniques of the age old art of traditional weaving.

    • All materials tuition and morning/afternoon tea included. Presented by Culture on the Move.

      Cost: $160/adult – suitable for 15 years and over

      Bookings essential: email cultureonthemove@gmail.com or ph: 0438 544 982


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  • Future of the Dreaming - Exhibition Tour and Egg Painting Workshop

    Wed 5 July; 10.00 am –- 11.30 am (children or 1.00 pm –- 2.30 pm (adults)

    Enjoy a guided tour of our NAIDOC Exhibition to learn about the significance of the emu to Aboriginal culture. Join the artists and paint your own egg using traditional dot painting.


  • Hands of Reconciliation

    3 - 7 July; 9.30 am – 4.30 pm

    “Language Matters” is this year’s theme – write on a paper hand and hang it in the Visitor Centre to show support for Indigenous culture in Australia as part of NAIDOC week 2017. 

  • Jindii Juniors – School holiday program

    Wednesday 12 July and Friday 14 July – various times

    Get the perfect spa treatment and let Jindii look after the kids! Jindii Eco Spa in the Gardens is proud to introduce their very own school holiday program allowing busy parents to recharge and replenish whilst their children are engaged in activities. 

    • Book in for your treatment and Jindii will take care of the kids in their fun, engaging and inspiring school holiday program.

      Wednesday 12th July – Macadamia Body Polish and massage

      Friday 14th July – Jindii Handprint or Footprint and we will take care of the kids!

      Jindii School Holiday programs are designed to develop your child’s emotional intelligence, self-care rituals, creativity and to improve their self-confidence.

      Activities will be focused on the dinosaur theme, as they make their return to the Gardens!

      For more information and bookings,  contact Jindii reception on 6257 8777.


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  • Walkabout Challenge

    3 - 7 July – 8.30am – 4.30pm

    Challenge yourselves for NAIDOC week and learn about how Indigenous people use plants for food, tools and weapons, and as medicine. Collect your booklet at the Visitor Centre.

  • afterDARK Firefly Tours

    Saturday 3 June (sold out), 1 July or 5 August; 6.30pm – 8.30pm

    Experience the sights, sounds and smells of the Gardens and flora by night. Enjoy hot chocolate and make your own ‘firefly lantern light’ to illuminate your way on this ranger-led tour. 

    • Suitable for adults and children over five years only*. Tickets $26 adult and $21 consession.

      Saturday 3 June - SOLD OUT

      Book Saturday 1 July

      Book Saturday 5 August

      Gates open 6pm and close at 6.30pm sharp. Late arrivals will not be able to join the group.

      Start the evening with a delicious hot chocolate, then construct your own hand made lantern.

      Your tour leader will then take you on a fascinating after dark discovery of the Gardens using your ‘firefly lantern light’ to help guide the way.

      Online bookings close 5pm the Wednesday prior to each tour.

      *Tour is not pram accessible and not suitable for those with limited mobility.

      Please wear flat shoes and warm clothing. Event will proceed in light rain and ponchos are provided if needed. In the event of cancellation for weather, ticket holders will be notified by SMS.


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  • Botanical Watercolours for Beginners

    Wednesday 12 July, 9.30am - 4.00pm

    Learn to paint a three-dimensional portrait of a pear using washes, glazes and dry brush work - with botanical artist Cheryl Hodges. Look at composition, tone, and principles and techniques for creating botanical paintings. 

    • Cost: $100 – bookings essential

      Further information and bookings contact Cheryl

      Ph: 0402 436 723 or email: hodgespc@bigpond.com


      Venue:  Banks Building, Australian National Botanic Gardens


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  • Eucalypt Dye Workshops with Sally Blake

    Wed 7 June, Sun 11 June or Sun 18 June; 9.00am – 1.00pm

    Learn techniques for extracting plant dye from eucalypt leaves and bark, with local textile artist Sally Blake. Choose to dye a personalised scarf or fabric section for a cushion cover, either for yourself or a unique gift.


