What's on in Sydney this Christmas

Nigel AbelloNigel Abello

Ideas for backpackers this silly season

How bad is the FOMO going to be when you see all your family back home eating massive christmas feasts. I bet the memories of your drunk aunt trying to kiss your cat under the mistle toe are starting to make you feel homesick as the festive season approaches.

Despite what you may have heard, there is a lot to do in Sydney on Christmas Day. We have got Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day covered for you.

Local favourites for Christmas

Did you know that our mobile app has one of the largest marketplaces of things to do in Australia. When you're stuck for ideas jump on the app anywhere, anytime.

Local recommendations for you to fill your Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day with:

Haven't had a chance to buy your christmas presents yet? No problems make sure you check out the Carriageworks Christmas Markets on Friday evening from 4-9.


Christmas Eve

During the day head over to the Shangri-La Hotel to see a life-size gingerbread house and twinkling carousel. With free entry your taste buds can have a little party by themselves whilst you marvel at the take-away treats available including Mini Gingerbread Lolly Bag Houses, Ginger Ninja’s Family, Fruit Mince Star Tarts, Mix ‘n’ Match Rocky Road and Christmas Pudding.

After you got a bite to eat make your way to Moonlight Cinema at Centennial Park which hosts a range of movies with general admission tickets starting at $17. With bean bag seating you can be sure to relax in the comfort of Centennial Park whilst catching a few flicks.

After that, spend your night seeing Sydney's Christmas sites! Head down to Martin Place, Sydney to see the 21 metre tall Christmas tree. It lights up from 6pm onwards with a light show held between 8.30pm to 9.15pm.

Image: Sydney.com

If you're away from home share a Christmas message via text on 048 SYD XMAS and watch your message light up the tree for everyone to see. Take a picture and send it to your family back at home so they know how much you're thinking about them this festive season. You never know, nearby the tree there might be some Carols in the City also going on 😉

Image: What's On

For the wild at heart, buy a ticket and join OzParty events for their iconic ULTIMATE Christmas Eve Cruise! This sell-out event brings the best of a 18+ event all together with a cruise, drinks, great company and amazing views over Christmas Eve!

See yourself meeting a whole lot of new friends outside Cargo Bar, King Street Wharf, Darling Harbour at 6:15pm. Soon after you're departing at 7:00pm for a Fancy Dress Cruise for the next few hours. With tickets starting at $89 for a memorable night, you better get in quick to make the most of it! The OzParty Cruise involves:

Christmas Day

Seeing as though you might not be the best version of yourself because of your big night before on the cruise. Try waking up and attending a Christmas Service to start off your morning. This is a family friendly Christmas Day service followed by a community lunch and then distribution of the Anglicare Toys’n’Tucker Hampers. A community brunch will start at 10:30am located at One1Seven Church - 117 Young St, Redfern NSW 2016, Australia.

If that's not your kind of thing, head down to The Bucket List Bondi which is famous for its fish and chips. This Christmas, they're offering a special $35 head set Menu that's perfect after a leisurely day spent at the beach! Get in fast because spots get booked quickly. Find out more info here.

If you feel like doing something on your own or just met some new friends whilst travelling - get down to any of Sydney's beaches, parks or gardens for your own Christmas picnic. Below is a photo of Bondi beach at the start of summer. Typically the beach is always busy but getting down there on Christmas day is a great way to getaway from the hustle and bustle of the city during one of the most peaceful days of the city.

A popular thing-to-do that's open on Christmas Day is Taronga Zoo! It's only a short ferry ride away from the city where you can take in some spectacular harbour views whilst on the way there. The zoo is home to over 300 species of animals with some of Australia's greatest animals there for your viewing and interactive pleasure. Get up close to unique Australian animals such as the echidna and platypus.

The best value would be to purchase a flexipass for $99 (save up to 40%!)

The flexipass will let you into 3 top attractions (Taronga zoo included).

Get that pass here

However, if eating and lousing around isn't your kind of thing how about kayaking in Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park on Christmas Day. Not everyone can say that they've been kayaking but even less kayaking on Christmas Day. It's a crazy fun 3 hour kayak experience in one of the best National parks Sydney has to offer. For more info click here.

Now after your long day surely, you're still up for another adventure! If you decided to skip the Christmas Eve cruise, alas! You're in luck because you can join the Christmas Day Cruise run by Sydney Pearl Cruises! This is a family friendly cruise where you can relax, dine, drink and gaze at the views the Sydney Harbour has to offer. The boat is equipped with a licensed bar for cocktails, plenty of room to dance and party, and there are even prizes to be won. It's a perfect way to meet new people, celebrate Christmas and just have a great festive time. For more info click here.

Boxing Day

Boom! Just like that Christmas Day is over and Boxing day is ahead of us. Worldwide, Boxing Day is full of discounts and sales so head to down to any shopping mall for some great deals. We can recommend a few such as Pitt St Mall, Westfield Bondi Junction and Westfield Sydney!

By this time I hope you're spent - both physically and financially! Christmas is one of the best times of the year so we want to make sure you make the most of it!

This is just a small snapshot of what's available here in Sydney. Be sure to check out our catalog and app for activities around Christmas time or chuck a comment below if you know any other events we can all attend!

Nigel Abello
Thanks for reading guys!

Nigel Abello

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