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INSIDE: Roam the Gnome’s Guide to Government House Canberra.

Show the kids a bit of Australian history and culture with a quick stop at the Government House Canberra lookout.

Once the most palatial homestead in the region, Yarralumla House is now the official residence of the Governor General of Australia in the National Capital.

Want a sneak peek at this heritage property?

Head to the Lookout. Details below. 

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking on one of these links, we may receive a small commission at NO extra cost to you.

government house canberra lookout sign pic

FAQ about Government House Canberra

What is Government House Canberra?

The official residence of the Governor-General of Australia. 

Where is Government House Canberra?

It’s in the suburb of Yarralumla, in the vicinity of Yarralumla Park. (Check out this nature play area for kids close by)

When was Government House Canberra built?

Unlike the purpose-built Government Houses in the state capitals, the Governor General’s residence dates from an earlier era, linking the history of the Limestone Plains with Canberra.

It was built in 1833.

Who lives in Government House Canberra?

The Governor General of Australia, and his or her immediate family. 

Can you visit Government House Canberra?

Yes, but if you are a member of the public, only on annual open days.

25,000 school children have the fortune to visit Government House every year.

The other way to visit is if you are lucky enough to score an invitation to an official dinner or function hosted there. 

The residences are used for events ranging from:

  • celebrations of the work of community organisations and charities
  • visits by Heads of State and royalty; and
  • investiture and swearing-in ceremonies.

australian government house canberra pic by john

Image credit: John via Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

The Role of the Governor General

“A Governor-General appointed by the Queen shall be Her Majesty’s representative in the Commonwealth, and shall have and may exercise in the Commonwealth during the Queen’s pleasure, but subject to this Constitution, such powers and functions of the Queen as Her Majesty may be pleased to assign to him.”

Our current Governor General of the Commonwealth of Australia is:

Government House Canberra Open Day

Keep an eye on the Government House Facebook Page for updates on the next Government House Canberra OPEN DAY event.

government house canberra lookout inscription pic

THE INSIDE SCOOP: Government House Yarralumla

Correct at time of publication on Roam the Gnome. Please check with venue for updates. We apologise in advance if there have been any changes we are unaware of. All prices in AUD dollars, unless otherwise stated

Address: 420 Lady Denman Dr, Molonglo Valley ACT 2611
Website: Click here
Telephone: (02) 6283 3533
Opening Hours: The lookout is open daily. The residence of the Governor General is only open on special open days.
Entry Fees: Free


Image credit: John via Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

How to get to Government House Lookout

By Car: 

  • 10–15 minutes drive from Visitors Centre.
  • From the Canberra Region Visitor Centre, drive under Commonwealth Bridge on Barrine Drive, and turn right onto Albert Street, then back north on Commonwealth Avenue.
  • Take the first exit onto Parkes Way west and after the tunnel turn left onto Lady Denman Drive.
  • Stay on this road which will cross Scrivener Dam.
  • The lookout entrance is on your left.

Yarralumla Government House Lookout Map

parliament house canberra with flag by mike

Image credit: Mike via Flickr CC BY-SA 2.0

Toadstool Rating: Australian Governor General Residence Lookout

Good for a super quick history lesson, if that takes your fancy.

Other places to look at, or visit, for more of Canberra’s history include:

  • Lake Burley Griffin (join this cruise of the lake for fun commentary),
  • Parliament House Canberra
  • Museum of Australian Democracy in Old Parliament House, and
  • The Lodge Canberra, the primary official residence of the Prime Minister of Australia, of Georgian architecture

NB: Admiralty House is the official residence of the Governor-General of Australia in Sydney, located in Kirribilli. 
government house lookout pic

Looking for MORE SUPER DOOPER FUN places to visit in Canberra with kids?

Click the links in blue below for more of the best Canberra attractions. 

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