Sydney Family Holiday Guide

One of the things Sydney does best is solve family holiday dilemmas. From dusk til dawn, there’s a treasure trove of “aww”, “cool”, “sick” and “giggle” inducing sights, entertainment and wallet friendly fodder to ensure an unforgettable time for all the right reasons.

Day 1: We be a swashbuckling harbour city me-hearties, so grab the crew and hoist the anchor, we’re off to sea:

  • At the Australian National Maritime Museum you can jump aboard ships, peer through a periscope, and see fun exhibitions or cool scary stuff like mythical creatures of the deep.
  • Grab a fish and chips lunch at Darling Harbour then cool off in the water fountains - designed for kids to splash around in while hapless parents can only watch on or join in.
  • Walk to Sydney Aquarium to gawk at sharks, rays, octopus and the dungongs, Pig and Wuru – undeniably cute creatures, but the fact they’re ancestors were ever mistaken for mermaids just proves how strong the Rum was back in settlement days.
  • Dinner at the very family friendly Pancakes on the Rocks, with its irresistible menu selections such as Crazy Potato, Alice In Wonderland and the Caterpillar.

Day 2: Go west young family! In less than two hours you’ll be on top of the great wall of Sydney, the stunning Blue Mountains.

  • Take a full day tour to the Blue Mountains, explore the Jenolan Caves and take an almost vertical cliff side ride down into the rainforest on the scenic railway.
  • Or hire a car for the trip and stop off at Penrith Panthers on the way back for a round of mini golf or some wild arcade game action in the Kaos family centre.
  • Then tuck into some cowboy fare at the nearby Silver Spur Steak Ranch with face painting, PlayStation, balloons and a brilliant kids menu.

Day 3: Last chance to smear the town red with those grubby little mitts. We better make it good:

  • If your kids are of creative persuasion, the hands-on art workshops and enchanting storytelling at the Art Gallery of NSW will have them in rapture.
  • The Disco and Magic Cruise is a bit like Siegfried and Roy for kids - without the ticked off kitty cat. The best part is that you can relax while the magician, music games, prizes and lunch keeps the kids spellbound for hours.
  • Step under Sydney’s worst ambassador for cosmetic dentistry, the Luna Park face. Free to get in, open most days and they offer a range of ride passes from Go Silly for the littlies to Go Wild for your thrill seekers.
  • After all that tossed and turned fairy floss, eating may not be high on the agenda tonight. But if is, take the troops down to Harry Cafe de Wheels, grab a pie, dangle your legs off the wharf and have a yarn to half of Sydney’s never-around-when-you-need-one taxi drivers.

Recommended Sydney Family Hotels:

  • Novotel Darling Harbour is a short break mecca for Sydney family fun – swimming pool, tennis court and an honest “not far now darling” walk from the Imax Theatre, Powerhouse Museum, Wildlife World an Aquarium..
  • Kids are treated like rock stars on the verge of a tantrum at the Four Seasons Hotel Sydney - child size bathrobes, bedtime milk and cookies. Plus they’ll even arrange babysitting so you can hit the town and leave the divas behind.

See the list below for more Sydney Family Hotels.

3 self rated
88 Dowling Street Sydney 2011 Australia

Situated on the city centre's edge, Nesuto Woolloomooloo offers spacious studio apartments in a beautiful heritage listed 4 storey building, located amongst traditional Sydney terrace houses in histor...more

5 self rated
161 Elizabeth Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Situated in Sydney CBD, overlooking Hyde Park, Sheraton Grand Sydney Hyde Park (formerly Sheraton On The Park) offers a restaurant, a bar and a 24-hour rooftop fitness centre. Guests enjoy an indoor p...more

4 self rated
317 Castlereagh Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Located in Sydney CBD (Central Business District), 5 minutes’ walk from Central Station and Hyde Park, Oaks on Castlereagh offers stylish studios and apartments, a well-equipped fitness centre, and a...more

3 star
18 Ingram Road Wahroonga 2076 Australia

In the heart of Wahroonga, Ascot Motor Inn is close to Wahroonga Park and Glade Reserve. This motel is within close proximity of Hornsby Park and Brickpit Park.Rooms Make yourself at home in one of th...more

4 self rated
212 Riley Street Sydney 2010 Australia

Boasting a bar, Cambridge Hotel Sydney is situated in Sydney in the New South Wales region, 1.6 km from Art Gallery of New South Wales and 2.1 km from Hyde Park Barracks Museum. Among the facilities o...more

