A New Exhibition and More Tours for Sydney Observatory This Winter

Fri 24th May, 2024 – Wed 31st December, 2025
Observatory Hill Park
1003 Upper Fort Street, Millers Point
Price: $24 - $36
Make your way to the highest natural point in Sydney Cove this winter to see Sydney Harbour and its history in a whole new light.

A new exhibition is now open at Sydney Observatory inside the recently restored residential wing of the historic observatory. This free exhibition explores stories of family life and scientific innovation at the top of The Rocks. Work by First Nations artists Bulthirrirri Wunuŋmurra, Gail Mabo, William Barton and Veronique Serret sit at the centre of new exhibits exploring song lines, navigation and clouds. The exhibition and grounds are open to the public free from Thursday through Saturday from 12-6pm.

While you’re there, book a spot on a tour of Sydney Observatory to go deeper inside the history of the hill. The intimate group tour leads visitors over Fort Phillip into the Signal Master’s Cottage before venturing inside the Observatory building and its astronomy domes. Visitors will explore objects from the Powerhouse Collection before climbing the narrow staircases to see Australia’s oldest working telescope alongside a modern 16-inch telescope. Tours run day and night from Wednesday to Saturday and tickets can be purchased online. The tour is recommended for adults and high school-aged visitors, but family-friendly tours for groups with children as young as six are also on offer.

If your visit inside the domes leaves you wanting more, you’re in luck. Sydney Observatory also releases its monthly sky guides, created by astronomers Geoffrey Wyatt and Dr Andrew Jacob. The guide explains moon phases, planetary action and constellations; if you’re one for stargazing, this may be just the ticket to take your nightly viewing to the next level. The guides are released monthly and detail any special astronomical events you can expect to see.

There’s also an evening in June of curated events inspired by Te Mātahi o te Tau, the Māori New Year. Matariki, the Māori name for the star cluster also known as Pleiades, rises every midwinter – a time of remembrance, celebration, and renewal. Visitors can enjoy weaving workshops led by Western Sydney-based artist Angela Paikea, performances by Kapa Haka group Te Raranga Whanui and Hāngi (a traditional meal) made by Hāngiworks. The evening will also feature a ritual called Speaking the Stars, where visitors can reflect on loved ones lost and release future intentions to the stars.

Open Wednesday to Saturday. Times vary, check the website for details. See more information and plan your visit.