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The best outdoor cinemas in Sydney

You're spoiled for choice when it comes to watching flicks in the open air when the mercury starts to rise in Sydney

Mov'in Bed Cinema
Photograph: Supplied
By Time Out editors |
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Feel like enjoying a film in a park, by the water, or even on the water? Do alfresco movies like an expert with our guide to the new summer season of films outdoors, from blockbusters to tearjerkers and chilling horror shows. Bring a rug, bring some snacks (or buy them from handy pop-up eateries) and bring your family – some cinemas will even let you bring your dog. 

While you're planning your summer adventures, organise a trek to these majestic waterfalls near Sydney or these engaging Indigenous walks and tours

RECOMMENDED: The best ocean pools in Sydney.

Sydney's most scenic outdoor movie screenings

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A wide shot of the crowd sitting down in front of the large scre
Photograph: Moonlight Cinema
Film, Outdoor cinema

Moonlight Cinema

Centennial Parklands, Centennial Park

Pack your picnic baskets because Sydney’s favourite park cinema is returning for movies under the stars this summer. Moonlight’s rolling expanse of green grass and pop-up screen is the perfect setting for unfurling a picnic blanket and keeping the family entertained, spending time with mates or having a date where you have more room to chat (and canoodle) than a traditional cinema. Keep an eye out for the full program release.

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Mov'in Bed Cinema
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Mov'in Bed Outdoor Bed Cinema

The Entertainment Quarter, Moore Park

This fun date night series has been running since 2016, offering Sydney’s film buffs the chance to see new releases and classic cinematic moments on the big screen while laying in bed at pop-up outdoor locations. The full program is yet to be announced for Sydney audiences, but if the earlier event in Perth is anything to go by, it’s looking like a winning summer of movies.

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American Express Openair Cinemas Pyrmont
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

American Express Openair Cinemas Bondi

Bondi Beach, Bondi Beach

American Express Openair Cinemas offers movie fanatics much more than the average cinematic experience. From February 3 to March 15, the amphitheatre and lawn of Bondi Pavilion will be taken over by a packed program of movies, live entertainment, dining and music.  The Bondi season will feature exciting new films plus hits of 2019 along with a couple of beloved classics. 

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Sunset Cinema North Sydney
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Sunset Cinema

North Sydney Oval, North Sydney

North Sydney Oval, with its historic grandstand and views of the lights of North Sydney, is a classy venue for outdoor cinema screenings, and Sunset Cinema will kick off another ten-week season on January 15. Gates open 90 minutes prior to each film commencing a range of food and beverages is available. 

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Floating Sydney
Photograph: Supplied
Film, Outdoor cinema

Floating Cinema

Sydney Harbour, Sydney

We've already got movies in the park, movies by the beach, outdoor movies in bed, and movies down by Sydney Harbour, but now Sydney's mania for alfresco screenings has taken that extra leap to deliver movies on a boat. The concept kicked off last summer and proved a hit, so they've announced a brand new round of floating films. See seasonal flicks like Elf, Die Hard and Crazy, Stupid, Love on the harbour.

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Skyline Drive-In Blacktown
Film, Special screenings

Skyline Drive-In Blacktown

Prospect

Enjoy all the holiday movies like it’s 60 years ago at Sydney’s only drive-in cinema. It’s been renovated to follow a 1950s theme, with diner food like hamburgers, hot dogs, shakes and banana splits served by staff in era-appropriate costume. They'll be showing all the standard Star Wars-level blockbusters over summer, plus a few festive faves like Love, Actually.

Stay in wide open green spaces

People sitting in the Botanic Gardens Sydney at sunset
Photograph: Supplied
Attractions, Parks and gardens

Where to find the best Sydney parks

Whether you’re in need of a green garden to laze in during lunch or a just quiet spot away from the city, these Sydney parks have sprawling open spaces, free barbecues and shaded corners to while away an afternoon.

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