4.5 self rated
169-179 Thomas Street Haymarket 2000 Australia

Novotel Sydney Central is in the heart of Haymarket, walking distance from Railway Square and University of Technology Sydney. This 4.5-star hotel is close to University of Sydney and Sydney Opera Hou...more

4.5 self rated
242 Arden Street Coogee 2034 Australia

Located in Coogee (Randwick - Coogee), Crowne Plaza Coogee Beach is minutes from Coogee Beach and Wiley's Baths. This 4.5-star hotel is within close proximity of Wedding Cake Island and Gordon's Bay.R...more

4.5 self rated
34 52 Harrington Street The Rocks 2000 Australia

With a stay at Harbour Rocks Hotel Sydney - MGallery Collection, you'll be centrally located in The Rocks, steps from Susannah Place Museum and Museum of Contemporary Art. This 4.5-star hotel is close...more

3 star
480 Pacific Highway Killara 2071 Australia

Located in Killara, Killara Inn is minutes from Killara Golf Club and close to Marian Street Theatre. This hotel is within close proximity of Killara City Park and Lane Cove National Park.Rooms Make y...more

4 self rated
28 Macleay Street, Potts Point Sydney 2011 Australia

Located in Sydney’s stylish Potts Point area, The Macleay offers accommodation with Sydney Harbour, Opera House or city views. It features massage services and barbecue facilities. Macleay Hotel is lo...more

Mantra Chatswood

4 star
10 Brown Street Sydney 2067 Australia

Mantra Chatswood provides large, fully self-contained 1 and 2-bedroom apartments with laundry facilities. This hotel is located in the centre of Chatswood's business and shopping district Guests have...more

5 star
30 Pitt Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Marriott Sydney Harbour is in the heart of Sydney, walking distance from Museum of Contemporary Art and Customs House. This 5-star hotel is close to Sydney Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge.Rooms...more

4.5 self rated
2 Lee Street Haymarket 2000 Australia

With a stay at Adina Apartment Hotel Sydney, Central, you'll be centrally located in Haymarket, steps from Railway Square and minutes from University of Technology Sydney. This 4.5-star apartment is c...more

3 self rated
431 - 439 Pitt Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Metro Hotel Marlow Sydney Central is located in Sydney CBD (Central Business District), close to public transport and just 5 minutes’ walk from Central Station. Guests have access to a restaurant and...more

4 self rated
100 Murray Street Sydney 2009 Australia

Located 3 minutes’ walk from Harbourside Shopping Centre in Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Novotel Sydney Darling Harbour offers spacious rooms, some with stunning views of the city skyline....more

4 self rated
55 North Steyne Road, Manly Sydney 2095 Australia

Located opposite Manly Beach, one of Australia’s most beautiful and popular beaches, Novotel Sydney Manly Pacific is just 15 minutes' ferry ride from Circular Quay and the Sydney city centre. Guests e...more

4 self rated
1 North Head Scenic Drive, Manly Sydney 2095 Australia

In the heart of Sydney Harbour National Park - Manly, this unique hotel offers a peaceful and romantic retreat or a fully equipped base for business with stunning views across Sydney Harbour. Sydney's...more

4 star
389 Pitt Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Perfectly located in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), Rydges World Square offers luxury accommodation with a flat-screen TV. Guests enjoy a fitness centre, a cocktail bar and a res...more

Oaks Hyde Park Plaza

4 self rated
38 College Street Sydney 2010 Australia

Overlooking the famous Hyde Park, Oaks Plaza offers self-contained accommodation with TVs and DVD players. The hotel features a sauna and rooftop deck with stunning views across Hyde Park. Guests rece...more

4.5 self rated
359 Crown Street Surry Hills 2010 Australia

With a stay at Adina Apartment Hotel Sydney, Crown Street in Surry Hills (Darlinghurst - Surry Hills), you'll be minutes from Taylor Square and Brett Whitley Studio. This 4.5-star apartment is close t...more

4 self rated
5 York Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Located in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), The York by Swiss-Belhotel offers air-conditioned apartments with a private balcony and free WiFi. Guests have access to a fitness centr...more

Mantra 2 Bond Street

4 star
Cnr Of George And Bond Streets Sydney 2000 Australia

Located close to Sydney Harbour and Circular Quay, Mantra 2 Bond Street is just a 1-minute walk from the heart of the Sydney CBD (Central Business District). The Rocks, with its mix of restaurants, pu...more

