Vivid Sydney precinct guide: From Taronga Zoo to Chatswood 2019

A breakdown of the top precincts to hone in on to see and experience Vivid Sydney at its best.

Sydney’s biggest light festival Vivid Sydney has grown astronomically since its launch in 2009. What started as a succinct display on the city's foreshore now encompasses areas of North Sydney, including Taronga Zoo and Chatswood, and the new city precinct of Barangaroo.

With so many sections of the city glowing luminously, and this past year was no different. In this guide, we list some of the best areas of the Vivid festival that we personally love.

Image: Vivid Sydney

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Want to see it all? Vivid cruises are the way to go.

Want to know more? Check out our Vivid Sydney guide.

Vivid Sydney Taronga Zoo

With picture-perfect views of the harbour and a menagerie of animals, Taronga Zoo had all the makings of a memorable Vivid Sydney experience.

Its theme for the event is animals (naturally), with larger-than-life luminescent sculptures, conservation talks and interactive displays.

Called Lights for the Wild, it is a ticketed event that often has multiple sessions throughout the evening. Tickets for 2019 have yet to be released.

Picture not described: Vivid-Sydney-2019.jpg Image: Getty

Vivid Sydney Opera House

Part art installation, part live event space, part dining hub, the Sydney Opera House is always one of the most diverse venues on the Vivid Sydney schedule.

Every year its sails are lit with a rolling display of artworks, with this year's display dedicated to Australian botanics comes from artist Andrew Thomas Huang.

Event highlights within the Opera House include performances by The Cure, Herbie Hancock, Maggie Rogers and more.

Picture not described: darling-harbour_render-1900x900px-300.jpg Image: Getty

Vivid Sydney Darling Harbour

Making an epic impression at Darling Harbour is this larger-than-life 16 metre tall 'bot. He's an ecobot dedicated to crushing and processing old vehicles to create a fresh new society from their pieces and is a symbol of sustainability in our hyper-manufactured world.

Bring the kids along. You know they'll love it.

Image from Vivid Sydney 2018

Vivid Sydney Chatswood

Chatswood has been delivering a light display for Vivid since 2015. From the train station to Chatswood Mall, the precinct lights up in a celebration of the vast future and all its peaceful and harmonic possibilities.

The Vivid Sydney team have upped the game this year at Chatwood with more art and interactivity for all ages. Jazz performances by the likes of Vince Jones and Lisa Fisher & The Grand Baton as well as a three-day festival dedicated to girl gamers.

Because we run the world.

Picture not described: vivid-fireflies-field-1900-900-300.jpg Image: Getty

Vivid Sydney Botanical Gardens

When Vivid comes around you can always count on the Royal Botanic Gardens to deliver an interactive bio-display worthy of your Instagram feed.

This year's contenders include Firefly Field an engineering feature that sees hundreds of lit "fireflies" buzz around you, Dancing Grass an installation of green grass spears as high as 4.5 metres that you can walk amongst and Torus, a wavy reflection of light that responds to vibrations.

Luna Park Spirit of Fun, Vivid 2019. Image: Supplied

Vivid Sydney Luna Park

Luna Park returns to Vivid this year with a blinding display of roving performers (decked in LED lights) and carnie rides, including the iconic Ferris Wheel which will be lit up by 3,000 LED lights.

It's a quieter and more unique Vivid destination and to help you get there and back, Vivid visitors nab $10 parking.

Picture not described: Vivid-Sydney-2019-Winter-Camp-image-credit-Daniel-Boud-1900x900_0-300.jpg Image: Getty

Image: Daniel Boud

Vivid Sydney Barangaroo

Sydney's hottest new lifestyle and food precinct is quickly becoming the centre of attention during Vivid. As the light hits the water the precinct thrives with light installations, restaurant fare and live performers.

Pull up a chair and gawp at the 6-metre tall Marri Dyin which honours the spirit of First Nations women every evening until 9pm.

Road closures

As Vivid Sydney attracts millions of visitors to the city’s precincts, there are multiple road closures around popular areas throughout the festival. Generally, George Street, Martin Place to the Botanical Gardens and The Rocks to Dawes Point are closed from 5pm until midnight.

Wheelchair access is available along certain routes.

For a full list of road closures by day see the Vivid Sydney website.

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