Things to do in Sydney these Christmas holidays
Kayaking on the Sydney Harbour
There’s nothing better than kayaking around the Sydney Harbour on a Sunday afternoon. I personally love Rose Bay- where typical kayak-hire for two sets you back around $40 for several hours. Get some vitamin D while you train your core and explore some scenic inner-city bays.
High Tea at the Vaucluse House Tearooms
I adore Vaucluse house- it’s a fantastic way to spend your day. There’s something unmistakably romantic and sentimental about wondering through its spacious rooms and imagining life before our time. The garden is breathtaking and perfect for some fantastic photos. After you finish exploring the beautiful Wentworth home, relax with some tasty treats at their impeccable tearooms. This one’s guaranteed to make you feel perfectly serene.
Bondi to Coogee
Bondi to Bronte is arguably one of the most popular coastal walks in NSW. I love starting my weekends by extending it a little further a walking all the way to Coogee, having some breakfast and juice at the Coogee Pavilion, and heading back to Bondi. It’s a breathtaking walk any time of year, but I especially love this scenic trek in early Summer when I can take a quick dip in the beautiful Gordons Bay on my way home. For those who have an appreciation for fine architecture, prepare for a treat, many of the homes you’ll see along the way are an absolute dream. Along the way, I enjoy strolling through the Clovelly cemetery and looking out onto the sea from the very top of the hill- it’s quite spectacular paired with the beautiful tombstones. Bondi to Coogee will-not disappoint.
Art Gallery of NSW
The Art Gallery of NSW is one of my favorite places in Sydney- its selection of works from around the world is truly impressive. The last several times I’ve visited, they had some fantastic works by Del Katherine Barton and Brett Whiteley on display. It is a place of complete serenity for me and if you enjoy art, I can assure you that you will get lost in its mystical halls for hours on end.
As a brief side-note, if you’re a fan of Brett Whiteley, you can also visit his home and workspace in Surry Hills to see the settings behind his inspiring works. I definitely recommend it.
Go Bike Riding in Centennial Park
If you’ve never visited Centennial Park, you’ll be surprised how secluded it feels, despite being so centrally positioned. It’s such a versatile park, full of fun activities that can be explored. From horse-riding to casual BBQs and bike-riding, it’s the perfect sunny weekend destination.
Explore the Royal National Park
Have you ever been to the Royal National Park, south of Sydney? If not, then I can confidently say you need to book a day trip there. Pack some snacks, friends (and kids if you happen to be lucky enough to have some), get in your car, and prepare for a treat. My personal favorite Royal National Park destination is Wattamolla Beach. I like its versatility with the wild beaches, safe, freshwater bays, and cliff jumping spots for the adventurous. My words cannot do its beauty justice, but this image will give you an idea of what to expect. Last year I had a birthday BBQ at the beach- it was the end of March and even during questionable weather- it is a sensory treat.
Take a dance class with the best at the Sydney Dance Company
Now I know this one’s not for everyone, but individuals that enjoy dancing (or are adventurous enough to find out whether they could potentially enjoy dancing) will love a class with the best in the industry. One of my claims to fame is that I did ballet for many years. That was a lifetime ago and after a decade of not dancing, I struggled to find a studio that had proper classed that were challenging yet gentle enough for my out of habit physique. Sydney Dance Co ticked that box after many disappointments. I like the fact that their classes cater to all levels and are fun and diverse. If you’re after a feel-good activity, this one will do the trick.
Grab some fish and chips and explore Watsons Bay
Watsons Bay is such a cool spot, and the Doyle’s Fish and Chips on the wharf are pretty excellent. I get their fisherman’s basket and head over to the Watsons Bay Boutique Hotel for some fresh coconut juice (in a coconut). I then wander around, enjoying the pretty surroundings- I love the contrast between the peaceful and scenic bay with and the wild, wavy crashing waters of the Gap which is right across the road. Watsons Bay has nice BBQ facilities and perfectly green, manicured grass for wonderful picnics. It’s also one of the best spots in Sydney to watch the sun setting. Enjoy it with friends, kids, or the fam this weekend!
