NSW public holidays 2020 – 2022
NSW public holidays are listed in the table below:
|New Year’s Day||Wednesday|
|Australia Day Holiday||Monday|
|Easter Saturday (the Saturday following Good Friday)||Saturday|
|Queen’s Birthday / Volunteer’s Day||Monday|
~Only applies to some Financial Institutions
*When New Year’s Day, Christmas Day or Boxing Day falls on a weekend, the Holiday Act provides for an extra public holiday.
NSW public holidays – regional
|Walcha Cup (midday to 6pm)||Walcha||Friday|
|Kangaroo Valley Show||Shoalhaven||Friday|
|Albury Gold Cup (midday to 6pm)||Albury City||Friday|
|Maclean Show||Clarence Valley||REVOKED|
|Nyngan Show||Bogan Shire||REVOKED|
|Coonamble Annual Show||Coonamble Shire||REVOKED||Wednesday|
|Ramornie Race Day||Clarence Valley||REVOKED|
|Grafton Cup||Clarence Valley||REVOKED|
|Trundle Show (9am to 5pm)||Parkes||REVOKED||Wednesday|
|Peak Hill Show (9am to 5pm)||Parkes||REVOKED||Wednesday|
|Parkes Show (midday to 6pm)||Parkes||REVOKED||Tuesday|
|West Wyalong Show||Bland Shire||REVOKED|
|Jacaranda Thursday||Clarence Valley||REVOKED|
|Lismore Cup||Lismore City Council Area||Thursday|
NSW Local Event Days
|Newcastle Show||Lake Macquarie City Council area||Friday|
|Newcastle Show||Newcastle City Council area||Friday|
|Kempsey Show |
|Kempsey Shire Council area||Wednesday|
|Kempsey Cup |
|Kempsey Shire Council area||Friday|
When will 2022 NSW public holidays be announced?
The 2022 NSW public holidays have now been announced by the New South Wales Government, but regional and local holidays take longer. Check back regularly as we regularly update this site as soon as the information comes to hand.
NSW public holidays are prescribed by the Public Holidays Act 2010 and are advertised here.
Other important NSW dates to know about
NSW school holiday and term dates
A complete list of NSW school holiday and term dates can be found on this website.
To view 2020 and 2021 school holiday and school term dates for New South Wales, please click here.
NSW daylight savings
In 2020, daylight saving time began at 2:00 am Eastern Standard Time on Sunday 4 October. Daylight savings ends at 3:00 am on Sunday 4 April 2021. The daylight savings dates for 2021 – 2023 are outlined here.
NSW Financial year
The financial year is 12 month time period that is used for tax purposes. It runs separately to the calendar year. As a state of Australia, New South Wales follows the Australian financial year. Each year, it starts on 1 July and ends the next year on 30 June.
Are NSW businesses open on public holidays?
During some public holidays, some NSW businesses may operate restricted hours of operation. On selected public holidays, notably Easter Friday, liquor legislation may prevent the consumption of alcohol on commercial premises at specific times of the day.
Some services, such as public transport, may operate on a modified public holiday schedule.
All about NSW public holidays
In 2020, the state of New South Wales observes 13 public holidays. The number of public holidays observed in NSW remains unchanged each year.
In New South Wales, public holidays can be divided into three types – national, state and regional.
National public holidays are recognised throughout Australia. Examples include New Year’s Day, Easter Monday and ANZAC Day.
State-wide NSW public holidays are holidays that are specific to New South Wales.
Regional public holidays are full or part-day public holidays that are observed within specific regional locations within NSW.
Like many Australian states and territories, NSW observes regional public holidays in addition to statewide public holidays. Regional public holidays include bank holidays, observed by some financial institutions, along with a range of regional horse racing and show holidays.
The NSW bank holiday
Each calendar year, New South Wales observes a bank holiday. This holiday takes place on the first Monday of August, and it is exclusive to eligible employees within the finance/banking sector. The Banks and Bank Holidays Act 1912 requires all banks in New South Wales to be closed on the day.
Some other businesses operating in the finance industry may close for the day. This generally occurs if the bank holiday is included in an employment award or agreement.
Ten things to do on NSW public holidays
Rain, hail or shine, there are so many things to do on NSW public holidays. Whatever the time of the year, a public holiday could be the perfect time to get out and about with your family and friends. Get inspired with out top ten tips below:
1. Plan the perfect picnic
Planning the perfect picnic doesn’t have to be a major exercise. It’s all about keeping it simple.
The most important factor is the location – as they say in real estate – location, location, location. Pick a shady spot, get there early and ensure it has a view.
To set the atmosphere, bring a large picnic rug (or tablecloth) and a picnic basket if you have one, otherwise an esky is just as good.
Foods should be simple – fruits, vegetables, dips, cheese, crackers, hotdogs and salads. Bring some ice for drinks and keep it light – opt for a white or rose wine or lighter style beers in the heat of the day and plenty of water or juice for the kids.
You’ll also want to bring some utensils and knives to cut food and serving spoons. Finally, a good size rubbish bag to take your rubbish home with you.
Throw some balls and games in the car for the kids to play at the park as well.
And of course, don’t forget to give your friends and family plenty of notice – otherwise you’ll be a bit lonely.
2. Take an epic road trip
Planning a road trip is all about inspiration – there has to be an epic destination or sight that you reach. With that in mind, you can then start to plan your route, with stops, accommodation and dining spots identified along the way.
Don’t get too bogged down in the detail though, as it’s the randomness of a road trip that makes it memorable. Be chilled out and have the flexibility to stop for as long as you want.
