With an abundance of good weather, this week in Canberra is set to be a big…
Boys nights out can be tough to plan.
As a Canadian addicted to travelling, I’ve been fortunate enough to experience some epic nights out in a number of cities known for their nightlife such as Vegas, London, Vancouver, Stockholm, Amsterdam, Barcelona, Alicante and Hollywood.
But some of the best nights I’ve had have been right here. Yep, in my recently adopted hometown of Canberra.
What I like about Canberra is whatever mood you’re in, you can find a place that suits. Whether it’s live music, dancing or having a few too many pints with your mates I haven’t been disappointed (until the next morning).
So you can steer your mates in the right direction and skip the mood-killing planning stages of a night out, I’ve selected four itineraries that will tickle everyone’s fancies and be selected based on mood and day of the week.
#1 The Kingston Area
Best night: Thursday
Mood: Chilled and conversational
Having recently moved to Griffith I didn’t know too much about the Kingston scene, but after spending a few nights out I quickly adapted and selected a few favourite spots. My recommendation would be to head to The Dock on a Friday for after work drinks and dinner. Enjoy the calm feeling that The Foreshore brings and the distance from the City.
From here you and your mates can head to Old Kingston and try your luck at The Durham if you’re thirsting for craft beers at an old school pub or the lively Little Brooklyn gastropub which has a more modern feel and open dance floor. This route is best for when you’re with very old friends or very new friends and want to hear what everyone is saying.
#2 Loose as a Moose
Best night: Saturday
Mood: Wild and celebratory
Back in uni my flatmates and I had a rule called the ‘Red Card’.
It meant that each of us got to choose one night per year (without notice) and the others had to drop literally everything we had planned and rally up for a big night. For some reason I think I’d be heading to Mooseheads for one of those nights.
All jokes aside, it’s a fun place to start a night out and/or perhaps end up. You even can play a Moose-only drinking game: taking bets on how many times the guy with the mop walks by in ten minute spans – loser shouts. The best part is you’re now in a central place and can easily jaunt to Uni Pub for some pool and drinks or the DJ on the top floor or head to the other side of the Sydney Building to Mr.Wolf if you’re feeling a club that plays an eclectic mix of beats.
Best night: Friday
Mood: Cool and playful
I would have to say out of all the places I’ve visited in Canberra, Braddon comes alive the most with its own culture.
For a good Friday session I would suggest starting at the BentSpoke Brewing Co. as soon as you knock off work where you can indulge in a number of internally brewed craft beers amidst good conversation. After a good taste here take a short walk to Hopscotch where you can either stick with your pints or move to a wide selection of whiskies and other spirits. The thing I like about Hopscotch is that it’s fairly spacious and open making it easy to mingle with others. There’s also the option of hitting the dance floor once enough courage is mustered.
From here the night can go two three ways. Pack it in, stay at Hopscotch, or move somewhere else such as Knightsbridge Penthouse for a dance and live DJ. Knightsbridge entices a fun, older crowd in comparison to some of the more typical nightclubs in Canberra like Academy.
#4 City Lights
Best night: Friday or Saturday
Mood: Indulgent, celebratory
With many options available in Garema Place it becomes a question of what you are looking for. What you’ll find here is an investment in atmosphere – lots of effort has gone into creating the perfect vibe for these venues.
My favourite starting place would have to be HonkyTonks because of the Tex-Mex food like tacos and the laid-back vibe. The sangria is great and very shareable and the DJs are quality. Hippo Co. has a classy, rustic feel and a high-grade selection of whiskey and cocktails to pair. It’s dark and intimate – a good place for really indulging in some well-made drinks. If you’re feeling a more chill night, a fun place to check out would be King O Malley’s for a classic Irish pub atmosphere with a live band – not to mention the Guinness.