Shelby’s Sidecar Tours
Nothing puts a smile on a grumpy motorist’s face quite like seeing a vintage-style motorbike chugging uphill. We’re getting a ride on one of Shelby’s Sidecar Tours – a guided adventure from Manly to Dee Why, including a short bush walk at Long Reef Point – and as we cruise around the quieter streets of Sydney’s Northern Beaches we get waves, giggles and lots of smiles from passers-by.
Things to do in Sydney this week
Looking for something to do after work this week? LOL at some free comedy, book a table at one of Sydney's best new restaurants, head to an underground bar or check out some bargain theatre shows.
Sydney Science Festival guide
Here's Time Out's guide to getting involved in the scientific side of Sydney.
The Barber Shop Barangaroo
The owners of York Street’s gin palace behind a barber shop have flipped the concept on its head for their second venue: the Barber Shop at Barangaroo is a gentlemen’s playpen of grooming products, luxury shaving treatments and three shelves of hard liquor.
The best of Sydney
The best yoga studios in Sydney
Ashtanga, yin, vinyassa, hatha, bikram – whatever your style, Sydney's got it. Here are the best yoga studios offering a relaxing place to work on your poses. Reward your efforts with Sydney's healthiest breakfasts, or try something completely different and check out the best kayaking spots.
Escape rooms in Sydney
Puzzle rooms are taking Sydney by storm. Every time we check, another two seem to be popping up out of nowhere – and each one raises the bar with new ideas inspired by the hundreds of escape rooms found across the world. (Apparently Hungary is the place to go for the ultimate mystery room binge – there are more than 100 rooms in Budapest alone). The concept is simple: solve a variety of puzzles placed in and around the room before your allotted time runs out. Each room has a different theme and stimulates all senses, demanding a variety of problem-solving skills. Time Out took the challenge of visiting nine rooms in the city. Whether we got out in time? Well, that's a different matter.
Things to do when it rains in Sydney
Just because the skies are falling, doesn't mean you have to sit around doing nothing... We may be a city that struggles when the heavens part but look hard enough and there's a bunch of fun to be had in a downpour. The key is staying out of it with these great rainy day activities:
101 things to do indoors
Get out and undercover with our guide to indoor activities, from entertainment parks to sport and fitness, classes and talks and cultural venues that are warm and dry all year round.
The best funs runs in Sydney
Sydney has a few major running festivals every year, including one marathon that traces the streets of the city over Sydney Harbour Bridge and through Centennial Park. For events of a more manageable distance, there are regular 5K, 10K and half marathons that take place in every season.
Events coming up in Sydney
Fairs and festivals
Smooth Festival of Chocolate
The cobbled streets of the Rocks are lined with marketstalls and chill-out zones for the third annual festival dedicated to chocolate. For two days, you can sample chocolate desserts, pick up baking tips from the experts and buy famous cakes from the likes of Black Star Pastry (that strawberry watermelon cake), Love Dem Apples, Textbook Patisserie and Adriano Zumbo. There’ll be a Chocolatiers’ Quarters based in the Overseas Passenger Terminal, a Lindt Lounge at Tallawolodah Place (in front of the MCA) with three new éclair flavours, plus the Callebaut Test Kitchen featuring demonstrations from chefs like Black Star Pastry’s Christopher Thé, Carlos Heng of Mak Mak Macarons and Jean Michel Raynaud from La Renaissance Patisserie.
Cabramatta Moon Festival
Each year, Cabramatta Moon Festival celebrates the best of South East Asian culture and cuisine with a huge street festival, drawing 90,000 people from across Sydney to the party on John Street. The date of the event falls on the day of the year when daylight and darkness are equal in length, and Cabramatta Moon Festival is filled with colourful entertainment from day to night – from a lion dance parade at 10.30am to a fireworks finale at 8pm. There are fairground rides, cooking demonstrations and three stages of entertainment, including a performance from Prince Mak (3pm) and Timomatic (6pm). My Kitchen Rules winners Tasia and Gracia will be there, too, giving a demo on their cooking skills at 11.05am and 1.35pm on the Mekong Mounties Group Stage.
