There is an abundance of unique and fascinating things to do in Sydney after the sun goes down, both for first-timers and returning visitors. As the day draws to a close the city begins to sparkle and you can discover even more opportunities for places for fun and adventure. Enjoy our recommended list of things to do when travelling by yourself at night that prove that you don’t have to be a couple or with a group of friends to create a memorable evening.
Evenings at Circular Quay
Circular Quay can be a great place to spend your evening for taking in spectacular views of the city lights and the Sydney Opera House. Grab a bite to eat or at one of the restaurants by the water’s edge or stop by the Sydney Opera Bar and try out a special from the cocktail menu while admiring the illuminated backdrop of the Luna Park. Australian music performed by local buskers provides a charismatic soundtrack for a leisurely stroll along the Sydney Harbour. You’ll also find plenty of places to stop for a refreshment along the way with ice creams and snacks available at the many convenience outlets. Whatever your preference, Circular Quay is an area full of buzz and warmth every night of the week.
Take a class at the Sydney Dance Company
No evening is complete without dancing, although you won’t have to go far to find your fix. If you’re looking for somewhere other than a nightclub or hotel to shake your stuff then why not book up for a lesson at the Sydney Dance Company. The studio is located on Pier 4 at The Wharf on Hickson Road in Sydney’s arts precinct at Walsh Bay, this gorgeous waterfront location has a backdrop to die for – all the more reason to give it a try. Classes for adults typically cost around $20 and include hip hop, jazz, tap, ballet and lyrical dance styles. Professional teachers tailor the classes to your ability level, from beginner, to advanced.
Gaze at the stars at Sydney Observatory
Star-gazing in Sydney is a fun adventure that you can enjoy without the company of others. For an ultimate view of the evening sky via telescope head over to the Sydney Observatory at the city side of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The observatory holds a special place in Australian history as it was essential to shipping, navigation, meteorology, and astrology as far back as the 19th century. The popular landmark remains a fully-functional observation spot that you can take advantage of in daylight hours too.
The recommended tour starts at 8:15 pm includes the Planetarium, telescope viewing and dome tour. From March 1, 2017 all night tours will feature a screening of National Geographic’s short film, Lost in Light, which will open your eyes to the night sky like you have never seen it before. For a unique night out by yourself and to learn something new, don’t miss out on this attraction.
Grab a bite to eat in Chinatown
The lively atmosphere at Sydney’s Chinatown is a great way to kick off the evening’s entertainment and makes for a fulfilling activity if you’re travelling alone. Wander through the narrow streets laden with authentic Asian restaurants and shopping amenities to find a variety of exquisite choices for food, drinks, homeware, and souvenirs. This venue is also a well-known area for grocery shopping, medicinal herbs, species, amongst many traditional Asian products that are worth a classic tourist photo at the very least. The areas not to miss are Market City and Sydney’s famous Paddy’s markets. Check the events calendar to synchronise your visit with one of the many high profile events that take place in Chinatown throughout the year.
Enjoy live theatre performances
Culture vultures will feel at home with the wide variety of theatrical performances hosted around city all year long. Adding a Sydney show to your list of things to do will only enrich your experience of the city. We recommend trying out the Sydney Opera House for an eclectic taste of plays where some of Australia’s finest stage actors are on show. The State theatre is another popular venue with a wholesome line-up of performances happening throughout the year.
You won’t go short on affordable options either: head over to Carriageworks who cap their tickets at $35, the Griffin Theatre Company in Kirribilli for tickets as low as $20 on Mondays. Hayes Theatre Company offers $20 tickets on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays if you purchase tickets twenty minutes before the show. The Sydney Theatre Company is offering $20 tickets available for every performance (excluding opening nights and have discounted tickets for people under 30).
Laugh out loud at standup comedy
Sydney has a fantastic emerging comedy scene to explore. Going out alone at nighttime doesn’t have to be a dull experience when you can share a laugh with the comedians at the likes of The Coogee Bay Hotel. On Monday nights, local talent in the form of comedians and artists perform for at this venue reularly. The laughter runs all week long; on Thursday see live stand-up shows at The Hive Bar in Erkinesville; then on Friday night, make a stop at the heart of Glebe at Staves Brewery to enjoy some of the brightest comedians from around Sydney and Australia for only $10!
Night ferry trip around the harbor
Put your feet up and take in the sights at night-time with a relaxing ferry ride around the Sydney Harbour. Taking a taxi or bus will never have the same appeal again after you have travelled by boat around the harbour perimeter for a showcase of the city’s lights and sights. Best of all is the low fares per trip – a full circuit from Circular Quay or Milsons Point is pocket change compared to other transport methods.
Firework displays in Darling Harbour
Start your weekend with a bang, or a blast! Every Saturday night at 8:30 PM, Darling harbour hosts an unmissable firework display that literally brightens up any Sydney experience. In addition to your list of things to do, take a casual stroll along the harbour side where local entertainment and eating options are available – before or during the fireworks show. The biggest event of this kind takes place on New Year’s Eve, when the city competes with the rest of the world to put on the most flamboyant and mouth-watering light show for bringing in the New Year.
Late Night Shopping Thursdays
Shops in Sydney have a habit of closing early on weekdays which is bad news for retail therapy fans, however late night Thursday shopping has come to the rescue. For one day a week visitors to shopping meccas such as The Strand Arcade, Queen Victoria Building, Sydney Central Plaza and the Westfield Sydney can browse the plethora of high end stores for fashion, homeware and beyond until 9pm. Most malls have convenient transport links and are a suitable walking distance from the city suburbs. Enjoy a tip on us: claim a refund for GST paid on goods bought in Australia under the Tourist Refund Scheme.
Listen to live music
Sydney has no shortage of music talent and the hidden treasures can be found at local bars and hotels where live music is a regular feature. If you find yourself at a loose end of an evening, then why not head down there and join in with the fun. The atmosphere is often amicable for first-timers so expect to meet a friendly bunch of music fans during your night out. You can start by checking out the gig listings at various venues throughout the city, hosted by The Metro, The Enmore in Newtown and other well known establishments. Many bars host open night mics, so you can even participate yourself if you’re keen to show off your skills. Sydney also hosts many live music festivals so it is worthwhile looking into what’s on in Sydney when you arrive.
For more fun and exciting ideas to try when exploring Sydney alone don’t miss out on iVenture Card’s top recommended and free things to do guides.