What’s on in Sydney in December 2022
December in Sydney signals the start of Summer. Days are long and warm with perfect swimming weather. Afternoon storms are not uncommon, and while you might see more rainy days than you would like, it’s not cold, and rain rarely falls for more than a couple of hours.
Restaurants and bars are busy with Christmas celebrations and the latter half of the month sees the beginning of the 6-week summer school holidays, making shopping centres and attractions much busier.
Accommodation prices normally skyrocket from about 20 Dec. right through until at least 3 Jan because of the number of people arriving to see the NYE Fireworks spectacular.
Average Temperatures: 25.8 – 18.6°C (64-79°F) While each year varies the last December saw eleven days of rain.
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.
If you are looking for Christmas lunch or dinner ideas, check our list of Christmas Day dining.
- Major Annual Events
- Markets, Fairs and Community Festivals
- Theatre and Performance
- Exhibitions and Family Events
- Food and bar events in Sydney
- Regional Events
This post contains affiliate links. Our full disclosure policy is here.
Major Annual Events
We have listed general things on our What’s to do in December page. For more, check out our list of Christmas markets and Christmas events in Sydney this year..
- Noel Sydney – 9 to 24 December
- Sydney To Hobart Yacht Race – 26 December
- NYE in Sydney – 31 December
Markets, Fairs and Community Festivals
Head to Macquarie Street and the Botanic Gardens to enjoy Sydney’s newest Christmas event, Noel Sydney. Kind of like a Christmas themed Vivid event Macquarie Street’s grand buildings will be transformed into neon artworks. From Hyde Park Barracks to the Mint, Sydney Hospital and the State Library the lights will lead you to the Royal Botanic Gardens and the Digital Christmas Forest.
- Noel Sydney Markets – which operate from 6pm each day.
- Christmas Entertainment – There is also nightly entertainment from 16 December from 7pm-8.15pm
- Noël Christmas Skyshow will see hundreds of magnificent dancing drones take to the skies at 8.15pm and 10pm each night from 16-24 December.
Where: Macquarie Street and the Royal Botanic Gardens
When: 9-24 December 22, 6-11pm
The Other Art Fair
Whether you are shopping for Christmas or just shopping the Other Art Fair is a fantastic place to find professional selected artwork from over 120 emerging and independent artists. Along with the art, there will be DJs, food trucks and more
Where: The Cutaway Barangaroo
When: 1-4 December 22, 4-9 pm
Cost: Tickets on sale here
If you are looking for authentic, unique gifts, check out the Blak Markets. A huge range of affordable Aboriginal art, jewellery, homewares and beauty products.
The markets support the local aboriginal people with 100% of the profits going back into the community. There will also be Indigenous-inspired food and drinks on offer.
Where: Tallawoladah Lawn in The Rocks Precinct
When: Sunday, December 4 from 10am to 3pm.
Need ideas for how to spend Christmas Day? We have you covered.
Theatre and Performance
Carmen on Cockatoo Island
Opera Australia’s brand new, Sydney-exclusive open-air event, Opera on Cockatoo Island, launches this November with a gritty new production of Bizet’s much-loved Carmen, giving visitors a thrilling opportunity to experience world-class opera under the stars with stunning harbour views.
Where: Cockatoo Island
When: 7.45pm each night until 18 December
Cost: S99-$149 Buy tickets here
Candlelight: Tribute to Taylor Swift at the SMC
Taylor Swift’s biggest hit performed by a string Quartet, the Phoenix Collective, in a gorgeous candlelight setting. If you haven’t been to any of Fever’s candlelight concerts you are in for a treat, the lighting adds a magical element to the performances.
Where: Sydney Masonic Centre
When: 23 December – 2 shows 6.30pm and 8.30pm
Cost: from $32-$62
To the hedonistic tunes of perpetual anthems like “Ain’t No Body” (Chaka Khan and Rufus), “It’s Raining Men” (The Weather Girls) and “Born to Be Alive” (Patrick Hernandez), Velvet Rewired pays homage to disco greats and New York’s Studio 54, the infamous club synonymous with a celebration of cultural acceptance, glitter and disco.
Velvet Rewired continues the story of a young man on his path to self-discovery as he returns to the club seeking redemption. Led by the fearlessly fabulous Marcia Hines, Craig Reid (La Clique, La Soirée) returns as the incredible “Hula Boy” and Joe Accaria (Once, Dream Lover) as the DJ and mix-master.
Where: Sydney Opera House
When: 22 December – 5 February
Cost: From $64.90 + $8.50 booking fee
Sound Out the Street
On the last Friday of every month, musicians, artists and performers from the Pact Centre for Emerging Artists will fill the streets and shopfronts of Erskineville at sunset with surprising pop-up performances, live music and dance.
