What’s On in Sydney in January?


Field Day

New Year’s Eve is overrated, but New Year’s Day can be loads of fun. Field Day is a solid Australian festival held on January 1st that will have you starting off the New Year right. The lineup is always accoladed for its excellent mix of up and coming artists with quality established acts.

There’s usually a good blend of rap music, house, indie, and electronica, and this year is no exception. Field Day 2016 features headliners such as UK grime giant Skepta, experimental hip hop artists Young Fathers, and local heroes Flight Facilities with their dreamy house bangers. Buy a ticket to this and it may save you a hangover, spending too much money, and wasting time battling drunkards on New Year’s Eve.

Sydney Festival/Meriton Festival Village

Sydney Festival runs from the 7th to the 26th of January. There are loads of theatre and cabaret options, from burlesque to opera, in a variety of locations all across Sydney. Some are ticketed, but there are lots of free shows on for those travelling on a budget. You can check out the Flaming Lips live at the Domain, see some Opera in the Park, or check out the minimalist skate park at Barangaroo Reserve – all for free.

If you’re still trying to decide which show to pick, or just want a taste of the festival, head to the Meriton Festival Village in Hyde Park. It’s a great spot for warm summer nights, where you can sit amongst the famous Spiegeltent and the Magic Mirrors Spiegeltent. There are also a range of amazing foods available from noon, and drinks to enjoy from 4pm onwards during the balmy afternoons.

Apia International Sydney

Fancy watching a spot of tennis? Well it is summertime, after all! Apia International Tennis will serve up some awesome sets from the 10th to the 16th of January at the Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre.

You can watch world class tennis played by international superstars, including current world number 2 Simona Halep, and world number 6 Petra Kvitova. It may come down to these two skilled sportspeople, and Kvitova has the extra pressure of wanting to retain her 2015 Champion title. Another one to watch and cheer on for will be local favourite and world number 27, Samantha Stosur.

The Legends field will feature the talents of seven time Grand Slam singles champion, John McEnroe, and Australian favourite Mark Philippoussis. It’s sure to be an unforgettable match!

O’Neill Sydney Surf Film Festival

Celebrate summer, sand, and surf with 2 weeks paying homage to surfing via film, art, music, and culture. It’s a great way to experience a celebration of the Australian surf scene, and there are plenty of excellent films and exhibitions to entertain surfies and art lovers alike.

Sydney screenings of the SSFF will take place at both Manly’s International College Management School (ICMS) and the Bondi Pavilion. If you’re not in Sydney to check out some events at these iconic locations, the film festival will also be holding events at other beach communities all along the coast of Australia. Check out the SSFF website for more info on the dates of screenings, parties, and photo exhibitions near you – it could be a good excuse to get out and explore a new beach town!


If you like your music heavy and brutal, Soundwave is the Aussie festival for you. Soundwave 2016 has a fairly varied lineup this year than usual. Metal giants Killswitch Engage will play their popular album Alive or Just Breathing in its entirety. They’ll be joining other favourites such as the Deftones, revolutionary rappers Public Enemy, electronic pioneers The Prodigy, and punk nostalgia act Frenzal Rhomb.

There will be three Soundwaves this year – one in Melbourne, Brisbane, and Sydney – all at the end of January. You can also purchase access to the Soundwave Comfort Zone, giving you access to luxuries like a roaming masseuse, cake bar, and awesome shaded viewing spots to watch your favourite bands play.