Vivid Festival is one of the Sydney's most keenly anticipated annual festivals. This special major event transforms Sydney into an amazing and breathtaking canvas of lights, music and ideas. This year the Vivid Sydney Festival will take place from 27 May to 18 June 2016. The celebration starts at 6pm and it will run for an additional five nights until June 18 in an attempt to top last year's record visitor total of 1.7 million!
It is a mesmerising free public exhibition of outdoor lighting sculptures and installations around Sydney Harbour and its surrounding suburbs. It also offers a cutting-edge contemporary music program and various creative industry forums. But the highlight for me is definitely the spectacular illumination of Sydney's iconic architecture, including the sails of Sydney Opera House!
It is my must-attend annual winter event on the international creative calendar and I never cease to be impressed by the colour, inspiration and innovation that Vivid brings. Sydneysiders and visitors from around Australia and the world will enjoy and interact with an array of immersive lighting experiences, live performances and inspiring ideas.
A variety of entertaining installations and projections
I attended Vivid festival last year. Despite the cold night it did not seem to deter the visitors. Familiar buildings, sights and places all took on a new life as incredible lighting effects change the ways they were seen and offer creative artistic expressions. Sydney city was packed with enthusiastic visitors and they all seemed to be enjoying the light festival.
Transforming the Museum of Contemporary Art building into a colourful, moving illuminations. Photo credit @ishen21
On this particular occasion, I started at the Opera House and then made my way to Circular Quay and then past the Overseas Passenger Terminal, under the Harbour Bridge and around the Walsh Bay and then back to the Quay. The most memorable highlight for me was still the 'Lighting of the Sails', where the lighting effects projected onto the majestic sails of the Sydney's iconic Opera House. It was truly brilliant and quite special even for Sydney locals.
A fantastic family friendly attractions including roving performers and interactive light installations
I saw numerous creative exhibitions all the way, but still missed some of them. So every time I visited during the Festival period, there were always some new element of surprise to be discovered. Vivid Sydney has proven to be an effective drawcard for getting people out and about and enjoying the city at night.
There were many wonderful sights at the Vivid Sydney festival last year, and it is expected the 2016 VIVID will be bigger and better!
This year, visitors can experience the Vivid Sydney festival at Circular Quay, The Rocks, Opera House, Darling Harbour, Walsh Bay, Martin Place and Chatswood. In addition, Vivid have added three new landmarks to illuminate more light installations in The Royal Botanic Gardens, Taronga Zoo and The Galeries shopping mall.
Vivid Festival is not just for the eyes and ears, another popular part of the event is the spectacular feast on offer as well! To celebrate being part of Vivid Sydney for the first time, many restaurants in The Star, such as Sky Terrace , Balla, Black by ezard and Sokyo, has created a range of Vivid-inspired menu.
Limited Dessert Edition from Cow and Moon - During VIVID festival time only
There are also many gourmet street-food stalls and food trucks around The Rocks Markets and at Martin Place, so you can still grab some nice cheap bites while you are on the move. I would highly recommend to check out the Messina's special Vivid gelato selections.