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The Culture Vulture's Guide to Getting the Most Out of Your Sydney Stay for the FIFA Women's World Cup 2023™

Make the most out of your Sydney trip with a healthy dose of culture alongside your football fever.
By Reema Hindi
July 14, 2023
By Reema Hindi
July 14, 2023

in partnership with

The FIFA Women's World Cup 2023™ has been accumulating some serious buzz around the world and in Australia and New Zealand, we are set to host it for the very first time. Meaning, with Sydney hosting some exciting games, the city will be bustling with football fever. The event will run from July 20 to August 20, adding some much-needed winter excitement to our lives — especially with the FIFA Fan Festival™ at Tumbalong Park. So if you are planning a trip to Sydney, let's not forget a key ingredient in the making of an unforgettable holiday: range. Make sure you balance out all that sporting fun with some art and culture to create a perfectly rounded getaway and keep all your travel buddies happy. 

We've tracked down some excellent cultural activities that prove Sydney isn't just sunshine and beaches. While the footy will undoubtedly captivate your attention, this guide will ensure you make the most of your stay by immersing yourself in the city's vibrant cultural scene. So beyond your dose of World Cup action, Sydney offers an array of experiences to satisfy any culture vulture.

Image: Hamish McIntosh


Sydney's art gallery scene is one to impress traveller and connoisseur alike. From iconic institutions to small, independent galleries, there is a lot to explore when you aren't in the stadium. Don't miss Australia's iconic Archibald, Wynne and Sulman Prizes for this year, showing at the newly expanded Art Gallery of NSW from now until early September. While you're there, be sure to check out the Brett Whiteley Studio, a museum in the former home of the legendary avant-garde artist. 

If contemporary art is more up your alley, you can't go past the impressive works in the MCA, located right on Sydney's idyllic harbour. Or, explore a world-class collection of Chinese contemporary art at the White Rabbit Gallery. And after you finish browsing, you can enjoy tea and dumplings at their tranquil teahouse.

Image: Daniel Boud


With the Opera House and Sydney Theatre Company in its stable, Sydney is leading the way in global theatre. So once you are done with the international football stage, you can shift your focus to a different stage. 

Be sure to pay a visit to the harbourside icons and check out a classical music performance at the Opera House, or a production at Sydney Theatre Company's Roslyn Packer Theatre. Or roam the charming streets of Surry Hills and catch a play at the innovative Belvoir Street Theatre. For something further afield, you can check out Riverside Theatres and the Seymour Centre. There's no shortage of culture during your Sydney stay.

Image: Destination NSW


When it's time to take off the football boots and whack on your dancing shoes, head to a gig at one of Sydney's live music venues. Looking to hit the dance floor with a live DJ set? Then check out what's on at Oxford Art Factory. Or, if seeing local live talent and bands is more your thing, enjoy new music alongside beer and burgers at Mary's Underground or The Lansdowne Hotel. For something on a bigger scale, the Enmore Theatre is host to some of the top international acts in the game. Sydney is sure to provide you with plenty of options to dance the night away after a big football win.


You can't come to Sydney without doing a bit of shopping. So if you're in town for World Cup season, be sure to make time for some market and boutique-hopping when you aren't cheering in the stadium.

The charming suburb of Paddington, lined with designer boutiques in Victorian terrace homes, is a must-visit destination. After enjoying a coffee at one of the leafy cafes in Five Ways, take a stroll up Glenmore Road, where you'll find a range of high-end boutiques from renowned Australian fashion houses such as Lee Mathews, Dion Lee, Venroy and more. Don't forget to explore Paddington Markets, held every Saturday on Oxford Street. Here you can immerse yourself in a wholesome community atmosphere with bustling stalls filled with artisanal goods from local businesses.

Sydney boasts many more vibrant markets waiting for your perusal. For a unique and eclectic shopping experience, head to The Rocks, Bondi, or Glebe, where you'll discover a treasure trove of handmade goods, vintage clothing and gourmet food. Uncover hidden gems that reflect Sydney's creative spirit.

Image: Sharon Hickey


Sydney will be bursting with international visitors, both on the field and in the stands, this World Cup season. We have a lot to celebrate in terms of our multicultural landscape, but it is also important to discover and celebrate Sydney's Indigenous origins and continuing cultures. 

If you are the type to crave a bit of time out in nature, then be sure to include time to explore the Jibbon Loop Track in the Royal National Park. Embark on a journey through ancient landscapes and sacred sites, walk in the footsteps of the Dharawal people and discover some Aboriginal carvings. The track is about an hour's drive out of Sydney, and takes about an hour and 45 minutes to complete the circuit. It's a perfect interlude to your Sydney getaway when you need a break from city-slicking. 

For those who prefer to stay city-side, then embark on a compelling Dreamtime Southern X Rocks tour. Led by knowledgeable Indigenous guides, this 90-minute tour takes you around the historic Rocks area to uncover the history of the Aboriginal people's saltwater heritage in Sydney Harbour. After your tour, you can head to Leichardt and immerse yourself in contemporary Indigenous art at the Boomalli Aboriginal Art Co-op. This space showcases the works of talented Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists in a diverse range of mediums. Curated exhibitions are held regularly. 


If visiting Sydney for the FIFA Women's World Cup, be sure to check out the FIFA Fan Festival™ Sydney, taking place from Thursday, July 20 till Sunday, August 20 at Tumbalong Park, Darling Harbour. Check out the website for the full schedule of events.

Published on July 14, 2023 by Reema Hindi
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