Celebrating Lunar New Year in Sydney 2024

Each year Lunar New Year celebrations in Sydney seem to get bigger; they are now said to be one of the biggest outside Asia. Aussies love a party, and with many of our residents having Chinese, Mongolian, Korean, Thai and Vietnamese ancestry, it’s no surprise there are plenty of ways to celebrate!

While Lunar New Year actually falls on Saturday 10 February 2024, the festivities start a week earlier.

Read on and find an event to enjoy…

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2024 is the Year of the Dragon (the wood dragon year to be exact). If you were born in 1940, 1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000 or 2012, this is your year!

The Year of the Dragon 2024

Looking for the best places to celebrate the Year of the Dragon? Look no further; Sydney City Council’s celebrations will run across the week. You will also find local events spread across the city, from Chinatown to Chatswood and Hurstville to Campsie. There is something for everyone, and best of all, much of it is free!

Lunar Lanes Haymarket Street Party

Market stalls, lion dancers and food trucks will bring plenty of life to Haymarket to kick off New Year. Make your way to Dixon Street between 5-10pm on Saturday 10 February.

Lion dancers will begin at 5pm, and there will be performances from Sydney’s Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, Indonesian, Korean, Taiwanese and Japanese community groups on the Hay Street stage.

Lunar Lanes Street Party – Haymarket

Lion Dancers, market stalls and community performances will help get the festival underway

Show Haymarket some love this Lunar New Year and support the small businesses here, many that have been operating for decades. Get the details here.

Fascinating Thaitown will transform a laneway in the heart of Thaitown into a celebration of Thai culture, cuisine, and traditions. This event will showcase a bustling market, live entertainment, a Thai gate art installation, and a drum procession.

Thai dancers will entertain
  • Thaitown Lunar Market: 11 am – 8 pm next to Meriton Suites on Campbell Street. 
  • Opening Ceremony at the Lunar New Year Thai gate: 11.30 am Located at the start of Thaitown on the corner of Campbell and George Street.
  • Long Drum Procession: 11.50 am in the laneway
  • Thai Beer Garden: From 11.30-8 pm at Cosy Corner Thai restaurant
  • Thaitown Restaurant Offer:  Discover the many flavours and dishes of Thailand at participating restaurants around Thaitown offering an exclusive 10% discount on the day. Visit www.thaitbc.org for more information on the program and to download your 10% off voucher

When: Saturday, 17 February 11am – 8pm
Where: Laneway near the corner of Campbell and George Streets, Haymarket

Market City will celebrate the year of the Dragon with a series of free, engaging, and auspicious activities. The celebration will feature installations across all three levels, including flying dragons pursuing a magical orb symbolizing wisdom and spiritual energy.

Join the fun at Market City

You can take selfies in front of a traditional dragon door. The festivities include high pole and dragon dance performances by Jin Wu Koon on 10 and 11 February, showcasing acrobatic feats on 3-metre-high poles, along with giveaways of soft dragon toys, Lunar New Year decorations, and lucky red envelopes.

Children can enjoy free lion and dragon dance workshops on 18-21 January.

Get more information about Market City’s events here

Lion Dancing Performances – Paddy’s Markets Haymarket

  • Friday 9th Feb, 1pm
  • Saturday 10th of Feb, 3pm
  • Sunday 11th Feb, 1pm

See all the Paddy’s Markets fun here

When: Monday 17 February to Sunday 25 February
Where: Market City, 13 Hay Street, Haymarket

Darling Harbour Lunar New Year Festival

One of the best spots to get into the Lunar New Year fun, there is lots scheduled for Darling Harbour. Key events include:

Darling Harbour Lunar Festival

Sydney’s best Dragon Boat teams will head to Cockle Bay Wharf for the annual Lunar Dragon Boat racing weekend. More than 3000 individuals will paddle their way along the water of Cockle Bay over this two day event.

Chinese Garden of Friendship

The Chinese Garden of Friendship will kick off its Lunar New Year celebrations with an opening ceremony on 10 February.

