The best open-air cinemas in Sydney
Open-air cinema is experiencing a tidal wave of popularity at the moment, but did you know that outdoor movies are actually over 100 years old?
Sun Pictures, the oldest continuously operating outdoor cinema in the world, is situated in Broome, Western Australia and has been entertaining audiences since 1916. Guinness World Records holds it as the oldest open-air cinema in continuous operation.
There are many benefits when it comes to an open-air cinema. They are more accessible to people with disabilities, they are a great place to take kids because they can plan and run around while you relax and they are usually more affordable than a traditional indoor cinema.
Open-air cinema offers a unique and romantic experience, unlike conventional movie sessions. Imagine yourself sitting on your deck chair or on the grass with friends and having a good time while enjoying a glass of champagne, a BBQ, or some snacks on a warm summer night. You will definitely not forget the experience.
There are some fantastic open-air cinema options available right here in Sydney and accessible from Coogee Sands where you can enjoy the latest releases, cult classics and more, including:
Moonlight Cinema, Paddington
This is Australia’s largest open-air cinema with a generous green screen and plenty of space to lounge out, with bean bags provided for optimal comfort.
You can enjoy the latest releases in comfort here and stretch your legs out without having to fight your way to your seat like a traditional theatre.
When it comes to food, take your pick. You can bring your own picnic, purchase traditional movie fare like popcorn at the concession stand or indulge yourself with options available from the on-site food trucks.
Responsible dog owners are even allowed to bring their furry friends to the movies, as long as you clean up after them and they don’t disrupt other moviegoers.
The Sunset Cinema, North Sydney
This is more than just a movie, it is an experience. Hosted on the lawns of North Sydney Oval you will be treated to a large range of gourmet food truck options, champagne and wine and beanbags to enjoy your favourite movie.
It’s a celebration of North Sydney culture and you can enjoy a pink gin and tonic supplied by local legend Manly Spirits or a frothy cold beer from the Bent Spoke beer menu at the licensed bar.
All of the old favourites are included as well, including buttery popcorn and choc top ice cream while the movie selection varies from contemporary to classic to family favourites for everyone to enjoy – all with the iconic North Sydney Grandstand as your backdrop.
Westpac OpenAir Sydney, Sydney CBD
An amazing festive atmosphere that captures the spirit of summertime in Sydney can be found at this event, which offers incredible views of the Sydney Opera House, Harbour Bridge, and the city skyline.
This is a cinematic experience unrivalled by any other that unfolds as night falls. In front of an eager crowd, the three-story-tall 350 sqm screen rises from Sydney Harbour. In addition to state-of-the-art Dolby Digital surround sound and comfortable seating, it boasts a wonderful array of films.
Restaurants and bars in the harbour add to the experience of OpenAir as much as the films do. From classic drinks and snacks to cocktails and fine dining, there is always something for everyone at the venue.