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Top 5 Summer Activities in Sydney

Home > Sydney > Family | Lists | Music Venues | Shopping Centres
by Cassandra A (subscribe)
I escaped to Sydney over 11 years ago and haven't looked back since. I enjoy going to cafes, local markets and festivals, and finding the best views in town for free. Visit my twitter page:
Published November 23rd 2018
Make this summer the best one yet
Making the most of your summer often means having to be selective about how you spend your time. There is always plenty on offer in Sydney.

These are my top 5 activities for summer, based on value for money, uniqueness, family-friendliness and exclusiveness. Please share your favourite in the comments!

Shopper Hopper

This is the perfect way to shop around Sydney without worrying about traffic or parking (let's face it, parking is a nightmare in Sydney in Summer). Set sail aboard Fantasea's Shopper Hopper and enjoy the water with your nearest and dearest. Before you know it, you'll be gazing over racks of clothes and shelves of goods in two of Sydney's shopping meccas.

Picking up from Circular Quay, you can stop off at the Harbourside Shopping Centre, a great place to have lunch by the water and pick up a few treats. You can also purchase a dining add-on to your ticket, which you can redeem at the highly rated restaurant Blue Fish.

The cruise then travels on to Drummoyne, where you will reach the Birkenhead Point Brand Outlet. Sitting on the marina, the outlet has over 140 outlets and includes brand favourites such as Lorna Jane, Oroton, Nike and Sheridan. Be prepared to do some serious shopping!

A return ticket can be purchased for $22 or one way is $13. To book, visit:

Uniqueness: 2/5
Family friendly: 3/5
Value for money: 3/5
Exclusivity: 4/5 (seats are limited to 28, but expect the shops to be busy)

Fantasea cruising, Sydney, shopper hopper, Birkenhead
Fantasea Cruising's Shopper Hopper tour

Manly Kayak Centre

Try the latest trend with your family and family - stand up paddleboarding. Become one with the ocean and glide across the water in Manly for the day. Or for something more energetic, sign up for a game of SUPBALL (stand up paddle ball). You can also hire kayaks and self-driving leisure boats (no boat licence needed). Hire rates start at $25 per hour for a single kayak or SUP. Book online at

For something really exclusive, book a private picnic where everything will be set up for you so all you have to do is relax and indulge. Pure bliss!

Uniqueness: 3/5
Family friendly: 5/5
Value for money: 4/5
Exclusivity: 2/5

Stand up paddle boarding
Stand up paddle boarding

Haunted Sydney Ghost Tour

This is a must-do tour for any local or visitor who wants to venture into the dark side of Sydney. Run regularly on Thursday-Satuday evenings, the 90 minute tour explores the history of Sydney in an era of greed, brutality, misfits and gangs. The tour is run in The Rocks and will involve 2 km of walking and a visit to a haunted site. Be prepared for a truly creepy experience!

Buy tickets for $36 for adults or $96 for two adults and two children. Find more details here:

Uniqueness: 5/5
Family friendly: 2/5 may not be suited for younger kids / infants
Value for money: 3/5
Exclusivity: 4/5

Ghost, tour, history, sydney, scary, creepy, fun, evening
Lantern Ghost Tours

World class tennis

The Sydney International is running on 6-12 January at Homebush. Returning champion Angelique Kerber will be defending her title while Naomi Osaka is joining the line-up for the first time, after securing a historic win over Serena Williams at the US Open this year. More player announcements will be made closer to the event.

The tournament will host music performances and have a range of food trucks adding to the lively atmosphere. Families will enjoy the ANZ Tennis Hot Shots Day on Sunday 6 January with free tennis lessons and activities throughout the day. Tickets can be purchased for single events or you can obtain a three day pass for $46. For more details, visit

Uniqueness: 2/5
Family friendly: 4/5 (entry is free for kids on most days)
Value for money: 4/5
Exclusivity: 3/5

US Open Champion Naomi Osaka
US Open Champion Naomi Osaka

Sundown Sunday Sessions

What better way to unwind on a Sunday afternoon than to listen to live music in an idyllic location like Bondi? Mamasan is answering our dreams for a place to kick our feet up and cure the Sunday blues...with Jazz. Every Sunday until May 2019, you can find the Asian fusion restaurant occupied by talented musos from 5pm to 10pm. The music is free but you won't want to visit this place without trying out their scrumptious tapas or cocktails. Book a table from Mamasan's website here to complete your summer!

Uniqueness: 4/5
Family friendly: 2/5
Value for money: 4/5
Exclusivity: 2/5

Mamasan Bondi, Asian, tapas, restaurant, Sunday Sundown, music, Sydney
Mamasan Bondi - 57/59 Beach Rd, Bondi Beach

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Why? To make the most of summer
Where: Sydney - Bondi, Manly, The Rocks, Darling Harbour, Homebush
Cost: Various
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