Learn more about Chinese culture – you can take part in a traditional tea ceremony, calming meditation or brush painting demonstration. Or for an extra fee have your Chinese astrology chart read.

Lion Dancers
Experience a traditional lion dance performance

There will be Lion Dancing of course along with Tea Ceremony demonstrations, and traditional Chinese music.

On Lunar New Year’s Day there will be a traditional red envelope for each child who visits the garden. Inside will be a chocolate gold coin, for good luck! (Arrive early to avoid missing out)

They will stay open until 9 pm on Saturday so you can enjoy the ambience of the garden in the evening light.

LEGO Lunar New Year Dragon

Head to Haymarket and help complete the build of the longest LEGO dragon. LEGO Australia is embarking on a quest to create the World’s Longest LEGO Dragon to celebrate Sydney’s Lunar New Year, inviting everyone to Darling Square from February 16th to 18th.

With the head and tail crafted by The Brickman team, the community is encouraged to help build the connecting segments. Participants can design their own ‘dragon scale’ using LEGO bricks, contributing to a collective masterpiece that symbolizes strength and unity.

When: 16th to 18th February l Free
Where: Haymarket, Sydney (Cnr Hay and Harbour Street)

World Square celebrates Lunar New Year with two weekends of festivities on 8th-10th and 22nd-24th February, and daily spectacles in between. The celebration features an interactive dragon pagoda with infinity mirrors and lantern markets, where visitors can buy lanterns and have them inscribed by Chinese calligraphy artists.

The event is packed with traditional music, dragon and lion dances, drummers, LED shows, and stunning decorations, making World Square a prime destination for the New Year. The 16 days of celebration include significant dates like Red Dog Day and the God of Fortune’s birthday, encompassing a period of solemn joy and inclusivity.

On Saturday 24th February the epic Lantern Festival Day concludes the Lunar celebratory season at World Square.

When: 8-10 Feb. & 23-25 Feb. Thur. 4pm-9pm Fri. & Sat. 12pm-8pm
Where: World Square, 644 George Street, Sydney  

Chinatown Comedy Club Celebrates Lunar New Year

Celebrate the Year of the Dragon with laughter at the Chinatown Comedy Club’s hosted at six:twelve, the venue formerly known as Harbour City Cinema and a once-abandoned Chinatown cinema.

Catch a show at the Chinatown Comedy Club

Soul of Chinatown will host the event featuring a lineup of Australia’s finest comedians including Neel Kolhatkar, Alan Fang, Stella Wu, Guneet Kaur, and Henry Zhu, complemented by live music to keep the vibes going.

When: Friday, 16 February, 8pm – 11pm
Where: The six:twelve, 6 Harbour Street, Haymarket
Information and Buy Tickets

Lunar Sea – Australian National Maritime Museum

The Australian National Maritime Museum, together with the China Cultural Centre, is celebrating the Lunar New Year with “Lunar Sea,” offering a series of free, engaging events for all ages throughout February.

Activities include:

  • The Lunar Sea Activity Trail & Lucky Dip Prizes on February 10, 11, 17, 18, 24, and 25 from 10am-4pm, where kids can explore the museum through a trail inspired by lunar animals and constellations to win creative activity packs.
  • Mandarin Language Tours on the same dates at 11am and 1.30pm offer insights into Australia’s maritime history through the lens of navigation, immigration, and Indigenous culture.
  • The Culture Carnival on February 24 features a day of traditional performances, workshops, and displays celebrating Xi’an’s heritage. Activities range from traditional instrument performances and opera to Chinese calligraphy and painting workshops.
  • On February 25, the Lunar Maker Space from 11am-3pm invites families for art-making activities inspired by the Lunar New Year, including ink-painting and lantern making.
Dragon dances on 25 February

Concluding the celebrations, Lunar Performances at 11.30am, 1.30pm, and 2.30pm showcase traditional Dragon dance, martial arts, and more, blending cultural heritage with the maritime setting.

