Best Things To Do with Kids When It’s Stinking Hot


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By: Serina Hajje, ellaslist

Do you see heat waves outside your window? Are the kids waiting impatiently by the door, eager to do something despite the crippling heat? Fear no more the intense heat, we’ve collected a wide range of activities and places that will please kids of all ages, and will keep everyone cool! So here are the best things to do with kids when it’s stinking hot.


So much is happening in Sydney that will keep everyone wet and cool!

FREE Water Playgrounds
If you prefer something cheaper then come see these FREE water playgrounds. Sydney is spoiled for choice when it comes to this and they cater to kids of all ages. Find your closest FREE waterpark. Our favourites include the new Blaxland Riverside Park and Playground that truly has the WOW factor!


Awesome Waterslides
Everyone loves a good waterslide, especially on a hot day. We’ve hunted throughout Sydney and found the longest, curviest and most fun slides for kids in Sydney. Some reside in pop-up waterparks and others are open for the whole summer at aquatic centres. Travel throughout Sydney and tick off all these amazing water slides!

Indoor Swimming Pools
Sometimes it’s best to avoid the sun altogether in this scorching heat! Every suburb has a range of indoor swimming pools, but we’ve found the very best for kids. Find where the best indoor swimming pools are in your suburb. We just adore the Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre- it’s like a water amusement park!

indoor pool

Wet’n’Wild deserves it’s very own section. Being one of Sydney’s best waterparks with an impressive collection of slides, rides and activities that pleases kids and adults alike, it’s worth spending a full day here. It’s a short 40 minute drive from Sydney CBD and it’s action packed with over 40 slides and attractions. Considering the size and range of it’s rides, we’ve set up a guide to help you take advantage of your trip.

waterworld central_sydney waterparks

Destination Stores

You can always count on stores having crispy cool air-conditioned aisles. Stores can be quite accommodating to kids, from free kids art activities, to meet-ups and play centres, shopping centres really do want families to visit (and shop more). Check out the best destination stores for kids!

Playgrounds at Shopping Centres

If you’ve still got an air-conditioned place in mind, you’d be surprised by how many shopping centres have well-designed playgrounds. Drive up to one of these shopping centres and spend a peaceful hour watching the kids play from a nearby chair- there are some great ones all over Sydney.

where to take the kids on hot day sydney

Indoor Play Centres

Outdoor playgrounds are out of the question on a sizzling day. Thankfully, there is no shortage of incredible indoor play centres in Sydney, catering to different age groups and each designed to make your child active and happy in a safe enviornment. See the amazing indoor play centres across Sydney. Some of our favourites include Little Dynamo’s, Mess and Learn Kingdom, Skyzone and Ultimate Sydney!

Cafes with a Play Area!

It’s a rare combination…good coffee and preoccupied, happy children. This summer, don’t settle for anything less than a perfect and enjoyable cafe experience with kids at a cafe that’ll make them satisfied! From toys and books to mini farms and healthy kid menus, check out our top kid friendly cafes.

where to take the kids on hot day sydney 2

Cool Ice Cream Parlours

There’s not a more delicious way to cool down in Sydney heat. While we’re on the subject of food, you can’t survive a hot day without some ice cream. After much searching, we’ve found the best ice cream parlous across Sydney.

what to do with your kids when it's hot sydney

Icy Milkshakes

You still need a cold drink and don’t settle for a plain, simple flavour. On hot days, everyone should indulge in some chocolate coated, Nutella flavoured, doughnut filled milkshakes. All these places have their own specialty that you won’t find in many places. So go and sink your teeth into the best milkshakes in Sydney!

what to do with your kids when it's hot sydney 2

Exploring the City (indoors)

There’s always something new and exciting to do in the city, and you can still do that on a hot day and still be nice and cool. There’s always a new exhibit for kids at your favourite places. Here’s a taste:

Manly SEA LIFE Aquarium: Get Hands On 
When we visited SEA LIFE recently- our kids had a ball. Get interactive and hands-on in the rock pool, watch fish and sharks being fed and had a play at Shipwreck Shores- the soft play area for kids under 7!

Museum of Contemporary Art: Connect With Everything 
The new light exhibition at the MCA by Japanese artist Tatsuo Miyajima is perfect for a kids introduction to the arts! You can lie on your back and gaze up at stars that look like the night sky, or visit the family space where you can get hand son and make your own art!

Powerhouse Museum: Ancient Egypt
Little budding historians will love the theme of this Summer- Ancient Egypt! Kids can get involved in some awesome holiday workshops including Secret Histories, Midday Storytelling, Dig Discovery Zone & LOADS more.

