Bright, bold and beautiful
Visit Sydney for its gorgeous festival of light, and stay on to explore a host of activities for all kinds of travellers.
IT’S all about those beautiful bright lights during Vivid Sydney 2017. Happening now till June 17, the world’s largest festival of light is transforming the Australian city into a dazzling outdoor art exhibition.
Iconic buildings, such as the Sydney Opera House, will be illuminated by mega light installations and projections.
There are other equally enthralling sights during this time, too. Humpback whales visit the New South Wales coastline between May and November, sometimes swimming even right into Sydney Harbour! Australia’s mild winter is perfect to explore places such as Snowy Mountains, Blue Mountains and Scenic World.
You can be sure there’s something for everyone in New South Wales’ (NSW) capital city. Here’s a round-up of activities for the various types of travellers.
Dreams do come true for lovers of fresh produce, wines and delectable desserts, and hipster cafes, when they visit Sydney.
Here’s where you will find the largest working market of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere. The Sydney Fish Market offers all sorts of fresh seafood – oysters, crayfish, and sashimi – at affordable prices.
Be sure to also visit the Carriageworks Farmers Markets if you want to buy direct from local growers and artisans.
Meanwhile, the booming local café scene is good news for those with a sweet tooth.
Try some of Australia’s best coffees, gelati and pastries, including BlackStar Pastry’s mouth-watering Strawberry Watermelon cake: reputed to be the world’s most Instagrammed dessert.
The wildlife fan
Unique wildlife is abundant in Sydney and the region. Now till November is when the coastline of NSW comes alive with migrating humpback whales as they swim up north to breed in warmer waters before making their way southwards. Opt to watch these friendly giants along the shores, or take a whale-watching cruise to see them up-close.
If you like to meet cute and furry land animals instead, Taronga Zoo is the place to go to. Also, it has amazing views of the city across the waters. Other venues include Featherdale Wildlife Park near the Blue Mountains, or Symbio Wildlife Park which is a short detour off the Grand Pacific Drive, where you can see koalas, kangaroos and wombats.
There’s also Port Stephens, the official dolphin capital of Australia, just 2.5 hours’ drive north of Sydney.
The nature lover
Escape into the wild via Sydney, gateway to the beautiful mountains and coastline of New South Wales. About 90 minutes west of the city is the Blue Mountains.
The Unesco Heritage Site is home to stunning limestone cliffs, gorgeous waterfalls and crisp, eucalyptus-scented air.
If the ocean calls out to you, take a road trip down the Grand Pacific Drive and meander through spectacular national parks, rugged coastal cliffs and pristine beaches.
The Royal National Park (Australia’s oldest and the world’s second oldest) is only an hour’s drive away.
Once there, you can hike to Curracurrong Falls, one of the few waterfalls in the world that plunge straight into the ocean.
The adrenaline junkie
Looking for some adrenaline-pumping action? You can go jet-boating right in the heart of Sydney Harbour or whizz past the Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.
Up the excitement a notch by going on the thrilling BridgeClimb Sydney and standing atop Sydney Harbour Bridge for some of the best views of the harbour.
During the annual Vivid Sydney, there’s Vivid Climb, for which you can wear your flashing Vivid Climb vest and climb the Bridge above the bright, bold and beautiful lights before dancing under the stars on the illuminated 1970s style multicoloured flashing dance floor.
If you crave even more action, you can go tandem-skydiving in Wollongong and jump from a height of up to 4,267m! Or take in equally stunning views of the Hunter Valley as you glide over its rolling vineyards in a hot-air balloon.
If you prefer to be more “grounded”, why not head to Port Stephens and go on quad bike across vast, towering sand dunes? In fact, these are the largest coastal sand dunes in the Southern Hemisphere. How’s that for an adventure?
Promo fares are available at RM499 from now till 18 June 2017. Find out more at airasia.com/ sydney.
Every year, the magical Vivid Sydney transforms the capital of New South Wales into a colourful, dazzling outdoor art exhibition.
Watch the NSW coastline come alive as humpback whales perform spectacular acrobatic displays in the sparkling waters. — Photos: Destination NSW
Superb views of The Three Sisters, in the Blue Mountains, can be seen from Australia’s highest cableway.
Enjoy strolling along one of NSW’S many pristine beaches.