ultimate Christmas in Sydney: Guide to Events 2023
Sydney Christmas events for 2023 are not yet published however if you are spending Christmas in Sydney this year we have you covered with this guide to the very best Sydney events from concerts and tree lightings to Christmas carols and Chrissy drinks on the way.
It’s time to get into the Christmas mood, and to help you along we have collected all the options so you can find all the best things to do in Sydney at Christmas, from festivals and Christmas markets to carolling and the prettiest Christmas trees.
Many of these experiences have not been confirmed for 2023 yet, but we have left them in place, so you have an idea of what might be happening.
New events and updated content are added to these pages as it becomes available. If you would like to add your event to Sydney Expert, please complete this form.
- Christmas Festivals and Special Experiences
- Christmas Trees In Sydney you should visit
- Christmas Drinks
- Christmas Carols
- The Best Christmas Lights and Decorations in Sydney
Christmas Festivals and Special Experiences
Christmas in the City – Lighting of the Tree
Martin Place will be Christmas Central on 26 November when the Martin Place Tree will be light up. There will be markets, Christmas carols and Santa along with a cool fireworks display.
Where: Martin Place
When: Saturday 26 November
Enjoy the music of Love Actually? Well, there is no need to sing along in your lounge room. This stage version is a must for fans of this classic Christmas film.
When: 14th – 17th December Sydney, 24-25 November Parramatta
Where: Sydney Opera House / Riverside Theatre
A Celtic Christmas
Celebrate the season with a big dose of Irish charm! A Celtic Christmas sees the world’s best Irish dancers support a cast of Irish musicians who bring you the story involving star-crossed lovers twirl, mistletoe and all your favourite Christmas carols.
Where: Sydney Coliseum Theatre, West HQ, Rooty Hill
When: Wed 30 Nov 2022 7:30 PM
Book via Ticketek
The Muppets Christmas Carol
Disney’s The Muppet Christmas Carol will be presented live in concert this Christmas featuring its musical score performed live to the film.
Where: Darling Harbour Theatre at ICC Sydney
When: Sat 10 Dec 2022
Cost: From $100.85
Book via Ticketek
Love Actually In Concert
It’s impossible not to get into the Christmas spirit at this concert. The Sydney Symphony will perform live while the Christmas classic is played on the big screen.
When: 4pm & 8pm Saturday 17 December
Where: Aware Super Theatre, ICC Sydney
12 Days of Christmas at Dendy Newtown
Take the Christmas spirit up a notch and head to the Dendy for their 12 Days of Christmas screenings. Time to fall in love with the classics again or drag along a friend who somehow missed your favourite.
- 1947’s Miracle on 34th Street
- 1946’s It’s a Wonderful Life
- Love Actually
- Home Alone
- The Muppets Christmas Carol
- The Santa Clause
For those who like their Christmas with a little less sugar, there is:
- Tim Burton’s macabre masterpiece The Nightmare Before Christmas
- 1974’s cult horror classic Black Christmas
- Everyone’s favourite non-Christmas Christmas movie, Die Hard.
2 sessions for most films but they will likely book out so grab your tickets early.
When: December 13 and run through to December 24.
Where: Dendy Newtown
Cost: all tickets $15
Christmas in Darling Square
There is plenty of Christmas fun to be had at Darling Square this month
- Santa in the Square: Santa will be roaming the streets and smiling for photos, free of charge. Get a quick snap and share your Christmas wishes: 17 & 18 December from 5pm
- Light Tunnel: Walk, skip and dance through Darling Square’s festive light display.
- Fireworks: End the night with a bang at Cockle Bay’s iconic firework display. 9pm on the following Fridays and Saturdays: 16th & 17th and 23rd & 24th December.
When: on now until
Where: Darling Square
Pixar Putt Putt
Discover brand-new holes from Pixar’s two latest releases, Turning Red and Light Year. Putt your way around 9 or 18 holes
When: Friday 16 December until Sunday 5 February.
Where: Pier Street Underpass
Cost: all tickets $15
Christmas Cake Decorating Class
After the tremendous success of Novotel Sydney Central’s Cake Decorating classes last school holidays, they are bringing them back with some extra Christmas joy. Let your kids explore their creative side with this hands-on activity where they can take home their masterpiece and share it with the family.
Get merry with the little ones or sit back and relax while the hotel Executive Chef leads the class.