To get a comprehensive idea of the best kids activities in the city on a hot day check out our top ten picks!

spooky seas


It’s a melting pot of everything a kid needs to feel energized upon entry, and exhausted but satisfied upon leaving. Dodge and jump lasers, strap into a harness and do the rope course, go bowling, see the XD theatre or spend a good hour or two at the arcade! It’s easy to keep the kids occupied at AttracTivity. We bet adults will have a blast too.

Ice Skating

You definitely won’t be getting hot by going ice-skating. Here are some of our favourites:

Liverpool Catholic Club Sports Complex
Not only do they offer lessons for kids but they also have Playgroup on Ice for kids aged 2-6! Check out all the details on lessons and the playgroup here. The Sports Complex is built as a leisure haven with a fully equipped gym, and Mini Golf, as well as a Cafe.
WHERE: 424-458 Hoxton Park Road, Prestons
COST: Under 15 yrs- $17,  Over 15 yrs – $20,    Family (2 adults + 2 children)-$62

Canterbury Olympic Ice Rink
They have a reputation for being the friendliest and best value rink in the inner west.
WHERE: Phillips Avenue, Canterbury 2193
COST: Under 5 yrs – $11, 5-12 years – $19, 13 yrs and over – $22, Family Pass – $69

Penrith Ice Palace
These guys have a canteen for all your parental needs as well as skating programs to help beginners.
WHERE: 7 Patty’s Place, Jamisontown
COST: Adults – $20, 17 yrs and under – $18, 4 yrs and under – $10, Family Pass -$70

Sydney Ice Arena
The arena has the best ice skating facilities in Sydney! Let the kids be thrilled by a range of ice skating activities like ice shows, public ice skating sessions and ice skating lessons.
WHERE: 11 Solent Circuit, Baulkham Hills
COST: Under 4 yrs – $13, Child – $16, Adult – $20

Macquarie Ice Rink
There’s an awesome Kiddies Club that runs with Coffee Club that’s a perfect match for parents and kids! Best of all, the first 3 hours of parking is FREE in the centre. Be sure to check out their special discounts during the last hour of every general session, plus their Lunchtime Special and Monday Cheap Skate Night.
WHERE: Macquarie Shopping Centre, North Ryde
COST: Under 16 yrs -$22, Adult- $24
Lunchtime Special- $20 flat rate
Monday Cheap Skate Night- $20 flat rate
Discount Rates:
Children (U16)/Students- $17
Adults- $18

Rainy Day Activities for kids_Ice Skating_sydney


Have a swing and enjoy competing against one another at bowling. Bowling ramps are always provided to help kids make those strikes and you can have the option of putting up the alley ramps so no one has to miss a pin!

Manhattan Superbowl
Stroll into the 60s with this quirky and fun bowling alley! This meshes adult luxury with kid friendly play areas with drinks at the Pontiac Bar, sun drenched Beer Garden, Bistro, and arcades area.
WHERE:549 Gardeners Rd , Mascot
COST: For Kids – 1 Game – $13.00
2 Games – $21.00
3 Games – $25.00

AMF Bowling
With over 40 centres across Australia, AMF has certainly built itself a reputation for most families who’ve grown in the country. Bowl yourself some memories at any of these centres!
COST: Under 14 yrs – $12.90
Adult – $14.90

Rainy Day Activities for kids_bowling_sydney

Art and Craft Centres

Get messy and let someone else clean up! We love a good art centre, here are our favourites:

Little Ginger Studio
Their Saturday drop-in classes are incredible. 5-12 year olds are welcomed to the ‘Secret Garden’ where each week they will engage and experiment with new materials from printmaking to sculpture.
WHERE: Randwick Literary Institute (out the back), 60 Clovelly Road (cnr Market Street cul-de-sac)

Paint and Play
This is a popular drop-in/casual playgroup session for children 0-5yrs, in Alexandria and Maroubra in Sydney’s inner city and eastern suburbs.
WHERE: Maroubra and Alexandria

Little Plaster House
Come in for a day filled with cake, coffee and creativity with a wide selection of plasters that will satisfy anyone; from butterflies, wands and ladybugs to Lego men, castles and lighthouses.
WHERE: F76 / 24-32 Lexington Drive, Bella Vista

Mess and Learn Kingdom
Mess and Learn Kingdom is a Arts & Fine motor skills indoor playcentre and party venue for kids 16 months and above.
WHERE:775 Anzac Parade Maroubra

Jenny’s Painted Pots
Jenny’s Paint a Pot & Sweet Shop is a fun place to let your imagination go wild. Go along and choose from a wide range of ceramic animals, plates, mugs, decopatch letters and figures – the list is almost endless.
WHERE: Suite 5, Macmillian Court, 11 Avalon Parade, Avalon

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Serina Hajje

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  1. Bec

    Great ideas thank you

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