The Festival Of Lights | Vivid Sydney 2018

Vivid Sydney, A walking guide

The Vivid light’s festival has kicked off once again in all its glory in Sydney, Australia. For the next three weeks, Vivid will dazzle and amaze over 1.7 million visitors who will flock to one of the world’s most beautiful harbour city. 

Each year the light spectacle gets bigger and better and of course this year, well, that is also the case. The theme of this year’s festival is Light, Music, and Ideas. The majority of the installations can be seen in Circular Quay and its surroundings. 

In this blog post, I have set up a walking route that you can take so you will see the majority of the light festival from spectacular vantage points… not a problem 😉


Vivid Sydney is a 23-day festival of light, music, and ideas that will run from 25 May to 16 June 2018. It’s one of the foremost creative festivals in the world and Australia’s largest event of its kind.

Over 80 light installations and projections form part of Vivid and alight the city in a rainbow of colours and spectacular displays.



The best way to see the majority of this festival is by travelling to Milsons Point first. From there you will have amazing views of Circular Quay, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and the Opera House, what more could you want? 

When you have taken a million pictures(trust me you will) wander over to Luna Park for a quick snack and enjoy its amazing atmosphere. Hop on a quick ferry/bus ride if you feel like it and then wander to Milson’s Point station, here you will have access to the Sydney Harbor Bridge from the north side. As you walk across the harbour bridge you will find yourself in awe of the beauty of the harbour, circular key and the opera house setting, a sight that still takes my breath away. 

Continue following the guided walk-way from the bridge and you’ll end up at Circular Quay. From there you can walk to the Opera House and take some pictures up-close, and go for a walk-about (aboriginal saying) through the Royal Botanic Gardens or if you wish you can continue on to Darling Harbour

This walk will take you around 2-3 hours (Because of all the stopping to take pictures, and enjoying the show, of course) but it is definitely worth it. 


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Your first stop on your walking route is Milsons Point. From here you have absolutely spectacular views of Circular Quay, the Sydney Opera House as well as the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Colorfully decorated boats, float past, a rainbow of colors can be seen on the bridge as well as from the city, and much more can be seen from this amazing vantage point.




Whilst at Milsons Point you better also wander over to Luna Park. They have two events on during Vivid: THE SPIRIT OF FUN and PHANTASOS

Besides, wandering around this colorful and fun park it is also a joyous occasion, even without the festival, a must see if you are visiting Sydney. 

Extra tip: Jump on the Ferris Wheel at Luna Park once the lights have turned on so you can see spectacular views and sights of the lights and the stunning harbor. You’ll get a great view of the colorful boats cruising up and down the harbor and all the wonder and busy-ness of Sydney. 


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From Milsons Point walk over to Burton street, where the entrance is for the Harbor Bridge. (This is about a 5-minute walk from Luna Park entrance) 

On the bridge, you’ll have spectacular city views, you’ll see the opera house at its finest glory and you’ll be at an amazing vantage point for the light shows at Circular Quay. 

Although, the Opera House is definitely the most spectacular. (I can post 100 pictures of the opera house but I have contained myself to only 3, YAY me) 


Keep walking down to Circular Quay and get close to the opera house. 

Because of my illness, I was not able to walk all that way this time, but I of course definitely suggest you go, I mean – it’s a sight for sore eyes. I have been to this festival before so I decided my health would go first. If this is your first time visiting Vivid, then I advise you to plow on. 

It does get VERY crowded at Circular Quay, so be prepared and maybe take a microphone with you, so you can move people aside when you need to get past haha! (JOKING)



When you have seen the opera house and the bridge and all events at Circular Quay, you can then continue to walk down to Darling Harbor. 

At Darling Harbor, there are 7 events on during the festival of lights:  


  • Come early. Some of the lights start at 5:30pm when the sun has set. 
  • Try not to go on the weekend but rather go on a weekday, it is a lot quieter. 
  • The best installations are at Circular Quay but don’t forget to wander to Darling Harbor and the Royal Botanic Gardens as well, as it really is all amazing. 
  • Walk – it’s the best way to experience all of what Vivid has to offer.
  • Bring warm clothes and wear layers. Yes, it gets cold in Sydney at winter time, I know, its a shock.  
  • Jump on a ferry to get you around Sydney so you can see it lit up from the water. You may even want to do a Vivid light cruise.
  • Get an Opal Card and top it up with money to make public transport travel easy. You can use your Opal card on buses, ferries, and trains and all you need to do is tap on and off, (don’t forget to put money on the card, you don’t want to be worrying about this every two seconds)


Vivid runs until June 18th and lights come on every evening at 6pm. Check out the schedule of events to plan your trip to vivid. Hope you have a great time! 



vivid Sydney

Have you been to Vivid Sydney yet?

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