Best Of Vivid Sydney For Kids 2016

  • Family

By: Phoebe Ackland, ellaslist

Best of Vivid For Kids:

We were dazzled by the lights at Vivid last year, and this year, Vivid 2016 is set to be bigger and better than ever! With a record number of light displays, an extra 5 days to see all the action and a whole heap more family friendly activities, this spectacular Winter event cannot be missed!

What is Vivid?

Vivid is the world’s largest light + music + ideas festival, and is happening from 27 May – 18 June 2016. Here are some of the most magical experiences and events families will love this year: (we’ve categorised the attractions by age to make it easier to find what’s suited to your family)

PS: if you’re looking for kid-friendly lights, categorised by location, you’ll find what you need here.

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Great for Under 5’s

Dinosaur Magic: Prehistoric creatures come to 3D life in Chatswood at WildLight, The BioKinetic City. Kids can have a turn controlling the frame of a mechanical dinosaur thanks to the magic of puppetry!

Electric Jellyfish: Journey inside this enchanting dome where you can bounce around your own electric light rings and watch them float away. Museum of Sydney

For Animal Lovers: Taronga Zoo will light up with life sized animals who change colour and emit sound… and families are welcomed to interact with them!

Story Time at Customs House: Follow the blue tongue lizard on a story adventure through forests and past witches projected onto the great sandstone of Customs House.

Magic Tunnel at the Royal Botanic Garden: Find your way through a 70 metre long tunnel decked out in mesmerizing LED lights at the Royal Botanic Garden.

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Perfect for 6-10 Year Olds

Spectrum at The Rocks: This hands on display will have kids putting their own unique stamp on an incredible interactive light sculpture. The Rocks

Shadow Wall at Circular Quay: Your shadow will come to colourful life as a rainbow silhouette. Circular Quay

Dress Circle: Using touch sensitive 3D technology, kids can colour the skyline and watch as their art shows up in Vivid real-time. Circular Quay

IMPOSSIBLE Voyage: At Cadman’s Cottage you can take a ride to mysterious lands as the magic of light transports you through new landscapes. Circular Quay

Silent Disco at Central Park: Kids can dance away their energy to music that parents don’t even have to listen to! Each child will have their own headphones for some toe-tapping fun. Central Park

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Excellent for 11 Years +

Laser Dragon Water Theatre: Kids will just love this action packed exhibit! 4 water screens, 56 fountains, 22 flame jets, and 10 lasers will create effects to leave big kids gobsmacked at Darling Harbour!

Sound Bubble: Approaching visitors will cause this huge, transparent cube to emit all kinds of colours and sounds. The more people, the greater the show! Circular Quay

U-Tube: The whole family can make a great impression (literally!) on this sculpture where you can imprint your face, hands or anything else! Circular Quay

Return of Robowars: On June 5 watch some hand made metal robots of all shapes and sizes as they battle it out in epic fashion! Cargo Hall, Overseas Passenger Terminal

Vivid Sydney 2015, Mirador, The University of Sydney. 25/5/2015. Photo Credit - James Horan/Destination NSW

For Future Vivid-Makers

Get down to the Michael Crouch Innovation Centre at UNSW for a hands on workshop where kids can explore using 3D printing, 3D scanning, electronics and laser cutting! Kids will make their very own mini Vivid light in this inspiring workshop.


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For Creative Thinkers and Little Inventors

This hands-on workshop at the MCA for kids aged 9-12 yrs will see children make their very own mini invention as a solution to a given problem, which they can take home afterwards!


View Vivid On a High

When you dine at The Deck Sydney in Luna Park, you will receive a complimentary ferris wheel ride and mug of mulled wine or hot chocolate as you soak up the lights and atmosphere from the most spectacular vantage point Sydney has to offer.



Vivid at Sydney Tower Eye

Sydney Tower Eye offers you an exclusive opportunity to soak up the ultimate bird’s eye view of the world-famous VIVID Festival from Sydney’s highest viewing platform as well as create your very own light display! Have a ball at the silent disco, get some bright UV face painting, or have a 45 minute guided tour for an incredible photo opportunity.



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Vivid at the MCA

The facade of the MCA will transform into a canvas for the incredible work of Western Sydney artist Huseyin Sami. Perch on the Sculpture Terrace (till 9pm on Thursday-Sunday as part of Vivid Late Nights) and watch the awe-inspiring colours and animated lights, as you dine on some delicious eats.


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Top Tips For Seeing Vivid With Kids

  • Monday-Wednesdays are the quietest times to see the lights. Peak times are Friday and Saturday nights, so best to avoid those crowds.
  • Get there early in the evening! There’s lots to see, and you want to have the kids home before they fall asleep on their feet.
  • Go a few times! There’s too much to pack into one evening, so take the pressure off and visit Vivid over a few nights.
  • Public transport is recommended! There’s extra trains, buses and ferries operating, so take advantage and leave the car and parking hassle at home.
  • Take a map, or plan your trip with our family light route guide!
  • Chatswood and Taronga Zoo light up from 5.30pm, extra early to suit kiddies!
  • The best place to watch the Laser Dragon Water Theatre is at an outside table at a restaurant on The Promenade. Fancy a quick bite?

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