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Australia Day

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Darling Harbour is home (and host) to the nation’s biggest harbourside party every year on 26 January.

The Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority is proud to once again bring Darling Harbour to life for you on Australia Day, as part of our commitment to supporting the NSW visitor economy.

There are so many ways to be Australian; celebrate them all at Darling Harbour with our program of family fun, festivities and fireworks!

We’re all about free entertainment! The kids will love the colourful Circus Playground at Palm Grove, where they can learn to juggle, hula hoop and stilt-walk.

Enjoy live world music as artists from the Culture Beats program return to the stage, showcasing sounds from traditional Cretan music to West African rhythms.

Watch out for musical lifeguards and kangaroos on stilts around the bay, and look out for a Bollywood flash mob, lawn-bowling swing-dancers and contemporary Indigenous performers busting out their best moves at Pier 26.

Witness a heart-warming twilight concert from The Voice’s Darren Percival, enjoy the official NSW Australia Day ceremony, catch international superstar DJ Havana Brown performing live at Darling Quarter, then be wowed by spectacular fireworks and music shows lighting up Cockle Bay and NEW location, Tumbalong Park from 8.45pm. 

With all this and more on offer and so many bars and restaurants to choose from, Darling Harbour is the only place to celebrate our nation’s day with your family and friends.

Accessibility
An accessible viewing area is available at Palm Grove located at the southern end of Cockle Bay, opposite IMAX.

View accessibility map

Watch the Australia Day Spectacular streamed live from 6pm

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8.15pm – 8.45pm Havana Brown
Darling Quarter
8.15pm – 8.45pm

Catch International superstar Havana Brown perform at Darling Quarter. With chart-topping singles like We Run the Night under her belt, Havana has collaborated with Pitbull and toured with the likes of Rihanna, Britney Spears and Chris Brown, and is sure to get you dancing with her upbeat tunes.


6pm – 6.45pm Twilight Concert - Presented by P&O Cruises
Darren Percival
Cockle Bay
6pm – 6.45pm

Darren Percival of The Voice fame brings his smooth soul sound to a floating stage in a touching twilight concert, presented by P&O Cruises.

7pm – 9.15pm Australia Day Spectacular
Cockle Bay and NEW location, Tumbalong Park
7pm – 9.15pm

The Australia Day Spectacular is a multimedia symphony, an awe-inspiring fireworks display that stretches the length and breadth of an evolving Darling Harbour precinct. Presented in one of Australia's most beautiful urban spaces, the Spectacular is a fitting finale to our national day of celebration.

Always fresh and innovative, the 2015 Australia Day Spectacular stars international superstar DJ Havana Brown mixing up her all-Australian fireworks soundtrack, live on stage in the Darling Quarter Precinct following a special concert performance.

The beautiful waters of Cockle Bay are the centrepiece of the Australia Day Spectacular, with a breathtaking inferno of pyrotechnics and light exploding from a specially commissioned sculptural creation on the bay. More fireworks than ever before erupt from new positions in Tumbalong Park and on rooftops around Darling Harbour, bringing the show closer to the thousands of people spread across the site.

The official NSW Australia Day ceremony on Cockle Bay leads into the Spectacular, and includes boat parades, an address from the Governor of NSW and other special performances. This civic occasion will celebrate the year that has passed, and consider what lies ahead in 2015, the Centenary of Anzac.

12 noon – 4.30pm Circus Playground
Palm Grove
12 noon – 4.30pm

Big kids and little kids are invited to learn to stilt-walk, juggle and hula-hoop under the supervision of skilled instructors from Circusworks.

For almost two decades, Circusworks has been the premier provider of circus and street theatre in Australia. Their famous Circus Playgrounds are colourful and fun whilst being educational and safe for children.

 
12 noon – 4.30pm Circus Playground
Palm Grove
12 noon – 4.30pm

Big kids and little kids are invited to learn to stilt-walk, juggle and hula-hoop under the supervision of skilled instructors from Circusworks.

