Aboriginal Experiences in the Australian Capital Territory
Namadgi National Park in the Australian Alps is a world of natural bushland, breathtaking vistas, abundant native wildlife and rich Aboriginal history, all just 45 minutes drive from Australia’s capital, Canberra.
As you explore the area you’ll discover old campsites with fragments of stone and animal bone left by the Ngunnawal people during the last Ice Age. You can visit the ancient quarry sites where they gathered stone for making tools and even follow the Yankee Hat Walking Track to the rock painting sites of Yankee Hat Shelter. See where Ngunnawal people harvested nut-flavoured Bogong moths in Mount Kelly and the ceremonial stone arrangements in the high peaks of Mount Namadgi are another attraction you simply won’t want to miss.
With over 50 sites of Ngunnawal occupation in Namadgi, a guided tour will help you experience the absolute highlights of the area. In nearby Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve you can travel back in time as you follow the Birrigai Time Trail to the state’s oldest Aboriginal site, the Birrigai Rock Shelter where the local people took shelter from the extreme conditions of the Ice Age. You can also visit Bogong Cave, where tribes gathered to collect Bogong moths which were a tasty food source, and Tidbinbilla Mountain, a sacred initiation site for young Aboriginal men.
The National Gallery of Australia has recently established a dedicated section highlighting the diversity and complexity of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art. This places particular focus on the evolution of Aboriginal art and its regional stylistic variations. The National Museum of Australia also features an extensive section showcasing both the traditional and contemporary stories of Aboriginal Australians.