Spend the day at Luna Park
Luna Park is one of those iconic destinations that you MUST visit at least once. I like it best in the evening as the sun is setting. Ride the Ferris-wheel and get your perfect sunset selfie against the backdrop of the beautiful Sydney Harbour. Get your adrenaline pumping with some of the adventurous rides on offer, or do like me and hang out on the carousel, making your friends take millions of photos of you as you gallop past. There’s fairy-floss, corn on a cob, and all the elements needed to make you feel like a carefree kid for a couple of hours.
Relax at the Bucket List with a spectacular view of Bondi
The other night I was walking past the Bucket List at around 11 o’clock on a Friday night and suddenly I felt a warm gush of wind that accompanied the mellow music, gently playing from the venue. Instantaneously, it was summer. That’s what the bucket list is really, it’s the perfect embodiment of what an Australia summer should feel like. Relaxed drinks and food by the beach with some great beats and a killer view of Bondi.
Try a Yoga class
This one may sound clique but when was the last time you did a really good/authentic yoga class (or a yoga class at all)? I’m a huge fan of Body Mind Life- their Tuesday and Thursday night Yin classes have kept me sane at my most stressful of times. Lately, I’ve indulged in some new studios around Potts Point, Darlinghurst, Surry Hills, and Bondi Junction. In Sydney, we are so spoilt for choice for amazing yoga as many of the teachers I’ve been fortunate enough to meet completed their yoga teacher training in India, Thailand, Bali, and other countries that have a very strong focus on training. If you’re a first-timer have a google around and see the best classes in your area, I guarantee you’ll feel 100% more centered and zen.
Try a Salt-Therapy Session
I really like Salt Therapy as it’s super relaxing, easy, and has a lot of health benefits. It may sound unfamiliar but the basic process looks a little like this: you sit in a salt-room or salt-cave, fully clothed, and inhale little particles of salt ( you can’t feel this) over the course of an hour. It cleans your lungs, heals your skin, and positively charges your ions. If you think of those pink Himalayan salt lamps you see at every health food shop, yoga studio, and market- it’s sort of like that times a million. Every time I go, I come out feeling revitalized and energized and I don’t think it’s a placebo because everyone I know that’s tried it, tells me they feel the same. If you’re into all the new age alternative therapies and relaxation treatments, this one’s for you.
Go trekking in the Northern Beaches- check out the coastal route from Barrenjoey Headland to Narrabeen Lakes
A lot of my proposed activities are based around the Eastern Suburbs, so here’s a fun adventure for all the cool cats hoping to explore the mystical lands of the Northern Beaches. The coastal route from Barrenjoey Headland to Narrabeen Lakes is a truly breathtaking experience- especially during late Spring and early Summer when it’s just getting warm. Time will fly as you pass some of the most beautiful landscapes in New South Wales. Give it a go when you get the chance and experience the prettiness for yourself.
Head to the markets- our office favorites are Rozelle, Bondi, and Glebe
Market days can be very hit and miss- to ensure you get the optimal experience, I would recommend heading to Rozelle, North Bondi (on a Sunday), and the Glebe Markets. Some of the coolest bits and pieces I have ever gotten are from the above. Amazing vintage dresses- check, (they also have a lot of fun options in the form of men’s apparel); journals; candles; jewelry; art a vintage mint condition Omega watch ( this one was from Rozelle) and everything in-between. You may just have a stellar day exploring or you may come across an impressive investment.
George St in Sydney is the best inner-city destination for fabulous karaoke. Personally, I go to Wagaya as I adore their food and the combination of those two perfect elements is very hard to beat. All the karaoke venues are well priced during the week so I would recommend breaking the week up and having a karaoke Wednesday, however weekend karaoke is also always a good idea. If you’re a fan of belting out a tune or a keen listener of your friends belting out tunes, it’s a fun idea for a day or night out on the town.
Spend the afternoon at the fish markets enjoying the best local seafood on offer
Whenever I pass by the fish markets, I cannot help but pop in and stock up on the freshest selection of prawns, oysters, and scallops. It’s such an iconic spot to spend the day at, getting a taste for all the local seafood (try the seared scallops in their shells with rice- freshly prepared as you watch) or indulge in some top-notch sashimi as you enjoy the harbour views. The fish market is a funky spot for Sydney-siders and locals alike- you will not be disappointed.
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