When: 10-25 February 2024
Where: Powerhouse Museum

Johnnie Walker Blue Label Mahjong Club

To celebrate the Year of The Wood Dragon, renowned Sydney chef Dan Hong and actor Remy Hii of “Crazy Rich Asians” fame have teamed up for a unique one night only event at the Johnnie Walker Blue Label Mahjong Club.

Guests are invited to join in the Lunar New Year festivities by participating in mahjong tournaments, under the guidance of a local mahjong master. In addition to the excitement of the game, attendees can savor a special menu featuring Dan Hong’s innovative fusion dishes and enjoy unique cocktails infused with Johnnie Walker Blue Label. This event promises a blend of tradition and modern luxury, offering a distinctive way to ring in the new year.

When: 1:30pm – 9pm, Saturday 17 February, 2024
Where: Est., Level 1/252 George Street, Sydney
Cost: Tickets from $60 inclusive a cocktail and snack. Book here

Lunar New Year Afternoon Tea at Capella’s Aperture

Experience a unique Lunar New Year celebration with Afternoon Tea at Aperture.

Traditional afternoon tea at Capella ©Esteban La Tessa

Enjoy innovatively combined traditional flavors in a menu featuring Salmon Roe Vol-Au-Vent, Maremma Duck San Choi Bao, and Mandarin and Dark Chocolate Cremeaux. Each delicacy is paired with exquisite teas and fine wines, creating an unforgettable experience.

Inhouse guests can also join a special Tea Ceremony & Calligraphy class. Learn more about special Lunar New Year packages here.

Where: Capella Sydney, 24 Loftus Street Sydney.
When: February 9 to 18, from 1- 4pm
Cost: $110 per person, For reservations, call +61 2 9071 5090.

There will be Lion Dancing at every day at Town hall from 6-6.30pm between 11 February and 15 February. Then Thursday to Sunday at 1pm and 6pm.

Lion Dancing Performances – Paddy’s Markets Flemington

  • Saturday 3rd Feb, 6pm (Paddy’s Night Food Markets)
  • Friday 9th Feb, 11:45am
  • Saturday 10th of Feb, 8:30am
  • Sunday 11th Feb, 10am

Lunar New Year Dining in Sydney City 2024

If you are looking for a special Lunar New Year in Sydney menu, you may find a few fewer this year with staff shortages. however, there are still dozens of banquets and special meals taking place this year across the city. Here are a few of our favourites:

We will update these events as details are released

Aria | Circular Quay

Aria’s limited-edition seven course tasting menu showcases prestige ingredients to match their unparalleled views of Sydney Harbour. The Lunar New Year seven-course degustation honours traditional flavours with an Aria twist.  

Aira Lunar New Year Steven Woodburn Photo
Aira Lunar New Year Credit: Steven Woodburn

The 7-course degustation menu will include:

  • Peking duck consommé with abalone and shiitake
  • southern rock lobster with handmade noodles and XO
  • red braised wagyu short-rib, turnip, garlic shoots & ox tail

When: 10-24 February 2024
Cost: $350 per person

The Gardens by Lotus | Darling Harbour

The top of the list has to be Gardens by Lotus. This is THE ultimate spot for a Lunar New Year celebration. Dine on a specially created new year banquet surrounded by a traditional Chinese Garden.

Dine at the Gardens by Lotus – at the Chinese Gardens of Friendship

Check the menu and what they have planned for this year here.

Din Tai Fung | CBD and Suburbs

Every year Din Tai Fung delivers some excellent LNY specials. This year enjoy a traditional Prosperity Toss Salad (Yusheng). With 15 lucky ingredients, including smoked salmon the salad is dressed in a special house made plum sauce. If you really want to stick to tradition, you should shout your hopes for the new year while you mix the ingredients.

Fin Tai Fung’s Prosperity Salad

When: dates tbc
Find the nearest outlet to you here. You can also order buns and other specials for home delivery.

