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Bastille Festival 2023

Sydney’s annual celebration of French food, wine and art is back.
By Sarah Ward and Ben Hansen
June 02, 2023
By Sarah Ward and Ben Hansen
June 02, 2023

Every city has its traditions, but one of Sydney's midyear mainstays since 2013 takes its cues from the other side of the globe. The event: the Bastille Festival, which livens up Circular Quay and The Rocks each July, serving up French celebrations without the plane fare to Europe.

Food, wine, art: if any of these pique your interest, then this four-day French fest is for you. Uniting people in the spirit of Bastille Day, the popular event is back for its tenth edition this winter.

Running from Thursday, July 13–Sunday, July 16, this year's street fest will serve up everything from ten tonnes of cheese to a 1.4-kilometre wine-tasting walk around the harbour. Expect a big emphasis on vino in general, of course — and food, too. All that wandering and watching is hungry (and thirsty) work, after all, so there'll be a heap of pop-ups keeping attendees fed and watered.

Highlights include a self-guided wine-tasting tour where you can check off different regions via your boozy passport, a wine and cheese feast, and French culinary classics like escargot, crepes, raclette and croque monsieur.

The fun doesn't end with the food and wine, though. There will be more than 50 performers to marvel at across multiple stages, with the likes of live bands, DJs, circus performers and fire artists all popping up. And an outdoor cinema will be screening French flicks under the stars.

The festival will take place across five Bastille Festival villages set up at The Rocks, The Overseas Passenger Terminal, East Circular Quay, Customs House and Quay Quarter Lanes, providing attendees with a choose-your-own-adventure-style journey through the food, drink, art and culture. Entry is free, but you'll be paying for whatever you'd like to eat and drink as you go.

If you can't wait until July to get in on the French action, check out our list of the best French restaurants in Sydney.

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