Free things to do in Sydney

From art to music to sports, there are plenty of things to do in Sydney without spending a cent. You just have to know where to look.

Get arty at galleries and exhibitions

Sydney’s thriving art scene means there are always creative events happening in the city. Keep your eye out for artist talks, exhibitions and free workshops. In the meantime, check out these permanent fixtures.

Art Gallery of NSW
Want to see van Gogh and Cézanne in Sydney? The Art Gallery of NSW has everything from Impressionism right through to contemporary sculpture and Indigenous art. The gallery itself is a pleasure to spend time in, with lovely archways and great views over Woolloomooloo. Entry is free to the permanent exhibitions.
Address: Art Gallery Road, Sydney NSW 2000
artgallery.nsw.gov.au

Museum of Contemporary Art
The MCA is located on the water’s edge at Circular Quay. It features more than 4000 works by Australian artists as well as temporary exhibitions. Entry is free for the permanent collection. Tip: the Café on level 4 has spectacular views of Sydney Harbour.
Address: 140 George Street, The Rocks
mca.com.au

White Rabbit 
A newer addition to Sydney’s art scene, The White Rabbit Collection has one of the largest collections of contemporary Chinese art in the world. The tea house downstairs is a spot of zen in the city. Entry is free.
Address: 30 Balfour Street, Chippendale NSW 2008
whiterabbitcollection.org

Go sightseeing

We’re totally biased, but we think Sydney is the most beautiful city in the world. We’re #blessed with picturesque parks, interesting architecture and surrounded by a sparkling harbour. Take it in without spending your hard-earned cash.

Walk across the Harbour Bridge
It doesn’t cost a cent to walk across the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Start from The Rocks and wander over to Milsons Point to enjoy sweeping views of the city and Sydney Harbour on the way. The walk across the bridge is approximately 1 kilometre and a nice easy (if a little windy) stroll. If you’re worn out once you reach the other side, you can grab a ferry from Milsons Point back to Circular Quay.

harbour-bridge-walk

Looking for something free to do in Sydney? Walk the Harbour Bridge. Pic: @andrew_sf via Instagram

Pack a picnic and visit Observatory Hill
Observatory Hill is perched above the historic Rocks and is one of the nicest spots to take in picturesque views of Sydney. Choose a sunny day, pack a picnic and take some time out.

Observatory-Hill

A popular spot with locals, workers and visitors, Observatory Hill Park offers sweeping, panoramic views of Sydney Harbour and the Harbour Bridge for free.

Take a stroll to Mrs Macquaries Point
Looking for the perfect place to take a few happy snaps in front of the Harbour Bridge and Opera House? Wander over to Mrs Macquaries Point – you won’t be disappointed. Accessible via the Botanic Gardens or Mrs Macquaries Road.

mrsmacquarieschair_demasrusli

Mrs Macquaries Point offers arguably the best views in Sydney. Pic: @demasrusli via Instagram

Go for a walk

Real talk: we’ve got some pretty good weather on our side here in Sydney. Not to mention the views. There’s really no excuse for boredom in a town like this: just get out for a walk. Here are some of our favourite ways to walk the city.

Go clubbing
Love walking? Join the club – literally. Find out about your local walking club.

Culture walks
Explore Sydney’s historical and cultural past with the free Culture Walks App. It’ll tell you the stories behind public artwork and historical sites in Sydney. Download it for free on iOS and Android.

Sydney Culture Walks - Explore Sydney’s historical and cultural past with the free Culture Walks App. It’ll tell you the stories behind public artwork and historical sites in Sydney.

Discover art and Sydney’s history in our free Culture Walks app.

Walk the foreshore
Circular Quay to Rushcutters Bay and the Glebe Foreshore Walk are two of our city’s favourites – and you’ll soon be able to walk an almost uninterrupted 14km track along the water when the Barangaroo development is finished. See more of Sydney’s best walking tracks.

Want more?

  • How about a self-guided cycling tour? You can request a free map of Sydney’s cycleways or view it online and then you’re on your way.
  • Or, right now, we’re running free discovery rides so there’s no need to go it alone.
  • There are always free gigs happening around the city
  • Head to the library. The City’s libraries hold author talks, workshops and late night events throughout the year.
  • Weekend? Browse one of Sydney’s markets.
  • Get into the park life. It won’t cost you a thing to relax in one of Sydney’s best parks.

To see all free events on offer in our city, check out our freebies section.

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