Come From Away
Taking to the stage this month is the Tony® award-nominated Broadway rock musical, Jagged Little Pill. The show brings to life the much-loved work of Alanis Morissette, including hits, You Oughta Know and Ironic.
Where: Theatre Royal Sydney
When: 5 November to 15 January
Cost: from $95 – half-price tickets are available for some performances
Exhibitions and Family Events
Brickwrecks – Suken Ships in LEGO® bricks
Combining the work of Ryan ‘The Brickman’ McNaught’s stunning LEGO® models, and authentic shipwreck artifacts this interactive experiences breathes life into historic shipwreck stories.
Lots of fun experiences, from seeing how you would have survived the events of the titanic to trying your hand at rebuilding part of the Batavia.
Where: Australian Maritime Museum
When: from 17 Dec to 26 January
More: Find out more
Reverberations: A future for memory
I visited the new exhibition in Sydney, Reverberations: A future for memory, at the Sydney Jewish Museum. The exhibition highlights the experiences of 43 holocaust survivors who made Sydney their home.
Lifesize video interviews cover really thoughtful concepts. It’s incredibly engaging and honestly hard to tear yourself away from.
Once you are done you can ask your own questions. Using artificial intelligence (AI) they have created spaces where you can have a conversation with 3 survivors, including the Happiest Man on Earth, Eddie Jaku. Over 400 hours of footage was captured between 2018 and 2020 to bring their stories to life.
At the exhibition, visitors can have one-on-one “conversations” with three interactive survivor biographies, made possible using artificial intelligence (AI). Ask questions like “where were you born?”, “do you believe in God?” or even “Are you still angry at what happened to you?” and hear their real responses.
Open now for the next 12 months I can’t recommend this highly enough. Curator Shannon Biederman and her team have done an amazing job
Where: Sydney Jewish Museum
When: from 1 December – Nov 2023
Cost: from $18 adults, $45 families
More: Find out more
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 at Pier Street Underpass this summer.
Where: Pier Street underpass Darling Square
When: Friday 16 December to Sunday 5 February
Find out more
Food and bar events in Sydney
With singing wait staff and karaoke for guests, Broadway Diner will be a big hit with musical theatre lovers and anyone who was a fan of the TV Show Glee.
While young performers belt out their favourite tunes, you can either sing along or just enjoy the sound of the talented youngsters. This young lady was amazing and I expect I will see her on a biggest stage one day.
With giant burgers, loaded fries and a caesar salad that, while delicious cannot be considered remotely healthy. There are vegan and vegetarian options and plenty of pretty cocktails to keep thirst at bay.
Where: 1/21 Bay St, Glebe – at Broadway Shopping Centre
When: From 21 December till late Jan at this stage
Tinseltown – Sydney’s favourite pop up Christmas Bar is back
If you’re looking to get into the festive spirit, then Tinseltown is the place to go. It’s Christmas Day, every single day, and I’m not just talking about the decorations. They’ve got Christmas tunes, Christmas drinks, and more Christmas Pudding than you can shake your cracker at.
Find your santa hat, reindeer ears or even bad Christmas jumper and make your way to Cleveland Street.
Where: 280 Cleveland Street, Surry Hills
When: until 30 December
Fiorente Elderflower Spritz
If you are a fan of Aperol, there is a new aperitivo to enjoy this season the Fiorente Elderflower Spritz. After taking Italy by storm over the summer, it’s now hit our shores.
Head to the recently refurbished Camelia Grove Hotel and there new European inspired terrace and Italian bar menu. The star of their weekly aperitivo afternoon, held on Saturday and Sunday is Fiorente Elderflower Spritz. Booking is not essential, but recommended for a nice spot on the terrace.
Alternatively, hit up Matteo Downtown and try the Fiorente spritz at their Italian bottomless lunch. For just $99 you get a three-course food menu, bottomless Fiorente cocktails (Elderflower Spritz and Yuzu Flower Fizz), selection of wines and margaritas. Sign me up!
Where: Camelia – 146 Henderson Road, Alexandria / Matteo – Bond Street Sydney
When: Camelia – Weekends from noon. Matteo- Saturdays 12-4pm until April.
Cherry Harvest Season in Mudgee
Fresh cherries are an essential part of an Aussie Christmas, so why not create a new Christmas tradition in your family and make heading bush and picking your own part of your Christmas experience.
Where: Roth Family Orchard, 108 Eurunderee Lane, Mudgee
When: 1-21 Dec.
More: details here Bookings from late October.
Like to see your event list here? Get in touch
Feature image: Noel Sydney. Credit: AGB Events