20 things to do in Sydney this January 2020

Whether you’re in the midst of school holidays, just taking a well-earned break, or finding things to do in between work, we’ve put together a list of 20 things to do this January 2020. They’re all based in and around Sydney so you won’t have to travel far. Just take your pick and enjoy yourself.

1. Sydney Festival

It’s our favourite time of the year in Sydney. The annual celebration of the arts and a definite for the summer’s must-do list.

When: Jan 8-26

Where: All over Sydney

How much: Varied

2. Solange

Performing at the Sydney Opera house, world-renowned artist and R’n’B icon is returning to the infamous Sydney venue to perform her Australian premiere of Witness. It’s composed and directed by Solange and will be only the 2nd time she’s performed it in the world. Get your tickets now.

When: Mon 27 and Tues 28 Jan

Where: The Concert Hall, Sydney Opera House

How much: From $89 plus $8.50 booking fee

3. Daniel Boyd: Video Works

As part of our favourite festival, Sydney-based Kudjala/Gangalu artist, Daniel Boyd, will present three major video installments – A Darker Shade of Dark #1-4, History is Made at Night, and Yamani. These showcase an abstract journey through time immemorial and are a gesture to the impertinence of lift on our planet.

When: 8 Jan – 1 March

Where: Carriageworks, Eveleigh

How much: Free

4. Louis Theroux Without Limits

The king of documentaries is back with a brand-new show. Join the multi-award-winning actor for an evening of insight and exploration as he delves into subjects from his extraordinary catalogue of work.

When: 14, 17, 18 Jan

Where: State Theatre

How much: From $100.80

5. Contemporary Kids x Fambo

This is an LGBTQIA+ experience for all the different kinds of families out there. It features vogueing, drag workshops, and storytelling, plus impressive art installations and much more. It’s suitable for kids aged 4-12 but any family at any stage is welcome, and kids under 12 months are free.

When: 21-25 January

Where: Museum of Contemporary Art

How much: Up to $20 per family

6. Six the Musical

Introducing the six wives of Henry VII; the rebellious heroines of history take to the mic to tell their story. Get ready for the Australian premiere of this electrifying smash hit pop musical that’s taken the West End by storm.

When: 4 Jan – 5 March

Where: Sydney Opera House

How much: from $59 plus $8.50 booking fee

7. Twilight at Taronga 25th anniversary celebrations

What better way to spend a summer’s evening then enjoying the beautiful sunset over the harbour, and at the same time, enjoying some music or comedy performances. This year’s line up includes Wolfmother, Broods, Pete Murray, and Kitty Flanagan to name but a few.

When:  31 Jan – 7 March

Where: Taronga Zoo

How much: From $71.10

8. Roadwerk – A festival by Heaps Gay

Heaps Gay’s – the most extra queer party starters in town – street festival is back with a vengeance after their sell-out years in 2017 and 2018. The summer festival celebrates local talents alongside Australian and international performers.

When: 18 Jan

Where: Marrickville Road, Marrickville

How much: From $47.94

9. Flickerfest

The 29th annual Flickerfest International Short Films Festival is back. For 10 thrilling days, the beloved Sydney summer institution will delight audiences with provocative and widly entertaining short films.

When: 10-19 Jan

Where: Bondi Pavillion

How much: From $8 for kids and $12 for adults

10. 1984! The Musical

It’s a brand new Australian musical in this light-hearted comedy about totalitarianism, thought-police, surveillance states, and sex. Expect tap-dancing torture chambers, rats with razzle-dazzle, and Big Brother with even bigger star power.

When: 8-25 January

Where: New Theatre, New Town

How much: From $15

11. Sunset sessions at Cockatoo Island

Enjoy Saturday nights filled with sunsets, songs, and storytelling when you jump on the ferry to Cockatoo Island for a night of chilled acoustic performances.

When: Runs until March 28

Where: Cockatoo Island, Sydney Harbour

How much: From $30

12. Wonderful Watercolour Workshops

Head along to Etienne Cohen Paintings for a Saturday session and unleash your inner Artiste. Led by expert educator Etienne Cohen, you’ll spend three hours of painting, and creativity sharing. Plus, you’ll enjoy complimentary health juices, snacks, and music.

When: 4 Jan-14 March

Where: 50 William Street, Paddington

How much: $75 per day

13. Aboriginal Art class

Discover native art and culture amongst the backdrop of Centennial Parklands. You’ll learn contemporary Aboriginal art techniques and culture with your artist on the day, and take home your crafted Aboriginal art style souvenir. Each class includes morning tea.

When: 2 Feb

Where: Centennial Parklands

How much: $40 per adult

14. Fun Japanese Cooking Workshop with Yoshiko

Enjoy an afternoon with this superstar chef and recreate tasty and nutritious Japanese-inspired food – both savoury and dessert.

When: Through to 1 Feb

Where: Bondi Junction

How much: From $133

15. Social Kayaking Sessions

These are perfect for people who want to get out on the water, and also meet other adventurous and like-minded people. It’s a self-guided 1.5hour group kayak – there’s no guide provided. The only thing included in the price is the equipment.

When: Until 4 April

Where: Bundeena

How much: $40

16. Wine you want

Back due to popular demand, this is a celebration of boutique wines, craft beers, fabulous food trucks, tinny bar, prosecco cart, and froze bar. Just pull up a picnic rug, enjoy the sunshine, and enjoy the local music. There’s also an after-dark dance party to enjoy once the sun has set.

When: 18-19 Jan

Where: Camden Valley Way, Gledswood Hills

How much: $15 per entry, per session for adults. Children are free.

17. Surry Hills Markets

A unique open-air market specialising in handmade, second-hand, and recycled goods held on the first Saturday of every month – regardless of the weather. They’re an essential fundraiser for the Surry Hills Neighbourhood Centre.

Where: Shannon Reserve, Surry Hills

When: 4 Jan-4 July on the 1st Saturday of the month

How much: That depends on how much you spend

18. Mov’in Bed 2020

Sydney’s outdoor bed cinema is back and to say we’re happy is an understatement. 150 beds in the Moore Park Entertainment Quarter, so you can lie back and enjoy the blockbuster movies. All with food brought to your bed. Bliss!

When:  17 Jan – 8 March

Where: Sydney Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park

How much: $73.80 for a couple and $93.90 for a trio

19. Lunar New Year at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium

Explore more than 13,000 magical creatures in their underwater world and enjoy endless photo opportunities with penguins, turtles, sharks, a dugong, and so much more.

When: 20 Jan-5 Feb

Where: Sea Life Sydney Aquarium

How much: Adult $46, Child $33

20. Artpark Australia Woolloomooloo Sculpture Walk

Walk through contemporary sculpture exhibition at Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf.

When: Every day until 31 Jan

Where: Woolloomooloo Finger Wharf

How much: Free