If you're keen to take the family on an adventure during the September school holidays there are plenty of activities in Sydney that won't break the bank.
Here are a selection of what's on offer that the Mercury thinks is worth the drive, or train, north.
Check out the Atmospheric Memory exhibition, suited to all ages from 8 and up.
Interact with artworks in an immersive environment filled with light, sound and colossal projections.
Inspired by computing pioneer Charles Babbage's proposal that the air is a 'vast library' storing every word ever spoken, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer's breathtaking immersive art environment invites audiences to a multisensory experience at the intersection of art and science.
Control 18 interactive artworks and surround yourself with light, sound and colossal projections as you walk through the chambers of Atmospheric Memory.
Powerhouse Ultimo, 500 Harris Street. Open daily from 10am-5pm. $25 Adult, $15 Child, $15 Concession.Family ticket $65, 4 people, up to 2 adults.Book ahead of time.
Catch the Paper, Scissors, Shadows show, a free shadow-puppet theatre workshop for kids and families as part of the family-friendly "Volume Festival" in the gallery's new North Building - all for FREE.
Families can also get hands-on with inspiring art-making activities alongside artists and musicians at the gallery.
Experience live music performances; create and move to your own colourful sounds; experiment with shadow play; and listen to stories during the spring school holidays.
Free entry. Art Gallery Road, The Domain.
The museum will be abuzz this spring with exhibitions, vessels, hands-on workshops, themed creative activities, films and more.
Explore the Mana and Baru and Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, get hands-on with creative art-making and experiments in the Kids on Deck activity space, explore touchable objects and specimens at the Cabinet of Curiosities, climb on board the museum's fleet of vessels, relax with a film screening, adventure on the Sea Country Activity Trail and discover innovative solutions to plastics pollution at the Seabin Ocean Health Lab.
They will also have drop-in weaving and storytelling sessions, bubble art and science performances, under 5s tours, underwater drones workshop, creative workshops (like the "young inventors" and "rock the boat music video") and more.
Children under 4 are free. Prices start at $12 for kids under 15 and $20 for adults.
Find the museum in Darling Harbour, next to the Pyrmont Bridge.
Explore the Dinosaur Festival on from October 3 to 8, with live science shows, performances and roaming beasts for free.
Guests can even conduct a T.rex autopsy, and see a new Hologram Dinosaurs experience.
The Australian Museum is open every day of the school holidays, with free general entry.
Monster Madness is on at the library where you can design your own monster, dress up and scare grown-ups or design a house for a monster.
It's on from 10am to 3pm in the Learning Centre, at the State Library, on Shakespeare Place in Sydney.
The Hyde Park Barracks is an extraordinary record of the living legacy of colonial Australia. Originally built to house convicts, the Barracks also served as a women's immigration depot and asylum, and later law courts and government offices.
Today this immersive museum tells the stories of the thousands of men, women and children held or housed there, and the Aboriginal communities profoundly impacted by the relentless push of colonial expansion.
The museum has a Kids Audio-guide and Trail - an adventure through time with a tailored audio guide and kids' activity trail. Learn about convicts, migrants, First Nations people and archaeology.
Find it on Macquarie Street in Sydney, 10am to 5pm. Free entry.
The huge global sensation Jurassic World: The Exhibition is roaring into Sydney for the school holidays as an exciting and immersive experience for the whole family.
Visitors walk through the iconic "Jurassic World" gates, explore richly themed environments, encounter a life-sized brachiosaurus, velociraptors, and the most fearsome dinosaur of all, the mighty Tyrannosaurus Rex.
Guests will be able to imagine what it would have been like to roam amongst these breathtaking creatures, and even interact with baby dinosaurs, including "Bumpy" from the popular animated series Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous.
It's on at SuperLuna Pavilion, Sydney Showground at Sydney Olympic Park: Monday to Thursday 10am to 7pm, Friday 10am to 8pm, plus Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 8pm.
Admission starts at $39 for children (ages three and up) and $49 for adults (ages 16 and up). Family and group tickets are also available.
Paper Planet is on until October 7, suitable for kids aged 3 and up.
Children and their grown-ups are invited into a large-scale forest of cardboard trees and after exploring the space, they add to this strange and delicate planet using only paper, tape and their imaginations.
Theatre and play merge in this magical place, as creatures, plants, costumes, characters, stories and adventures spring to life.
Meantime, the Junior Adventure Tour will see guests embark on a journey behind the curtain and discover how the magic of theatre comes to life on this one hour behind the scenes adventure filled tour with fun facts, crazy stories, dress-ups and guessing games.
Walk away wide eyed with plenty of fun facts up your sleeve to share with your friends.
This motorsports show is slightly after the close of school holidays but still worth the trek north in mid-October.
World champion male and female athletes and their 12,000-pound monster trucks capable of doing backflips, vertical two-wheelers and racing at speeds up to 70 miles-per-hour will tear up the dirt in wide-open competitions of speed and skill.
Monster Jam also features a post-halftime, breath-taking Freestyle Motocross exhibition, including an FMX best trick competition.
Prices start at $27.50 for juniors, $42.50 for adults. Accor Stadium, Sydney Olympic Park, Saturday October 14, 6:00pm (Pit Party 1:30pm - 4:30pm).
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