Whether you are in Sydney or Katoomba we have tracked down some of the best activities for the kids these January school holidays. Make the most of the sunshine and get out and about before the kids head back to school for another year!
If you would like to add your event to our school holiday guide, please email firstname.lastname@example.org with the event details.
From kids yoga to cupcake decorating, crazy science to hula hooping or even coding your own robot, Kinder Cafe has the kids sorted with their line up of fun and active school holiday workshops. And while the kids play you can enjoy a delicious coffee or scrumptious meal from the kitchen. Be sure to book to avoid disappointment!
Location: 3/3 Salisbury Road, Castle Hill
Dates: Open Monday – Saturday (Closed Sunday). Check the timetable for class details and booking.
Cost: From $10
Add a touch of elegance to your school holiday plans with the Frosted High Tea. Dine on French delicacies including Elsa’s frosted macarons, Anna’s Blueberry tartlet and gorgeous Olaf religieuse. This is a special little treat your Frozen fans will adore! Read our review of the Frosted High Tea here.
Location: Soirée, Sofitel Sydney, 61-101 Phillip Street, Sydney
Dates: Daily until 31 January, 11am – 5pm
Cost: $29 per child (aged 3-12). $65 per adult, including your choice of Dilmah Teamaker’s Private Reserve loose leaf tea or barista coffee. ($75 per person including a glass of sparkling wine or $85 per person including a glass of Veuve Clicquot)
Whether animals or adventure are your thing, Taronga Zoo has you covered. From the newly opened Tiger Trek where you can immerse yourself in the Sumatran Tiger environment to the new baby Chimp, baby Gorilla and Koala Joey arrivals at the zoo there are animals galore. And with the opening of the Junior Wild Ropes course for children aged 3 years and over, the whole family can now take on the exciting challenge of swinging between obstacles high above Taronga Zoo Sydney’s Australian walkabout. This spectacular outdoor activity overlooks the Sydney Harbour Bridge and the Opera House and will have the whole family navigating more than 60 obstacles over 90 minutes while spotting Koalas, Kangaroos, Emus and Wallabies.
Location: Bradley’s Head Road, Mosman
Dates: Open daily 9:30am-5:00pm
Cost: Buy tickets online at and save up to 20%. Online tickets for adults are $41.40 and children 4-15 years old are $23.40. Taronga Zoo Friends Annual Passes are $99 online at and may include two children 4-15 named in the application. Annual Passes may also be used at Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth Zoos and include other benefits. Wild Ropes starts online at $37 for adults, $32 for children aged 8-17 or $20 for children aged 3-7. Bookings and further information are available online.
Drawing inspiration from two of MCA’s summer exhibitions, Jon Campbell: MCA Collection & Word: MCA Collection that engage with language and text, children will be asked to create a text artwork or activist poster of their very own referring to the typography and posters seen in both exhibitions. Children will choose a cause to action or issue that’s important to them and use this as a starting point of their artwork, they will also have the choice to take their artwork home or add it to a larger artwork inside the gallery. The School Holiday program is designed to inspire children to look at text in new, different and abstract ways; and invites children and their grown-ups to collaborate together. Suitable for ages 4+.
Location: Creative Studios, Level 3, Museum of Contemporary Art, 140 George St, The Rocks
Dates: 23 – 27 January (closed 26 January), 10.30am – 4pm
Cost: Family ticket – $20 per family
The annual cultural celebration Sydney Festival returns, delivering the highest quality art and big ideas. The program spans theatre, dance, circus, visual art and music, reaching from Sydney’s CBD to Parramatta. For the kids highlights are sure to be the Jurassic Plastic exhibition (FREE) at Sydney Town Hall, the Karaoke Carousel (tickets from $5) with special Disney Sessions on Sundays in the Village Sideshow, Hyde Park North and the Highly Sprung interactive trampoline show (FREE) in Prince Alfred Square, Parramatta.
Location: Various across Sydney CBD and Parramatta
Dates: 6-28 January
Cost: Various; the festival does have a range of free events
Kids in the Park boasts more than 50 activities for all ages, tastes and budgets. From archery and swimming to clue trails, writing workshops, FREE outdoor cinema and so much more, Kids in the Park makes Sydney Olympic Park the official home of the BIGGEST range of school holiday activities of any location in NSW.
Location: Sydney Olympic Park
Dates: daily until 29 Jan 2018 (and every NSW school holiday period)
Cost: various, incl FREE activities
Returning for it’s fourth season, Sydney Hills Outdoor Cinema has a blockbuster lineup of new releases for the whole family to enjoy. You will be able to enjoy a movie in a beach style oasis, under the stars, with an array of delicious food offerings to choose from. With films like Ferdinand, Coco and Paddington 2 for the kids, as well as the likes of Bad Moms 2 for girls night or Star Wars and Downsizing for a date night with a difference, this is sure to be a huge hit this school holidays.