4 self rated
Cnr Kent And Bathurst Streets Sydney 2000 Australia

Featuring an indoor heated swimming pool, a fitness centre and sauna facilities, Adina Apartment Hotel is located in Sydney CBD (Central Business District). It offers air-conditioned apartments and st...more

4 self rated
183 Coogee Bay Road Sydney 2034 Australia

Refurbished in 2019 and situated just 200 metres from Coogee Beach, Adina Apartment Hotel Coogee features an indoor heated pool and fitness centre. Free WiFi is available throughout the hotel and cove...more

BreakFree on George

4 star
653 George Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Located in the heart of Sydney, BreakFree on George offers refurbished, modern, self-contained accommodation with air conditioning and satellite TV. Sydney’s famous Darling Harbour and the Internation...more

Seasons Harbour Plaza

4 self rated
252 Sussex Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Just a 2-minute walk from Darling Harbour and Town Hall Station, Seasons Harbour Plaza offers spacious modern apartments in Sydney CBD (Central Business District). Guests can enjoy a swimming pool, sp...more

4 self rated
110 - 114 James Ruse Drive, Rosehill Sydney 2142 Australia

Nesuto Parramatta offers modern self-contained apartments with free cable TV and 1GB of free WiFi daily. Guests have access to a fitness centre, outdoor heated pool, restaurant and bar. Located opposi...more

APX World Square

4 self rated
2 Cunningham St. Sydney 2000 Australia

APX World Square offers spacious apartments with a private balcony and full kitchen in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District). APX World Square is a 5-minute walk from the shopping and en...more

4 self rated
2-12 Busaco Road Marsfield 2113 Australia

When you stay at Medina Serviced Apartments North Ryde in Marsfield, you'll be in the business district and convenient to Macquarie University and Macquarie Shopping Centre. This 4-star apartment is w...more

4 self rated
47 - 49 Chippen Street, Chippendale Sydney 2008 Australia

Nesuto Chippendale offers fully self-contained serviced apartments, located on the fringe of the city of Central Sydney, just 2 km from Sydney’s CBD. It is within a 10-minute walk from the University...more

4 self rated
860 Victoria Road, Ryde Ryde 2112 Australia

Featuring an outdoor swimming pool, a restaurant and a barbecue area, Metro Inn Ryde is 30 minutes’ drive from Sydney’s city centre. Free parking is available on site. Set in the north-western suburbs...more

Fraser Suites Sydney

5 self rated
488 Kent Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Offering free WiFi and a fitness centre with a sauna. Fraser Suites Sydney features luxury apartments with modern furnishings, kitchen facilities and views of the city skyline. Located in Sydney CBD (...more

4 self rated
35 Levey Street, Wolli Creek Sydney 2205 Australia

Just 5 minutes' drive from Sydney International Airport, and 10 minutes' drive from the Domestic Terminal, Quality Hotel CKS offers modern rooms with free WiFi. Guests also enjoy an on-site restaurant...more

4 self rated
72 Liverpool St Sydney 2000 Australia

Radisson Hotel and Suites is situated in the heart of Sydney CBD (Central Business District), just a 5-minute walk from Darling Harbour and Town Hall train station. Facilities include an indoor swimming...more

4 self rated
18-40 Anderson Street, Parramatta Sydney 2150 Australia

Featuring an outdoor pool, a hot tub and a fitness centre, Holiday Inn Parramatta is 15 minutes' drive from Wet'n'Wild Sydney. It offers refurbished guest rooms with a large work desk and a high-defin...more

5 self rated
80 Pyrmont Street Sydney 2009 Australia

Offering luxurious accommodation, The Star Grand Hotel and Residences Sydney (formerly Astral Tower and Residences) is situated in The Star Entertainment Complex. It is located in Darling Harbour. The...more

Quest Manly

4 self rated
54a West Esplanade, Manly Sydney 2095 Australia

Located in the seaside suburb of Manly, Quest Manly is situated opposite Manly Ferry Wharf, providing easy access point to Sydney city centre via ferry or fast ferry ride. The property offers an array...more

5 self rated
98 Gloucester Street, The Rocks Sydney 2000 Australia

Quay West Suites Sydney offers 5-star apartments located in the historic Rocks precinct of Sydney. The hotel is a just a 5-minute walk from Circular Quay where you can see the Sydney Harbour Bridge an...more

