Cloudy days in Sydney are few and far between; after all, the city enjoys 300 days of sunshine a year. But summer—from October through February—is arguably the most pleasant time to visit. Increased daylight means long afternoons spent soaking up the city’s coastal ambience and even longer nights making the most of the cosmopolitan nightlife. The beaches are teeming with sunbathers and surfers alike during this period.
Kicking off the summer months is Crave, the city’s international food festival that runs throughout October. Participants can taste the freshest fare Sydney has to offer, watch celebrity chefs in action, attend the night noodle markets, and even have breakfast on the Sydney Harbour Bridge.
But perhaps one of its finest celebrations takes place on the last day of the year: The city’s liveliest party envelops Sydney each New Year’s Eve as the harbor is set ablaze by one of the biggest fireworks displays in the world. An estimated 1.5 million spectators come down to the waterfront for the annual Harbour of Light Parade and the pyrotechnics show of a lifetime.
March through May is the shoulder season. Days tend to boast clear skies and warm temps, with cooler nights. Bring a sweater for evenings out. The upside is that most of the crowds have cleared and the attractions are more accessible.
Crisp winter mornings from around June to August are punctuated by bright, clear, blue skies. Temperatures are cool but certainly not cold, lingering around 50 degrees, with an average of ten wet days per month. The Alpine Winter Festival runs in four Australian cities, hitting Sydney around late July or early August. Snow is brought in to form an outdoor ice-skating rink for dance performances, hockey games, and free skating with the family.