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Things to Do in Sydney with Kids: Top 3 Activities for Rainy Days

A whole day indoors with kids can be very long, especially if the kids are young. I always like to plan at least a half-day outing so we’re not sitting at home all day, even if it’s raining cats and dogs!

These are my top three places to hang out with a toddler on a rainy day or on a very hot day. I have kept the Wildlife Museum and the Aquarium off the list because they are more suited to
older children. Toddlers won’t get the most out of those attractions, and they tend to get very busy on rainy or hot days.

1. The Powerhouse Museum


Address: 500 Harris Street, Ultimo.

With free entry for kids under 16, the Powerhouse Museum is the perfect family destination for exploring the interactive side of arts and science.

We would highly recommend visiting soon, as the museum is closing from June 2020.

Young kids and toddlers will especially enjoy “The Wiggles” exhibition and “Experimentations”.

“The Wiggles” exhibition has music and a virtual dancing game kids can play. There are puzzles and blocks and“cooking”with wooden fruit and vegetable. There is picnic play, flower-making and much more. Lewis (my 17 months old toddler) particularly enjoyed the Wiggles car and the pirateship.

The “Experimentations” exhibition is fantastic.It is filled with lights, colour and electricity and has all kinds of practical experiments that are perfect for kids of any age. Lewis enjoyed working with the magnetic pipework; this was one of the only experiments he could do unassisted. There are not enough balls to go around, and older children tend to take supplies from the younger ones, so perhaps bring some spare table-tennis balls if you have them.

There is a small playground outside the museum for children to enjoy. There is a café, but options are limited and the food is not particularly healthy.


Here is a map of the exhibitions.

Open: Daily 10:00am – 5:00pm.

Cost: Adult $15. Children 16 years and under are FREE.

Parking: very limited street parking only.

Visit their website for more information.




2. Harbourside Shopping Centre and the Maritime Museum 


Address: 2-10 Darling Drive, Sydney.

Harbourside Shopping Centre and the Maritime Museum are my default places to go on rainy or hot days, as I live very close and they are rightnext to each other. Driving is easy.You can park at Harbourside and enter the shopping centre directly from the carpark.

There is a good play area at Harbourside, with two levels of indoor play, including some video and virtual games. The area tends to get crowded during peak hours, but the play areas are nice. Once the kids are tired, there are countless places to eat that parents will also enjoy.


Open: Daily 10:00am – 9:00pm

Parking: 100 Murray Street, Pyrmont NSW 2009. Parking is not free.

Visit their website for more information.

Harbourside Shopping CentreHarbourside Shopping CentreHarbourside Shopping Centre

Maritime Museum

Address: 2 Murray St, Sydney NSW 2000

Directly next to Harbourside Shopping Centre, the Maritime Museum has a small play area also worth visiting. There is an entrance fee, but you can bypass that if you tell the front desk that you only wish to visit the play area. This indoor play area has puzzles, and there are always painting and craft workshops running.

Theatricals an outdoor workshop for kids at the back of the museum, right next to the café. If weather permits, this is a fantastic place to be! Currently, there are water pipes and taps for water play.


Open: Daily 9:30am–5pm

Tickets: Tickets cost between $20-$35 BUT free entry if you only want to enter the indoor play area

Parking: Information on parking

Maritime Museum

Maritime Museum

3. Broadway Shopping Centre


Address: 1 Bay Street, Ultimo.

Broadway is the closest family-friendly shopping centre to the city, with a good-sized play areaon level four. I also have a trick up my sleeve at Broadway. When Lewis gets bored withthe play area, I let him play with toys in Target or Kmart. He’s at an age where he doesn’t demand that toys are bought for him and is happy to play with them at the shops!

You can also catch a movie at Hoyts if your kids are of an age to enjoy them.

Broadway Shopping Centre

Author: Joseph Fairchild

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