Everything Sydney-siders Did on ‘Freedom Day’

The day came.


Yesterday was #FreedomDay in Sydney; the day marked in everyone’s social calendars as the “day we get out of lockdown” and safe to say, I had to hold it together here in Melbourne.

It got to a point where I actually had to put my phone away for hours. Every time I found myself scrolling down Instagram, all I could see was sexy people cheers-ing spicy margaritas, dancing on pub tables, roaming the beachy streets of Sydney (every suburb looks like Bondi to me) looking like captives set free into a music festival.

So, I thought, what’s the harm in finding out how Sydney-siders actually spent their first day of freedom? I couldn’t possibly feel any more FOMO, there’s nothing to lose.

I put a call out on Instagram and went for a stalk of all my Sydney friends, to see what they got up to.

To my surprise, not everyone went crazy.

Much like Sydney venues, of which most had lines out the door and around the corner, some people went from 0 – 100. While others, didn’t feel ready to expose themselves to the madness just yet.

“It was rainy and miserable,” one friend told me. “Every corner pub was packed and had such massive lines, you’d have thought it was a public holiday.”


“I went and saw Respect at the movies (by myself)” another friend said, reminding me of just how much I miss going to the movies.

Sure, projectors at home are pretty cool, but there’s nothing quite as calming and being in a dark, cold cinema, waiting to be whisked away by the magic of film.

“I only left the house to take the dog for a wee,” said someone else, reminding me that yesterday was just like any other day at work, but actually busier, because things were starting to open up again.

“I went solo bar-hopping in the city,” one of my closest friends told me, through her clearly very unpleasant hangover.

“I caught the ferry from Rose Bay to Circular Key, started at Door Knock, then Baxter’s Inn, where I settled for a bit and met two investigators who are on the Australian War Crimes Case.”

“Now, I’m hungover as hell, at work.”

Sheeesh. I’m not envious of the hangover, but I do missing a solo bar hop, and just dining alone in general.

“I booked a table with 10 friends at our local pub,” someone else tells me, which sounds like exactly what I would’ve done.

“I am definitely paying for it today.”

While three people‚ÄĒabsolute troopers might I add‚ÄĒtold me the exact same thing: “a fucking assignment”, which sounds pretty terrible given the circumstances, I have to say.

“I went to the gym for the first time in months and it was both terrifying and incredibly difficult,” a colleague told me, which impressed me a helluva lot actually, because I barely find motivation to go to the gym on a usual day, let alone my first day of freedom after months of lockdown.

The same colleague, said they then went to the pub which was even more overwhelming.

“I bought several pints and had the thrill of standing in a queue and making small talk with strangers,” which honestly sounds divine, because how great is random human interaction?

But despite the excitement of #FreedomDay, there was also some angst too, understandably.

Not only was it socially overwhelming and slightly “anxiety-inducing” for people to go out in the world and socialise “normally” again, the Sydney pubs were said to be a “bit too packed.”

“It felt like going from 0-100 real quick, and not in a good way,” said a Sydney-sider who indeed went to a pub, last night.

“The pub I was in was also super disorganised. We didn’t get asked for vaccination status and it was definitely above the 1 person per 4sqm rule, but the police came in to check and didn’t say anything?

“My friends and I were having a bit of a joke about how fucked we’re all going to be in a few weeks.”

Eeeeek. That doesn’t sound super promising. But also, it’s kinda hard for me to be cynical when I’m so friggin happy that my friends got to experience a taste of freedom again.


It’s not long now for you Melbourne. Hang in there.

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What’s On in Sydney This Winter

There's plenty on.

It’s officially cold, but that doesn’t mean we should hibernate. Throw on a warm coat and hit the streets, as Sydney comes alive with Vivid, Bridgerton Balls and much more.

Check out these events if you’re looking for more fun things to do this weekend in Sydney. 

things to do sydney this weekend

Don your favourite snow gear for Sydney’s biggest Snow Festival

July 4 – 30
North Sydney
There is a snow festival coming to North Sydney, and it’s being brought to us by the hospitality group, Tilley & Wills. Shipping in more than 150 tonnes of real snow, the Greenwood Hotel and The Richmond Inn will be transformed into a winter wonderland over July. There will be the largest Olympic-grade ice-skating rink in North Sydney, winter movie showings, ice-skating performances, inflatable polar bears, gondolas, champagne and skate-up Fireball whiskey bars, free children’s activities and frozen performances. The Richmond Inn will be kicking off the festivities just in time for the school holiday season from July 4 to 10. Then the Greenwood Hotel will be kicking things up a notch with a two-week extravaganza from July 19 to 30.
Cost: Varies.

things to do sydney this weekend
Photo: K Wong Photography

Follow the Truffle Trail down in Darling Square

Darling Square
Over the next few weeks, dive into all things truffle with a selection of Sydney restaurants offering exciting dishes showcasing the unique depth and the umami and sweet flavours of the hyper-seasonal truffle. To take things to the next level, a pop-up cart will be open each Sunday offering exclusive, luxury truffle products for avid truffle seekers. Expect duck truffle soup from Auvers Cafe, wild mushroom truffle ragu from Hello Auntie, and even Truffalo buffalo wings from Wingboy.
Cost: Varies

things to do sydney this weekend
Photo: Holly Hawkins

Attend a 10-day art, NFT, and negroni pop-up for charity

July 21-31
The Rocks and Darling Quarter
Sydneysiders can discover an epic line-up of homegrown artists, from NFT creator Bianca Beers to graffiti artist Scott Marsh, with 100% of profits from ONE’s ticket donations, art sales and auctions going to local charities, including; Asylum Seekers Centre, HalfCut and Save the Children. Across the 10 days, there will also be live auctions featuring luxury items from local businesses, exclusive pieces from Sydney artists and designers, themed life-drawing, and comedy tickets to the ARA Darling Quarter Theatre. 
Cost: Varies from $10- $200 (dependant on auction pricing)
Buy tickets here.

