Five FREE Sydney Festival events for kids

From music under the stars to the great heights of a trampolining show, all these Sydney Festival events are family friendly…and FREE!

1. Ferrython 2018, Sydney Harbour

Sydney Harbour will make a splash with the annual Ferrython, one of Australia’s most popular and iconic free events.

See our beloved ferries in this hugely popular Australia Day tradition, as they venture from Circular Quay to Shark Island and then back to a glorious finish at the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Pack a picnic and gather on the foreshore to barrack for your favourite ferry.

Spectators are free, but if you want to be aboard a boat, the cost is $220 each and includes morning tea on arrival, wine, beer and non-alcoholic drinks, a premium lunch box and a chance to take out the title! A package without alcohol costs $150.

  • When: Monday 26 January, passengers from 9.45AM, spectators from 10.45am
  • Where: Sydney Harbour
  • More info: Ferrython 2018


2. Jurassic Plastic Dinosaur Sculptures, Town Hall

Jurassic Plastic is art for both kids and grown-ups – a fun exercise in creativity and nostalgia, while contemplating mass consumerism. Japanese artist Hiroshi Fuji recycles and reinvents unwanted plastic toys into colourful ‘Toysaurus’ dinosaur sculptures and landscapes.

As a space where complex issues sit alongside simple joys, Fuji’s immersive installations are highly evocative: simultaneously dystopian, nostalgic and optimistic. But Jurassic Plastic is also a place to play – hands-on workshops will unlock your creative potential, where you can transform discarded plastic toys into your own new creations, drawing inspiration from the explosions of colour and patterns in the swamp of vibrant plastic and colourful sculptures.

Want to get more hands-on with Jurassic Plastic’s toy world? Book a ticket to one of the workshops for 6–12-year-olds, or an Up Late session for the 18+ crowd.


3. Symphony Under the Stars, Parramatta

One of the most well-loved Sydney Festival events returns to Parramatta. It’s the perfect evening for families and friends to pack a hamper, grab a blanket, and settle back in a Sydney summer dusk to enjoy beautiful music.

This free concert is always one of the most anticipated events of the Sydney Festival and 2018 promises to be no exception. Returning to the gorgeous surrounds of Parramatta Park, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra will perform a selection of beloved classical compositions.

Parramatta Park is an easy stroll from both the ferry wharf and the train station.


4. Highly Sprung Trampoline Show

Enjoy the long summer evenings at the annual Friday Twilight Food Fair in North Sydney’s Civic Park. A great way to end the week with delicious hot food and live entertainment! You can expect a variety of tasty global cuisines including Thai, Malaysian, South American, Chinese, German, Turkish, Italian, Japanese, Indian and Middle Eastern. There’s also live music and free children’s activities every week. With good food, relaxed dining and great entertainment at its heart, Twilight Food Fair attracts a happy crowd. It’s a firm favourite for both families and individuals looking to make the most of their balmy summer evening


5. Four Thousand Fish at Barangaroo Reserve

Join us at this large scale art installation to celebrate fisherwoman Barangaroo, the influential and resilient Cammeraygal woman after whom the place is named. On 10 special days across the Festival, Four Thousand Fish invites you to visit Nawi Cove and create your own frozen fish using sea water and a cast mould.

Across each weekend of the Festival, you can help return the ice sculptures to an artist’s modern interpretation of a traditional nawi (bark canoe) with a fire lit inside, where the heat and the setting sun will slowly melt and return the frozen fish to the Harbour.

The nawi fire installation without the ice fish sculptures can be seen every day during the Festival between 7pm-10pm. However, to make the most of this experience and take part in the returning of the fish, we suggest scheduling your visit to coincide with sunset on a Saturday or Sunday or the 5 & 26 of January.


Access to the artwork on Nawi Cove is via a floating pontoon. Please be aware, at low tide the gangway accessing this pontoon will be at its steepest.



Want more ideas? Check out the NSM What’s On section… we’re always adding new local events around the North Shore.

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