Sydney Zoo Nzuri Giraffe

How to keep the kids busy these school holidays

Anyone make it to the school holidays with the egg hunt organised and long weekend planned, but nothing booked in for the rest of the break? There’s loads on in Sydney at the moment. Here are some great ideas for outings to keep the kids inspired and entertained.

Sydney Zoo

There have been some exciting new arrivals at Sydney’s newest zoo. Last week, one-year-old giraffe Nzuri joined the herd from Canberra’s National Zoo and Aquarium. And in February five meerkat pups were born and have recently begun emerging from their burrow. This large, accessible zoo is home to elephants, tigers, lions, and a great number of Australian animals. It houses an aquarium too. Located in western Sydney, it’s a 30-40 minute drive from the inner west, with good public transport options.  The school holiday program includes a recycling-themed show by Play School’s Abi Tucker.

Also try: a day trip to Symbio Wildlife Park in Helensburgh. It’s great for primary aged kids and younger.

Sydney Zoo, 700 Great Western Highway, Bungarribee, sydneyzoo.com
Symbio Wildlife Park, 7-11 Lawrence Hargrave Drive, Helensburgh,  symbiozoo.com.au

Narcissus Garden at the Museum of Sydney

Yayoi Narcissus Garden-Museum of Sydney

This installation by artist Yayoi Kusama will reside at the Museum of Sydney until April 18. The kids will be intrigued by the sight of their reflection, staring back at them again and again in the 1200 mirrored balls that line the floor. But don’t leave the museum without a visit to the immersive Enchanted Valley, a sound and light display reflecting a slice of Australian bushland, inspired by Castlecrag’s Haven Amphitheatre. Let the kids explore and spot an echidna or kookaburra, check under the bridge for a fairy and listen out for the sounds of a storm rolling in. There’s an activity area close by where they can get busy decorating a bat, cockatoo or gum leaves to add to the tree installation.

Also try: the Maritime Museum’s interactive Map It! exhibition.  The kids will learn about different methods of navigation as they solve puzzles to piece together their own map. Recommeded for children aged 5-12.

Museum of Sydney, Corner of Phillip and Bridge Streets, Sydney (open Thursday to Sunday), sydneylivingmuseums.com.au/museum-of-sydney
Australian National Maritime Museum, 2 Murray Street, Darling Harbour, www.sea.museum

Meet Tinkerbell at the Botanic Gardens

Tinkerbell - Sydney Botanic Gardens

Shakespeare Australia is staging Tinkerbell and the Dream Fairies in the Pioneer Memorial Garden at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney until April 18. This hour-long musical sees Tinkerbell meet up with the fairies from A Midsummer Night’s Dream for a magical quest. Take the kids for a hot chocolate at Opera Kitchen below the Sydney Opera House beforehand (it opens at 7.30am) then explore the gardens as you walk to the venue.

Also try: Monkey Baa Theatre Company is bringing the Jackie French and Bruce Whatley book Pete The Sheep to life in a musical comedy for kids. It runs for 45 minutes and is recommended for ages four and up. Catch it at their Darling Harbour theatre from April 6 to 17. Or check out Erth’s Prehistoric World, on at the Sydney Opera House until April 18. It runs for 45 minutes and is aimed at children aged five and up.

Tinkerbell and the Dream Fairies, Pioneer Memorial Garden, Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au 
Pete The Sheep, ARA Darling Quarter Theatre, 1-25 Harbour Street, Sydney, monkeybaa.com.au
Erth’s Prehistoric World, Sydney Opera House,  sydneyoperahouse.com

LEGO Cities exhibition at Sydney Tower Eye
More than 600,000 Lego bricks have been used to construct an exhibition of more than 20 buildings, showcasing the architecture of New York, London, Dubai, Tokyo and Sydney! Designed by Lego Masters judge Ryan ‘The Brickman’ McNaught, the exhibition is part of the 40th anniversary celebrations of Sydney Tower.

Also try: The NSW Rail Museum is running heritage train rides every day of the school holidays. Catch a steam train ride on the weekend or a Railmotor ride during the week.

The Sydney Tower Eye, Level 5, Westfield Shopping Centre, corner of Pitt St and Market St, Sydney, sydneytowereye.com.au
NSW Rail Museum, 10 Barbour Rd, Thirlmere, nswrailmuseum.com.au

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