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15 epic things to do on Boxing Day in Sydney

From escaping to the Blue Mountains to taking a cruise, here's what's open on 26 December.

Don't retreat back under the doona this Boxing Day. We've crowdsourced 15 hangover-bashing ideas to make this the absolute best Boxing Day yet.

Top things to do on Boxing Day in Sydney

1. Get the adrenaline pumping

If you've been waiting for the perfect time to get that adventure in, why not on Boxing Day?

From getting out onto the water to heading to the skies, it's the perfect way to kick off the last week of the year.

Beach Picnic on Shark Island including Seaplane Flight
Beach Picnic on Shark Island including Seaplane Flight

Experience Oz


2. Escape to the Blue Mountains

Hankering to escape the city and breathe some fresh (blue-tinged) air? Hop in the car and escape to the Blue Mountains this Boxing Day. A short drive away and otherworldly in appearance (the blue mist that hovers overhead is bordering on fairytale-like), the Blue Mountains is prime "mini break" territory for Sydneysiders.

Burn off excess Christmas calories with a hike up Wentworth Falls, meander Mount Wilson's gardens or relax in a kooky Katoomba cafe.

Blue Mountains Stargazing Evening Experience
Blue Mountains Stargazing Evening Experience

RedBalloon

Blue Mountains Scenic Skyway, Walkway, Cableway and Railway
Blue Mountains Scenic Skyway, Walkway, Cableway and Railway

Klook


3. Don't cook: Go out for lunch

After a tiring Christmas, there is nothing nicer than a slap-up Boxing Day feast – especially when you don't have to lift a finger.

From a seafood buffet lunch at a hotel and sticky dim sum dumplings in Chinatown to proper pub grub at your local, just make sure you book a table.

5-course Tasting Menu by the Harbour with Wine
5-course Tasting Menu by the Harbour with Wine

RedBalloon

Mystery Picnic in Royal Botanic Garden Sydney
Mystery Picnic in Royal Botanic Garden Sydney

Klook


4. Take a leap of faith with a tandem skydive

The ultimate bucket list item – but how often does it actually get ticked off?

We think there's no better time than Boxing Day. Stay with us here, we're very serious. Here's why:

  • You're not at work.
  • It's the height of summer.
  • You probably need a rude awakening from a post-Christmas slump.
  • You don't have to go far to tick this one off. You can skydive in Wollongong, Newcastle and Hunter Valley.

5. Go to the cinema

Boxing Day is a very big deal for film buffs. That's because it's when you can catch some of the biggest summer releases.

Whether you're off to watch a romantic comedy or you want to take the family to the next big kids flick, not much beats settling into a comfy armchair, munching on popcorn and fixing your eyes on that super-sized screen.

With Christmas in Sydney being a summer affair and all, outdoor movie experiences are all the rage on Boxing Day.

Retro Drive-in Movie, Overnight Stay and Breakfast
Retro Drive-in Movie, Overnight Stay and Breakfast

RedBalloon


6. Spend the day on the water

We may not have a white Christmas Down Under but we do get to make the most of those warm December temperatures. Boxing Day provides the perfect opportunity to get out onto the water. Escape the crowds on Sydney's main beaches and hire your own kayak, paddleboard or boat for the day.


7. Take a harbour cruise

Not a picnic and park kind of person? No worries. Take to the water with a Boxing Day cruise. Sit back and relax as you watch the waves pass you by with your choice of day cruises.


8. Wildlife encounters

After a long and hectic year, you might be keen to surround yourself with nature. Maybe get close and personal with one of Australia's critters?

Fortunately, Sydney is surrounded by great wildlife opportunities and a koala cuddle could be just a ferry ride away.

Featherdale Wildlife Park General Admission Entry
Featherdale Wildlife Park General Admission Entry

RedBalloon


9. Go to the theatre or watch some sports

Treat yourself for a laugh, arts or cultural experience and get tickets to the latest opera/theatre/musical production.

There is an event showcasing on Boxing Day from Royal Randwick Racecourse.

And we don't need to tell you twice that 26 December is Boxing Day Test day for cricket fans. Head to your local to catch it on the big screen.

Live Entertainment in Sydney Pearl Cruises
Live Entertainment in Sydney Pearl Cruises

Groupon


10. Visit a museum or art gallery

Culture vultures and art addicts can get their fix on Boxing Day too. A lot of the city's art galleries and museums stay open for most of the day. Here's where you can go:

Australian National Maritime Museum Big Ticket Entry
Australian National Maritime Museum Big Ticket Entry

RedBalloon


11. Harbour Bridge climb

We were surprised to find out that you could do this on Boxing Day, but we're mighty happy that you can.

Picture this: you're looking down on speck-like city buildings from a 52,000-tonne steel frame while sparkling water flows below and the morning sun warms your shoulders. Goodbye, post-Christmas blues!


12. Go for an outdoor swim

From Insta-perfect local creeks to wave-battered ocean pools, Sydney has no shortage of sweet swim spots. Get a head start on those healthy New Year's resolutions and start Boxing Day with a cooling dip.