2 self rated
485 King St, Newtown Sydney 2042 Australia

Australian Sunrise Lodge is located in Newtown, within 10 minutes' drive from both Sydney CBD and Sydney Airport. It offers free high-speed WiFi in public areas and the rooms. Australian Sunrise Lodge...more

3 self rated
108A Oxford St, Darlinghurst Sydney 2010 Australia

Featuring a rooftop terrace with lovely harbour and city views, Sydney Wattle Hotel is just 5 minutes’ walk from Hyde Park. It offers air-conditioned rooms with a flat-screen TV and DVD player. Some r...more

4 star
4 Collaroy Street, Collaroy Narrabeen 2097 Australia

Only 50 metres from beautiful Collaroy Beach, Sydney Beachouse YHA is set in the heart of Sydney's Northern beaches. It features a rooftop terrace with a swimming pool, an onsite cafe, 24/7 secure acc...more

3 self rated
42 Parramatta Road, Summer Hill Sydney 2130 Australia

Marco Polo offers budget-friendly accommodation with free unlimited, high-speed WiFi access, just 20 minutes’ drive from Sydney Airport. All rooms come with an en suite bathroom and cable TV. Each roo...more

4 self rated
243 Pyrmont Street Sydney 2009 Australia

Overlooking Darling Harbour, Oaks Goldsbrough Darling Harbour offers stylish accommodation with cooking and laundry facilities. Situated in a historic 19th century building, many apartments offer stun...more

3 self rated
132 - 136 Sussex Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Metro Apartments are located in Sydney CBD (Central Business District), just a 2-minute walk from Darling Harbour and Sydney Aquarium. All units feature a balcony and full-length windows, many with pa...more

4 self rated
383 - 389 Bulwara Road Sydney 2007 Australia

Just 3 minutes’ walk from the Powerhouse Museum, Metro Aspire Hotel Sydney offers refurbished rooms with private balconies. It features a restaurant and bar, function rooms and a tour desk. Guests rec...more

4 self rated
74-80 Ivy Street Sydney 2008 Australia

Adina Apartment Hotel Chippendale offers modern serviced apartments set around a leafy courtyard with an outdoor plunge pool. All apartments include a kitchen or kitchenette. The property is 6 minutes...more

4 self rated
8-13 South Steyne, Manly Sydney 2095 Australia

Set directly opposite Manly Beach, The Sebel is a stylish, boutique hotel offering 2 swimming pools and a spa pool. All accommodation features a private balcony with outdoor furniture. Some offer fabu...more

3 self rated
17-23 Parramatta Road, Haberfield Sydney 2045 Australia

Offering free high-speed WiFi and free parking, the 3.5 star hotel Garden Lodge Sydney offers rooms with a balcony and a 40-inch LED TV. Just 7 km from Sydney's city centre. It is a 15-minute train ri...more

5 self rated
199 George Street Sydney 2000 Australia

Overlooking Sydney's historic Rocks area, Four Seasons Hotel Sydney offers free WiFi, a bar, restaurant, fitness centre and swimming pool. Situated in Sydney CBD (Central Business District), it featur...more

4 self rated
34 The Avenue Sydney 2031 Australia

This 4-star boutique hotel is located in Randwick, close to Sydney's CBD (Central Business District) and Coogee Beach. It offers peaceful surroundings and a relaxed setting with a front desk open unti...more

2 star
201 William Street Sydney 2010 Australia

Located in the heart of Kings Cross, ibis budget Sydney East offers budget accommodation just 10 minutes’ walk from Hyde Park, Oxford Street and the Australian Museum. The famous Bondi Beach is a 15-m...more

3 star
5 Ross Smith Avenue Sydney 2020 Australia

Ibis budget Sydney Airport is located just 10 minutes’ walk from the domestic terminal and railway station, and a 10-minute drive from the international terminal. All air-conditioned rooms have a priv...more

3 self rated
331 Mona Vale Road, Terrey Hills Terrey Hills 2084 Australia

Surrounded by peaceful natural bushland, only 25 km from Sydney city centre, this resort features a large swimming pool, sauna and spa pool. The restaurant and bar serves international cuisine. Set on...more

3 self rated
6 Steinton Street, Manly Sydney 2095 Australia

Just 150 metres from Manly Beach, this guest house offers free WiFi and a lounge area with comfortable sofas and cable TV. All rooms have a wardrobe and towels and bed linen are provided. Sandy Bottom...more


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