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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Five Ways to Experience Vivid from the Lower North Shore

From glowing Ferris wheels to electric silent discos to vibrant light markets.
By Jasmine Crittenden
June 07, 2018
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Five Ways to Experience Vivid from the Lower North Shore

From glowing Ferris wheels to electric silent discos to vibrant light markets.
By Jasmine Crittenden
June 07, 2018
  shares

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If you're a dweller of the lower north shore, don't mind some Vivid lights in your life but also struggle to bring yourself over the bridge, this year's festival of light, music and ideas has a few spectaculars for you. But really, even if you aren't lower north shore-based, you should listen up, too. For the first time, Luna Park has joined the festival program, expanding the LNS offering. Along with this new light precinct (which includes projecting your face onto the Luna Park face), Chatswood returns with a Brazil-inspired light market and Taronga Zoo's animals are immortalised in glowing larger-than-life installations.

Every night of Vivid from 6pm, the waterfront amusement park transforms into an otherworldly kingdom of dazzling images. And entry, as always, is free. To help you get out and explore the new (and returning) Vivid sights, we've created a guide of some top installations and things to do at the autumnal light fest.

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EXPLORE A NEW VIVID PRECINCT

In all of Vivid, there's only one installation you can ride and that's Phantasos. This artwork, which engulfs the Ferris wheel in light, colour and music, gets its name from the Ancient Greek god of surreal dreams. Meanwhile, Coney Island will provide the setting for the Spirit of Fun, a massive projection exploring Luna Park's history and possible future. As you wander around, keep an eye out for street performers, who'll be twirling and whirling about in illuminated costumes. Bus, train or ferry is the easiest way to travel, but, if you need to drive, then parking's available for a $10 flat rate, from 6pm, Sunday to Thursday.

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DANCE IT OUT AT A SILENT DISCO

Add a little boogie to your Vivid adventures with an evening at the Quiet Riot Neon Boombox Truck, which you'll find on the midway at Luna Park. Every night from 6pm, a silent disco will kick off, organised by Playground Sounds and hosted by Luna Park's resident DJs. Prepare your shapes, pop on a set of noise-cancelling headphones and get ready for a deluge of singalong and dancefloor classics. Whatever your tastes, you should find tunes to suit them — there are several channels to choose from. The Silent Disco is free with an Unlimited Rides Pass.

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SATE YOUR HUNGER WITH EATS AND VIEWS

When all the Vivid excitement starts to make you peckish, refuel at Luna Park's various eateries. For old-school carny fast food, head to Helter Skelter to feast on hot dogs, dagwood dog and American-style burgers. Or, for fresh seafood, salads and pizza, take a seat in the Hungry Horse Diner. If you've got cash to splash, then treat yourself to a fancy feed — and dramatic Sydney Harbour views — at The Deck. Up the ante even more, and combine your meal and views with a ride on Phantasos with this Dine 'n' Ride package.

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Destination NSW.

LIGHT-SEE AWAY FROM THE CROWDS

Right next to Luna Park, there's a lovely, roomy stretch of grass known as Bradfield Park. It's an excellent place to park yourself for an evening and spend a few hours gazing across the water at Vivid's installations — rather than racing from one to another, battling crowds. The Harbour Bridge is visible, up-close, from both its eastern and western sides. Further in the distance, you'll see Metamathemagical projected on the Opera House sails and backdropped by some more vibrant Circular Quay lights. Don't forget your picnic blanket, snacks and even your pooch, who's just as welcome to light-see from the park as you are.

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WANDER A LIGHT MARKET

Chatswood Mall has been taken over by the Light Market, a complex of stalls made with recycled materials and inspired by both shanty towns and Star Wars. Over 20 vendors are peddling an array of international foods, including Sydney staples Black Star Pastry and Mary's. Along with the glowing market, Chatswood is host to light installations including Crank Zappa, a jellyfish made entirely of single-use plastic items that electrify when touched, and Future Scape, which has transformed The Concourse into an immersive solar system.

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Whether you're lower north shore-based or not, head to the area for a different view of Vivid. Check out all that's going on at Luna Park here.

Published on June 07, 2018 by Jasmine Crittenden

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