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Christmas Day in Sydney – Lunch, Dinner and more [2020]

Are you trying to decide what to do on Christmas Day in Sydney for 2020? The pandemic has changed the game this year, seatings will be limited so get in quick, or you may miss out.

We have been busy updating the dining information on this page and will continue to do so until all the menus have been released. If we’ve missed any, please get in touch to let us know!

Last Updated 21/11/2020

What to do and where to eat for Christmas in Sydney

It can be hard being away from family and friends during the holidays, and it can be challenging figuring out what is open on Xmas day, so we have put together a list of ideas for those of you who want to get out of the house or your hotel room on Christmas day this year.

Whatever you do we hope you have a fabulous Christmas in Sydney.

Where to Eat Christmas Lunch in Sydney

It’s worth noting that 2020 lunches are booking fast – several of the listings below are almost booked out.

Christmas Buffet at Sylvesters Sydney Harbour Marriot
Christmas Buffet at Sylvesters Sydney Harbour Marriot Hotel

It is recommended that you book your Christmas lunch as soon as you can if you have your heart set on a specific spot.

Where to find the best Christmas buffet lunch or dinner in Sydney
This year Christmas buffets with a smorgasbord of choice will likely be a thing of the past. Most restaurants will offer fixed menus or shared plate service.

Are there any Christmas Eve or Christmas night dinners?
Some readers have been asking about Christmas Eve and Christmas day dinners – many of these restaurants are offering those options too so check them out via their websites linked below.

 

Christmas lunch in the City, Pyrmont, Darling Harbour and Barangaroo

O Bar and Dining will offer both lunch and dinner. A five-course meal with your choice from 4 entrees and mains and 3 desserts, added to this a starter course of oysters and to finish petit fours. Vegetarian options are available, and there is also a children’s menu. View the sample menu. Adults $225 and Kids $100.

Christmas Lunch at Botanic House in the Royal Botanic Gardens will offer a shared feast menu by Luke Nguyen. The 2020 menu features an assortment of Luke’s fantastic dumplings, king prawns and scallops and mains of roast duck, wagyu and pork belly. A mango, coconut, raspberry & gingerbread Verrine is served to finish. Bookings are for a 2 hour sitting and cost Adults $160pp

Christmas Lunch at Botanica House
Botanic House Dumplings, king prawns and scallops and mains of roast duck, wagyu and pork belly

Terrace on the Domain 4-course shared feast with an Italian twist. Includes a glass of prosecco on arrival Adults $150pp kids, $55 per person. 12pm or 3pm seatings.

The Calyx Experience4-course shared feast featuring seafood and some delicious desserts. An unlimited beverage package is also included – Adults $180pp or kids $80pp – Seating from 12:00pm-2:00pm

Sir Stanford Hotel Circular Quay – In 2020 they are offering Christmas Eve dinner and buffet, and Christmas Day lunch and dinner. Christmas Lunch is a seafood buffet, no details on how this will be Covid safe yet. There are two seatings. Adults $249 per person – Buffet Including a 2-hour Standard beverage package, Children [6-12 years] $145 

The Christmas Dinner with 2 seatings in the evening from 5:30pm offers a 3-course alternate serves for $119pp and includes a glass of sparkling wine. Kids 6-12 $49 Bookings now open

Q Dining – a delicious 3-course lunch, a glass of Veuve Clicquot Champagne on arrival & wine and beer (12pm-3pm) all with Sydney Harbour as your backdrop. Adults, $229 Teens (12 yrs-17 yrs) $139 Under 12 years $59

Hacienda Sydney Bar + Lounge – 3 delicious Christmas inspired shared courses, a glass of Veuve Clicquot Champagne on arrival, plus flowing wine and beer from 12pm-3pm. Adults, $229 Teens (12 yrs-17 yrs) $139 Under 12 years $59

The Star Complex has several fine dining options. Just be sure to book as these restaurants are bound to be popular.

