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Where to celebrate Christmas in July in Sydney 2020

If December feels too far away, there’s always these Christmas in July and Yuletide events to look forward to in Sydney.

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Group of people celebrating with Santa hats. They are toasting at a Summer Christmas party, and there is food on the table. Shot from above. High, wide angle view

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Christmas in July. It's a time when Australians can experience Christmas in winter, just like in the Northern Hemisphere.

Yes, this includes Christmas feasts, glühwein (a.k.a. mulled wine) and crackling fireplaces.

So if you feel like singing Christmas carols while wearing that signature Christmas jumper, these Sydney based events are bringing Christmas in July to life this year.

Group of girl friends happy and relaxing on a golden summer evening, enjoying a sunset cruise on a yacht while drinking beer with brilliant sunflare

Sydney Harbour cruises | Sydney (July)

Go against the grain this year and book a spot on a Christmas in July cruise to celebrate the mid-year.

A handful of Sydney Harbour cruises theme their sailings around winter and the big great jolly guy. Expect delicious meals with a Christmas twist, music and plenty of games.

Due to COVID-19, boat capacities may be limited.

Top Sydney Harbour cruises you can book right now


Yulefest

Yulefest | Blue Mountains (June-August)

The Blue Mountains is perhaps the closest you can get to real snow on a day trip, and every winter the region hosts Yulefest the winter months.

It’s less of an event festival and more of a "Christmas atmosphere" deal here, with many venues offering Christmas-style meals and hospitality.

Expect log fires to be lit, Christmas carols to be sung and that mouthwatering Christmas turkey to be featured at the centre of the table at hotels such as Emirates One&Only Wolgan Valley and Hotel Mountain Heritage.

Top Blue Mountains stays

Hotel Mountain Heritage Blue Mountains
Hotel Mountain Heritage Blue Mountains

Finder Hotels

Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains - MGallery
Fairmont Resort Blue Mountains - MGallery

Finder Hotels


Winterfest-Luna-Park

Winterfest | Luna Park (Dates TBC)

Take the kids on the ultimate day at at Luna Park.

The Sydney amusement park loves a good theme and often celebrates Christmas in July with an ice skating rink that comes free with an Unlimited Rides or Annual Pass ticket.

Don't have one? That's OK. Skating contributes as one of your rides on your Sampler Pass.

This year's even has yet to be confirmed, but we'll keep you updated with more as it comes in.

Top Luna Park passes


Christmas-in-July-July-23-2016-1W6A6522-1000x667-300

Christmas in July | Thredbo (June-September)

Naturally the place to get your true snow fix in July is the snows. While not in Sydney, it's one of the most accessible snow regions for Sydney-siders and hosts many a Santa-filled party (with social distancing) for the season.

You know the drill: snap up a Thredbo deal and hightail it to the slopes.

Due to gathering limits and physical distancing requirements, you will need to pre-buy your lift passes to be allowed on the slopes. There will be no one-the-day passes issued.


Bondi-Ice-Rink-300

Bondi Winter Magic | Bondi Beach (Rescheduled to 3-11 October)

Bondi Winter Magic has got to be one of the coolest concepts on the Australian coast. It features Australia's only beachside ice-skating rink and is possibly the only place you can dip in the ocean before hitting the ice.

This year, things are being played out a little differently though. With physical distancing measures in place the event has been rescheduled for October. We know what you're thinking: that's not winter. And you're right. It's not.

To suit the season, Bondi Festival is being reimagined. What that means is anyone's guess but we personally can't wait to see what the team comes up with.

See you in October!


Future Christmas in July events

Some of the annual Christmas in July events have been cancelled for 2020, but we think they're worth marking in your calendar for 2021. We'll add their dates as soon as they become available.

Christmas in July Markets | The Rocks (Cancelled for 2020)

A popular event for the July calendar, The Rocks Christmas in July Markets is a fun, French-themed night out.

The markets have cancelled for 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions, but generally it features French chalets, market stalls pouring mulled wine and serving hearty winter dishes.

As for the atmosphere? That's merry with Christmas carollers roaming the street singing their joyous tunes.

Mark this one on your calendar for 2021.


St Mary's Cathedral, Sydney

Skating at Cathedral Square | St Mary's Cathedral, CBD (Cancelled for 2020)

In a typical year, Australia's travelling Skating At festivals (formally, Winter Festival) tends to its home in the forecourt of St Mary’s Cathedral in the first two weeks of July.

Reminiscent of European winter markets, the festival revolves around an outdoor ice skating rink and food stalls/huts brimming with winter and international delights. Think German sausages and Turkish gozleme to get that stomach rumbling.

When you're off the ice you can continue all the wintery activities by ice racing on the iconic ice slide.

Sadly, this year the event has been cancelled. But you can still keep this in mind for 2021 when it'll likely return. Or, you can get a taste of that wintry goodness on at your local skating rink.

Ice Zoo skating session

Ice Zoo skating session from Groupon

Valid for children and adults until 31 July 2020 for a 90-minute ice skating session.

View details

Winterlight-300

Winterlight | Parramatta (Cancelled for 2020)

Set in Parramatta Park, Winterlight has grown to be a favourite amongst locals and families throughout Sydney. It could be the fact that it boasts Sydney’s biggest outdoor ice skating rink.

It could be the fact that it offers Sydney’s only ice slide and an illuminated ferris wheel.

Due to COVID-19, Winterlight has been cancelled for 2020. It plans to return during the July 2021 school holidays.


Wine and cheese platter at Bundanoon.

Bundanoon Winterfest | (Returning 10-18 July 2021)

Sick of ice-skating rinks and powder pits? The Southern Highlands does Christmas in July differently – promise. Its version of the winter celebration is Bundanoon Winterfest, which is a 10-day street party featuring kid-friendly activities, music and silent movies that brings the local together and draws visitors in from far and wide.

Local accommodations get into the act too, serving up hearty Christmas meals and lighting up their log fires to ensure your stay is as cosy and Yuletide-full as possible.

Stay till the end and catch the Closing Party. It caps all this fun and festivities off with a night of music, food and one massive bonfire.

While 2020's festival has been cancelled due to the COVID-19 crisis, the festival has confirmed its return for 10-18 July 2021.

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