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  • Junior Ranger Program

    Last Sunday of every month from 10 am – 11 am (exceptions apply)

    Become a Junior Ranger, explore Australia’s amazing environments and learn about its plants and animals.

    25 June: Indigenous Plant Use

    Take a guided tour of the Aboriginal Plant Use Trail to learn about the importance of country and culture to Indigenous people. Weave your own bracelet with indigenous artist Ronnie Jordan.

    • Junior Rangers will take part in different activities in the Gardens each month.

      Cost: Single sessions – $15; 6 sessions – $75 (save $15 and use for any six sessions).

      *Additional costs for materials apply

      Please Note: all bookings close three days before the event and will open again the following week

      Purchase tickets (advanced bookings required)

      June – Indigenous plant use

      July – Nature treasure hunt

      August – Build Your Own Bee Hotel*

      September – Spotlighting adventure (evening session)*

      October – Breakfast with the birds (early morning session – purchase your own breakfast)

      November – Our furry friends

      December – Insects in the Gardens


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  • Lessons on Trees – Drawing in the landscape weekend workshops

    19-20 August or 26-27 August (2 days) 10am – 3pm

    Join Canberra artist Genevieve Swifte for an intensive weekend of drawing under the rainforest ferns, tall eucalypts, hakeas, grevilleas and banksias in these 2 day workshops.

    • Cost: $180 Full; $162 Concession/Friends of the ANBG

      To book or for more information: mail@genevieveswifte.com 

      or follow the link: http://genevieveswifte.com/works/drawing-workshops—master-classes/405

      This intensive weekend workshop will respond to the rich diversity of native flora on display. The workshop will begin on Saturday morning with an introduction to landscape art, materials and techniques, before heading for the trees with paper and charcoal in hand for an immersive weekend of landscape drawing.

      Suitable for all levels, this course is taught by Canberra based artist Genevieve Swifte who’s practice has taken her from the coastline of NSW to the fjords and glaciers of the High Arctic and the Andes of Patagonia.


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  • Exhibitions at the Visitors Centre

    Exhibitions in the Visitor Centre Gallery aim to provide enjoyment for visitors through a broad program of display material including fine art, craft, photography, sculpture and other creative forms.


    Learn about upcoming exhibitions
  • Friday Storytime for Preschoolers

    First Friday of month from 10 to 11 am (different theme each month)

    Have fun with stories, songs, rhymes and creative activities brought to life by the ACT Storytellers. An engaging treat for pre-school children, parents and carers. $5 per child – No bookings required.





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  • Thursday Talks

    Thursday lunchtimes from 2 Feb to 23 Nov 2017

    Learn about Australian native plants and other aspects of the natural world.

    Join us for Thursday Talks at lunchtime.

    • Thursday talks cover a diverse range of topics. They are aimed at a well-informed general audience and everyone is welcome.

      Where: Theatrette at 12.30 pm – Cost: Entry by Donation

      2017 Talks

      1 June - Birds and plants in subtropical NSW

      Dr Brian Hawkins 

      Learn about the relationship between birds and their food plants in the forests of the Dorrigo-Bellingen-Coffs Harbour area. Brian, now a scientist with Bush Blitz in Canberra, shares insights from his earlier work as an ecologist in Northern NSW. 

      8 June - Recent results of the effects of fire on grassland plants and animals

      Dr Brett Howland

      Brett will describe his work on natural resource management programs. Over the last seven years he has been involved in the implementation of a kangaroo monitoring program using pellet counts; the creation of an ACT vegetation map; and the establishment of a research monitoring program looking at the effects of kangaroo grazing on reptiles and grass.

      15 June - A walk through some great gardens

      Ben Walcott 

      Ben will walk us through some gardens in Britain, Europe and other countries, with differing styles and plant choices.

