Live like a Sydney local

Sydney is unstoppable, and nobody knows that better than the people who live there.

Here's our local's guide to finding a great Sydney moment at any time of the year.

Major Sydney events coming up

No matter what time of the year you visit, Sydney is always putting on a show. Whether you're looking for bright lights, a great night out or world-class sport, there'll be something exciting happening around every corner.

Reserve your seats for musicals, shows and concerts in Sydney. Other fabulous venues in Sydney include the Capitol Theatre, the State Theatre, Sydney Lyric, the Roslyn Packer Theatre, the Theatre Royal, and the ICC in Darling Harbour. Big spectacles are held at Sydney Olympic Park arenas as well.

You'll discover cutting-edge shows at smaller venues, such as the Belvoir St Theatre and the Enmore Theatre. There are wonderful festivals, too. The eclectic Sydney Festival is in January. Vivid Sydney is held over several weeks in May and June, illuminating the city with amazing digital light shows. Major sporting events are held throughout the year with Sydney hosting 10 World Cups over 10 years.

You'll find convenient public transport options to and from most events in Sydney.

To find out the latest events on offer go to 


Vivid Sydney

Vivid Sydney is back from 24 May to 15 June 2024! The festival will bring a newly reimagined program of light, music and ideas to the city. Vivid Sydney is Australia's most loved and awarded festival, and brings together light artists, music makers and brilliant minds to share their creativity with you. See the city transform, discover new art forms, ride soundwaves, spark new ideas and ignite conversations. Let your imagination take flight. 

Sculpture by the Sea – Bondi

Sculpture by the Sea will return to the Bondi Beach to Tamarama Beach coastal walk from 18 October to 4 November 2024 as the world's largest free to the public sculpture exhibition. The stunning coastal walk will be transformed into a 2km long sculpture park over three weeks featuring 100 sculptures by artists from Australia and across the world.

Shopping the way the locals like it

Everyone knows Paddington; it's been the mainstay of alternative Sydney shopping for years. But have you discovered some of the other inner-city suburbs? We have a few recommendations, based on where the locals like to shop in central Sydney.

  • Right next to Paddington, Surry Hills is the place to add to your vinyl collection or buy an edgy piece of art
  • Newtown is bohemian and arty, with food and fashion to match. Wander down King Street to discover vintage shops, themed boutiques and healthy café food that is truly delectable
  • Located on top of Chinatown's Paddy's Market, Market City offers the only outlet shopping in the centre of the city. You're in the heart of Chinatown here, and the centre's 1909 Dining Precinct on level three has a great selection of Asian restaurants to dip into
  • Balmain, which is also accessible by ferry, for fashion, homewares and jewellery. At Balmain Markets, held the second and fourth Saturday of every month, you can hunt for vintage fashion, pre-loved books, antiques and collectables
  • Rozelle on the weekend. The open-air market every Saturday has a bit of everything; there's great food too

History, culture and art at Carriageworks

Housed in the Eveleigh Rail Yard, Carriageworks offers up a little something for every sense. Regular exhibitions show off world-class art, while performances from local musicians - such as the Aboriginal collective Klub Koori and the design and creativity festival Semi Permanent - are treats worth flying to Sydney for. A Saturday farmers' market offers delicious local breads, meat and veggies, as well as flower stalls loaded with scented wonders from the region.

Carriageworks is Australia's biggest multi-arts centre and a great stop for anyone with an appetite for culture. The unique venue is a heritage site complete with an original railway carriage and blacksmiths' workshops, giving the whole experience an authentic industrial feel. The artists, stalls and performances change regularly, with new exhibits and features popping up all the time.

Keep exploring Sydney

Sculpture by the sea, Tamarama Beach, Bondi, image courtesy of Destination NSW; New Year's Eve Fireworks image courtesy of Destination NSW