Dine & Discover NSW - Top Things to Do in Sydney for Free

Viv Tan Wei Wen
Viv Tan Wei Wen
8 Apr 2021
Image credits: @sealifesydneyaquarium & @sydneytowereye on Instagram; Klook
Whether you’re a city dweller or a nature lover, there are plenty of things to do in Sydney during the weekend. It’s a bustling city laden with accessible nature getaways that will keep your days off (or your kids’ school holidays) filled with fun and recreation.
If you’re having a hard time picking from the ton of fun activities one can do here, we’ve listed the top 18 things to do in Sydney everyone would enjoy. 
Bonus tip: Book any of these 18 activities for FREE when you use your Dine & Discover NSW Vouchers on Klook!  Here are the top things to do on your weekend or the kids’ school holiday:
Klook is officially part of the Dine & Discover NSW Program and is a one-stop-shop where you can use your 2 x $25 Discover vouchers to book over 100 NSW activities and experiences online!
To further support local NSW businesses, Klook is funding a discount of up to 60% off the normal price of activities, so you can book 30 NSW activities completely free of charge.
  1. Manly Stand Up Paddle Board Lesson
  2. SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium
  3. Wild Life Sydney Zoo Entry Ticket
  4. Madame Tussauds Sydney
  5. Sydney Virtual Reality Military Jet Experience
  6. Sydney Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tours (Open-Top)
  7. Sydney Opera House Guided Walking Tour
  8. Sydney Hop On Hop Off Cruise 1 or 2 Day Pass by Captain Cook
  9. Featherdale Sydney Wildlife Park
  10. The Rocks Walking Tour
  11. Australian National Maritime Museum
  12. Sydney Harbour Bar Cruise
  13. Sydney Tower Eye
  14. Sydney Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour with Mobile App
  15. Manly Kayak Hire
  16. Manly Stand Up Paddleboard Hire
  17. Stand Up Paddle Ball (SUP) Game in Manly

1. Manly Stand Up Paddle Board Lesson

A scenic view when paddleboarding at Manly
A scenic view when paddleboarding at Manly
If you’re looking for things to do in Sydney that are a bit more outdoorsy, Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) lessons at Manly is a must-try! Get all the perks of a weekend getaway with a scenic view of the sea while still staying within Sydney. 
Let the expert instructors guide you as you learn to paddleboard. Pretty soon you’ll be cruising by the beautiful waters of Manly Cove.

2. SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium

Happy kids walking under the sharks of Shark Valley. Credits: @sealifesydneyaquarium on Instagram
Happy kids walking under the sharks of Shark Valley. Credits: @sealifesydneyaquarium on Instagram
Let your childhood mermaid/Aquaman dreams thrive! Visit SEA LIFE Sydney Aquarium, home to 13,000 marine animals and the largest collection of sharks in any aquarium around the world.
Explore the world under the sea through its 14 themed zones including the Day & Night Reef, which takes you through the daily cycle of life in the Great Barrier Reef. You can also dare to swim among the sharks - or technically walk right under them - in Shark Valley.

3. WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo 

Enjoy a meal with the koalas at WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo. Credits: @wildlifesydneyzoo on Instagram
Enjoy a meal with the koalas at WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo. Credits: @wildlifesydneyzoo on Instagram
Indulge the inner animal lover in you by taking a trip to WILD LIFE Sydney Zoo, home to  Australia's “big five” native animals—the kangaroo, koala, Tasmanian devil, quokka, and echidna.
They have an assortment of attractions such as the Kangaroo Walkabout, Devil's Den, Gumtree Valley, Wallaby Cliffs, Kakadu Gorge and Nightfall where you can discover the diverse wildlife of Australia—Rocky the saltwater croc, Topsy and Bub the endangered Tasmanian Devils, and the cutest koalas you will ever see!

4. Madame Tussauds Sydney

Posing with the iconic Steve Irwin at Madame Tussauds Sydney. Credits: @tussaudssydney on Instagram
Posing with the iconic Steve Irwin at Madame Tussauds Sydney. Credits: @tussaudssydney on Instagram
Whether you’re looking for great photo opportunities with your friends or a chance for your kids to pose with their heroes, Madame Tussauds Sydney is a great choice. Just a 10-minute walk from SEA LIFE and WILDLIFE, this wax figure museum is a great addition to your day trip itinerary. 
Take creative photos with your favourite character, celeb, or politician and pose with your friends and family. You can even help Superman lift a helicopter and record your next chart-topping hit!
With all the wacky sculptures and exhibits, it’s definitely a fun-filled activity to do in Sydney during your kid’s school holidays or your day off.