things to do sydney this weekend

Go window shopping at the Sydney International Boat Show

July 28 – August 1
Darling Harbour
It is no secret Sydney loves yachts and setting sail under the Harbour Bridge, so this year the Sydney International Boat Show will introduce a VIP experience like never before. Located on The Jackson, a 60-metre superyacht, The Harbour Lounge is the ultimate luxe experience offering access to all-day 5-star catering, premium beverages, live entertainment and exclusive boutique tasting experiences, all while overlooking the superyachts on display in Cockle Bay.
Cost: $26

things to do sydney this weekend

Celebrate Christmas in July at Entertainment Quarter

July 8-17
Moore Park
Coinciding with the first week of the school holidays, the EQ will transform into a Christmas fantasy land. Taking inspiration from some of the beautiful, whimsical Winter Markets dotted around the globe at Christmas. Christmas Winter Wonderland is a fun, festive experience for children and their families. A moment to come together and celebrate all the magic of Christmas, however in July.  

Find the giant Christmas tree and take a walk down Selfie Lane where you can snap the night away and purchase a Selfie Snow Globe to let the memory live on at home. There’s even a selfie moment for your four-legged furry friends. Hop on board the Santa Express before heading to the main event in the Show Ring. There is also a Nueva Bar serving a range of tipples from prosecco and ales to mulled wine and more plus numerous food trucks, perfect for parents and those wishing to munch on melt-in-your-mouth foodie delights.
Cost: Varies: $10 for children and $16 per adult.

Attend The Bridgerton Ball

Saturday, September 3
Town Hall
The town’s most informed Lady¬†is inviting the cream of the town to the social gathering of the season at the exquisite Sydney Town Hall. Dress in elegance and come prepared to dance to classics known to many by our fabulous string quartet. Favourable food and enticing premium drinks fit for Lady‚Äôs and Lord‚Äôs, along with an array of activities such as life drawing and games of chance await you as you try not to be caught up in the gossip to earn the Queen’s attention.¬†
Cost: $209.

things to do sydney this weekend

Try Maybe Sammy’s new cocktail menu

From April 6
The Rocks
Rat Pack is out. Artistic doyennes are in. The new menu has been inspired by 12 women who have shaped us artistically from the fields of music, art, cinema and fashion. Each of the 12 cocktails is a tribute to these leading ladies and their contribution to the arts. Maybe Sammy has collaborated with a talented female Australian artist, Clementine Roslund (who goes by @klemekleme_), who has created bespoke artworks to accompany each cocktail. The artwork sits alongside each cocktail in the new menu booklet, entitled ‚ÄėStardust‚Äô, which is the name of this new collection. Each cocktail will have a bespoke custom social media filter made from the artwork, so you can pop yourself or your chum into it and extend the experience. The filters will be accessed by a QR code that can be found next to each of the cocktails in the Stardust menu.

things to do sydney this weekend

Conquer Sydney’s tallest paint and sip experience

Champainting has launched Sydney’s highest paint and sip event at over 300 metres above the CBD in the Sydney Tower Eye. The exclusive event allows guests to paint the ‘City by Night’ masterpiece. Sip on a two-hour drinks package and enjoy a gourmet grazing box while you unleash your inner Monet.
Cost: $145 per person.

things to do this weekend sydney

Race your friends at Hyper Karting

Entertainment Quarter
Located in Sydney‚Äôs The Entertainment Quarter, Hyper Karting is not your average go-karting‚ÄĒit‚Äôs karting reimagined. Think, electric karts, faster speeds, environmentally friendly, all-weather track and safe and inclusive karting. Each race is 15 minutes, and you can enter as many races as you want. It’s only $19 per race and there are two tracks, one for the kids (3-7 years old). When you start the race, your kart is at 50% power, although with every lap you finish, your speed increases dependent on your lap times. So the faster you complete a lap. the faster you can go the next time around. They have expert and standard races. If you’ve never been karting before, stick with the standard. You can race as a family, and the best part, they take your dine and discover vouchers. So what are you waiting for?
Cost: $19-$59.

things to do sydney this weekend

Bridge Climb X Hendrick’s Gin Bar

Throughout the month of January 2022, all climbers that scale the iconic arches on Day and Twilight Climbs departing after 1 pm will be treated to a complimentary post-Climb celebratory drink in an on-site celebration bar, which closes at 10 pm. The post-Climb drink offered will be a Hendrick’s and Fever-Tree Tonic with a cucumber garnish. Alcohol will be served to guests aged 18 years and over only. Those not of legal age to drink will be offered a non-alcoholic version.
Cost: From $198 for adults, and from $99 for kids.

things to do sydney this weekend

Butter X Impossible Pop Up at The Rocks

The Rocks
Butter, Sydney’s favourite burger and chicken joint have launched an Impossible Pop Up in The Rocks in Sydney. The menu is made exclusively with Impossible Beef, so you can pop down there and try the full menu if you want. Expect dishes such as an Impossible Chilli Cheeseburger, Impossible Katsu and American Impossible Chilli Cheese Fries. There will also be live music and DJ’s every week, and a bar stocked with fun cocktails. Butter hour is from 5 pm to 6 pm every Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Bottomless brunches will also be on, as well as secret menu items, Australia Day festivities and New Years events.
Cost: Varies.

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