  • Black Bar and Grill – A four-course menu with a choice of three mains, for $160 for adults and $55 for kids at – See the full menu here.
  • Flying Fish – 3-course seafood feast – $195 for adults and $30 for kids. View the menu here
  • Sokyo – A fusion sharing menu featuring the tastes of Sydney and Tokyo. Mainly seafood – 1 lamb course. Cost for $150 for adults and $55 for kids.

2020 bookings now open for all three venues.

Claires Kitchen on Oxford St will offer a traditional 5-course lunch with a modern twist. There will also be lots of Christmas fun. $140 pp. They also have a Christmas Eve dinner for $110pp. 2020 bookings now open.

Lunch with a bird’s eye view – Sydney Tower and 360 Dining have undergone a rebranding this year and are now known as Skyfeast and Infinity at Sydney Tower. 2020 Christmas menus are not yet available.

Sofitel Darling HarbourChristmas Dinner in Restaurant Atelier will be 5-course fine dining style meal featuring duck and pork. $119 for 4 courses per adult, Children can order à la carte from children’s menu. There is a15% discount for Accor Plus cardholder. 2020 details not yet available.

 

Christmas Day Lunch Harbour Cruises 2020

Chistmas Day cruise on Sydney Harbour may be in short supply this year. We are awaiting updates from cruise operators but with international travellers generally the biggest takers for lunch on the harbour you may want to get in quickly when these become available.

Captain Cook Sydney Harbour
Captain Cook MV 2000

Christmas lunch cruises can be more affordable than many of the waterfront restaurants and most offer a mix of Christmas and Seafood options with drinks included.

Captain Cook – Sydney’s premier cruise company is offering 3 choices for Christmas Day on the  MV Sydney 2000 on Christmas Day. The cruise departs at 12.30pm and returns at 3pm.

  • Ocean Deck – Christmas platters plus standard bar package of house wines, beers & soft drinks. This is on the entry-level deck with no stairs. Currently early bird of $179 – Normally $225 | Child 4-15 $159. More details including menu and bookings here.
  • Club Deck Lunch – 4-course lunch with superior drinks package held on the middle deck. Early bird $195 Normally $250 | Child 4-15 $189 More details including menu and bookings here.
  • Sky Deck – 4-course premium lunch plus superior wines, beers and spirits served on the top deck. Earlybird $195 Normally $250 | Child 4-15 $189 More details including menu and bookings
Join family and friends out on the harbour Christmas Day

Other cruise options include:

  • Vagabond Cruises have a 3-hour lunch cruise $130 for adults and $100 for kids (children under five free) Drinks not included
  • Oz WhaleWatching – one of the friendliest boats on the harbour is offering a 3-hour seafood buffet including drinks for $147 for adults and $97 for kids.
  • Majestic Cruises – a Christmas banquet and drinks package $179 for adults and $130 for kids.
  • Sydney Harbour Showboat – a 3-hour banquet lunch cruise with drinks package included. Jazz duo and the views provide the entertainment. Adults $169
 
 

Christmas Day lunch with Sydney Harbour or water views

Fancy dining with a view? These options all over water views.

Watson's Bay Christmas lunch
Christmas lunch at Watson’s Bay Hotel

Quay Restaurant – with a prime position on the waterfront opposite the Opera House and it’s status on various lists of best restaurants around the world this is a splurge for sure but for cashed-up food lovers, it’s an experience that’s hard to beat. The 2020 menu will offer Champagne on arrival, three canapes, and a five-course menu for $490 per person, add wine for $205 per person.

Watson’s Bay Hotel is a very Sydney spot to spend Christmas Day combining a small beach and harbour views. The 2020 menu features snapper, pork and turkey, with a 4-hour beverage package for Adults $299, Teens/kids (10-17 yrs) $125, under 10 free.

Pilu at Freshwater is a fantastic choice for a relaxed waterfront Christmas day.  Their 2020 Christmas lunch will be a four-course menu without drinks for $290 per adult. Children under 12 are $90.

Ormeggio Mosman is offering a variety of 2020 Christmas Eve and Christmas Day packages. Their seafood lunch at $285pp. is a 4-course offering which you can upgrade to a Luxury package $365pp. that adds an Aperol Spritz, 3 oysters and a cheese course. The Children’s menu is $99. More details here. They also have a more relaxed offering at Chiosco

Kingsleys Woolloomooloo is offering a 3-course set menu for 2020. This includes a shared hot and cold seafood platter to start, followed by your choice from 4 mains and 4 desserts. $179 adults and $45 kids.

