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Your guide to Canberra’s pub scene

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Who said Canberra doesn’t have pubs? On the contrary, the capital has an eclectic blend of exciting new venues and others steeped in history.

Whichever your preference, pub crawls generally follow the same crowd-pleasing formula of live music, big screens and a cracking good schnitty. Bringing together old and new, northside and southside, we bring to you the ultimate Canberra pub crawl.

Remember: when visiting venues, keep COVID-safe measures in mind—for your sake and theirs.

The last thing we want to do is make life hard for our favourite pubs, so here’s a cheat sheet:

Newcomer: The Fenway Public House, Woden

Despite being Canberra’s newest addition to the pub scene, The Fenway has quickly gained a loyal following. And with its hearty meals, sunken indoor beer garden, cocktail sunroom and large integrated TV screens, it’s not hard to see why.

Old-timer: The Kingston Hotel, Kingston

The “Kingo,” as it is affectionately known to locals, is one of Canberra’s oldest pubs, dating back to 1922.

With live sport, two bistros, an outdoor courtyard and a cosy feel throughout, this is our answer to the old corner pubs of Melbourne or Adelaide.

Newcomer: Public, Manuka

Ok so it’s not “new new”—it’s been around since 2010, after all—but Public Bar still has that fresh glow about it.

Surrounded by greenery on the corner of Manuka’s bustling Franklin Street, Public offers quirky share plates and modernized pub food, making it the perfect spot to kick back, take a seat and enjoy a lazy afternoon.

Old-timer: King O’Malley’s, Civic

One of Canberra’s most iconic pubs, everyone’s a local at King O’Malleys. The Irish-themed pub is home to one of the widest ranges of single-malt scotch and whiskies in Canberra and lip-smacking pub grub.

Located in the heart of the city’s Garema Place, it’s also the perfect spot for watching the hustle and bustle while enjoying a drink or two.

Newcomer: Assembly, Braddon

Assembly is one of those places where time seems to slip away. You promise yourself “just one quick drink” but the atmosphere and general vibe get in the way of it all, and before you know it it’s dinner time and you may as well stay for a bite.

And with meals like crispy buffalo wings and pulled pork burger on the menu, why not?

Old-timer: Old Canberra Inn, Lyneham

With live music, hearty meals and traditional Tudor decor, Lyneham’s Old Canberra Inn is a nod to the English pubs of yesteryear.

Boasting a comprehensive pub menu and a large outdoor entertaining area, it’s deceptively expansive interior means there’s plenty of space for everyone.

Find what makes Canberra more than meets the eye at

Please drink responsibly and visit for information about restrictions.

Feature image: Public in Manuka by Tim Bean Photography.

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