For some reason which remains unclear even to me, I have had a mad desire to go up Telstra Tower ever since moving to Canberra. It might be the fact that I can see it perched at the top of Black Mountain for my entire commute then watch it looming over me for my entire work day. It might be the memories of going there on Year Six camp. Or maybe just the desire to play tourist in my new home town…whatever the reason, this week, I ticked a big ticket item off my Canberra Bucket List.
So on a day where a broody storm was brewing the Brindabellas, I dragged husband and daughter up the steep windy road and zig zagged to the top of Black Mountain. Telstra Tower loomed over us. Having stared at it for so damned long and from so many angles from a distance, it was like greeting an old friend up close. I’ve heard it rather unflatteringly described as a giant syringe and a warty penis but I think both are a little unfair on the poor old tower.
We took some appalling selfies at the front of it then headed in, grabbed our tickets and zoomed up to the observation deck (870 metres above sea level for those lovers of useless trivia playing at home). Telstra Tower offers up some pretty spectacular views of the city with plaques letting you know what you are looking at. There is also an open air viewing deck but in true Canberra style, the wind nearly blew us off the tower and into Lake Burley Griffin so we headed back downstairs.
The observation deck has a small gift shop as well as a little café offering milkshakes, coffees and snacks and all of the seating has window views. You can even post a letter from Australia’s highest functioning post box.
The real disappointment was that there is still no sign of the revolving restaurant re-opening but other than that, Telstra Tower is a way to spend an hour doing something a bit different so whether you’re a local or a visitor, I’d say its worth the $7.50 entry fee.
Telstra Tower, Canberra is open from 9am to 10pm
Entry is $7.50 for adults, $3 for kids and pensioners, under 5s are free.