Skyfeast | Sydney Tower

Skyfeast is rolling out the red carpet for Lunar New Year with special additions to their Asian inspired counter. Enjoy an unlimited selection of pork buns, Singapore noodles, crunchy spring rolls and fresh seafood before rounding out the culinary experience with a trip to SkyFeast’s famous dessert bar. 

Skyfeast Lunar New Year
Sky Feast Lunar New Year

When: Lunch or dinner between 9-13 February
Cost: from $115 for lunch or $135 for dinner

Botanic House | Botanic Gardens

Journey through Australia’s multicultural heritage with a nine or ten course, Asian inspired degustation menu. Dishes are made using recipes handed down from chef Luke Nguyen’s Chinese grandfather and feature native ingredients and fresh produce paired with a botanical lunar cocktail on arrival.

Botanic House Lunar New Year Sydney
Botanic House’s Lunar New Year Feast Credit: Anna Kucera

The eight or nine course degustation includes:

  • Sashimi Kingfish, finger lime with miso & sesame oil dressing
  • Chinese steamed barramundi fillets, Bok choy, ice plants, mushrooms with ginger and shallot sauce
  • Vietnamese coconut cake, palm seeds in syrup, kaffir lime pudding, black sesame ice cream and seasonal fruits

See the full menu here

When: Fri 9th  – Tues 13th February
Cost: $105 Lunch and $125 Dinner

Lunar Dining at the Star | Pyrmont

Each of the restaurants at the Star Sydney’s signature will present dishes made from the finest ingredients designed to bring diners good fortune and prosperity for the year ahead.

Premium Lobster Sashimi Platter

Just a sample of the dishes on offer at The Star’s restaurants

  • Sokyo – “Prosperity” – Premium Lobster Sashimi Platter Chef’s selection of 13 sashimi with lobster, caviar, toro & scampi $888
  • Black Bar & Grill“Auspicious” – Wagyu Stuffed Quail King brown mushroom, saltbush $38
  • Flying Fish – “Auspicious” – Woodfired Goolwa Pipis Ginger, native lemongrass $88 / 500gm
  • Cucina Porto“Auspicious” – Prosciutto XO Scallop Baked scallop, seaweed, homemade prosciutto xo sauce $38.80
  • Food Quarter“Prosperity” – Glass Noodle with King Prawns Shiitake mushroom, Chinese celery, sweet soy sauce $38.80
  • Fat Noodle – “Prosperity” – Atlantic Salmon Yu Sheng Salad Radish, carrot, peanut, crackers, osmanthus dressing $38.80

Check the full menus here

When: 9th – 24th Feb 2024

Casual Dining Options | Darling Square

The buzzing precinct comes to life with a lantern tunnel, ceremonious Lion Dancers, and a pop up store offering custom lanterns and traditional sweets, and special dishes from Darling Square retailers including: 

Lunar New Year Darling Square
IIKO Mazesoba

Lion dancers will perform on Saturday 10 & 17 February at 6pm, 7.30pm & 8.30pm.

Lunar New Year Tours and classes

Aussie Chinatown – stories, snacks & secrets

Join Local Sauce, one of our favourite tour operators on their new tour of Chinatown. We went along last month and loved it! The tour uncovers Sydney’s long connection with China and the contributions Chinese-Australians have made to the community.

Along with a really entertaining history lesson, you will discover things hidden away in Chinatown that you have probably never noticed. You also get to taste at least 5 snacks from Cantonese, Nanjing, Xinjiang, and Xi’an cuisines.

At the end of the tour, you will receive a list of more than a dozen places to check out the next time you’re in Chinatown.

When: Every Sunday 11.30am
Cost: Adult: $65, Under 17 years $55 Book directly with the operator here

Luna Lu Dumpling Classes

Celebrate Lunar New Year with Luna Lu’s exclusive dumpling classes led by the renowned Chef Pier Davide Maiuri, whose impressive culinary journey includes experience in top 10 globally-rated restaurants and four Michelin-starred establishments.

