We might not have snow, ice skating rinks or cosy fireplaces but Christmas in sunny Sydney is just as magical a time as anywhere else in the world. One thing Sydney does very well is the sparkling lights decked out around the city. The whole city transforms into a magical wonderland, drenched in a kaleidoscope of light and colour as far as the eye can see. Get in the spirit of the season and check out these brilliant Christmas light displays in Sydney.
1. Martin Place Christmas Tree
The Martin Place Christmas Tree is a true Sydney icon in every sense of the word. The tallest Christmas tree in all of NSW is historically decorated with 110,000 LEDs, a 3.4 metre colour-changing star and 330 glossy baubles. Thousands around the city flock to Martin Place for that perfect Christmas shot and the tree looks spectacular both during the day and night.
2. Canopy of Light, Pitt Street
You’ll inevitably find yourself strolling along Pitt Street around Christmas — it’s where the best shopping is. But it’s also a popular spot for its stunning light display smack in the middle of the bustling CBD spot. Thousands of sparkling lights adorn the entire stretch of Pitt Street in this stunning light display. Get more info about the Canopy of Lights.
St Mary’s Cathedral is an absolute staple when it comes to seeing Christmas lights in Sydney. The catholic church illuminates in marvellous light displays and stunning visual effects every year during Christmas. The light show is elevated further thanks to the talented Christmas choir that delights Sydneysiders with nostalgic carols during the holiday season.
4. Queen Victoria Building, Town Hall
Everything about the QVB spells festive, glamour and glitz rolled into one. Right from the iconic Swarovski Christmas Tree — the largest indoor Christmas tree in Australia to the exclusive shopping service, it’s the place to be during the holiday season.
Darling Harbour is a year-round attraction and is constantly upping the ante with dazzling art installations and light shows. But when it comes to Christmas lights, they don’t hold back. There are massive floating baubles on Cockle Bay, pedal boats and rousing fireworks to see this Christmas.
6. The Golden Tunnel, Darling Square
Darling Square is a personal favourite spot, season notwithstanding. The energy is infectious and the food and drink options are limitless. During Christmas, they take it up a notch with their stunning golden tunnel of fairy lights along the tail of The Exchange Building and it’s an absolute sight for sore eyes.
Given the Hunter Valley is a few hours from the city, but it’s long been a holiday fixture for Sydneysiders. With over 3 million lights on display, the lights – spread over 14 hectares of gardens are a must-visit. The Southern Hemisphere’s largest light display comes with picturesque photo ops, a massive bauble tree, Santa’s Cave, fireworks, carnival rides and so much more.
Not a fan of the heat? Check out this dreamy Candlelight Concert.
8. The Rocks
Christmas at The Rocks means lights, markets, heaps of festive dining options and views for days. Plan a trip expecting the merriest of music, glittering fairy and festoon lights and Christmas trees galore. The Rocks Market is an absolute Christmas must-do in Sydney as well.
9. Hillsong, Norwest
Hillsong pulls out all the stops when it comes to its Christmas light displays. You can look forward to glittering Christmas installations, a tunnel of fairy lights, giant trees and reindeers adorned with lights. It’s a gorgeous festive sight; even the Grinch would melt. Be ready for crowds though, it’s a popular spot for Instagrammers.
10. The Grounds
A visit to The Grounds is a good idea any time of the year but especially during Christmas. This year round, they’re doing a super festive theme with snow flurries, a Naughty and Nice lane, candy canes, festive ornaments and heaps more spread across the venue.
Noel is a new Christmas event taking over the Royal Botanic Garden this December. And it’s not just another run-of-the-mill festive show. Expect a wondrous digital forest with giant lit-up treats, delightful festive markets, dazzling light shows every night, light trails and so much more.
12. Macarthur Square
When it comes to Sydney’s very own glamourous light displays, Macarthur Square takes the cake. Complete with spectacular ornaments, vivid, lit-up trees, giant reindeers and everything in between, the displays are sure to get you in the holiday spirit. Even better — the centre extends its trading hours this time of year to let you bask in the warm glow of the lights just a tad bit longer.