After-Dark Light Festival Lightscape Will Brighten Up the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney This Winter

Wander through 2.1 kilometres of light and colour, all while walking through nature, at this stunning Vivid Sydney event.
Sarah Ward
Published on February 15, 2023

Walking through stunning lights as far as the eye can see, moseying beneath a canopy of glowing multi-coloured trees, wandering between ribbons of flashing beams, taking the most luminous 2.1-kilometre stroll through nature that you can imagine — you'll be able to do all of this when Lightscape heads to Sydney for the first time in 2023.

Already a hit in Melbourne, the after-dark light festival will be taking over the the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney from Friday, May 26–Saturday, June 17, beaming away from 5.30pm each night as part of another dazzling Sydney event: Vivid. While the leafy spot is already extremely scenic, and Sydney's annual lights, music and ideas festival is already vibrant to look at as well, saying that Lightscape will be brightening up both is quite the understatement.

Prepare to see the garden illuminated by immersive and large-scale installations scattered along that 2.1-kilometre route, including sparkling trees, luminous walkways and bursts of colour that look like fireworks. A big highlight: large-scale works like giant flowers and glowing tunnels, both of which will make you feel like you're being bathed in radiance.

Lightscape first hit Australia in 2022 after first taking over gardens across the United Kingdom and the United States. Developed by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew in the UK, it's understandably proven a huge success — and more than two-million people wandered along its glowing trails in a season overseas.

Fingers crossed for pop-up food and drink stalls scattered throughout Lightscape in Sydney — selling, we hope, mulled wine to keep hands warm during the chilly winter nights.

Lightscape sits on a Vivid Sydney bill that'll also see the event host its first-ever food fest, and also feature plenty of other lit-up spaces around the Harbour City. The Vivid Sydney Light Walk is back for 2023, this time with 49-plus light installations and 3D projections along its illuminated eight-kilometre stretch; Barerarerungar from First Nations artist Maree Clarke will be projected across the Museum of Contemporary Art; and Jen Lewin's The Last Ocean will also be a highlight, hitting Sydney after premiering at Burning Man in 2022.

Lightscape will light up the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, Queen Elizabeth II Gates, from Friday, May 26–Saturday, June 17. For more information or to buy tickets, head to the Vivid Sydney website.

Published on February 15, 2023 by Sarah Ward
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