We all know that there are more things to do on a regular day in Sydney and New South Wales than you can shake a didgeridoo at (and if you don’t know that already, get on it!), but the state is also home to some fabulous festivals.
Read on for 5 ways to pass the time when stunning beaches, unique eco-systems, brilliant breaks and the friendliest people on earth just aren’t enough for you.
Vivid 2014 – Image Credit Andrew Smith
Sydney sparkles, shimmers and shines as the sails of the Sydney Opera House are splashed with colour and the Harbour foreshore comes alive with light installations and 3D-mapped projections during Vivid Sydney, the winter festival of light, music and ideas. Explore the Vivid Light Walk at Circular Quay, be inspired by the Vivid Ideas program of talks and workshops, and unwind with the line-up of phenomenal artists performing for Vivid Music.
Held in January each year, Sydney Festival takes over the city for nearly three weeks in a huge celebration of art and entertainment – and it’s all free! The event draws in an incredible pool of local and international talent, bringing together some of the world’s biggest names in performing and visual arts. Whether you want to discover abstract art, beatboxing, burlesque, fire breathing, or rock music, there is something for you to see.
Parkes Elvis Festival
Parks Elvis Festival
The Parkes Elvis Festival is phenomenal. In celebration of the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll’s birthday in January, more than 18,000 Elvii (the plural of Elvis) take over the small town of Parkes in Country NSW, for a long weekend of all things Presley. Kick off the festivities on the Elvis Express, a seven-hour train ride from Sydney to Parkes that is bursting with Elvis superfans.
Bathurst 12 Hour
If you’re a fan of gears, horsepower, and exhaust, head to the Bathurst in Country NSW. Petrol heads rejoice as some of the most amazing cars on the planet – Ferraris, McLarens, and Porsches, among others – tear up the asphalt at top speeds during this 12 hour race on Mount Panorama in February. The mountain is also home to the iconic V8 Supercars Bathurst 1000 event in October every year.
Bathurst 12 Hour Race
Celebrating the greatness of Australia on January 26, this national public holiday can be one of the best times to completely relax, or go on a full adventure until the sun goes down. Join the thousands in the water at Bondi donning a massively oversized thong for the Havaianas Thong Challenge. Grill up some “shrimp on the barbie” with friends, and blast your radio as Triple J announces their Hot 100 – the highly anticipated declaration of the year’s best songs.
Australia Day – Bondi Beach