Otto at Woolloomooloo Wharf is offering a three-course menu with plenty of choices. No turkey, ham or plum pudding here, just plenty of Italian inspired eats featuring fresh local ingredients. Adults $395 Kids $120. Drinks packages starting from $90pp.

Watergrill at Kirribilli Club will offer a three-course Christmas lunch with an alternate service (so make sure you are dining with someone who likes the opposite of you lol). Adults $190 | Kids (under 12) $65. Includes a drinks package.

Ripples Milson’s Point – along with great Harbour views  Ripples will offer a three-course set lunch menu with choice plus snacks, bread, olives and sides – Adults $215 and $95 for kids.

The Nielson in Vaucluse will offer a three-course set menu with choice plus snacks, bread, olives and sides for $215 for adults and $95 for kids. It’s an easy transition to the beach for a Christmas Day swim in the afternoon.

Aqua Dining North Sydney – with its position almost directly under the harbour bridge and views across to the Opera House this Christmas lunch will be one you remember. On offer is a three course set lunch menu with choice for $255 per person. Matched wines are available from $75 per person. A children’s menu will be available for $95 per child (under 12 years old).

Bather’s Pavilion with its fantastic beach and harbour views and a few dining options ranging from brunch, a restaurant or cafe lunch or a formal lunch with a drinks package. This year Brunch will be $125, a formal lunch with drinks $295 and a 3-course bistro lunch only $195. Full pricing details here.

If you want something a bit different to the traditional Christmas fare The Gantry at Pier One will feature a four-course tasting menu showcasing Australian ingredients for only $349 per person, add a 2-hour premium drinks package for $60 or Champagne for $99 2020 details not yet available

​The Park Hyatt at The Rocks will offer 2 options for both lunch and dinner menus  Either a set menu or shared family-style. Lunch $340 with dinner on Christmas Eve or Xmas Day at $220. Details for 2020 not yet available.

 

Related: Check out our Sydney Christmas Gift Guide to support local small operators

Christmas Lunch in Manly and the Northern Beaches

If you fancy Christmas day in Manly, then you should have several options. Last year many of the restaurants on the wharf were open for Christmas lunch and dinner. As these become available I will update this page.

Q Station at North Head in Manly is offering two options, a degustation lunch. Prices $220 adult (18+) / $180 teen (13+) / $155 child (9+) A family seafood lunch $200 per adult (18+) $160 per teen (13 – 17 years) $90 per child (5-12 years) $35 per infant (1-4 years)

Both of these offerings include a drink package of house beers, white, red and sparkling wines, and soft drinks. Booking quickly, so don’t wait.

Whitewater at Manly Beach is a local favourite and is offering a 3-course non-traditional menu perfect for anyone that prefers to avoid roast turkey and stuffing. $130 for adults and $65 for kids.

Manly Wine, one of our favourite spots overlooking Manly Beach is offering a three-course shared menu that includes Ham, Turkey and Barramundi and prawns. It is very reasonably priced at $120 for adults and $50 for kids. Check the menu on their website.

Beach House at Avalon – A Christmas Aussie Feast – a 3-course meal with shared entree platters, choice of main and dessert. Adults – $115pp with a glass of sparkling on arrival, Kids – $40pp with unlimited soft drinks. Seatings – 11:30am – 1:30pm or 2pm – 4pm

 

Chirstmas lunch in Sydney’s North and Northwest

The Epping Club – With ham, turkey, seafood platters, a choice of three mains and enough dessert to think you are at nana’s place the lunch at the Epping Club looks like a generous feast!
Adults $125 ($10 discount for members) Kids $49 those under 2 yrs free.

Novotel Parramatta – With seafood and a Christmas carvery and plenty of desserts the spread at the Novotel in Parramatta also includes house wine, beer and soft drinks. Adult $159 Seniors $125 Children 13-17 $106, 5-12 yrs $92, under 4 years free.

