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The best things to see at Vivid Light in Sydney

Take an after-dark stroll through the city to experience these ten light artworks

Photograph: Anna Kucera

Vivid Sydney is back from May 27 to June 18, including the free light artworks, projections and interactive installations every night from 6pm-midnight. This, along with the fact that we're already fed up with the cold here in Melbourne, has got us checking out last-minute flights up north. There are more than 60 light installations around Sydney – we've picked our top ten favourites to explore. 

1

Cathedral of Light, Sydney Royal Botanic Gardens

To celebrate its 200th birthday, Sydney gave the Botanic Gardens a makeover. Try to keep your jaw off the ground as you walk through the canopy of shimmering trees and illuminated landscape. While you’re there, weave in and out of the Rainbow Dancers and watch the colours change around you.

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2

Be the Light for the Wild, Taronga Zoo

The Zoo celebrates its 100th birthday with massive animal lanterns of echidnas, platypuses and elephants. It’s a brand-new location for Vivid Light, which will cost you between $12-$18 to visit, but we think the interactive works will be well worth it.

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3

Songlines, Sydney Opera House

In true Vivid fashion the white sails of the Opera House will serve as the canvas for light artworks – and for the first time it will feature all Indigenous artists. Songlines celebrates and illustrates the connections between the earth, sky, time and distance.

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4

Dress Circle, Circular Quay

This installation uses the city’s skyline as a brilliant backdrop – and the best bit is that you get to control the colours of the display. Using 3D, touch-sensitive interactive models of the skyscrapers, you can select the buildings you want to change to apply a new colour or visual effect.

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6

Fountain, Martin Place

Representing the growing population, water droplet humans will spew from the fountain, fall to the ground, and walk away. Also, nearby you can stand below a rotating tower called Geometrics and see the sky dappled with patterns of light.

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7

X Factory, Chippendale

The X Factory’s projection on the Carlton Brewery building explores the shift from human labour to technology and robotics. Celebrate or commiserate the ‘rise of the robot’ by dancing the robot in the silent disco, available on Fridays and Saturdays.

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8

Wildlight, Chatswood

The streets between Chatswood Interchange and the Concourse will be transformed with dinosaurs and rainforests. Technology and light will bring you on a journey to the past featuring the prehistoric creatures of the ancient supercontinent, Gondwana.

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9

Laser Dragon Water Theatre, Darling Harbour

The water projections will dazzle viewers with fountains, flame jets and lasers that combine to create forms of creatures like dragons and clowns in a thrilling display. While you’re there, check out roof of the Maritime Museum where The Nautilus and the Sea projects a fantasy world inhabited by giant critters.

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10

Perspectives, the Galeries

Not only is the Galeries new to Vivid Light, but it’s the first indoor location for the light festival. Massive LED screens will be divided into 18 parts showcasing work by video artists, surrounding you with light, colour and movement.

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Find more Vivid Sydney events

The best events at Vivid Ideas

The brainy sibling in the Vivid Sydney family, Vivid Ideas includes more than 160 events over 23 days ranging from the big guns of the Game-Changers Talk Series to creative conferences, markets and idea exchange sessions.

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