Try your hand at making dumpling in this class

Dumplings, a symbol of prosperity and good fortune resembling ancient Chinese currency, are a traditional favorite during the Lunar New Year. Chef Maiuri, a master of his craft, is not only teaching the art of dumpling making but is also available for interviews. He’s eager to share his recipes, insights on curating a Lunar New Year menu, and secrets to making perfect dumplings.

When:
Cost: Adult: $100 to book call  Call (02) 8220 8401 or Book directly

Lunar New Year events in the Suburbs

Lunar New Year celebrations will be held across suburban Sydney with big celebrations planned in Chatswood, Campsie, Bankstown, Rhodes and Hurstville

Chatswood Year of the Dragon Festival

Chatwood is home to some of the biggest Lunar New Year celebrations in suburban Sydney. With plenty of events from street markets to a comedy festival. One of the highlights will be the Twilight Lantern Parade in Chatswood CBD.

Parramatta Lunar Festival

Other highlights of the Chatswood Festival include:

Follow one of the special food trails and try the Japanese, Korean, Taiwanese food

When: Saturday 13 Feb from 6pm
Where: Chatswood Concourse
Cost: Free

Bankstown Lunar New Year Celebrations

The Bankstown Lunar New Year will be a huge celebration featuring live entertainment, where the God and Goddess of Good Fortune will be distributing lucky envelopes. The festivities will include a vibrant dragon dance parade, energetic lion dancing, and the exciting pop of firecrackers, among other attractions.

Start warming up your voice as this years celebrations include karaoke, with a selection of songs available in multiple languages, enhancing the festive spirit. Additionally, our New Year Garden will be a highlight, showcasing an array of food stalls and much more.

When: 4-9pm Saturday, 3 February 2024
Where: Griffith Park and Olympic Parade, Bankstown
Cost: Free

Campsie Lunar Year Noodle Markets

Anzac Mall is the home to the New Year action in Campsie, with a night noodle market being held on Friday and decorations on display throughout the festival period. Street performers will roam the mall providing entertainment. Korean, Chinese and Thai food will be available.

When: 4 February
Where: Anzac Street Mall, Campsie
Cost: Free

Hurstville Lunar New Year Festival

Stroll Forest Road, Hurstville, where you can savor a variety of food and explore market stalls, complemented by roving performances. Alternatively, you can visit Hurstville Plaza to enjoy the amazing stage entertainment.

The stage performances will kick off at 2.00pm, followed by the official opening ceremony at 3.00pm. Afterwards, community performances will resume and continue to entertain the audience until 9.00pm. Don’t miss this opportunity to experience a day filled with fun, culture, and entertainment!

When: Saturday 3 February
Where: Forest Road & Hurstville Plaza 12pm-9pm
Cost: Free

Do you know which animal represents your year?

Rat (1948, 1960, 1972, 1984, 1996, 2008, 2020)
Ox (1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021)
Tiger (1950, 1962, 1974, 1986, 1998, 2010, 2022)
Rabbit (1951, 1963, 1975, 1987, 1999, 2011, 2023)
Dragon (1952, 1964, 1976, 1988, 2000, 2012, 2024)
Snake (1953, 1965, 1977, 1989, 2001, 2013, 2025)
Horse (1954, 1966, 1978, 1990, 2002, 2014, 2026)
Goat (1955, 1967, 1979, 1991, 2003, 2015, 2027)
Monkey (1956, 1968, 1980, 1992, 2004, 2016, 2028)
Rooster (1957, 1969, 1981, 1993, 2005, 2017, 2029)
Dog (1958, 1970, 1982, 1994, 2006, 2018, 2030)
Pig (1959, 1971, 1988, 1995, 2007, 2019, 2031)

3 thoughts on “Celebrating Lunar New Year in Sydney 2024”

  1. Hi,

    Thanks for the lovely article, but we’ve been struggling to find the zodiac lanterns. Are you able to provide more information on their exact locations?
    We love seeing them every year!

    Cheers

  2. Thank you for this info for the lunar new year 2024. It is the most comprehensive site for Sydney that i have seen so far, and thats after many searches. Thank u for all the research and to those who contributed.

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