Best Winter Activities with Toddlers & Preschoolers in Sydney 2018

  • Preschoolers
    Toddlers

We all know Sydney is a city that comes alive in summer - but that doesn’t mean that you have to hibernate in winter! Here are some of our favourite winter activities to do with toddlers and preschoolers in Sydney's winter, because their energy stores certainly won't shut down just because of a chilly breeze. 

1. Adventures At Centennial Parklands

Rug up warm and enjoy the scenic Centennial Parklands. Feed the ducks at the pond, ride a tricycle around the new Fearnley Grounds, and grab a hot chocolate at the Centennial Homestead. Throughout winter, Centennial Parklands is bringing back their popular Bush School program for 2.5-5-year-olds. Bush School will have kids climbing trees, building cubbies, exploring the great outdoors, making mud pies and discovering different bugs. Led by the Parkland's expert team of Education Rangers, Bush School will inspire a love for the natural world through games, bushcraft activities, stories and more. 

2. Wonderful Winter Festivals & Events 

At one of Sydney's excellent winter festivals, you're bound to find a toddler-appropriate snow play section, ice skating rink, a touch of toboganning, or some children's games and entertainment. Little ones will be dazzled by the winter wonderland-esque atmosphere, delicious food stalls and mugs of hot choccie. See our list of Sydney's best for 2018 here. 

3. Indoor Playcentres

It might be a touch too cold for the playground, but don't let the weather stop your day of play! Check out one of Sydney's great indoor play centres where kids will have a ball, and mums can sit at the cafe and enjoy a hot, uninterrupted coffee. We recommend Wannabees Family Play Town in French's Forest which is set up like a mini village complete with supermarket, fire station and beauty salon, or the slice of heaven that is Nubo in Alexandria, and now in Chatswood too; instrumental nursery rhymes and a blue and white colour scheme make this the play centre so very different to the rest. 

4. We Bet You Wouldn't Have Thought Of This One

Heading to the pool certainly isn't the first venue that comes to mind when you think of winter time and toddlers, but take our word for it- the Sydney Olympic Park Aquatic Centre (pictured below) is the place to be! With special areas for toddlers and shallow wading pools as well as the incredible Splasher's Water Playgroud, it'll feel like the middle of Summer once you're inside. And yes, the pool is heated! 

We're also loving Sutherland Leisure Centre, where you can swim all while staying warm in the heated pools galore, including a heated children's indoor water play area. 

5. Get A Culture Fix at a Great Gallery or Magnificent Museum

There are SO many kid-friendly, interactive museums and galleries for kids to enjoy this Winter. Our top picks include the Australian Museum- their Kidspace is dedicated to under 5s, encouraging exploration of the natural world through getting very hands-on. This is a museum that will have you returning again and again.

We also love the Mini Mariners program for 2-5-year-olds at the Australian National Maritime Museum, which takes children on an interactive gallery tour followed by play time in the museum’s activity area, with craft, games, books, dress-ups and story time.

The Museum of Contemporary Art have heaps of kid and family friendly activities on their schedule this winter including Art Baby - fun and flexible gallery tours for mums or dads and bubs under 12 months, featuring a 45-minute gallery tour followed by a 30-minute tummy time play session. 3-5 year olds can experience contemporary art coming to life through games and stories, followed by hands-on art activities at the MCA's Art Safari, and under 5s can join MCA's ArtPLAY every Wednesday (from 10am to midday, excluding school holidays) for exhibition-related games and toys, interactive artwork, plus music and storytime. 

6. Have A Giggle At A Kids' Show

This winter sees a heap of headliners coming to town. Check out our wrap-up of the Best Kids Shows Of Winter 2018 and make sure to grab tickets 'cos they're selling like hot cakes. From the timeless The Very Hungry Caterpillar Show to the touching The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time live in theatre (pictured below), to the Disney On Ice sing-a-long spectacular and much more, you're sure to find a show that your little one - and you! - will love.  

7. Wild Ropes At Taronga

Kids 3-8 can get suited up and channel their inner Spiderman, all with utmost safety at a one-hour Taronga Zoo's Wild Ropes course, tailored to your little one's age accordingly. Pro-tip: buy Wild Ropes tickets online and combine them with your Zoo entry for great value, and a full day of adventure! 

Want Even More Winter Inspo?

Make sure to check out ellaslist Guide To Winter In Sydney 2018, packed with toddler, preschooler and family-friendly activities. 

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