Get into the Aussie spirit with Australia Day in Sydney

22 January 2014

There is no better place to celebrate Australia Day than in Sydney, where it all began.

Anyone lucky enough to be in Sydney on January 26, 2014 will have a huge array of activities and events to choose from, with plenty of food, entertainment and fun to be had around the city. The program for the day offers more than 14 hours of entertainment, according to Minister for Tourism and Major Events George Souris.

“Thousands of NSW residents and visitors from all over the world will take the opportunity to celebrate Australia Day by participating in hundreds of events across NSW and the Harbour City,” he said.

“In Sydney, there is an amazing array of activities and best of all, they’re all free.”

Check out just some of the great events going on this upcoming Australia Day.

Sydney Harbour on Australia Day

Enjoy Sydney Harbour on Australia Day – Image Credit James Horan

Australia Day at Sydney Olympic Park

Sydney Olympic Park is a hub of the city events scene and is putting on another great show for Australia Day. There will be plenty of free family entertainment and things to do such as visiting food stalls to pick up some lunch, free rides for the kids, arts and crafts, a community bazaar and a stage that will host entertainment throughout the day. To top it all off, the evening will wrap up with a spectacular fireworks show.

The Great Sydney Swim

Active sorts will love this chance to get in a good swim this Australia Day, with the last of the competitions in the Body Science Great Australian Swim Series taking place and offering the honour of taking out the top spot as the series champion. Every one of the 1,000 participants receives a race pack and gets a chance to win some of the great prizes on offer, but visitors and supporters will also get to see a fantastic race and enjoy the atmosphere. There are sections for competitive swimmers, as well as those just starting out in the sport, and even a 300m section for the kids as well. If you’re keen, there’s a 2.2km swim around Farm Cove, starting at the Sydney Opera House, or a shorter 750m swim track.

Swim Series, Sydney Harbour

Competitors in the Swim Series, Sydney Harbour – Image Credit Dan Gosse

The MS Colour Dash

It’s simply not possible to participate in this event and not have a great time. It’s a fund-raising activity for the thousands of Australians living with multiple sclerosis, meaning it’s all about enjoying the day, a bit of friendly competition and raising funds for a great cause. Anyone can participate, all you have to do is run (or walk) the 5km track in a white tshirt. The twist is, due to the colour bombs at the colour stations along the way, you won’t be wearing white by the end of it! You will be greeted with live music, food and drink and more colour at the end of the track, so be prepared for a great day of fun!

Australia Day Big Breakfast

For Australian foodies, there’s no better way to spend the day than on the beach at Dee Why. This is an annual tradition for tens of thousands of Aussies who can’t think of a more ideal day than one spent at the beach with a hot brekkie, a car and bike show, a thong throwing competitions, rides and entertainment, and of course, the traditional flag raising. Bring along your sunscreen and some good friends and family to enjoy a quintessentially Australian day in the sun!

Australia Day Big Breakfast - Dee Why

Australia Day Big Breakfast – Image Credit Australia Day Big Breakfast

Symphony in the Domain

Take a journey through outer space this Australia Day – all from a patch of grass with a picnic at The Domain. This free event promises to be a great one as the Sydney Symphony Orchestra will be performing The Planets, a masterful orchestra piece from legendary composer Gustav Holst.

Performances from the orchestra will be joined by readings and topped off with a fireworks display that is sure to impress. Pack up a basket of edible goodies and take along some friends early in the evening to grab a good spot and enjoy your 2014 holiday in style under the stars!

Harbour Concert Series

Another chance to soak up some great Australian music comes in the form of a floating stage in Sydney Harbour. Visit Blues Point Reserve for the best vantage point to see some great acts including Jessica Mauboy, Samantha Jade and Justice Crew. This is sure to be a highlight of the Australia Day program, so be sure to try to squeeze it into your plans!

Australian Boardriders Battle

In Sydney’s south, Cronulla Beach will welcome boarders from all over Australia for the biggest grassroots boarding event in the country. The history of this competition involves over 100 of Aussie’s best boardriding clubs, which comes down to just 16 clubs over the long weekend battling it out for the title over two days.


This popular event is a great day out for spectators keen on their boats. Head to Sydney Harbour and find a good vantage point to see the water between Bradley’s Head and the Harbour Bridge, so you can watch Sydney’s Tall Ships lead a fleet of vessels across the water. There will also be a 21-gun salute, an aerial display from the Royal Airforce FA 18 Hornets and a special regatta to celebrate the 178th Australia Day.

Sydney Ferrython, Sydney Harbour

Sydney Ferrython, Sydney Harbour – Image Credit Rodrigo Dawson

Darling Harbour Australia Day Spectacular

After a day of events and activities around Sydney, the evening sets in with a concert starting at 6pm at Darling Harbour. This will be followed by some exciting performances, dazzling lights and a fireworks display to top it all off.