Location: Castle Hill Showground, Showground Rd, Castle Hill
Dates: 11 January – 18 February
Cost: $19 General Admission; Student/Concession General Admission $16.50; Child 3-12 General Admission $15; Family General Admission $60; VIP seating from $32
Take in a breathtaking Sydney Harbour sunset while enjoying a relaxed and intimate performance of songs and story-telling. The Harbour Trust, in collaboration with artist performance space, Venue 505, bring you a relaxed afternoon series of home grown Australian acts who will seek to inspire you with songs of life, love and loss. Like many of the hidden histories uncovered across Cockatoo Island, Campfire Sessions allows visitors to enjoy not only the intimate stories of the artists but invites you to experience the magic of Cockatoo Island during dusk with song and performance. The program will feature artists such as Alice Terry, Wartime Sweethearts and Columbian born, Angela Rosero and is set to be one of the most enticing Campfire Sessions yet. While the Campfire Sessions are designed to be family friendly, the length of the performances may not be suitable for very young children.
Location: Cockatoo Island (accessible by public ferry)
Dates: 6-27 January, Saturdays 5:30-7:30pm
Cost: $25 General Admission; $15 overnight visitors/concession; FREE for kids 12 and under
Grab your friends for a day of all-out fun, skating to the latest pop and dance beats mixed by Macquarie Ice Rink’s resident DJ – while enjoying the spectacular laser show, smoke machine and around-the-clock music videos on the new 15 square metre LCD screen. Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday these school holidays. The perfect way to cool off from the summer heat while having a great time with family and friends! Macquarie Ice Rink is located in the heart of the entertainment precinct of Macquarie Park.
Location: Macquarie Ice Rink, Sydney (NSW), Level 1U Macquarie Shopping Centre, Herring Rd & Waterloo Rd, Macquarie Park
Dates: Jan 3 – Jan 24, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays during the school holidays from 11:30am – 2:30 pm
Cost: $20 – $25
Who doesn’t love a day full of live entertainment, jumbo games and some of the best food Sydney has to offer, right in the heart of Circular Quay? Every weekend throughout January 2018, culinary destination Gateway, will host its Summer Sessions, showcasing some of the best musicians and performing acts in Sydney. Talent such as Kids of Leo, the world youngest sibling pop group who shot to fame on Australia’s Got Talent, and Hendrick a professional busker who has travelled throughout Europe, NZ and Australia will be sharing their musical talents.
Location: Gateway – Alfred Street, Circular Quay
Dates: Every Saturday & Sunday, from 6th Jan to 28th Jan 2018 (Games available from 11am- 4pm. Live entertainment available from 12pm-3pm.)
Available Monday to Wednesday between 9am and 12pm across the school holidays (excluding public holidays), Bowl Camp is a fun and informative program allowing kids to learn how to bowl, from how to hold the ball correctly to where to stand on the lane, and also tips and tricks for scoring that elusive strike. Includes 1 game of bowling and 1 game of laser tag (2 games of bowling if laser tag is not available at the venue). Kids will also enjoy a jaffle and pop top drink, as well as 10 arcade bucks to enjoy the arcade games on offer. Best suited to children aged 5-15.
Location: Available at all AMF Bowling centres across Australia
Dates: Monday to Wednesday, 9am-12pm across the school holidays (excluding public holidays)
Cost: $28 per person
Available all day, every day during the school holiday period, kids can get the full AMF experience with bowling, laser tag and arcade games to keep them entertained. The Ultimate Fun Pass includes: 1 x game of bowling and 1 x game of laser tag (1 x games of bowling if laser tag is not available at the venue), shoe hire, 10 arcade bucks, $10 café voucher and $7 return voucher.
Location: Available at all AMF Bowling centres across Australia
Dates: All day, every day during the school holiday period
Cost: $29.90 per person
The 2018 Yak Ales BBQ Festival is an American-style barbecue competition packed with mouth-watering BBQ from local and international pitmasters. Running across two days in both Melbourne and New South Wales, the festival program features barbecue cooking and butchery demos, a barbecue cook-off sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbecue Society, a Kid’s cook-off zone, live bands, DJs and much more. It’s a fun day out for the whole family!
Location: Central Coast Stadium,
Dates: 10-11 February
Cost: Tickets from $30.60 (kids under 12 receive free entry)
Blog header image: Captured by Kirri
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