The Deckhouse – The view of the Harbour Bridge is a bonus on what is a lovely menu. With a seafood entree, turkey main and trifle for dessert the price includes an alcohol package for adults and soft drink, juice and a gift for kids. $275 adult – $150 child.

Related: Still not sure what to do NYE? Check our guide to NYE Dining.

Good Choices for Christmas Lunch in Sydney with Kids

Darling Harbour would be high on my list for anyone travelling with kids. Most, if not all of the restaurants here will be open and child-friendly. 

  • Fratelli Fresh’s Italian menus are well suited to kids, and the venues are family friends. Their 2020 Christmas menu features budget-friendly offerings at only $89 for adults and $29 for kids. You can add a 2 hr drinks package for $39 (Aperol spritz, espresso martini, house wine, prosecco and craft beer)
  • Nicks Restaurant Group is a great option for families. There are several restaurants in the group, including Seafood, Italian, Greek and steak options. Most located at Darling Harbour.
  • Pancakes at the Rocks will be trading as usual.
  • City Extra will also be opened with their usual menu

Centennial Homestead in Centennial Park will feature a Christmas Day Degustation menu with Oysters, prawns, snapper, beef and chicken. No one will go home hungry here!  Adults $149 and kids $45. 2020 Sold out!

Acre Eatery in Camperdown three-course lunch served shared banquet-style featuring seafood, pork and turkey. This is a very family-friendly venue with space for kids to run around and good value prices. Dinner plus one drink is $199 for adult and $50 for kids Noon till 5pm. View the menu and book here. Special diets can be catered for. 2020 details not yet available

Christmas in the Blue Mountains

Fancy escaping Sydney’s heat and celebrating somewhere different this year? The Blue Mountains is a great choice, eat your body weight in delicious food on Christmas day and then spend the next couple of days walking it off!

Fairmont Resort

With stunning views over the Jamison Valley the Fairmont Resort has two option on Christmas Day and one each on Christmas Eve and Christmas Night.

Christmas Day Luncheon in the Grand Ballroom will feature a seafood starter, choice of four mains, plenty of desserts and a cheese course. House wine and beer, selected soft drinks and tea and coffee also included. See the menu here. Bookings open now, prices $219 adults, / teen (13-17) $179 / children (5-12) $99 / children (4 & under) Free

Christmas Day Lunch in Jamison’s Restaurant will offer a relaxed menu that includes seafood, choice of main, festive desserts and cheese. A selection of beer, wine & soft drinks is also included. Priced at adults $169 / teen (13-17) $109 / children (5-12) $49 / Under 5 Free

Christmas lunch with a view at Hotel Mountain Heritage.

Hotel Mountain Heritage

Why not have your Christmas Dinner at the Jamison Views Restaurant in Katoomba

Indulge in a four-course menu featuring butternut pumpkin soup with parmesan twist, a medley of roast meats, vegetables and buttered broccolini, and traditional plum pudding, brandy anglaise, fine vanilla ice cream and choc curl, washed down with freshly brewed tea or coffee. Priced at $119pp, children $59pp (3-12 years).

The Lookout Echo Point – 3-course menu and cocktail on arrival – seating 12:00pm – 2:00pm
Adults $90 | Kids $40

Christmas Day Coffee

Casual Christmas Day Eats & Coffee (and drinks)

If you prefer not to book something fancy these establishments were open Christmas Day 2019. If you are travelling out of your way to one of these it might be good to double-check before you set out. We will add 2020 details as they become available

City centre and inner suburbs

  • Edition Coffee Roasters will be open for coffee and cakes from 9am till noon
  • Meet Mica in Surry Hills will be open all day 8am-3pm
  • A1 Canteen in Chippendale 8am till midday
  • Boon Cafe – Pitt Street (near Museum Station)
  • Chat Thai -Haymarket
  • Coffee, Tea and Me – Redfern –
  • Organic Bread Bar – Darlinghurst
  • John Montagu – Darlinghurst – coffee only 8am-noon
  • The Factory Grind – Surry Hills – from 6am
  • The Pelican Hills – Surry Hills
  • Joseph Hyde – Darlinghurst – morning only
  • Tropicana – Darlinghurst
  • Continental Deli – Newtown – noon till 4pm

