Sydney is turning it on this June, with 13 free events that’ll have you embracing the winter chill in our brightly lit city. To ensure that you have no excuses for staying indoors this winter, we’ve put together a list of free fitness classes, DIY chai bars and late night exhibitions.
Swing Dance Classes At The Swinging Cat
If ever there was a time to don your swing skirt and spin your partner around the d-floor, this is it. On Tuesday 14th June, New Orleans inspired bar; The Swinging Cat is hosting their second monthly swing dance class. Complete with velvet-lined entryways, gas lit street lamps and a six-piece jazz band to set the mood, we recommend that you order a Ramos Gin Fizz cocktail as well. For the sake of authenticity, of course.
Apple Photo Walk: Light the City
Learn how to capture the perfect Vivid moment while you wander around and admire the technicolour delights projected on Sydney’s most iconic landmarks and buildings. As part of the free Apple Photo Walk: Light the City, on Thursday 16th June at 6pm, you’ll learn how to incorporate light and adjust your exposure, to ensure a perfect image every single time. Apple will provide the lenses, tripod and any other accessories that you may need, so just make sure you arrive armed with a fully charged iPhone and comfy walking shoes. Register here.
The Zespri Sun-Up Free Pilates Classes
On Saturday 4th June, top female fitness YouTuber Cassey Ho is hitting Sydney to lead two free POP Pilates classes at 8.45am and 10.30am. Running for 45 minutes, this won’t be your typical Pilates routine and you can think of it more as a “dance on the mat” kind of experience. After the class, you can either devour a few free snacks at the Zespri SunGold Kiwifruit Breakfast bar or head to the Gold Radiance Zone to pick up some tips from the health and fitness experts. Interested? Then, you better get in there quickly, because places are filling up and fast! Book here.
Winter Wonderland at Daniel San
For the second year in a row, Daniel San is throwing their epic winter blowout, complete with a fully decked out rooftop and live music by Kimmi Walker and High Beam. Come June 12th, the rooftop will be heaving with ski goggle clad snow bunnies (yes, we’re talking about you) ready to party the night away, overlooking Manly Beach. RSVPs are necessary, so hop to it.
In case you haven’t noticed (where have you been?), our city has been lit up in rainbow fluorescent lights, because yes, Vivid is back. You would be forgiven for thinking that the fun starts and ends with lit up landmarks, but we are here to tell you that there is far more to the festival than just that. Between daily inspiring talks, live music acts, pop-up dinners and behind the scenes peaks into many the creative mind, you’ll be very busy from now until June 18th. Check out our list of must-sees at Vivid. Oh, and our eating guide while you’re at it too.
Chai Central at T2
Welcoming the winter months with a warming new collection of chai teas and matching wares, T2 will have you wrapped up in a big, warm hug (of the tea variety). From Monday 30th May – Wednesday 27th June, T2 will explore the ancient Indian brew and will whip tea-lovers into a spice-fuelled frenzy with their Bollywood Breakfast, Chill Out Chai and Hot Date Chai blends. If these don’t tickle your tea fancy, then you’re in luck, because Chai Central at Westfield Sydney features a DIY chai bar where you can create your own personal chai brew.
Night Market at Carriageworks
You know that little thing called Vivid that we mentioned before? Well, this may very well be our favourite addition to the festival’s program for 2016. On June 4th and 18th, Carriageworks will be filled with leading chefs, bespoke food offerings and regional produce for Sydney’s first immersive contemporary food and wine event. There will be over 50 stalls from the likes of Cornersmith to Efendy, Sweetness the Patisserie and Young Henrys Brewing Company, plus many more. Entry is free, but sadly the food and booze ain’t.
For 10 days of celebrating the creativity of local communities, Open Marrickville is an annual event hosted by Marrickville Council. As part of the celebration, there will be a series of events, with great food and children’s activities, walking tours and more. Our top pick is the Community Kouzina Open Kitchens bus tour; followed closely by the sacred sights tour, lead by Aboriginal Elder Aunty Jenny. For the full program, head here.
World Press Photography Exhibition
Since 1955, The World Press Photo Foundation has been a major force in developing and promoting the work of photojournalists and this month (Saturday 21st May – Sunday 19th June, to be exact), their exhibition of visual and multimedia storytelling has taken over the State Library of NSW.
Art After Hours at the Australian Gallery of NSW
Once the gallery doors close on Wednesday 1st June at5.30pm, Art After Hours will kick off. Begin your evening with an exhibition talk by Tang curator, Yin Cao, before moving on to the first of Benjamin Law’s Tang In Cheek series of conversations with well known Chinese Australians, like Adam Liaw and Lee Lin Chin. There will also be a live performance by Sydney-based artist, Rainbow Chan and the legendary Wizard of Oz playing in all of its technicolour glory on the big screen. Details here.
For anyone toying with the idea of growing a beard this winter, we may have just found you the legitimate excuse you’ve been waiting for. Kicking off on Wednesday 1st June and finishing up on Wednesday 31st August, Shout for Good are challenging you to ditch the razors and embrace your woolly facial fuzz, all in the name of conserving the Australian landscape. Already have a solid beard happening? Then just get that bad boy sponsored, because every $2 raised will plant one native tree. Growing said beard is free, but the money raised will be priceless.
United Nations World Yoga Day
The United Nations are all over the good juju and blissed out zen that comes from a solid yoga flow and because they’re loving their spot aboard the yoga train, they’ve pronounced Tuesday 21st June World Yoga Day. Derived from Sanskrit, yoga means to join or unite, symbolising the union of body and consciousness, so it’s hardly surprising that the United Nations are spreading the good word of yoga around the globe. To celebrate, a free yoga class will take place on the Sydney Opera House forecourt at 12.30pm, book-ended by Indian dancing, the release of doves and meditation and a traditional Aboriginal welcome and smoking ceremony.
Sydney Film Festival Viva Cuba Party
Following the screening of Viva on Friday 17th June at the Sydney Film Festival, the Hub (downstairs at Town Hall) will transport you to Havana for an evening of authentic Cuban flavours. From 9pm to 11pm, you can get your rumba on with live music by Armandito & Trovason Quartet, followed by Afro-Cuban and Latin beats with Merchants of Sound. Entry is free and there is no need to RSVP.
Need somewhere to eat before tackling these free things to do in Sydney? Check out our Directory!
Image credit: Destination NSW