10 tips to keep children safe at Vivid Sydney 2022


Taking the kids to a big event like Vivid Sydney is an amazing experience and creates memories that will last a lifetime. Of course, getting out at night when it’s dark can make it even harder to keep a close eye on them! It’s important to prepare before you go, so you can have lots of fun whilst keeping everyone safe. Here are some tips for a stress-free night.

With the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas set to run from Friday 27 May to Saturday 18 June 2022, Vivid Sydney is a ‘must do’ for all Sydney-siders! But if you’re planning on taking your children, you’ll want to do everything you can to ensure you have a safe and memorable experience. If you’re planning where to take the kids, we have a very handy guide to family-friendly Vivid events, or check out Vivid at Taronga Zoo.

Tips for keeping your children safe (and avoiding any meltdowns) at Vivid Sydney:

1. Go early in the week (and avoid the weekend!)

As you might expect, it’s quieter at the beginning of the week from Monday to Wednesday and then busiest on Friday and Saturday. Avoiding crowds is the easiest way to keep your kids safe while out and about. Choose one of less-busy days and enjoy the added benefits of more space, better views and entire instalments to enjoy without the numbers.

2. Arrive early in the evening

The lights are best when the sun goes down and they shine through the night. The Vivid lights turn on at 6pm every night, so get in early. If you’re planning dinner with the kids beforehand, book it in and aim to be done by 6pm, so you can head straight to the lights. It will help you beat those inevitable crowds, and see what you can before the kids grow tired.

3. Don’t try to do it all!

There’s a huge array of light installations to enjoy, but it’s simply not practical to try and squeeze them all into the one visit with kids. Come back another night, or next year! If you’re looking for the best family-friendly events for little ones, then check out our top picks here.

4. Travel by public transport

Leave the car at home and take advantage of extra bus, train and ferry services during the festival. Your kids will love the excitement of jumping on the train, bus, or ferry and you can be on hand to give cuddles, settle arguments and prevent any tired meltdowns at the end of the night. It’s much more stress-free than trying to navigate the roads with tired kids in the back!

5. Stay the night

Why not turn it into a mini-break? Take advantage of Vivid Sydney accommodation deals and stay near the action. Choosing a location near the city centre, Darling Harbour, Pyrmont or North Sydney. Even better, you can use your Parent NSW $250 voucher and enjoy a free night in the city. It’s the perfect end to the night!

6. Choose bright clothing

The easiest way to keep your children in sight throughout the evening is by dressing them in brightly coloured clothes. Avoid the blacks and navy and instead, let their little personality shine and encourage them to find their brightest clothes possible. Not only will they have a blast getting ready for the evening, but it will make them so much easier to spot in a crowd.

It might even be a good time for a glow-in-the-dark necklace or wand!

7. Arrive prepared

As soon as you arrive at Vivid, set a meeting place for the older kids. Make sure you remind them of the importance of staying close and not wandering off, and let them know what you’d like them to do if they do lose you.

For the younger kids, write your phone number on their arm, or have a wristband they can wear with it on.

Plan your visits beforehand. Vivid Sydney precinct and accessibility maps  including transport options and activities can be downloaded at the Vivid website.

8. Visit other Vivid locations beyond the city

If the thought of visiting the city with kids is overwhelming, why not visit one of the more local and family-friendly venues? Chatswood is a great local option, and Taronga Zoo and Luna Park are also excellent venues to explore during Vivid.

9. Bring the carrier/pram

One of best ways to keep your kids safe is by having them close to you at all times. Bundle up your carrier and/or pram, and if your child is at the right age, encourage them to use it. Even if they won’t at the beginning, as they tire throughout the evening it will definitely come in handy.

10. Take a photo

Take a photo of your child at the beginning on the night in their current clothing on your mobile phone. This is very useful in case your child gets lost and you need a description/photo for police.

Vivid Sydney is the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas, which transforms Harbour City with its colourful creative canvas. Find out more.

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