- 1 hour Christmas themed cake decorating class
- Refreshments available upon request (juice, soft drinks, coffee and tea)
- Letters to Santa Claus via Express Post to the North Pole
- Your decorated cake
When: Tickets still available 22, 23 and 24 December
Where: Novotel Sydney Central
Cost: From $62 per child per session
Rhys & Joel’s Family Christmas
Presented by Comedy Republic, last year’s debut of Rhys & Joel’s Family Christmas had audiences in stitches with its series of uproarious shows. In 2023, the dynamic duo is once again set to sashay across Australia, joining forces in Sydney to host an evening of pure unadulterated hilarity, storytelling and conversation alongside a soon-to-be-announced lineup of the nation’s fiercest comedians, drag artists and musicians.
When: Friday, 1 December 2023
Where: Enmore Theatre
Cost: Adult 18 & Over $40.00
Christmas Markets in Sydney 2023
There are several special Christmas Markets running across the city beginning in October, and all your favourite regular markets will probably have some Christmas stalls. Check out our Christmas Market Guide here.
Christmas Trees In Sydney you should visit
We expect Christmas trees to be going up across the city over the next few weeks and will update this page as soon as we have details.
The Rocks Christmas Tree
The Rocks Christmas Tree will be set up in the heart of the Rocks and feature plenty of Instagrammable spots for sharing your images with family and friends.
Where: Playfair Street and Argyle Street
When: November to Dec
Martin Place Christmas Tree
Martin Place is home to a 3.4m high tree decorated with 10,000 LED lights and 330 colourful baubles. This year the tree will feature 15000 Aussie flowers and will be unveiled on 28 November. The area will also boast over 4 thousand fairy lights strung across Martin Place.
This year the tree features 15,000 Australian flowers including banksia, waratah, bottlebrush, wattle, eucalyptus gum flower, kangaroo paw, flannel flower, pink waxflower and white waxflower. See more here
Where: Between George St and Pitt St at Martin Place
When: Saturday 27 November to Wednesday 1 January.
QVB Christmas Tree
At 24m tall, the sparking Swarovski Tree Christmas tree in the QVB is the tallest Xmas tree in Australia and the largest indoor tree in the Southern Hemisphere.
With over 100,000 crystal ornaments and more than 60,000 lights, the tree reaches from the ground floor to the top of the dome.
Where: Queen Victoria Building George Street Sydney
When: 7 November – December 30 (approx)
Where: Wonderland Bar – 24 Bayswater Rd, Potts Point
Cost: $17 per person for a 90-minute visit, which gets you a mulled wine or festive cocktail (with or without alcohol)
When: 3pm to 11pm
High Tea with Santa
Why not join Santa for high tea? The Tea Room in QVB, along with delicious eats, there will be opportunities for photos with Santa – either professional or with your camera.
Sensory Santa Experiences are also available for a calm and comfortable environment. Bookings are available from Saturday 13 November until Friday 24 December. Your experience includes at least two digital photos. You can also take photos with Santa on your own device.
Where: Level 3, QVB George St
When: Book a one-hour session between 8:30am-10am or 13:30am to noon.
Cost: Adults $70, Kids $49 includes a digital photo or Cocktails with Santa – Tickets cost $75 per person.
Elf on the Shelf High Tea
This is an Elf for the adults! The Star Sydney is offering a Elf on the G&T shelf for the month of December. Perfect for a catch up with friends before Xmas or for you next date night.
Enjoy mini festive flavoured treats including:
- double-smoked maple-glazed ham finger sandwiches with Camembert & cranberry relish
- mini field mushroom & chestnut wellingtons
- confit duck croquettes with smoked apricot chutney
- fresh crunchy king prawn and avocado cucumber rolls
- fruit mince pies
- traditional bûche de Noël, cherry and dark
- chocolate tortes, pear and yuzu bavarois with spiced honey biscuit
- mini traditional plum puddings bathed in brandy anglaise,
- blackcurrant and white chocolate fruit trifles.
You can customise your experience with a festive cocktail of your choice and even order gingerbread house or German Stollen Cake to take home.
Where: Level 6, The Star Sydney
When: 12pm and 4pm from Thursday to Sunday each week from Thursday 1 December until Christmas Day.
Carols in the Domain
Carols in the Domain is back in 2022. Sydney’s biggest carolling event is going ahead. There is a free area – known as the festive lawn but you will need to get here early to nab a spot. You can also book tickets.
