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Best of Vivid Sydney 2024 for Families

What makes us human?

That’s exactly what this year’s Vivid Sydney Festival will aim to spotlight – our love, kindness, compassion and creativity – across the interactive experiences and events that make up the 23-day program. Now hailed as the Southern Hemisphere’s largest multi-artform festival, this year Vivid will run from 24 May to 15 June and explore the theme of ‘Humanity’ through Light, Music, Ideas and Food. Here’s our round-up of the must-see attractions for the family so you can make the most of your visit.

Lighting of the Sails, Echo (2024) by Julia Gutman, image courtesy of Vivid Sydney


✨ Opera House: Lighting of the Sails

First up on our must-see list is the iconic Sydney Opera House. Every year, the Opera House becomes a dazzling canvas for Vivid’s creative projections and this year will see the artwork of 2023 Archibald Prize winner, Julia Gutman, adorning the Sydney Opera House sails for Lighting of the Sails: Echo (2024). 

Watch as the iconic sails of Sydney Opera House are wrapped in swaths of Gutman’s textural work which sees Roman poet Ovid’s myth of Narcissus afresh. Not only is this an old story made new, it’s also a collision of bygone craft and modern technology. By digitising centuries-old fabric making techniques, Julia and Pleasant Company have transformed donated textiles into an animated, pertinent epic.

Address: Circular Quay
When: 24 May – 15 June, 6pm-11pm
Cost: Free
More info: 

Reg Mombassa light installation at Customs House, image courtesy of Vivid Sydney

✨ Vivid Light Walk

Next, make your way to the Rocks to see Circular Quay and to enjoy the Vivid Light Walk – across 8.5 kilometres, this year’s Vivid Sydney Light Walk features its longest continuous light walk, stretching for 8km and linking the Sydney Opera House to Central Station. 11 Sydney CBD locations will ignite with Circular Quay, Sydney CBD, The Rocks, Barangaroo, Darling Harbour, Darling Square, Darling Quarter, The Goods Line, Central Station, Luna Park, and, Taronga Zoo all coming to life with a mesmerising kaleidoscope of light artworks.

Not sure where to start? Just before Lights On each night at 6pm, you can catch First Light, a ‘Calling Country’ that’s broadcast across the Light Walk at 5.55pm every evening.

Tip: On opening night, there’s a special live performance and Welcome to Country taking place at 5.30pm at Campbells Cove (you can also watch this live broadcast on screens across the Light Walk and at the Tumbalong Park stage).   

Where to next? After First Light head to Customs House to experience Gumscape with Road and Creatures, Reg Mombassa’s surreal journey with one-eye koalas and bacteria monsters as your travel companions. Then find Embrace right next to Circular Quay station, an invitation to reach out and touch one of the circle of silhouettes and contemplate our shared humanity.  

How to plan: With 60 attractions including light installations, 3D-mapped projections, venue takeovers and jaw-dropping spectacles, the Vivid Light Walk transforms the city completely. To keep your bearings, be sure to visit Vivid Sydney 2024 to see their Light Walk Itinerary.

Sensory friendly
As one of the busiest sections of the Vivid Light Walk, we’d recommend visiting Circular Quay during a quieter time so mid-week vs weekends are best. This year Vivid Sydney have identified several sensory friendly installation in their

Looking for some pram or wheelchair friendly options? In addition to Hickson Road Reserve, the lawn in the front of Museum of Contemporary Art is an accessible viewing area. From there, you’ll be able to take in the city skyline and illuminated harbour as well as works like the Sea, Sand and Stars installation by Chinese Australian artist Guan Wei on the MCA façade and Lighting of The Sails.

Address: Opera House but with viewing points all over Circular Quay
When: 24 May – 15 June, 6pm-11pm
Cost: Free

Dark Spectrum light installation Vivid Sydney 2024, image courtesy of Vivid Sydney

✨ Dark Spectrum

An electronic labyrinth awaits in the abandoned tunnels under Wynyard Station. Go deep underground, travel back in time within the Wynyard Tunnels, then fast forward to right here, right now. Plunge into a space of misdirection and discover a secret spectrum of touchable colour with 300 kaleidoscopic lasers, 500 handmade lanterns and over 250 searchlights in an underworld of intensity and power.

