Friends around the Domain
Join your fellow culture lovers on a day of discovery
The Royal Botanic Garden and Domain in the heart of the city is bordered by some of Australia’s oldest and most treasured cultural institutions.
For the first time, these organisations – including the Australian Museum, State Library of NSW, Sydney Living Museums and the Royal Botanic Garden and Domain, along with the Art Gallery of NSW – will open their doors to members from all organisations, offering special viewings, talks, walks and other events over a day.
All you need to do to participate is present your current membership card, showing you are a member for at least one of these institutions.
Program of events
Art Gallery of NSW
Free viewing of the exhibition America: painting a nation exhibition from 8 to 10am. You can also browse in the exhibition shop and enjoy breakfast on the cafe terrace.
Visit the amazing Tyrannosaurs exhibition at the members price from 9am to 5pm, and receive free general admission to the Museum throughout the day.
Royal Botanic Garden
Discover secret wonders in a free guided walk from 10.30 to 11.30am or from 1 to 2pm (limited numbers; meet at information booth at Woolloomooloo Gate). Celebrate the inaugural Tomato Festival Sydney, with a range of talks, walks, workshops and tastings on offer from 10am to 4pm. Pick up a voucher from the Growing Friends Nursery (valid for six months or use it on the day for a discount of at least 20% on a range of native and exotic shrubs and perennials).
State Library of NSW
Take a half-hour heritage tour of the Mitchell Library, including the historic Shakespeare Room. Go on a virtual tour with the Curio app on your smartphone. See the exhibitions A passion for collecting, Born to concrete: visual poetry from the collections of the Heide Museum of Modern Art and The University Queensland and Kings Cross 1970 to 1971: photographs by Rennie Ellis. Visit the original reading room. Get advice from an expert on family history services.
Receive a 20% discount on purchases in the Library Shop if you become a member on the day.
Lucy Osburn-Nightingale Museum
Free entry from 10am to 3pm to this museum in the grounds of the Sydney Eye Hospital/Sydney Hospital in Macquarie Street.
John Passmore Museum
Free entry from 10am to 3pm to this museum at 2–4 Sir John Young Crescent, Woolloomooloo, behind the Art Gallery of NSW, across from Brett Whiteley’s 'matchsticks’.
Hyde Park Barracks
Discover this UNESCO world-heritage listed site, see the Convict Sydney exhibition, try on some leg irons and lie down in a convict hammock, listen to the complimentary audio tour or join a guided tour at 11.15am or 1.45pm.
From Rum Hospital to an industrial site that minted gold sovereigns and now an architectural award-winning property of Sydney Living Museums, discover this fascinating part of Sydney’s history through interpretative displays.
Justice and Police Musuem
Explore Sydney’s seedy underbelly in the City of shadows exhibition (guided tour available at 11am). Wander the holding cells and the 1890s James Barnet-designed courtroom, see weapons, uncover famous murders and delve into the lives of notorious bushrangers.
The Museum of Sydney
Built on the site of Sydney’s first Government House, this museum interprets the history of this symbolic place and tells the story of Sydney’s past and present. Enjoy the temporary exhibitions Eat your history: a shared table and Suburban noir and browse through the shop.
Further details can be found by visiting these institution’s websites.
Image courtesy Australian National Botanic Gardens