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Don't Miss Out on The Fabulous Free Fun
For the past few years my friends and I have packed up the kids and ventured into Sydney CBD to see the Christmas lights and decorations. And even though the venues we visit have remained the same, there is always something new and exciting to explore.
Seeing Christmas lights through children's eyes is magical – that is if you can drag them away from all the toy and game displays.
This year Christmas is going to be no different. Here are some of our favourite spots to visit.
1. Queen Victoria Building
Christmas at the QVB is always spectacular. Not only do you get to see the beautiful sparkly tree which rises through several floors, but all the stores are cheerfully decorated and the atmosphere is warm and cosy. If you are lucky, you may even get to see street performers or appearances by fabulous guests, such as Jessica Mauboy who appeared a couple of years ago.
If you have young children, head to the Swarovski Crystal Garden for Christmas and have photos taken with Santa. With over 12,000 crystal ornaments, forestry and traditional Santa settings, this will be one photo session your kids won't quickly forget. As this is a very popular destination, it is recommended you get there early, particularly on the weekends. For more information, visit the Crystal Garden website.
Dates: 8 November – 24 December Address: Queen Victoria Building, George Street, Sydney
Each year the tree decorations are amazing and this year promises to add an extra dimension. Share the Christmas spirit by sending text messages to 0427 840 851 or #sydxmastree and your special wish will be displayed on the branches of the tree.
Dates: Thursday 27 November – Thursday 25 December 2014 Address: Martin Place, Sydney
To kick off the festivities, on Thursday 27 November from 6pm – 8.30pm you can also enjoy a family friendly Christmas Concert which features characters from Sesame Street, Lah Lah's Big Live Band and naturally the guy in the red suit is making an appearance.
Always a remarkable treat, the David Jones Window Display offers new surprises each Christmas season. This year you can see the much loved displays from Tuesday 3 November – 25 December.
Have Santa photos taken in the new enchanted Magic Cave world. Transport yourself into one of many Christmas scenes using green screen and even have your Santa Photo experience on DVD. Bookings can be made online or instore.
If you have a feathered, fluffy or furry friend, bring them along for a happy Santa photo too.
David Jones Santa has joined the mobile trend and has created his own Santa app. Download the David Jones Magic Santa app and put yourself into the scene with an interactive Christmas experience with Santa and his Reindeer.
From 11 December to 24 December the David Jones Staff Choir perform each day for 30 minutes from 9am. Their special Christmas Eve performance begins at 8am.
Date: 3 November – 25 December 2014
Address: Elizabeth Street, Sydney
Sydney's iconic Hyde Park is a wonderful place to walk through at night with its many fairy lights and Christmas tree decorations.
On Thursday 27 November from 6pm – 8.30pm enjoy a free family friendly Christmas concert. Your kids will love entertainment by Tom & Jerry, Hi-5 as well as craft activities, sausage sizzle, yummy ice cream and carols by Emma Pask and St Andrews Cathedral Choir.
Date: 27 November 2014 for Christmas concert, but decorations can be seen throughout the Christmas season
Address: Hyde Park, Elizabeth Street, Sydney
Watch the historic Town Hall come alive with unbelievable light projections every night from 8.30pm to 1am.
On Tuesday 16 December 2014 Town Hall puts on a Christmas concert from 8pm to 9.30pm. Cost is $15 for adults and $12 for children. Tickets sell out quickly, so make sure you book now at the City Recital Hall Website
Stroll through Strand Arcade and admire lovely Christmas decorations. Take a break in one of Strand Arcade or Pitt Street Mall cafes and enjoy delicious Christmas treats or take in the many free shows put on by local street performers.
Address: The Strand Arcade between Pitt Street & George Street, Sydney