The venue for the Canberra Walking Festival changes in 2018. The Control Centre for the walk will now operate from the historic Albert Hall on Commonwealth Ave, right next door to the Hyatt Hotel.
Walkers may wish to stay at the Hyatt for convenience, but their rates are high. We asked for a discounted group rate and the best they would offer is $325/night. Self parking costs ~$14/day on weekdays until 5.30pm. Depending on the proposed length of stay it was actually cheaper to book online without a group rate, so we did not proceed with the group rate option. Plus there are no restaurant options close to the Hyatt (other than those in the hotel).
We recommend the following hotel option for visiting walkers at the Canberra Walking Festival:
10 Bowes St, Phillip ACT 2606
Use promo code: BookSmart
The advance purchase rate (using the promo code) is currently ~$141/night, discounted from $152/night. If you are arriving earlier than Friday, then the rate is a little higher. Please note that rates may change over time. There is also a charge for parking on weekdays (~$12/day).
[Editorial note: prices checked on 21st Feb and the rate is now $134/night for 2 or 3 nights in a studio room using the BookSmart promo code. Prices checked again on 1st Apr and have reduced again to $128/night for 3 nights.]
Abode Woden is just a 10 minute drive from the Control Centre, or an easy bus trip (details below). It’s close to a variety of restaurant choices and a major shopping centre. There are also washing machines and kitchen facilities in the rooms, which may come in handy.
Alternatively you can source your own accommodation. Our location map shows some of the other hotel options in and around the city centre. You can compare prices and book Canberra accommodation online here or try accommodation web sites such as www.wotif.com or contact a property directly.
Information about bus transport:
Abode Woden is right next to the Woden bus interchange – catch any of the regular 300 series buses (Blue Rapid buses) from Platform 9 towards city. The bus trip will take less than 15 minutes, and there is a bus stop immediately outside the Albert Hall.
Cash fares are $4.90 for a single trip (no charge for transfers to another bus within 90min from boarding the first bus) or $9.40 for a daily ticket.
If you will be catching several buses while in Canberra, you should purchase a MyWay card ($5), which then allows discount fares as low as $2.49 per trip. Don’t forget to tap on AND tap off when entering and exiting the bus. MyWay cards may be purchased from many different outlets, including most convenience stores near the main bus terminals.
ACT Seniors (over 60 years of age and not in paid employment for more than 20 hours per week) – no charge for the MyWay card (may be obtained from Canberra Connect Shopfronts, ACT Libraries and COTA ACT with proof of residency and date of birth). Bus fares for seniors are 50% or less than the regular adult fare, and free for over 70s.
Australian Interstate Seniors – may also apply for a free MyWay seniors card for concessional travel. Apply at a Canberra Connect Shopfront (Belconnen, Tuggeranong, Woden or Dickson).
Unfortunately there is no concession for international seniors.
[Update 1 April] Sunday buses for those staying at Abode Woden and relying on bus transport:
The public buses (300 series Blue Rapid buses) do not start early enough for the 26km walkers to get to the Albert Hall in sufficient time on Sunday, therefore we have made arrangements for our bus charter, Deane Transport Services, to stop by the front entrance to Abode Woden to collect any walkers who are staying there. There is no charge to travel on either of these Deane buses. Please note that there is no return bus service offered, so you will be required to use public transport to return to Abode Woden after your walk on Sunday.
Bus 1: 7:10am board Deane’s bus at Abode Woden – bus will depart at 7:20am for Albert Hall (for any 26km walkers)
Bus 2: 8:10am board Deane’s bus at Abode Woden – bus will depart at 8:20am for Albert Hall (for any 21km or later walkers)
Suggestions for International Visitors
If you are flying in via Sydney you will arrive at the international terminal. Immediately outside the terminal you can catch a Murray’s bus to Canberra for about $45 per person, which takes you right into the Canberra City in just over 3 hours. This is often quicker, easier and cheaper than transferring to the domestic terminal and catching a domestic flight. Once in Canberra it is a short walk around the corner or across the road to the bus stops which will take you to your hotel. Catch any Blue Rapid bus (300 series or 900 series on weekends) from Alinga Street or Platform 1 in the City to the Woden interchange if you are staying at Abode Woden (you will pass Albert Hall on your way).
If you are planning to spend some time in Sydney before (or after) coming to Canberra, there is a train from the airport to the city & you should then be able to get around using public transport (you will need to get an Opal card & that will allow you to use all trains, buses and ferries while in Sydney). If you are planning to stay in the city centre and do the IVV walks, a hire car is NOT advised due to traffic congestion, lack of parking and very expensive parking when it is available. We recommend you save yourself the stress and use public transport in Sydney. From Sydney, you can also catch the Murray’s bus from outside Central railway station to Canberra.
If you arrive in Sydney very late or have a flight that departs very early, there is a Rydges Hotel right by the international terminal, and where the Murray’s Bus departs.
If you fly into the Canberra airport, there is now a regular bus to the city (11 or 11A), which arrives at Platform 9. You then need to walk to Platform 1 to catch the Blue Rapid bus to Woden.