Surry Hills Festival
Surry Hills Festival draws an impressive crowd of 50,000 people for free family-friendly entertainment from 10am to 10pm. This year’s event continues the 14-year tradition of unearthing stories from the suburb’s past, from a runaway elephant on Crown Street to the criminal gangs at Frog’s Hollow. It’s one of the biggest local festivals in spring, stretching from Ward Park to Shannon Reserve and from Crown Street to Hill Street, with live music performances, kids’ activities, art trails and market stalls. Entry is by donation and all funds raised on the day go to towards the community programs of the Surry Hills Neighbourhood Centre.
Held annually in September, Emerge Festival features 30 events from visual arts exhibitions to cultural parades and kids’ entertainment. It includes the Chatswood Street Fair on Saturday September 3, which is a full day of market stalls and music performances across numerous stages. There’s a pop-up Oasis at Chatswood Mall Market (Sep 1-2) and at the Concourse (Sep 22-25) with deck chairs, entertainment and kids’ activities. Plus, free outdoor concerts every Sunday afternoon. Emerge Festival includes the Taiwan Festival (Sep 10-11), which includes Taiwanese workshops, food and activities in Chatswood Mall, and art exhibitions at Incinerator Art Space, Willoughby.
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Father’s Day Lunch at Glass Brasserie
Your dad likes meat, right? And we’re guessing he likes beer, wine and barbecues too. Thought so. Then this Father’s Day Lunch offer at Glass Brasserie in the Hilton Sydney is one you should get on board with. On Sunday September 4, acclaimed restaurateur/chef Luke Mangan is putting together a lunch with three delicious courses matched with brews from Young Henrys and fine wines. The set menu includes confit pork belly, Moroccan spiced lamb and the famous dark chocolate cream Milo mousse. Luke will be also be on hand for an interactive presentation with top butchers (and father-son duo) Anthony and Victor Puharich of Victor Churchill, Woollahra and Vic’s Meat Market, Pyrmont. Dad can brush up on his barbecuing and meat seasoning skills, and learn the tricks behind selecting the perfect cut of meat. Guests also have the chance to win a selection of premium meats from Vic’s Meat Market valued at $300. Think of it as the ultimate meat tray, and then some. Glass Brasserie’s Father’s Day Lunch is $125 per person. Spaces are limited, so be quick to make your reservations via email@example.com.
The Festival of Dangerous Ideas is just around the corner
Sydney’s annual festival of controversial ideas and thought-provoking discussions is back for its eighth year, September 3-4. Sydney Opera House will host 24 individual speaker sessions and 12 panel talks over the weekend with this year’s festival covering four major themes: Disappearing Countries, Dealing in Death, Disruptive Behaviour and Dirty Politics. Headline speakers include author Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk About Kevin), Black Lives Matter activist Alicia Garza, artist and journalist Molly Crabapple, philosopher and columnist AC Grayling, UK science correspondent Alok Jha and English stand-up comedian Alexei Sayle (author of Thatcher Stole My Trousers). The biggest talking points of the festival will be the US election, the results of the recent Australian election, Millennials vs Baby Boomers, human rights violations from racism to the effects of climate change, the global refugee crisis, religious and political extremism and the horrifying number of Indigenous people dying in an international suicide epidemic. “We don’t need to talk about business-as-usual, particularly when you live in Sydney and the sun is shining and the coffee is good…” says FODI co-curator and head of talks and ideas at Sydney Opera House, Ann Mossop. She's laughing at our sense of impending doom. “We look at the more dangerous end of the equation, but also the less-dramatic but equally-interesting topics like the ‘Bamboo Ceiling’, which is about discrimination against people from Asia
Writer and director Benedict Andrews (The Maids; The War of the Roses) is premiering his new play at Sydney's home of new writing, Griffin Theatre Company. Reuniting Andrews with stage and screen actress Marta Dusseldorp (Janet King), Gloria follows a famous actress as she prepares for her latest role: playing the survivor of a sadistic crime. Dusseldorp will lead an ensemble of eight that includes Meyne Wyatt, Chloe Bayliss and Huw Higginson, wrangled by Griffin's artistic director, Lee Lewis.