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Things to do in Sydney on December 25 if you don't celebrate Christmas

While the majority of Sydneysiders are at home celebrating Christmas, take advantage of their absence

Photograph: Coral Chum

The Flying Spaghetti Monster has no birthday. Mawlid is either donezo or on the horizon. Hanukkah is a distant memory at this point, and the summer solstice is old news. Yep, it's December 25, and it's #NotMyChristmas. Without family obligations, what does one do on a day when almost everything is closed? Well, my non-Christian compatriot, follow us on a journey through an almost-abandoned city. Almost, but not quite... 

Non-Christmas activities open on December 25

Watch Star Wars unaccosted

The Event Cinemas in the city and Macquarie will be open on December 25 and showing all Rogue One all the time. Many of the sweaty teens that would otherwise make it a stressful viewing experience will be stuck at home with their families.

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Head to the zoo

Somebody's got to take care of the animals no matter what day it is, which means Taronga is open on Christmas Day. Over giraffes (you monster)? Well, you can also check out seals and sharks at Sea Life Aquarium, which is open till 7pm.

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Mosman

Eat all the dumplings

Don't celebrate Christmas? Do celebrate it but don't dig turkey? Luckily some of Sydney's best yum cha restaurants will be dishing up all the dumplings your heart could desire this Christmas Day.

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Take a dip

Bondi Beach remains rammed on December 25, but every other beach in town will be blissfully quiet. If you really want to make an adventure of it, head to a Royal National Park beach and hike to your swim.

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Sydney

Hunt down a waterfall

Sure, it's not as Insta-perfect as swimming under a waterfall on New Year's Day, but nature doesn't close for Christmas, and these waterfalls won't stop flowing.

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By: Alyx Gorman

Pretend like it's any other day

Sure, almost everything is shut on Xmas Day. Lucky for you, we've rounded up a few cafés and restaurants that are open, so you can just be your regular, caffeinated self.

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Go grab a drink

Nothing says "Thank god this isn't my holiday" like watching people who've been trapped with their families all day desperately trying to drink the pain away. Meanwhile, you can sip a mojito and just enjoy the feeling of total relaxation. 

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And for the next day...

Sea Life Sydney Aquarium

Dates open: December 28-30

Price: $0-$42

Head to Sea Life Sydney Aquarium’s newest exhibition Penguin Expedition. Museumgoers can board a raft that takes them through the exhibition where they’ll witness a bunch of adorable King and Gentoo penguins which have travelled all the way from Sea Life Melbourne. You can see the penguins as they swim in the pool and, if you’re lucky, catch a glimpse of the little fellas being fed. There are, of course, a bunch of other animals to see at the aquarium including dugongs, sharks and rays.

 

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Darling Harbour

Moonlight Cinema

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $14.50-$35

Spend a summer night under the big screen at Centennial Park’s Moonlight Cinemas. Catch Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them on December 26, Nocturnal Animals on December 27, The Girl on the Train on December 28, Assassin’s Creed on December 29 and Passengers on December 30.

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Centennial Park , Centennial Park Until Sunday April 2 2017

Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $0-$27

Pay a mummy a visit at the Powerhouse Museum’s summer exhibition, Egyptian Mummies: Exploring Ancient Lives. The exhibition is an interactive display of six mummies who lived and died in Egypt between 900 BC and AD 40, alongside 200 objects which provide a snapshot of Ancient Egypt life. While you’re there, check out the exhibition, Out of Hand: Materialising the Digital – an exploration into the role of digital manufacture in contemporary art, science, fashion, design and architecture.

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Powerhouse Museum , Ultimo Until Tuesday April 25 2017

Luna Park Sydney

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $16-$52

Whether you’re trying to keep the kids entertained or you just want to relive the excitement of going down a roller coaster, Luna Park is the perfect amusement park for all ages. It’s open until 9pm from Monday December 26 to Thursday December 29 – and until 11pm on Friday December 30, so there’s plenty of time for repeat rides on the Wild Mouse, soaking up history in Coney Island or spinning on the Rotor until you vomit (although we don’t recommend ending your night that way).

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Milsons Point

Spiders Alive and Deadly

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $0-$22

Visit the Australian Museum’s exhibition Spiders – Alive and Deadly – a dedication to our beloved arthropod friends. Here you’ll learn all there is to know about spiders – their venom and silk, where they live, how they hunt, how they have adapted to changing environments and the critical role they play in our ecosystem. There are over 400 real specimens to see, including 30 alive and deadly spiders such as the funnel web, red back and tarantula.

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Australian Museum , Darlinghurst Until Monday July 17 2017

Demolished Sydney

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $0-$12

Explore Sydney’s past and present buildings at the Museum of Sydney’s exhibition, Demolished Sydney. The exhibition remembers our city’s lost buildings – from the Garden Palace at the Botanic Gardens to Fort Macquarie that used to stand at Bennelong Point (where you'd now find Sydney Opera House). Uncover how Sydney’s buildings have risen and fallen as technologies have changed, populations moved and industries diversified.

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Museum of Sydney , Sydney Until Monday April 17 2017

Taronga Zoo

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $32.40-$46

Taronga Zoo is open every day for the rest of the year, so why not head to Mosman for a day amongst the animals? Whether you’re a lover of mammals or reptiles, birds or insects, there’s plenty to see, do and learn. Hang out with zebras at African Safari, or spend your time in a dark cave with snakes and crocodiles at Reptile World. Head to the free-flight bird show or sign up for an animal encounter with a koala, giraffe, penguin or owl.  

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Mosman

BridgeClimb

Dates open: December 26-30

Price: $193-$383

If you’re a Sydneysider and you’re yet to climb the Harbour Bridge, now is as good a time as ever. Climbs are pricier during this season but, if you happen to have a bit of spare cash left over from Christmas, we can’t think of a better way to spend it. Stand atop the Harbour Bridge and view Sydney like never before – observe the iconic white sails of the Opera House, the silhouette of the Blue Mountains and the endless ocean that flows beyond the east.

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The Rocks

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