5. Sydney Virtual Reality Military Jet Experience

lying the F/A-18 Military Jet at the Sydney Virtual Reality Military Jet Experience
lying the F/A-18 Military Jet at the Sydney Virtual Reality Military Jet Experience
Become a pilot for a day and man the F/A-18 Military Jet through the mountains of Switzerland or the New York skyscrapers. 
A commercial pilot will brief you so you’re ready to take-off, climb, turn, and do some military manoeuvres in a virtual environment. To make the experience more realistic, the controls and headset are replicas of the real jet.
Did we mention that you’ll also try to land the jet while travelling at 300kph? Talk about thrilling!

6. Sydney Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tour 

The open top bus near the Sydney Opera House
The open top bus near the Sydney Opera House
When was the last time you became a tourist in your own country? Why not explore Sydney again with the Sydney Big Bus Hop-On Hop-Off Sightseeing Tours. Get a fresh perspective of the city from the comfort of an open-top bus where you can get the best views of all the sites and landmarks. 
The tour has 34 spots you can visit and explore, and you can hop off the bus at any chosen stop and explore at your own pace. You’re the captain of this voyage! Do so as many times as you like—as long as your tickets are still valid. 

7. Sydney Opera House Guided Walking Tour

Entryway to the Sydney Opera House. Credits: C.Valdez on Unsplash
Entryway to the Sydney Opera House. Credits: C.Valdez on Unsplash
The Sydney Opera House is one of the most easily recognizable landmarks in the world. In 2007, it was even added to the World Heritage list. We dare say that a tour of Sydney is incomplete without stepping into the world-renowned architectural marvel. 
With your Dine & Discover vouchers, you can go to the tour for FREE - so there’s no excuse not to go!
Get to know why this site is such an icon with the help of knowledgeable guides. You can even do so in various languages such as Spanish, Korean, and Mandarin. 

8. Sydney Hop On Hop Off Cruise 1 or 2 Day Pass by Captain Cook

One of the ferries of the Sydney Hop On Hop Off Cruise sailing by the Sydney Opera House
One of the ferries of the Sydney Hop On Hop Off Cruise sailing by the Sydney Opera House
Explore Sydney through its coastal waters and feel the cool breeze brush your face on the Sydney Hop On Hop Off Cruise by Captain Cook. Similar to the Big Bus Tour, you can hop on and hop off at any of the following 11 destinations as you please:
  • Darling Harbour
  • ICC Sydney
  • Barangaroo
  • Circular Quay
  • Taronga Zoo
  • Manly
  • Watsons Bay
  • Fort Denison
  • Luna Park
  • Shark Island
  • Garden Island
With this, you get the dual experience of a cruise and a tour of Sydney’s best sites without leaving the city. You can learn about each stop with the informative onboard commentary by the staff while taking in the views and enjoying the breeze.
For more information on the stops, the routes, and schedules for each stop, check out this timetable: https://res.klook.com/image/upload/v1535438381/time_table_ivee02.pdf

9. Featherdale Sydney Wildlife Park

A baby and wallaby bonding at Featherdale Sydney Wildlife Park. Credits: @featherdalewildlifepark on Instagram
A baby and wallaby bonding at Featherdale Sydney Wildlife Park. Credits: @featherdalewildlifepark on Instagram
There’s plenty of things to do in Sydney that involve meeting fluffy, scaly, or feathery creatures. One of them is visiting Featherdale Sydney Wildlife Park, home to the largest collection of koalas in NSW and the world’s largest collection of native Australian animals.
Here you can pet and hand-feed the koalas, wallabies, and kangas. And since Featherdale has the world’s largest collection of Australian wildlife, there’s an assortment of animal species for you to discover. 

10. The Rocks Walking Tour

Strolling through the Rocks with the Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge in sight. Credits: sam manchester on Unsplash
Strolling through the Rocks with the Opera House and Sydney Harbour Bridge in sight. Credits: sam manchester on Unsplash
Go back in time and re-learn history once again. The Rocks district in Sydney offers rich historical insight with its restored nineteenth-century buildings, hidden alleyways, shady courtyards, and cobbled lanes. It’s also known for having the oldest streets in Sydney and Cadman’s Cottage, the area’s oldest surviving cottage built in the 1800s.
With the Rocks Walking Tour, you’ll get your fill of legends and stories about the First Fleet 1788, Nurses Walk, the Rum Rebellion 1808 and other historical tidbits thanks to the expert guides. 