Want to splurge? Consider the Sheraton Grand Gallery High Tea Diamond Package in the premium seating area, which includes High Tea supplied by the Gallery Restaurant at the Sheraton Grand, table and bottle of Sparkling wine.
Where: The Domain Sydney
Cost: Ticketed area from $69
When: 17 December 2022
Join The Song Company for a night of Christmas Carolling as they perform songs from the Renaissance along with audience favourites. Everyone is welcome, especially keen voices!
Where: The Garrison Church (Monday) and St James Church (Tue/Wed)
When: Mon 20th Dec 2022 6pm, Tues 21th Dec 2022 3pm/6pm, Wed 22 Dec 2022 3pm/6pm
Cost: Tickets $65 Adults, $55 Concession and $10 kids. Family $110 (2 adults and 3 kids) – Any 5 tickets $225
The Best Christmas Lights and Decorations in Sydney
Sydney city council has developed a self-guided walking app that will guide you around the city’s best decorations and light displays. The walk covers 4km and is estimated to take 1-2 hours, depending on how many stops you make.
Lights of Christmas – St Mary’s Cathedral
The best Christmas light show in the city takes place in front of St Mary’s Cathedral. This year’s show is a three-part narrative on the importance of ‘home” in our lives.
Where: St Mary’s Cathedral College St Sydney – entry via William Street
When: 9 Dec – 25 December
Time: 8.30pm-11pm with Choices from 7:30pm
David Jones Christmas Windows
Sadly, the grand David Jones Christmas windows are a thing of the past. This year, while colourful, they are just not the same.
Where: David Jones, 86-108 Castlereagh St, Sydney
When: 24 hours a day from 12 Nov – 3 Jan (avoid peak shopping hours for the best experience)
Giant Christmas gifts – These enormous 1.8m Christmas presents create a perfect Instagram shot – sparkling silver and pink packages can be found in the Harbourside Forecourt.
You will also find three large interactive bells at Darling Quarter – with swings that light up when you reach the top.
Where: Darling Harbour Foreshore and Darling Quarter
When: 1 Nov – 25 Dec.
Christmas decorations inspired by native flowers, the Strand Arcade is always stunning, but it looks especially lovely with some extra sparkle.
Where: 412-414 George St, Sydney
When: 2 Nov to 10 Jan 2021
Three gigantic interactive Christmas bells with inbuilt swings will light up Sydney harbour this festive season. Listen while you swing and you’ll notice the bells sound and light up every time you reach the top!
Where: Wulugul Walk, Barangaroo South
When: 24 Nov 2022 – 3 Jan 2023
Westfield Sydney Central
Westfield has 150 trees featuring half a million twinkling LED lights inspired by Eucalyptus Trees, the ‘Christmas Gum’. Plenty of backgrounds perfect for your Christmas Instagram shot. “Check out the 3D Matrix lighting installation between Zara and Innisfree, the Christmas forest down the Grand Staircase into the Food Court or the twinkling green wall pillars on the Level 3 Market St entry.”
Where: Westfield Central (Pitt Street Mall)
When: Now until Dec 28 approx.
Flour Drum Newton
Giving David Jones window a run perhaps is the Christmas Display Window at Flour Drum This will be the 5th year this Newtown cafe will be decorating and it promises to be bigger and better than ever. The window is just the start with the dining room and garden also decorated.
Pop in and try their delicious Xmas treats including Christmas Pudding / Cake / Mince Pies (all marinaded for over 12 months with a more than healthy tipple of Brandy), Gingerbreads People, Gingerbread Animals, White Christmas, Christmas Jams and Relishes. As well as handmade cookies and biscuits range, Christmas Pudding and an array of handcrafted gourmet treats.
Where: 531 King Street Newtown.
When: Mon, Thur & Fri : 7:30am – 2pm, Sat & Sun 7:30am – 2:30pm
Christmas Light Spectacular at Hunter Valley Gardens
The annual Christmas Lights Show at Hunter Valley Gardens is back. Book early to avoid disappointment.
Where: Broke Road, Pokolbin
Cost: $34 adults $27 for kids (Family tickets also available)
When: 4 Nov – 26 Jan, 2023 (Closed 25th Dec) 6:30pm – 9:30pm. Event closes at 10:30pm.
Related: Find out more about traditions of Christmas in Australia
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