      22 June - A necessary weevil: the pollination biology and evolution of cycads

      Dr Rolf Oberprieler and Dr Thomas Wallenius 

      Of the seven groups of weevils associated with cycads in the world, four have evolved exclusive pollination mutualisms with their hosts, depending on cycad cones for breeding while the cycads depend on them for pollination. The physiology of the cycad cones is tightly correlated with the behaviour of the weevils, in that the cones release specific odours and heat up in the evening to both attract and repel the weevils.

      Rolf will talk to the broad evolutionary relationship between weevils and cycads, and Thomas will place this in the Australian context.

      29 June - Alive with the songlines! Following in the footsteps of the Seven Sisters

      Professor Margo Neale 

      Get exclusive background on the Seven Sisters’ rock art, the next major exhibition of National Museum of Australia opening in September. Get a behind-the-scenes look at how this exhibition was put together by the curatorial team in collaboration with Aboriginal communities, and why it is considered a pioneering model where communities work with Museums rather than how Museums work with communities. Margo is Senior Indigenous Curator, National Museum of Australia.

      6 July - Charles Darwin in Galapagos and Australia

      Dr Sue Serjeantson AO 

      Go on an exploration of Darwin’s diaries from the ‘Voyage of the Beagle’ that revealed Nature’s Grand Plan from Sue, Chair of the Thursday Talks committee.

      13 July - How are Australian birds affected by climate change?

      Dr Janet Gardner 

      Discover how the use of time-series available through museum collections and bird-banding, are used to explore the dynamics of natural bird populations. This talk will focus on how Australian birds are affected by our changing climate and will provide insights into the mechanisms that are driving change. Janet is a Research Fellow at ANU.

      20 July - To breed or not to breed? How the European wasp queen suppresses her daughters’ reproduction

      Dr Philip Spradbery

      Philip, a research entomologist, has been asking himself this question for twenty years.

      27 July - Australian trees and their botanists

      Dr John Turnbull

      Hear about the association of Australian trees with overseas botanists and their amazing stories encompassing adventure, mystery, sex and even murder. John is a retired CSIRO scientist and volunteer guide at the Gardens.

      3 August - History of Australian Plant Breeding

      Angus Stewart

      Learn about the history of Australian plant breeding and Angus’ personal experience in breeding iconic kangaroo paws. Angus is an expert in Australian native plants and media personality.

      10 August - News from the National Seedbank: from coast to desert

      Dr Lydia Guja

      Find out about the work of the National Seedbank with Parks Australia, from Christmas and Cocos Keeling Islands in the west to Norfolk Island in the east, to Uluru-Kata Tjuta in between. Lydia is manager of the National Seedbank at the Gardens. 

      Queries to sue.serjeantson@bigpond.com


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  • Grandparents Playgroup

    Thursdays from 10.00 am – 11.30 am in the Gardens

    Venue: Banks Building – Spaces limited

    For playgroup membership enquiries email: gpgcanberra@gmail.com

  • Flowers, Fruit and Foliage

    Pick up a leaflet at the Visitor Centre and follow the numbered posts to explore a selection of our plants, many are flowering now. Distance and time varies from week to week.


    See what's in flower
  • Flora Explorer Tours

    Sat, Sun and public holidays at 10.30 am and 1.30 pm

    Discover the Gardens in relaxing style with a 45 min guided tour aboard our 13-seater electric bus.


    • Where: Tours begin outside the Visitor Centre.

      Cost: $6.00 adult – $3.00 child under 16 and concession – Children under three ride free.

      Purchase tickets: At the Botanical Bookshop in the Visitor Centre – Booking information 6257 3302.


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  • Free Guided Walks

    Meet a volunteer guide at the Visitor Centre for a free one-hour tour of the Gardens. Tours depart daily at 11.00 am and 2.00 pm.

  • News from the Gardens

    Would you like to be the first to know about the news from the Gardens? Subscribe to receive our seasonal e-news from the Australian National Botanic Gardens. See the latest news – Subscribe to our newsletterUnsubscribePrivacy Policy