Our personal favourites include these great spots:

  • Queenscliff ocean pool (followed by an ice-cream cone on Manly Beach, naturally)
  • Gledhill Falls for adventure and rugged bush surrounds
  • Maccallum Pool for harbour and bridge views

Need somewhere good for small children? Quaint and quiet Little Manly Beach has a child-friendly swimming net, relatively calm waters and a cute kiosk serving snacks.


13. TV binge

Okay, let's be honest. While everything on this list sounds tempting, this one wins the award for most realistic.

You have more than a few binge menu items to choose from. Here's our handy streaming hub for everything you need to know.


14. Volunteer

Volunteering around Christmas is a great way to embrace the festive spirit – and Boxing Day isn't too late. Give the gift of your time and help out a worthy cause.

There are loads of causes around Sydney, such as children's charities, St Vinnie's and soup kitchens that would love your help.


15. Stay at home on the sofa and hit the (online) sales

We have 1 question: do you really want to spend the day after Christmas trying to tackle the Boxing Day crowd? Nope, neither do we.

Boxing Day is an important event in any shopaholic's calendar, but it also turns shopping into a migraine-inducing, elbow-bashing, bargain hunter's jungle.

Trust us when we say this: be a truly savvy shopper and stay at home. You can bag brilliant bargains on fashion, furniture, electronics, toys and travel all from the comfort of your sofa.

You'll even find online-only promo codes for extra savings that you wouldn't get in-store. To navigate the online sales like a pro, check out our full guide of all the Boxing Day sales you need to know about.


Where can I book Boxing Day activities in Sydney?

1 - 7 of 7
Name Product Voucher validity Is there a sign up discount? Is price matching available? Can I book exclusive experiences? Where to book
Experience Oz
Experience Oz - Things to Do in Sydney
3 years
$10
Yes
Yes
RedBalloon
RedBalloon - Things to do in Sydney
5 years
$10
Yes
Yes
Amazed
Amazed - Things to Do in Sydney
1 year
No
Yes
Yes
Klook
Klook - Things to Do in Sydney
Depends on the individual experience
No
Yes
Yes
Groupon
Groupon - Things to Do in Sydney
Depends on the individual experience
No
Yes
Yes
Adrenaline
Adrenaline - Things to Do in Sydney
5 years
$10
No
Yes
Viator
Viator - Things to Do in Sydney
Depends on the individual experience
No
Yes
Yes
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What's open on Boxing Day in Sydney?

Want to browse in-store? Keep up to date with all the Boxing Day sales in Sydney.

Activities and attractions open on Boxing Day in Sydney

AttractionBoxing Day trading hoursWhere to book
Sydney Tower Eye10am–7pmAdrenaline
Featherdale Wildlife Park9am–4pmAmazed
Madame Tussauds10:30am–5pmKlook
Stadium Australia9am–5pmAdrenaline
Australian Maritime Museum10:30am–4pmAmazed
Bridge Climb SydneyAll day
Australian Museum10am–5pm
Museum of Sydney10am–5pm
Powerhouse Museum10am–5pm
Art Gallery of NSW10am–5pm

Restaurants, bars and cafes open on Boxing Day in Sydney

VenueBoxing Day trading hoursWhere to book
Via Alta6pm–7:30pmGroupon
Turkish Shared Meze Feast Experience6pm–8pmScoopon
Cicchetti Restaurant and Wine Bar10am–1pmGroupon
Cantina Bar Balmain2pm–5pmGroupon
Dalong Yi Hot Pot2pm–8pmGroupon
Namaste Nepali Indian Restaurant11:30am–9pmGroupon
Shaahi Tandoori Enmore6pm–8pmGroupon
Common Place5pm–7:30pmGroupon
Salt & Pepper Grill12pm–6:30pmGroupon
Ho Jiak - Town Hall11:30am–2:30pm and 5pm–9:15pm
Harajuku Gyoza Beer Stadium11:30am–9pm
Cafe Sydney5pm to late
Bathers' Pavilion8am–12pm
Jang Ta Bal5pm–11:55pm
Chiswick7am-8pm
North Bondi Fish12pm–8:45pm
Alberto's Lounge12pm–late
The Collaroy Hotel12pm-late
Opera Bar11am–11pm
The Golden Sheaf Hotel12pm-late
Darlo Bar12pm-late
Jackalberry7am-8:30pm
The Dolphin Hotel12pm-10pm
Shuk6am–2:45pm
Gelato Messina Darlinghurst2pm-10pm
Gelato Messina Bondi1pm-10pm
Mayflower7:30am-2:15pm
Cuckoo Callay Surry Hills7:30am–3pm

See the latest activity deals for Boxing Day in Sydney

Experience OzExperience Oz
Exclusive

10% off select activities with code FDEXOZ350

Ends

Get deal
Exclusive
Backpacker DealsBackpacker Deals
Exclusive

7% off activities + 10% cashback (code: FINDER7NV)

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Exclusive
KlookKlook

Up to 90% off on select international Klook Passes and Value Packs

Flight CentreFlight Centre

Win 1 of 20 Intrepid trips globally for two