For almost two decades, Circusworks has been the premier provider of circus and street theatre in Australia. Their famous Circus Playgrounds are colourful and fun whilst being educational and safe for children.

12 noon – 5pm Street Performer's Pitch
Harbourside Amphitheatre
12 noon – 5pm

Be delighted by a diverse array of talent from unique buskers like TOY, Tina Green, Beat the Streets, Solid State Circus and Psycho Sam, hailing from Australia and abroad. Catch a different act each hour, as they perform 40-minute sets to make you smile.

12.30pm - 4.10pm Dancing in the Street
Pier 26 (opposite SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium)

Look out for a Bollywood flash mob, lawn-bowling swing-dancers and contemporary Indigenous performers busting out their best moves at Pier 26. Keep your eye out for the following performers:

SIRENS DANCE
Featured on So You Think You Can Dance, these lovely Sirens will enchant with their exotic Bollywood dancing, and you might just learn some new moves too!

HU-LA-LA SWING DANCING
Get ready to giggle and get up for a boogie with this hilarious troupe of swing-dancing lawn-bowlers.

JANNAWI DANCE CLAN
This Sydney-based Indigenous dance company brings together talented young dancers with professionals to perform a unique mixture of contemporary and traditional styles.

1pm – 6pm Culture Beats World Music Stage
Darling Quarter
1pm – 6pm

Darling Harbour hosts over 25 cultural festivals from all over the world every year. Catch some of these amazing performers at the Culture Beats Stage this Australia Day and groove to Latin, Mongolian and Indigenous sounds. Keep your eye out for the following performers:

1PM – 1.45PM
JANNAWI DANCE CLAN
This community-based Indigenous dance company blends contemporary and traditional dance styles to tell the stories of their ancestors.

2PM – 2.45PM
EQUUS
An amazing fusion of Mongolian throat-singing, Middle Eastern strings and smooth sax set to cool bass and percussion.

3PM – 3.45PM
IHO NYX (Ήχο Νύξ)
Enjoy a range of traditional and contemporary Greek music from this talented troupe, playing sweet sounds from the Greek Islands and mainland.

4PM – 4.45PM
MARSALA
Marsala’s upbeat rhythm will get you dancing, with sounds inspired by the musical traditions of Cuba to Colombia, Spain to Senegal and back again.

5PM – 6PM
KEYIM BA
This acclaimed eight-piece band blends reggae, funk and rap with traditional West African sounds, sure to fill the dance floor.

2pm – 7pm Roving performers
Various locations throughout Darling Harbour
2pm – 7pm

Colourful roving street performers will be making their way around Darling Harbour throughout the day. Watch out for musical lifeguards, stilt-walking kangaroos and praying mantises, the Gramophone man, vibrant sun goddesses and more.

6pm – 6.45pm Twilight Concert - Presented by P&O Cruises
Darren Percival
Cockle Bay
6pm – 6.45pm

Darren Percival of The Voice fame brings his smooth soul sound to a floating stage in a touching twilight concert, presented by P&O Cruises.

7pm – 9.15pm Australia Day Spectacular
Cockle Bay and NEW location, Tumbalong Park
7pm – 9.15pm

The Australia Day Spectacular is a multimedia symphony, an awe-inspiring fireworks display that stretches the length and breadth of an evolving Darling Harbour precinct. Presented in one of Australia's most beautiful urban spaces, the Spectacular is a fitting finale to our national day of celebration.

Always fresh and innovative, the 2015 Australia Day Spectacular stars international superstar DJ Havana Brown mixing up her all-Australian fireworks soundtrack, live on stage in the Darling Quarter Precinct following a special concert performance.

The beautiful waters of Cockle Bay are the centrepiece of the Australia Day Spectacular, with a breathtaking inferno of pyrotechnics and light exploding from a specially commissioned sculptural creation on the bay. More fireworks than ever before erupt from new positions in Tumbalong Park and on rooftops around Darling Harbour, bringing the show closer to the thousands of people spread across the site.

The official NSW Australia Day ceremony on Cockle Bay leads into the Spectacular, and includes boat parades, an address from the Governor of NSW and other special performances. This civic occasion will celebrate the year that has passed, and consider what lies ahead in 2015, the Centenary of Anzac.

