Sydney’s Summer Open Air Cinema Guide

Moonlight Cinema in Centennial Park

Moonlight Cinema in Centennial Park

The days are long and the sun is shining – you’ll be spending enough time inside shopping centres when the sales are on so it’s time to make the most of those summer nights with an outdoor cinema sessions.

Here’s our guide to big screens in the great outdoors of Sydney. 

Moonlight Cinema

A picnic in Centennial Park is one of the great joys of living in Sydney but a picnic at the Moonlight Cinema in the park is the icing on the cake. Running now until 29th March, the long time cinema has outdoor screenings down to an art form. Drive through the gates, park your car, haul whatever cushions, picnic blankets, cheese, chips and drinks (yes, alcoholic too!) you can carry onto the grass. If BYO isn’t your style, reserve a seat in Gold Grass. Bean beds in the primo position in front of the screen and waiter service (aka they bring the food right to your bean bag) – what more do you need? The Food Truck has plenty of fries, burgers, nachos and movie snacks for everyone though. Keep an eye out for the Medibank Pet Insurance Doggie Nights when you can bring your dog to the picnic and the (back by popular deman) Frozen Singalong.

St George OpenAir Cinema

Leave your picnic rugs at home because Sydney’s famous Harbourside cinema is back. Once again the screen will rise up out of the water at Mrs Macquaries Point, right on the edge of the Botanical Gardens. This is the gold class of open air cinema experiences – seats, bar, restaurant and a five star view out over the harbor. Just remember to keep your eyes on the movie not the Opera House. This year the cinema kicks off on 7th of January with 42 screenings until the 31st January.

IMB Sunset Sydney, North Sydney

From the 22nd January until the 28th March, this fun cinema will be popping up for the third year in a row at North Sydney Oval. Cult classics, new releases, golden oldies – they’re all here. The Cobs Popcorn Lawn Lounge is for pre-reserved primo seatig but there’s plenty of grass for picnic blankets and cushions. The cinema does have backrests and cute kids bean bags for higher if you’re keen to bring the comfort level up a notch. The Baker and Builder Café have the food covered, although you can definitely still bring your own, and MadFish Wine Bar has drinks all sorted (BYO alcohol not allowed). 

Ben and Jerry’s Openair Cinema Bondi

Ah Bondi, never afraid to do something just a little different. Everyone’s favourite open air cinema is back, taking place on the Dolphin Lawn next to Bondi Pavilion. Every Sunday night is “Sundae Session” night, with live music and free ice cream. Forget the choc top, this is FREE Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Don’t worry, you can still buy the ice cream onsite other nights of the week, along with Doughboy pizza and drinks. The venue is fully licensed so bring food but don’t BYO alcohol. Like other cinemas, there will be screenings of new releases and Dirty Dancing, but keep an eye out for the always popular screening of The Princess Bride. Star Lounge and Polo Class tickets are also available for reserved seats.  

About the author

Lisa used to use Sydney as a base to drop off souvenirs before heading off on the next adventure but these days she’s got her feet almost on the ground, with a desire to try every high tea in Sydney, and a cute cavoodle puppy at home. Travel writer, photographer and Kitchen Aid freak, she loves to eat, bake and write.


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