Vivid Sydney

“Vivid Sydney is a unique annual event of light, music and ideas, featuring many of the world’s most important creative industry forums, a mesmerising free public exhibition of outdoor lighting sculptures and installations, a cutting-edge contemporary music program and the spectacular illumination of Sydney’s iconic architecture including the sails of Sydney Opera House.”

Often when I travel I have this habit of finding myself in the right place at the right time for major events and anniversaries. Last year, I was in San Francisco for the America’s Cup yacht race. In 2011, I was in New York for the 10th anniversary of 9/11 and in Chile during the student protests (potentially the wrong place at the wrong time). In that same year, I had two days to explore Vancouver and I happened upon the film set of my favourite TV show, Supernatural (which I later found out is not that easy to find). Over the years, I’ve found myself in Munich during Oktoberfest, New Orleans for the Decadence Festival, Sweden during Midsummer festivities, and Broome for the Stairway to the Moon.

So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised to find myself in Sydney for the final weekend of Vivid – a festival of light, music and ideas. This was a weekend that I’d planned for my Mum, so perhaps I should take credit for taking her to Sydney at the perfect time… but I really can’t. It was pure luck.

Ever since my father passed away in 2007, I’ve had an annual holiday with my Mum. We’ve been to Sydney before and it’s always fun – wandering around Darling Harbour, catching a ferry to Manly Beach, hanging out at Circular Quay for views of the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. This time was no exception, but it was definitely a unique experience because of Vivid.

The astonishing colour in the familiar landscapes was unforgettable… and here are some of my photographs from a memorable weekend.

So much colour

We arrived at Circular Quay at about 4.30pm and enjoyed a drink while waiting for dark. The lights came on at about 6.00pm.

Darling Harbour

We stayed at the Sheraton Hotel overlooking Darling Harbour, so we had an amazing view of the lights and fireworks from our room.

The ferries

The lights on the ferries changed colour depending on which area of the harbour they were in – they looked brilliant.

Sydney Harbour Bridge

We had plenty of incredible views of the Sydney Harbour Bridge… from Circular Quay, the Opera House and the ferry on our way back to Darling Harbour.

Sydney Opera House

The Sydney Opera House looked amazing and I took so many photographs that it was hard to choose. We were standing right beside the opera house when the projections began and gradually walked further away. here are the best of them…


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