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As the cold weather sets in, Sydney transforms into a winter wonderland, offering a range of exciting experiences. From music festivals to fun runs, arts and culture, Sydney ticks the box for anyone looking for the perfect winter escape. So, book your flights, lock in your boutique hotel, and let us guide you through some of the best 2023 winter escapes in Sydney.
Vivid Sydney is an annual celebration of creativity, innovation and technology. For 23 days and nights, the city transforms into a vibrant canvas of lights, music and art. The festival attracts visitors from all over the world to experience epic light installations, 3D projections, and interactive exhibits that illuminate the city’s iconic buildings, landmarks and public spaces. There is also a diverse range of musical performances, workshops and talks featuring the most boundary-pushing artists, thinkers, musicians and culinary experts of our time. Best of all, in addition to being easily accessible by public transport from Vulcan Hotel Ultimo, some of the vibrant installations are also within walking distance of the hotel venue.
If you’re searching for a winter-themed festival on the doorstep of one of the world’s top beaches, look no further than Bondi Festival. The big drawcard at this Sydney festival is the world-famous ice-skating rink set on the rooftop of The Bondi Pavilion. In between sessions on the ice, visitors can lose themselves in the tasty food and drink stalls, live music performances and winter market. Bondi Festival is the ultimate winter experience from your boutique hotel in Sydney.
If you’re a runner, chances are you’re familiar with Sydney’s annual City2Surf fun run - it’s the world’s largest fun run, after all. Attracting tens of thousands of participants every year, the race kicks off in the heart of the city at Hyde Park (walking distance from Vulcan Hotel) and ends at iconic Bondi Beach with a total distance of 14km. The route takes runners through some of Sydney’s most scenic locations, including the beautiful coastal walk and the steep incline of Heartbreak Hill. And if that’s not enough to take your mind off the struggle of 14km, there’s a buzzing atmosphere of live music, food stalls and cheering spectators on the streets. In preparation for the race, Cafe Vulcan is the perfect spot to grab a coffee for an extra energy boost. Alternatively, after completing the fun run, make your way back to Vulcan Hotel and indulge in our Happy Hour to relax and recuperate.
Taking place in Circular Quay, the Bastille Festival is a French-inspired winter festival that delivers a healthy dose of Parisian charm to inner city Sydney. With its authentic celebration of French culture and cuisine, the festival invites visitors to indulge in delicious French fare, wine, and cheese. Plus, on par with French culture, there’s always an opportunity to dance the calories away with live music performances and entertainment. Whether you’re a Francophile or simply chasing a fun day out, Bastille Festival is a winter event not to be missed.
With a history of showcasing thought-provoking and groundbreaking cinema with a focus on independent and experimental films, Sydney Film Festival is another great reason to visit Sydney during the winter months. Embrace the lights, camera, and action over two weeks, with screenings held in venues across the city, including at the flagship venue, State Theatre. The festival also offers a platform for talks and Q&A sessions with filmmakers and actors, providing a unique opportunity to engage with the creative minds behind the films.
Popping up in Sydney’s Entertainment Quarter during the winter months, The Winter Village offers a range of fun activities and attractions for the young and old. There’s an ice-skating rink, a snow play zone, and alpine-style food and drink stalls. The village also features cosy igloo cabins suitable for a date or seasonal catch-up with friends. Sydney’s Winter Village truly is a great opportunity to dress up in your winter clothes and embrace the cooler weather, and you’ll find it only a short walk from Vulcan Hotel in Ultimo.
If you love having your finger on the pulse of the latest trends and designs from emerging Australian designers, Australian Fashion Week is for you. As a major winter event on Sydney’s calendar, the event plucks designers, models and enthusiasts from around the globe to experience runway shows and exhibitions hosted throughout many of Sydney’s most hip and happening venues, such as Carriageworks.
Cronulla is a beachside suburb in Sydney’s south, and every winter, it hosts the Cronulla Jazz and Blues Festival. A lively event for music lovers, the festival features a range of Australian and international jazz and blues artists, with performances held on multiple stages throughout the day. Hunger and thirst are taken care of with on-site food and drink stalls. Yet the true highlight of this Sydney winter festival is the relaxed and laid-back atmosphere, with festival-goers having a chance to relax and enjoy the music while soaking up the winter sunshine and sea breeze. Whether you're a jazz or blues lover or simply looking for a fun day out, the Cronulla Jazz and Blues Festival is a great reason to visit Sydney in winter.