Top 15 Family Outings in Sydney

Sydney, Australia is brimming with activities the whole family will enjoy. From interacting with wildlife to exploring magical gardens, take a look at our top kid-friendly activities down under.

Photo By: Trevor Scouten, Oz Whale Watching

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Featherdale Wildlife Park

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Photo By: Royal Botanic Gardens

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Photo By: Kajo Merkert, Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

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Photo By: ames Horan, Destination NSW

Photo By: Destination NSW

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Photo By: Ethan Rohloff Destination NSW

Whale Watching Cruise

If you’re in the land down under between the months of May-August, hop on a whale watching cruise to spot some of the ocean’s most magnificent creatures. Starting in early May, humpback whales travel thousands of miles towards warmer waters along the east coast of Australia. Sydney is the perfect spot to sight multiple types of whales, dolphins, fur seals and sea birds during the winter months.

Bondi to Bronte Coastal Walk

There’s a reason the Bondi to Bronte coastal walk is one of the most iconic walking trails in Sydney. This relatively easy trail starts at the Bondi Icebergs Club and takes you 1.5 miles to Bronte Beach. Stop along the way for a quick swim or to observe massive rock formations and stunning ocean views. If you’re lucky, you may even spot aquatic life.

Note: If your group is up for a longer walk, start at Coogee Beach — 3.5 miles of beautiful scenery.

Featherdale Wildlife Park

Don’t fret if you aren’t able to see wildlife on the city streets of Sydney. At Featherdale Wildlife Park, you can interact with some of Australia’s most famous furry, feathered and scaly friends. From koalas to kangaroos, echidnas to emus, and Tasmanian Devils to crocodiles, Featherdale features the world’s largest collection of Australian mammals, birds and reptiles in a natural bush setting. For an additional price, you can have private animal experiences, private zookeeper walks and even breakfast with a koala.

Luna Park

This amusement park on the northern shore of Sydney Harbour is one of two amusement parks in the world that is protected by government legislation. Built in the 1930s, Luna Park is known for the giant face at the entrance and traditional carnival rides and games. Entry to the park is free and you can purchase ride passes that best fit your family’s needs.

Picnic Lunch at the Royal Botanic Gardens

Pack PB&Js and a picnic blanket and enjoy the views of the Royal Botanic Gardens. This magical, 74-acre garden features beautiful greenery and flowers, and you may even spot colorful birds, fruit bats and water dragons. Every month, the Gardens’ Volunteer Guides select a range of plants and other garden features to create a self-guided, seasonal tour. After exploring the Gardens, stop next door at Circular Quay to see other Sydney staples like the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House.

Openair Cinema

At American Express Openair Cinema, your family can catch the latest film off the shore of world-famous Bondi Beach. A general admission ticket does not include seating, so bring a picnic blanket or upgrade your ticket to include a comfy lounger. Children aged 4 and under can join parents for free (maximum of two children per adult).

Note: Films begin right after sunset and seasons vary by location. Typically, seasons run from mid-January to early March every year. Check the cinema's website for openings and featured films.

North Sydney Olympic Pool

Take a dip in the pool and enjoy the city sights of Sydney Harbour in this spectacular heated pool. Dozens of world records were set here by Aussie sports stars such as Lorraine Crapp and Shane Gould. This facility also includes a gym, sauna, spa, indoor pool and cafe.

Chinese Garden of Friendship

Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and relax in Darling Harbour’s hidden gem. Just outside of Chinatown, the Chinese Gardens of Friendship offer insight into Chinese heritage and culture. Make sure to stop by The Teahouse for savory treats and traditional Chinese tea.

Stay Overnight at Taronga Zoo

If interacting with Australian wildlife is number one on your family’s bucket list, consider "Roar and Snore" at Taronga Zoo. During this exclusive night safari, you can experience intimate animal encounters and hear stories from resident zookeepers.

Learn to Surf at Bondi Beach

"Surf’s up, dude!" For the more adventurous crew, learning to surf at Australia’s most famous beach is a must. Let’s Go Surfing caters to beginners and recreational surfers of all ages, genders and abilities. Interested in a private family session? The company offers lessons with a personal instructor who can meet your family’s needs and ensure you enjoy your time in the water.

Powerhouse Museum

Located on the site of the old Ultimo Power Station, the Powerhouse features one of the largest museum collections in Australia with almost 500,000 artifacts. The museum is known for its kid-friendly interactive exhibits that celebrate applied science and design. Bonus: Children 16 and younger can visit for free.

Watsons Bay

Catch a ferry from Circular Quay across the Sydney Harbour and spend the afternoon basking in the sun at Australia’s oldest fishing village. Watsons Bay features several small, secluded wharves and beaches perfect for activities like paddle boarding. To see breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean, take the South Head heritage trail to Hornby Lighthouse.

See the City from the Sydney Tower Eye

The Sydney Tower Eye is one of the most recognizable structures on the Sydney skyline. It’s the city’s tallest structure, measuring about 820 feet above street level. It offers breathtaking, 360-degree views and has high-powered binoculars and interactive touch screens so guests can really appreciate the amazing views and spot Sydney’s famous landmarks.

Art Gallery of New South Wales

At the Art Gallery of NSW, families are encouraged to creatively explore and experience art together. While mom and dad enjoy one of the largest galleries of Aboriginal art in Australia, children can follow along with free activity books to keep them engaged and interested.

Explore Cockatoo Island

Take a short ferry ride from Sydney’s city center to Cockatoo Island and learn about one of Australia's most fascinating historical sites. The island's history dates back to the first settlement, serving as a convict penal establishment and shipbuilding yard. To get kids engaged with the island's rich history, stop by the Visitors Center for a free activity book that includes challenges such as Convict Clues and Ship Shape. For a spooky take on the island's convict history, consider a Haunted History Tour.

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