Places to Go

New to Sydney? Six Must-Attend Events


While Melbourne is oft heralded as Australia’s cultural hub, Sydney is also the home of a bustling centre filled with events, entertainment, and performances.

If you’re new to Sydney’s scene – perhaps you’ve come from a different part of Australia, or a different country altogether – then you’ll be wondering what events contribute to the city’s vibrant atmosphere. When in doubt, here are six events you must attend to experience the Harbour City.

Sydney Festival
Held in: January

Home to some of Sydney’s finest visual art exhibitions, installations, musical performances and live theatre, Sydney Festival is an event that sees the city come alive. With over 20 days of entertainment, Sydney Festival is your chance to see the city’s best talent and bask in the glorious Australian summer. From concerts at night to light displays, you’ll catch a glimpse of everything that makes this city special. However, make sure you book at in advance, as the city can get jam-packed in the summer.

Crave Sydney Food Festival
Held in: October

Sydney boasts plenty of cafes, restaurants, and bars for any food connoisseur, and the Crave Sydney Food Festival is your chance to delight your taste buds with some new flavours and cuisines. With the World Chef Showcase, the Growers Market and the iconic Night Noodle Markets in Hyde Park, this is a chance to enjoy Sydney’s multiculturalism at its most delicious.

Opel Moonlight Cinema
Held in: December – March

Want to enjoy the Sydney summer and watch your favourite flicks under the stars? The Opel Moonlight Cinema is the perfect opportunity to catch a classic film in a classic location: the lawns of Centennial Park. Pick a film and a night, book your tickets (priced between $14 to $32), and be prepared for a wonderful night of relaxing outdoors with your favourite celebrities flecked across the screen.

Art and About
Held in: September/October

Sydney’s key art festival, Art and About, sure is all about the city – artists utilise key landscapes in the Harbour City and bring them to life with installations, sculpture, painting and film. From Hyde Park to Queen’s Square, no location is safe from these artistic masterpieces – you’ll delight in exploring Sydney with these pieces of art to discover along the way.

Vivid Sydney
Held in: May/June

Vivid Sydney is touted to transform Sydney into a canvas of ideas, lights, and music – and transform it, it does. With lights cast upon the Harbour Bridge, the Opera House, and the cathedral, the city becomes a playground for neon projections and comes alive once the sun goes down. The festival also has live music and talks to encourage the people of the city to let their creative side run wild.

The Sun-Herald City2Surf

Held in: August

For the more athletic visitors to Sydney, the City2Surf is a great way to catch the best sights while moving your body at the same time. The 14km run starts in the heart of Sydney’s CBD and then goes through Rose Bay and Military Rd to the world-famous Bondi Beach. This is a fantastic chance to not only see the city, but also meet some Sydneysiders as well – even when they’re puffing and sweaty, they’re a great bunch to know!

Author bio: Liza Jenkins is a writer who is currently looking for accommodation for the next Sydney Festival. She can’t wait to see 2001: A Space Odyssey with a live symphony performance.


Wandering the Earth for truth, love of life and to make a difference however I can.

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