Note: Dark Spectrum is suitable for a wide range of age groups to enjoy, however children between the ages of 6 and 12 must be accompanied by an adult and children aged 5 and under are not permitted into the event. For safety reasons, strollers and prams are not permitted. There will not be a designated area to store strollers or prams at the event.

Address: Wynyard Tunnels, Wynyard Park, 1001 York Street, Sydney NSW 2000
When: 24 May – 15 June 2024
Cost: From $35
More info:


Vivid Kids at Tumbalong Park, image courtesy of Darling Harbour

✨ Vivid Kids 

Who said the adults should have all the fun? Round up the little ones and start your Vivid Light Walk journey in Tumbalong Park at 5pm each Saturday during the festival as the stage lights up with free children’s acts ahead of a night of live music.

Vivid Kids at Tumbalong Park 2024 entertainment line-up:

25 May: Buuja Buuja Dance – It’s time to learn about the amazing craft and culture of our First Nations people with Buuja Buuja Dance. This First Nations led dance group will teach all the little feet present some of the oldest dance steps in the world!

1 June: The Beanies – The Beanies are completely silly! They also know how to write a very catchy, fact-packed tune. Plus, they’re experts at making each and every kid feel gloriously and unapologetically themselves. Which means, you’re in for a fun, laughter and adventure crammed show at Tumbalong Park.

8 June: Formidable Vegetable – Veggies have never been so appealing. Formidable Vegetable craft family-friendly electro-funk with a planet loving message. From five to 95, everyone can learn something from one of their toe-tapping shows.

15 June: The Quokkas – This five-piece deliver empowering messages of inclusion and diversity in a fun and lively way. The Quokkas’ all have different cultural backgrounds and physical abilities, and want to show everyone that anything is possible, no matter who you are

Address: Tumbalong Park, 11 Harbour St, Darling Harbour, Sydney
When: Saturdays during the festival from 25 May, 5pm
Cost: Free
More info:


Tumbalong Nights Vivid Sydney, image courtesy of Darling Harbour

✨ Tumbalong Nights

Want to keep the party going? Stay on after Vivid Kids shows for contemporary music as the best international voices and local talent take to the stage at Tumbalong Park for 12 nights of free live music.

Djs keep the vibes spinning from Sunday to Wednesday nights. Live music starts at 7.30pm each Thursday to Saturday (and Sunday 9 June) – with kids shows (listed above) each Saturday from 5pm. Expect music from Mallard + Tiffi, Jalby Muna, Forest Claudette + The Blssm and many more. Get the full Tumbalong Nights entertainment line-up here.

Address: Tumbalong Park, 11 Harbour St, Darling Harbour, Sydney
When: 24 May – 15 June, from 7.30pm
Cost: Free
More info: 


Lightscape Royal Botanic Gardens, image: Keith McInnes
Copyright: Copyright 2023 Destination

✨ Lightscape, The Royal Botanic Garden

One of 2023’s stand-out installations, Lightscape is back in Sydney and re-imagined for Vivid 2024. Experience the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney in a new light, with breath-taking lightworks created by acclaimed local and international artists.

Stroll beneath towering tree canopies illuminated in mesmerising colour, be awestruck by larger-than-life flowers and travel through gorgeous glowing tunnels.

Note: On each Lightscape event day The Royal Botanic Garden will close to the public at 5pm and reopen to Lightscape ticket holders from 5.30pm onwards. They recommend planning for a 90-minute visit, in order to experience everything Lightscape has to offer.

The Royal Botanic Garden has been a popular Vivid destination for families but this year’s Vivid sees the return of this attraction as a paid event so book in advance to avoid missing out.

Address: The Royal Botanic Garden, Sydney, Queen Elizabeth II Gates
When: 24 May – 15 June, 6pm-11pm
Cost: From $38 for adults, $28 children (kids under 3 free). Off-peak discounted tickets available options on Mondays and Tuesdays starting from $30 adults,  $18 children
More info:


Got a tip for enjoying Vivid Sydney with kids? Leave a comment below or email us at

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