December in Sydney may not see snow during the holiday season; it does, however, have a unique spin on Christmas. Whether you see Santa in Board shorts or enjoy a swim on Christmas day, festive season in Sydney is full of Christmas cheer. So here are ten fun, festive things to do during December in Sydney.
1.Bondi Beach and beyond
December in Sydney is the perfect time to go for a dip in the ocean, and of course, visit the iconic Bondi beach. You could choose to swim in the sea, go for lunch with a view at Bondi Icebergs or walk from Bondi to Coogee. There are loads of fun and festive things to do and see at Bondi; however, don’t limit yourself to Bondi; there are many great beaches to explore in the eastern suburbs.
Coogee – many cafes to enjoy beachside
Tamarama – a short walk from Bondi Beach
La Perouse – A great place to go without the crowds and the waves.
2.Manly and beyond
Manly is fun at any time of the year, but summer has that extra something special. I would also recommend getting to Manly via ferry. Whether you opt for the express ferry (it is a little more expensive) or the slow ferry, on a beautiful day the views are amazing. There is plenty to do in Manly, from a hike to North Head Scenic Walks to settling in for a long lunch at Hugo’s. But like Bondi, many other beaches will take your breath away in this area.
Balmoral – the water is flat, so it is friendlier to swim in.
Palm Beach – Much more chilled than the beaches mentioned, and you may see them filming in and around the area for “home and away“.
Narrabeen – is less populated than Manly, but a great beach with waves.
Okay, okay they aren’t the type of Christmas markets you will find in Germany, but they are full of Christmas spirit. If shopping in malls during December in Sydney and buying from retail chains for Christmas presents isn’t what you want, these markets are a better option. Christmas markets can be found scattered in and around Sydney during December.
There is plenty to do on Sydney Harbour during December. You could catch a ferry to Manly, enjoy watching a movie on the floating cinema or spend the day out on the island. Or if checking out the harbour from the water’s edge is more your thing, then there are loads of choices. Spending the afternoon sipping cocktails at the Opera Bar or eating lunch in Darling Harbour is also a great way to see Sydney’s famous harbour.
5.Carols by Candelight
Australia is the home of Carols by Candlelight, the tradition may have begun in Melbourne in 1937, but it is in full swing in Sydney. You can find them dotted around in almost every neighbourhood in Sydney or Carols in the domain which is televised and hosts Aussie Celebrities.
6.Brunch with friends or family
There are plenty of great cafes to choose from; however, places like the grounds of Alexandria offer a unique instagramable alternative along with a photo with Santa. You can eat inside or alfresco, but remember that parking can be hard to find. Other choices like The Boatshed at La Perouse or the Boathouse in balmoral or Palm Beach, offer a relaxed outdoor summer vibe.
7.Long lunch Outdoor dining
Sydney offers some of the best outdoor dining experiences, in a range of Sydney suburbs. Try The bucket list at Bondi that allows you to enjoy a long lunch by the beach, or The Coogee Bay Hotel where you can sit in the beer garden and order a delicious meal from their extensive menu. If you would instead like venture over the bridge to the north side, then the Newport is always busy and has always been one of my favourites for years or try The greens in North Sydney has a chilled afternoon feel to it and is perfect on a sunny summer’s day.
Barron Joey Lighthouse makes for a perfect afternoon stroll, the views from Sydney’s most northern point are amazing. It won’t take long to get the top; you can take the steps that are more difficult but will get you to the top faster or choose the leisurely uphill climb via the ascending walkway. Check out the oceanfront cliff walk from Coogee to Bondi; the path is signposted, so it is easy to follow, you can choose a longer route from Maroubra or a shorter route from Bronte, the stunning view along this famous coastal walk will not disappoint.
If you love watching movies but hate the thought of being restricted to an air-conditioned cinema, then you must try one of the outdoor cinemas in Sydney. Centennial Park’s Moonlight cinema in Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs is the original outdoor cinema. It is still busy however if you want to see Christmas movies then you should head to Darling Quarter Village Green, Darling Harbour best part it’s free! Most of the other outdoor cinema’s start in January.
Nothing beats the Lights of Christmas at St Mary’s Cathedral Square, this light spectacular last until Christmas night. However, if you would rather check out the lights in your neighbourhood then go onto Christmas lights app and find the closest neighbourly Christmas lights spectacular.