11. Australian National Maritime Museum

The Australian National Maritime Museum
The Australian National Maritime Museum
History lovers, here’s another thing you can do in Sydney—visit the Australian National Maritime Museum where you can unearth Australia’s rich maritime history by exploring the featured artefacts, exhibits, and archaeology. Learn about the earliest boats built by Torres Strait Islanders and Aboriginal peoples, as well as the modern-day marvels of ships, fleets and submarines.
You can also unleash your inner pirate and see the world's largest in-water fleet and tour several historic ships including the full-scale replica of Captain Cook's 18th-century ship.

12. Sydney Harbour Bar Cruise

Enjoying the food and cocktails aboard the Sydney 2000 on the Sydney Harbour Bar Cruise
Enjoying the food and cocktails aboard the Sydney 2000 on the Sydney Harbour Bar Cruise
Take a sip of your favourite cocktail as you cruise by Sydney’s waterfront on the Sydney 2000. Whether you’re looking for a quick romantic getaway or a hassle-free hangout with your friends, the Sydney Harbour Bar Cruise is perfect for you. Hop on at Circular Quay or Darling Harbour, and spend the afternoon, drink in hand, as you cruise through Sydney waters. 
Spend 90 minutes aboard and delight in the lounges, live music, Tapas Style Menu and the assortment of cocktails including its signature Southerly Buster Mojito.

13. Sydney Tower Eye

Father and son basking in the view of the city atop the Sydney Tower Eye. Credits: @sydneytowereye on Instagram
Father and son basking in the view of the city atop the Sydney Tower Eye. Credits: @sydneytowereye on Instagram
Get a 360-degree view of Sydney 250 metres above its bustling city streets. The Sydney Tower Eye provides a phenomenal view of the city’s most iconic landmarks including the Opera Rouse, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and even as far as the Blue Mountains!
Take Instagram-worthy photos with the tower’s light installation, or even visit during sunset and make the picturesque orange and pink sky your backdrop! 

14. Sydney Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour with Mobile App

View of Sydney’s iconic Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Credits: April Pethybridge on Unsplash
View of Sydney’s iconic Opera House and Harbour Bridge. Credits: April Pethybridge on Unsplash
If you’d love to explore Sydney and avoid the crowds while you’re at it, you can explore the wonder of the city at your own pace and at your own time with the Sydney Self-Guided Audio Walking Tour. Simply download the app for your own personal audio guide and let it take you through the marvels of Sydney, including The Rocks, Sydney Opera House, St James Church, Government House, and Sydney Harbour Bridge.

15. Manly Kayak Hire

A merry group kayaking in the crystal clear waters of Manly
A merry group kayaking in the crystal clear waters of Manly
Have a weekend getaway without leaving Sydney, and explore the crystal clear waters of Manly via kayak. Explore hidden gems like scenic beaches and waterfalls only accessible via boat, kayak and paddleboarding.
Whether you want to go solo or tandem up with a friend on a double kayak, the Manly Kayak Hire is a perfect way to relax and explore the beautiful sites of Manly. 

16. Manly Stand Up Paddleboard Hire

 A merry group kayaking in the crystal clear waters of Manly
A merry group kayaking in the crystal clear waters of Manly
Another way to explore Manly’s surroundings is via Stand Up Paddleboarding or SUP. Paddle away into the moored yachts and hidden beaches of Manly to your heart’s desire. You can rent your paddleboard for one hour for a quick getaway or extend up to 8 hours for a full day of exploration. 
If you’re a beginner, no worries! The paddleboard offers great stability in flat waters so you can get the hang of it in no time! For a boost of skill and confidence, you can even opt for basic instruction. 

17. Stand Up Paddle Ball (SUP) Game in Manly

A fun game of SUPBALL at Manly
A fun game of SUPBALL at Manly
Bring out your competitive spirit and challenge your friends to a friendly game of Stand Up Paddle Ball or SUPBALL, a combination of netball, water polo, lacrosse, and rugby but on the waters of Manly. Feel the rush and adrenaline as you throw and dodge balls while balancing on your paddleboard.
It’s fun, great for beginners and players of all ages, and sure to bring a good laugh and a good time to everyone. 
You can choose to have your own dedicated private court or decide whether you want to make it a contact or non-contact game amongst friends. A minimum of 6 people is required for the court hire, but if you’re unable to gather your own group, you can join pre-organised games on a Friday. All necessary equipment will be provided, including the stand-up paddleboards, ball, and paddles.

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