8.15pm – 8.45pm Havana Brown
Darling Quarter
8.15pm – 8.45pm

Catch International superstar Havana Brown perform at Darling Quarter. With chart-topping singles like We Run the Night under her belt, Havana has collaborated with Pitbull and toured with the likes of Rihanna, Britney Spears and Chris Brown, and is sure to get you dancing with her upbeat tunes.


 

Will there be fireworks?
A fireworks display will take place as part of the Australia Day Spectacular at 8.45pm on Cockle Bay, from new positions in Tumbalong Park and on rooftops around Darling Harbour.

Can I buy food and drinks during the event?
A number of food and beverage venues, including takeaway outlets, cafes and restaurants, throughout Darling Harbour will be open during the event. Find out more about places to eat and drink in Darling Harbour.

Is alcohol permitted at the event?
Darling Harbour is an alcohol-free area and alcoholic beverages can only be purchased and consumed in licensed areas. There are numerous bars at Darling Harbour where you can enjoy the entertainment. Find out more about bars in Darling Harbour. 

Can I bring my own alcohol?
No glass or alcohol can be brought into Darling Harbour.

What happens if it rains?
The event will proceed as per the advertised program. There are limited undercover areas within Darling Harbour.

In the unlikely event of a performance being cancelled due to performer or public safety, an announcement will be made at the location of the performance. 

What time does the event start?
The entertainment will commence on Monday 26 January at 12 noon and will continue until 9.15pm concluding with fireworks. 

Download event program

Where are the stages located?
There are five locations for the event:

  • Culture Beats World Music Stage at Darling Quarter – located at Darling Quarter, adjacent to the playground with entertainment from 1pm to 6pm, and from 8.15pm to 8.45pm.

  • Circus Playground at Palm Grove – located at the south end of Cockle Bay (opposite IMAX) with entertainment from 12 noon to 4.30pm.

  • Street Performers’ Pitch located at Harbourside Amphitheatre – located along the promenade outside Harbourside Shopping Centre (near Pyrmont Bridge) from 12 noon to 5pm.

  • Pier 26 – located opposite SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium from 12.30pm to 4.10pm.

  • Twilight Concert and Australia Day Spectacular Floating Stage at Cockle Bay from 6pm to 9.15pm.

View event map

In addition, there will be a live video link to screens around the precinct, so you don’t miss out on all the action at the Twilight Concert and the Australia Day Spectacular. Plus, grab a spot at a number of additional fireworks vantage points at Cockle Bay, Tumbalong Park and Darling Quarter.

How do I get to Darling Harbour?
Getting to Darling arbour is easy with a number of transport options available. Find out more about transport options.

View information on Australia Day road closures.

Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre Car Park closure
As part of the development of the $1 billion Darling Harbour Live facilities, the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre Car Park and the Sydney Entertainment Centre Car Park are closed.

There are many other ways to access the precinct, including:

  • Train to Central Station and light rail to Darling Harbour
  • Train to Town Hall and walk down either Market, Druitt, Bathurst or Goulburn streets
  • Bus to the CBD and walk down either Market, Druitt, Bathurst or Goulburn streets
  • Drive to Darling Harbour and park at Harbourside Car Park (1,400 spaces)
  • Drive to Darling Harbour and park at The Star – walk up Pyrmont Street
  • Drive to the city and park at one of a number of CBD car parks located within 250m walking distance of Darling Harbour’s eastern shore
  • Catch a ferry from Circular Quay to King Street Wharf or Pyrmont Bay Wharf.

Where can I get more information on the day?
Please be advised that there will be no glass or BYO alcohol permitted in managed access areas at Darling Harbour. Please bring sunscreen, plenty of water and a hat. Pyrmont Bridge may be closed to pedestrian traffic at various times between 3pm and 10pm on Australia Day. Pedestrians are advised to take this into account when planning their journey to and from the city around this time.

Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority wishes you a happy and safe Australia Day!