Top Rainy Day Places to Go with Kids In Sydney City

  • Family

Rainy, chilly or even too hot to be outside? Being stuck indoors can make for a LONG day with young kids.

Here’s our top rainy day places to visit when you're in Sydney City.

1. The Powerhouse Museum

The Powerhouse Museum is one of our all time favourite low cost activities for kids in Sydney. It’s Sydney’s most popular museum with a unique and diverse collection of objects that spans history, science, technology and design. It gives kids a brilliant hands on, interactive experience and it is such fun that they won’t even know it’s educational! With so much to see as well as excellent daily activities for kids on offer, it is definitely worth more than an annual visit. It is the perfect rainy day destination and best of all, the Museum is suitable for mums and bubs, toddlers right through to young adults.

Where: Ultimo
When: 10am - 5pm
Cost: Free general admission

We love the Powerhouse Museum in Ultimo.


2. The Australian Museum 

A visit to The Australian Museum is a wonderful family day out for any age, this large museum houses everything from dinosaurs to insects and everything in between so you’ll find plenty here to keep kids of all ages busy for hours and hours. There is so much to see and do that repeat visits only uncover more interesting displays. and great special exhibitions. Perfect for rainy and hot summer days.

Where: Sydney City
When: 10am–5pm
Cost: Free general admission


The Australian Museum is perfect to escape the rainy or hot summer days. 


3. The SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium (Darling Harbour) 

The SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium (Darling Harbour) is suitable for all ages even young bubs. There’s so much to see and do here, you’ll easily spend 3 hours here. You’ll find the world’s largest collection of all-Aussie aquatic animals, including sharks, penguins, giant rays, tropical fish, turtles, dugongs, crocodiles, platypus, sea dragons and more. Sydney Aquarium is also excellent for mums and bubs, all areas are easily accessed with a pram and even the tiniest baby enjoys gazing at the creatures behind the glass. Toddlers have plenty of room to run and explore (especially on weekdays) and pre-schoolers and up love trying to find Nemo and discovering other fish and sea creatures they recognise.

Where:    SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium & WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, Darling Harbour, Sydney
When:     7 days a week during the school holidays, 9:30am - 5pm (last entry 4pm)
Cost:       Child (4-15yrs): $41 for 2 attractions. Adult (16yrs+): $58 for 2 attractions


Can you find Nemo?


4. National Maritime Museum 

The National Maritime Museum is not just for maritime history buffs, it is truly dedicated to introducing children to our national sea-faring history in a fun and engaging way. This museum captures these themes with fascinating artifacts, lively exhibitions, fun activities for kids and even the chance to board ships. They also offer fantastic organised activities for toddlers, pre-schoolers and older school children. 

Where: Pyrmont, Sydney
When: Daily, 9:30 am – 5 pm 
Cost: Child (under 15) $15, Adult $22. Members and children under 4 are free.


Not just for history buffs!


5. WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo 

WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo houses the nation’s largest variety of Australian animals under one roof and provides a complete all-Australian wildlife activity experience for kids in the heart of Darling Harbour. This is one of our favourite rainy day activities and it is very easy to spend a couple of very pleasant hours here and there’s plenty of room for active kids to race around. 

Where:    SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium & WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, Darling Harbour, Sydney
When:     7 days a week during the school holidays, 9:30 am - 5 pm (last entry 4 pm)
Cost:       Child (4-15yrs): $41 for 2 attractions. Adult (16yrs+): $58 for 2 attractions


Come and meet the Big 5!


6. Hyde Park Barracks

Hyde Park Barracks is a child-friendly destination that really strives to involve even young children in both their permanent and temporary exhibitions. Whether your visit includes catching a children’s theater performance in the old convicts quarters, dress ups and a kids’ convict trail or wonderful school holiday ideas, there is plenty on offer for your pre-schoolers and school age kids. Even very young children will love the idea that they are walking through a building that once housed convicts and pirates when they visit the Hyde Park Barracks. Kids (and grown ups) can lie in a convict’s hammock, try on leg irons and look for distant relatives. This is a great place to spend and hour or so on a rainy day and the excellent and very child friendly Hyde Park Barracks café is also well worth a visit. Best for ages 5+ years.

Where:    Hyde Park Barracks, Queens Square, Sydney
When:     Open Thursday to Sunday, 10 am – 5 pm
Cost:       Included in general admission: Child $16, Adult $24, Family $64. Members and children under 5 are free


The very child friendly Hyde Park Barracks café is also well worth a visit.


7. Indoor swimming

There’s nothing better in rainy weather than to get wetter. Cook and Philip Aquatic Centre has a shallow kids pool with water bubblers, and 33 degree hydrotherapy pool available for use (when no classes are on) – which is perfect for little babies. The Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre has a separate kids pool with lots of crocodile floaties for the kids to play on. This pool is always nice and warm and right next door to the Powerhouse Museum.

Cook and Philip Aquatic Centre:

Where: Sydney City East
When:  Monday to Friday from 6 am - 8 pm; Saturday to Sunday from 7 am - 7 pm. Free play and recreational swimming is from 9 am to 5 pm.
Cost: Concession $6.20, Adult $8.30. Child Under 3 Free.

The Ian Thorpe Aquatic Centre

Where: Ultimo
When: 6am- 8pm
Cost: Concession $6.20, Adult $8.30. Child Under 3 Free.

We love the water bubblers!

8. Art Gallery NSW

A visit to the NSW Art Gallery in Sydney’s Domain is a wonderful activity for kids of all ages. Indoors, spacious, great for prams and strollers and safe for toddlers it’s a great option for rainy or chilly days. Art Gallery NSW hosts an extensive range of free activities for children from tots to teenagers. You’ll find specially created children’s trails and a kids audio tour to help young visitors engage with the art in the exhibitions. Plus a lovely spacious cafe, perfect for lunch with friends. 

Where: Domain, Sydney City
When: Daily 10 am - 5 pm. Wednesdays open 10 am - 10 pm
Cost: Free General Admission


Art Gallery NSW hosts an extensive range of free activities for children from tots to teenagers.


9. Movies and Bowling

Always a favourite family rainy day activity. Visit Event Cinema’s or Hoyts to see what’s on. For family friendly bowling try Strike Bowling at Darling Harbour and The Entertainment Quarter. Or if you wanted to travel a little further out you can't beat out guide to the Top Bowling Alleys for Kids in Sydney.


Bowling, a rainy day family classic! 



10. Indoor Play Centres 

Your little one will love a great indoor play center, the best ones can keep them entertained all day long! We have the perfect indoor play center list for you.

See our top picks of Sydney’s Indoor Play Centres.


Unbeatable fun! 

More Fun Things To Do In Sydney

Sydney's Best Indoor Climbing Centres
Best Scavenger Hunts in Sydney for Kids
Best Kids Cooking Classes In Sydney

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Bethany Hutchison

Jun 13 2016

Aaron is 16 Dylan is 13 Live near newcastle nsw Teenagers boys like doing things in Sydney nsw