Drinking is a huge part of Australian culture but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out! Whether you’re trying to get your health on track or you just aren’t feeling it for some other reason, these 10 non-alcoholic night activities will make sure you don’t miss out on a night’s worth of fun!
1. Weekend Fireworks at Darling Harbour
Who says Darling Harbour is just for cashing in at the Casino and downing drinks by the bar? You can’t forget about the ever-delightful gelato places, the humbly fragrant bakeries, the always-buzzing restaurants that encircle the bright and beautiful harbour; all of which you can enjoy as you watch the weekend firework show. It’s on every Saturday and you can enjoy it with or without drinks.
Grab a cup of gelato and sit by the pier to enjoy the lights celebrate in the air and dance on the water. Munch on a few chips or pretzels and stand by the shops for a full view of the night sky light up with colours. Ask for a window-side seat at a restaurant and savour your meal and the light show from a more private space. What makes Darling Harbour one of Sydney’s attractions isn’t the bars, clubs, or casino, it’s the well-lit buildings and the fireworks to match that do the trick!
Check out their website here for specific times and dates.
2. Outdoor Cinemas
Ben & Jerry’s OpenAir Cinema 2014. Source.
If you’re a lover of the outdoors but also a fan of curling up inside for a good movie, outdoor cinemas are what you need. Running seasonably throughout Sydney, this non-alcoholic activity can be enjoyed with absolutely anyone!
Some of Sydney’s best include: Flickerfest in January at Bondi, Ben & Jerry’s OpenAir Cinema from January to March also at Bondi, Movies By The Boulevard in January at Sydney Olympic Park, Moonlight Cinema running from December to March at Centennial Park, and St George OpenAir Cinema from January to February at Mrs Macquaries Point.
A bonus one is the Skyline Drive-In Blacktown cinema, the only drive-in outdoor cinema in Sydney. Regardless of who you go with, you won’t be missing the beers or the spirits with this activity!
3. Theatres & Shows
If you aren’t too keen on the idea of being outdoors but still want to appreciate the art of films and performances, catching a show may be the ideal activity for you. Why not enjoy a musical rendition of one of your favourite childhood books, Matilda, with family? Or venture into the re-imagined performance of Les Misérables with your friends? Or even have a romantic but a laugh-filled date with your partner watching the Lion King?
With a plethora of theatres such as the Sydney Opera House, Sydney Lyric Theatre, State Theatre, Belvoir St Theatre, and the Capitol Theatre, you’re sure to find a show, dance, musicals, comedy, and a variety of other performances to have a night well spent without relying on alcohol.
The last two activities had you watching others perform but with this one, you get to be the shining star! Karaoke promises a night where you mouth is either full from food, laughter, or lyrics. Not to mention, there are so many places to eat, laugh, and sing the night away.
Some of Sydney’s best include Mizuya Japanese Restaurant & Karaoke, Karaoke World, K1 Karaoke Lounge, Strike Bowling, and Ding Dong Dang Karaoke. With these places, you can sing to your favourite childhood jams, rock out to the latest hits, and even a few songs in another language!
You’ll never tire from the long list of menu and even longer list of songs. Sure, drinking can be a part of this night activity but it doesn’t have to be! Chances are, you’ll be singing a lot better without it!
5. Night Markets
Shopping isn’t just a daytime activity in Sydney. With at least one night market running almost every day of the week, your inner foodie and shopaholic is in for a treat. A majority of these markets are dedicated to food but you’ll definitely able to find a few items of clothing, interior decorations, and fashion accessories alike. When it comes to the food, you’ll be able to find familiar flavours of local bakeries, fast food stands, and dessert places, as well as try out new tastes from other cultural cuisines such as Asian, European, and South American.
A few of Sydney’s must visit night markets are the Eat Street Market running every Thursday night, Chinatown Night Market running every Friday night, Foodie Street Markets on every last Friday of the month, Liverpool Night Markets on every first Saturday of the month, and Night Noodle Markets running now from October 8 to October 25 every year! You don’t want to miss out on these markets, it’s a great way to see Sydney come to life after dusk and be a part of the night-time buzz!
