Eat, pray, play these winter school holidays

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Four days out in Sydney packed with fun and faith

Parents, don’t just survive but thrive these winter school holidays with our four ideas for a day out with the kids. These are based around a visit to a church in or near Sydney’s CDB that will create fun family memories and welcome God into the holidays.

For Mass times see sydneycatholic.org.

Skate and pray

Until 21 July you’ll be able to ice skate every day and night at an open-air ice rink at the forecourt of St Mary’s Cathedral on College Street.
Warm up with a hot chocolate, or espresso martini for the adults, and grab a snack from one of the food vendors throughout your skating session.
The skate rink, and a slide, is run by the City of Sydney, but is perfectly located for dropping into the cathedral afterwards to offer thanks to God a beautiful day.
Take a free guided tour offered every Sunday following the 10.30am Solemn Mass

Dates: 28 June-21 July
Ages: All
Where: St Mary’s Cathedral forecourt, College Street
Cost: $9-$28 for ice skating

Play and pray

Pop into St Peter Julian’s Church at 641 George St Haymarket to pray before the Blessed Sacrament or go to Mass before heading down to the iconic Paddy’s Markets for its school holidays program.
Called Pop-Ups it includes free kids soccer workshops to boost their juggling, dribbling, kicking and goal scoring skills.
End the outing with a wander around Chinatown, follow the crowds to sniff out the best yum cha or noodle soup.

Dates: July 12 and 20 for the soccer workshop stall
Ages: All
Where: 9-13 Hay Street, Haymarket
Cost: Apart from a few dollars to spend on a souvenir or maybe lunch

Walk and pray

Photo: Shutterstock

Park the car at Milson’s Point and take the spectacular scenic walk across Sydney Harbour Bridge and down to St Patrick’s Church on Grosvenor Street.
Look for street parking near the entrance to the bridge and take the flight of stairs located on the east side of the bridge at Burton Street.
It’s a 30 minute walk, maybe longer with little ones or older grandparents, but flat all the way and the views across the bridge are spectacular. After stopping at St Pat’s for Mass, confession or just a quiet prayer, you’ve got some great choices, hop on a ferry, pop across to the Royal Botanic Gardens or check out the Sydney Observatory.
The Observatory is open from 10am-5pm during the day and is running a school holidays program for children aged 5-12. Just save some energy for the walk back to the car!

Dates: Every day
Ages: All
Where: 20 Grosvenor St, The Rocks
Cost: Adults $10, Concession $8, Children 4-16 $8, Family $26 for general admission to the Observatory

Read and pray

St Benedict’s Church at Broadway is a 10-minute walk from the famous Gleebooks bookstore on Glebe Point Road.
The church is easy to access by bus or train with the closest train stations Central and Redfern.
There’s a Mass and confession available every day around midday except for Saturdays and public holidays.
After that head down the bookstore with its enormous selection including second-hand books. On Saturdays from 10am -4pm you can also pick up a snack and peruse the creative offerings from fashion to arts to food and more at the Glebe Markets in the grounds of Glebe Public School.

Dates: Every day
Ages: All
Where: Corner of Broadway and Abercrombie Street, Broadway
Cost: You will want to buy a book at least!

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