If you’re travelling with children, make sure you have enough activities for the trip. A road trip is a great time to ease kids off screens too.
Finally, make sure that your car is up to the trip – perhaps a service before you go might be in order.
3. Get a dose of culture at a museum or art gallery
Catching a dose of culture can be really good for your mind, soul and body. It’s a time when you can observe, reflect and respond in new and unique ways.
Culture is not just about museums or art galleries – think in broader terms – opera, musicals, painting, sculptures and literature.
If you’re not sure where to begin, a good place is often your local public library.
4. Climb the Sydney Harbour Bridge
A visit to Sydney isn’t complete without a climb up Sydney’s most iconic structure after the Sydney Opera House. While it isn’t cheap, it is an experience of a lifetime. Climbing the “coathanger” will give you panoramic 360 degree views of one of the best harbours in the world.
You’ll climb up to 1600 stairs and stand 134m in the air, so make sure you’re fit and not afraid of heights!
Tickets prices range upwards of $150 per child to several hundred per adult, depending on the package chosen, so pick a fine day to make the most of it!
5. Visit a farmers market
Even if you’re not a foodie, a visit on the weekend to a local farmers market is a superb opportunity to indulge in new taste sensations. And you’ll definitely be able to have a good coffee while you’re there too.
You’ll get the chance to taste and purchase not only the freshest local produce but also some of the best artisan food around. And did I mention fresh? – you’ll be blown away by how much tastier and wholesome the food is than your local supermarket.
You’ll also save a fortune by buying your fresh fruit and vegetables at markets and feel good knowing that the farmers are earning far more than selling to the big supermarkets.
Kids also love the markets – they’ll see farm animals and crafts and all sorts of entertainment.
6. Get moving on a bush walk
Bushwalking is one of the most underrated forms of exercise and leisure. Take a half or whole day to stroll through lush bush and end up at a beach or waterfall for a swim.
NSW National Parks manage a sensational range of parks throughout the state including outback walking trails and coastal lookout walks.
Park your lunch, dress appropriately and check the weather reports. What’s stopping you?
7. Hit the beach
What better way to enjoy the outdoors than to watch the locals and visitors on Bondi Beach? Sometimes calm and sometimes super dangerous, the beach always has something to offer. So grab an ice-cream and sit back and watch the throngs of visitors hunt for that perfect Instagram snap.
Don’t forget you can walk the cliff-top paths for superb views of the coast and glimpses back toward the city. Located just 7km from the Sydney CBD, it’s a quick and relatively cheap affair to reach the shores.
If crowds aren’t your thing, consider heading down to one of the quieter South coast beaches, where you can undertake a 10km hike from Garie Beach to Otford. See stunning views of the Pacific and have a chance to interact with some wildlife on the way.
8. Take the kids to the Royal Easter show
The Sydney Royal Easter Show first began in 1823 and has run almost uninterrupted bar the Spanish Flu, WW2 and COVID-19 ever since.
Held at the Sydney Showground, it’s not just a rides and thrills show, but remains true to its agricultural roots with woodchopping, animal judging, regional exhibits and a vast array of best-in-breed competitions for cattle, farmyard animals and horses. Arts and crafts are also showcased.
But… if you really want the kids to have fun head to the showbag area straightaway!
9. Shop till you drop
Head to Westfield Sydney or Bondi Junction for a spot of mall shopping. A good dose of retail therapy can certainly be good for the soul as long as you don’t spend too much!
If boutique shopping is more your thing, Paddington, Barangaroo, Surry Hills, Mossman or Balmain are sure to please.
Oxford Street, running from Paddington to Darlinghurst is a great place to start. You can start or finish at the Intersection at Paddington where a large number of local designers are gathered.
For a bite to eat and some very fashionable and expensive boutiques, Double Bay is a nice place to stop for a latte.
On the Northern Beaches, you’ll find slightly trendier and funkier ionic Australian labels.
To finish up, Balmain / Rozelle is our pick for beautiful eateries and pubs.
10. Visit wineries
If you’ve got some time on your hands, then a leisurely trip into one of the many wine regions of NSW could be on the cards. One of the closest, the iconic Hunter Valley is just 130km from Sydney or 1.5 hours. Producing a variety of grapes including highly acclaimed Semillon with hints of honey and vanilla, there are over 100 producers more happy to have you drop by their cellar doors.
The Hunter Valley has been in production for 150 years and also produces some fine Shiraz and Tempranillo.
A word of warning – the Hunter Valley is busy and heavily commercialised.
In all, there are over a dozen wine regions in NSW, producing a vast array of varietals, so it’s pretty hard not to find a wine drop that you’ll enjoy in NSW.
New South Wales public holiday timings
NSW public holidays are observed throughout the year. In 2020, some public holidays are timed to coincide with school holidays. Others are observed during the school term, resulting in multiple ‘long weekends.
Several holidays, including New Years Day and Australia Day, are observed during the popular summer holiday break for schools.
Visiting during NSW public holidays
NSW can become very busy during public holidays, with many people visiting from interstate or overseas, along with residents getting out and about.
Flights and accommodation can be in high demand during a NSW public holiday weekend. So, it’s important to plan ahead and book as early as you can.
Visiting NSW on Australia Day
Australia day is one of the most popular NSW public holidays in Sydney, specifically.
Currently, this public holiday is held on 26th January each calendar year. However, many Australians wish to change the date. In 2020, Australia Day took place on a Sunday, with a Monday public holiday provided in lieu.
Each year, hundreds of thousands of people converge on Sydney Harbour for Australia Day to watch Sydney Harbour’s world-famous fireworks display. There are many other activities scheduled within NSW on Australia Day.