This may seem like an odd one to put on the list but Sydney is known for having some of the best mocktails for their non-alcoholic locals. Two bars worthy of mention are the Baxter Inn, known as one of Sydney’s trendiest bars in the heart of the city, does mocktails even drinkers can recommend, and Lentil On The Rocks, newly established last year in Newtown, is a bar that doesn’t serve alcohol – you read that right, they only serve mocktails. Just because your friends are having a night out doesn’t mean you have to be left behind.
Most bars and restaurants in Sydney do mocktails that are just as flavourful and colourful as cocktails! If anything, a night of mocktails might mean a morning after where you’ll be the only one who remembers all the silly shenanigans your friends have absolutely no memory of!
7. Ghost Tours
With Halloween just around the corner, what better activity is there than going on a few ghost tours? From haunting stories to eerie buildings, you won’t need alcohol to keep the adrenaline pumping! Some of Sydney’s more popular ghost tours are The Rocks Ghost Tours, Monte Cristo Ghost Tours, Q Station Adult Ghost Tour, The Gruesome Sydney Tour, Blue Mountains Ghost Tour, and Lower North Shore Ghost Tour.
But regardless of which tour you pick, you’ll definitely be in for a thrilling and somewhat historically educational night. These tours often occur in groups so you won’t be alone but you may want to go with a friends, family, or partner so you don’t feel too alone. Either way, just make sure you’ve got a good pair of shoes to run in, you know, just in case!
8. Sydney Harbour Bridge Climb
Definitely a number one contender on the Sydney bucket list, the Sydney Harbour Bridge climb is another activity well worth checking out. With a choice to climb during the day, twilight, night, or dawn, this can be your non-alcoholic night-time activity.
From up above, you’ll be able to see a million tiny, sparkling lights dancing on and off to make up the beautiful city that is Sydney. It’ll take you to great heights to give you a new sense of appreciation and perspective for the city. With each step, you’ll be struck with wonderment and awe at the extravagant and incomparable view, similarly but without any justice seen on puzzle boxes.
This could be a romantic treat with your significant other, or a bucket list item to cross off with your friends or family. Regardless of who you climb with, this will be a night you definitely won’t forget.
Book your bridge climb here today!
To see a million different lights dancing above Sydney, a night visit to the observatory is the perfect night-time activity for you! Stars are almost impossible to see from an ever-busy city like Sydney but that doesn’t mean you can’t! Just a little off from the CBD, right next to The Rocks is the Sydney Observatory where you can enjoy the luminous stars brightening up the night sky.
This activity is more romantic compared to the other activities, making it perfect for a couples’ date. But it can also be great for families with children as it can be an educational experience. Group of friends are also welcome at the observatory since it’s another prominent bucket list item! When you see the natural lights right before your eyes, you definitely won’t be missing the disco, strobe lights in the club!
10. Sydney Night Tours
If you’re feeling like you have no idea which activity to start with, maybe this one is the one to go. Sydney night tours will help you familiarise yourself with the city, especially if you’re new. Even as locals, depending on which night tour you choose, their itinerary scours out the nooks and crannies of the city.
You’ll find new places to feast at, sights you just can’t enough of, and a whole side of Australian culture you’ve been obliviously missing this entire time! The best part it, the night time adds just the right amount of wildness and adventure. With the night time vibes of the ever-vibrant city that is Sydney and the thrill of unfolding all if it’s story, you’ll be feeling buzzed all without any alcohol!
I’m Free Tours conducts FREE Sydney tours with a 6pm tour of The Rocks that you should definitely check out.
Good old clean fun!
Who says you need a bottle to have fun? All you need are good activities and great company! Plan your next night out with one of these activities and let us know how they went in the comments below! And if you’ve got other non-alcoholic night activities to do in Sydney, let us know too!