Super-size me: Sydney experiences with that something extra

By Jay Chabon

We don’t do things by halves here in Sydney.

There’s colour and excitement, on a grand scale, at every turn.

So when you step out in the city for a bite to eat, to see a show or to explore any of the many sub-cultures that are alive and kicking here, you can expect more than the mainstream.

Be it a cabaret show with fine dining, a celebration of body art with a pop-up tattoo studio, or Shakespeare with stars and a stunning foreshore, you’re sure to get more than you bargained for!

Come to the cabaret

Life is a Cabaret, old chum, Come to the Cabaret.

Nothing says “cabaret” like the thought of Liza Minnelli belting out the famous tune.

Who doesn’t love a sassy stage number with booming vocals and even bigger moves to match?

It’ll raise the roof on any night of the week.

And raising the roof is just what Darlinghurst venue Slide is doing inside a 1920s art deco former bank building at the Hyde Park end of Oxford Street.

Above: Risqu’e Revue show.

Enjoy a Thursday night dinner and show with Risqué Revue (the food is French, the show a Moulin Rouge-style cabaret with a modern twist).

The promise of witnessing the show’s “infamous aerial bathtub routine” had us sold from the get-go.

And if you want to go all 1920s, there’s The Gin Mill Social  (on selected Friday nights).

The banquet menu is matched with live swing musicians, flappers and vaudeville performers.

Roaring 20s attire encouraged!

Above: Australian Internation Tattoo Expo at Moore Park.

Get inked

Whether you’re covered in ’em, got a cheeky one in a secret spot, or just like looking at intricate designs on skin, you can get an eyeful of body art in all its forms when the Australian International Tattoo Expo descends on Sydney from March 11 to 13 at the Royal Hall of Industries, Moore Park.

Celebrate the culture of body art, or get inked on the spot!

Industry artists (more than 250 of them, including the go-to tattooist for some of the world’s leading heavy metal rock stars), trends and techniques will be on show, as well as cool cars and motorcycles, circus acts and other live entertainment.

You can even show off your own ink on the big stage in daily tattoo contests.

Above: Shakespeare by the bay. Image courtesy of David Rouse.

Shakespeare by the bay

If the great bard’s beautiful prose isn’t selling point enough, then the chance to see the work of the world’s most famous playwright brought to life outdoors on Sydney’s beautiful foreshores, and beyond, surely is.

Shakespeare theatre company Bard on the Beach has already performed at Balmoral Beach and Avalon his summer.

Next the actors take the great tragedy Hamlet indoors, at the Greek Theatre in Marrickville (March 11 to 19), before returning to an outdoor stage at Watsons Bay from April 8 to 17.

It’s a perfect setting for a picnic under the stars.

What a way to enjoy a fine performance of one of Shakespeare’s best-known plays.

Above: Kebabs cooking at the Taste of Sydney.
Above: Kebabs cooking at the Taste of Sydney in Centennial Park.

Taste of Sydney

Picking just one place to dine out for an indulgent lunch or dinner is a dilemma you won’t have to face at Taste of Sydney.

The idea behind this festival is to graze through your dream tasting menu.

And with more than 60 dishes, crafted by Sydney’s latest, greatest and hottest restaurants, you’ll be spoilt for choice.

Set in Centennial Park, the event operates much like a restaurant with lunch and dinner services.

There are six sessions over four days (March 10 to 13), each lasting four to five hours.

Plenty of time to enjoy the delicious dishes and live music; shop from artisan producers, and test your culinary skills in a masterclass.

Plus there’s the chance to mingle with Sydney’s top chefs and even discover some of their secret cooking techniques.

The ultimate foodie day out!

Above: Thailand Grand Festival at Darling Harbour.

Taste of Thailand

…right here in Sydney!

From March 12 to 13, the Thailand Grand Festival sets up in Tumbalong Park, Darling Harbour, for an all-Thai extravaganza.

As the City of Sydney puts it: it’s “the event for Sydneysiders and visitors alike to visit Thailand without having to leave Australia.”

Apart from the tasty Thai food from top-notch restaurants, there’s a Thai beer station from which to sample and sip.

All while enjoying cultural shows and activities on the main stage and in side pavilions, covering music, dance, massage and handicrafts.

The Muay Thai (Thai boxing) demonstration is sure to pack a punch!


Know of a super-sized Sydney experience? Tell us in the comments below.

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