Barangaroo and Darling Harbour

  • Anason at Barangaroo will be offering up their famous Turkish hospitality from 11.30am-11pm
  • Muum Maam – Thai Christmas lunch or dinner from $65
  • Bungalow 8 at Cockle Bay Wharf will be open noon till midnight
  • Mamak – Haymarket – Malaysian – lunch and dinner

Circular Quay and the Rocks

  • Customs House Bar 11am -11pm
  • Munich Brauhaus in The Rocks 11am till late
  • Tayim in the Rocks will open from noon till 3pm for Middle Eastern eats
  • City Extra at Circular Quay – 24 hours a day 365 days a year for 30 years. These guys will be serving their full menu all-day
  • Pancakes at the Rocks – Pancakes and more.
  • Grain Bar, Four Season Hotel – 2pm–late

Suburbs

  • Pacific Club Bondi Beach – noon till 5pm
  • Shuk – North Bondi, Elizabeth Bay and Chatswood from 7am
  • Love of Beans Carlton – coffee and cake 7am- noon at least
  • Neptunes, Brighton-Le-Sands: 9am-late
  • Sake Manly – Japanese – lunch
  • Efendy – Balmain Middle Eastern – noon–3pm, 5–10pm

Things to do on Christmas Day in Sydney besides eat!

If you would rather miss all the Christmas feasting and spend your day either sightseeing or fighting off homesickness check out these ideas.

Christmas day mass at St Mary's Cathedral
Attend Christmas day mass at St Mary’s Cathedral
  • If you are from the Northern Hemisphere, you might enjoy the novelty of a day at the beach. Bondi is usually busy on Christmas Day, and everyone is happy to share the Christmas spirit.
  • Say Merry Christmas to the animals at Taronga Zoo – They would love your presence, and a bonus is the crowds are usually a little smaller on Christmas Day. SeaLife Aquarium and Wildlife Sydney Zoo are also open and offer joint tickets that reduce the cost a little.

Check out our list of the best Christmas celebrations in Sydney in the lead up to the big day!

  • For something memorable, you could book a Bridge climb. These will probably book out to best to get in early.
  • Attend mass at St Marys Cathedral (Catholic) or St Andrews Cathedral (Anglican)
  • Jump on the 8.54 am train up to Katoomba and explore the Blue Mountains in relative peace as many tour operators do not run on Christmas day.

Have you sorted your plans for Boxing Day?  Don’t miss the start of the Sydney to Hobart

I hope one of these ideas appeals to you. I would love to hear how you plan to spend your Christmas day in Sydney.

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16 thoughts on “Christmas Day in Sydney – Lunch, Dinner and more [2020]”

  1. Thanks a bunch for sharing this with all people you actually know what you are talking approximately!

    Reply
  2. St James Church on King St is much better than the cathedrals, and more friendly to all people. The do a kids service on Christmas Eve too

    Reply
  3. Hi. Are there any late afternoon or dinner options or is everything centred on lunch. We like to enjoy the day and have a great dinner afterwards.

    Reply
  4. We are wanting to have a Christmas Lunch buffet not over the top cost wise with the family in Sydney but has to be electric wheel chair friendly and if possible not far from a railway station so the patient can travel from hospital in the wheel chair to the destination by train.

    Reply
    • I have just completely updated this page so have another look if you can. I think Silvesters at the Sydney Harbour Marriot could be a good choice with a flat 3 minute walk from Circular Quay Station.

      Reply
  5. we are a group of 6 who would like to have lunch on Christmas Day do you have a luncheon Menu for Christmas Day this Year ?

    Reply
    • That would be fine Rie, just make sure you have all your picnic supplies on Christmas Eve as very little is open Christmas day and what is open is very expensive. Merry Chrismas

      Reply
  6. Thank you for some great tips Paula. I’ll be in Tasmania this year for Christmas but it’s always good to know what to do on a day like Christmas.

    Reply

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