Sydney's world-famous Mardi Gras is the evolution of 200 years of gay and lesbian history in Sydney. From the gay governor whose conduct scandalised the British Empire to the bright lights of the gay strip on Oxford Street, hear the stories and see the sites that define Sydney as one of the friendliest cities for gay and lesbian culture in the world.
Sydney is one of the world's great gay and lesbian cities — with plenty of stories waiting for you to uncover. Learn about the gay governor of New South Wales whose conduct scandalised the British Empire, the gay bushranger who was hanged at Darlinghurst Gaol, and the "most violent woman in Sydney," a tough lesbian criminal who carried a knuckleduster in her handbag and stole male gangsters' girlfriends.
Starting out at Hyde Park Barracks, you’ll explore the eastern part of the city near Hyde Park and the Botanical Gardens before your Sydney tour heads toward the bright lights of the gay strip on Oxford Street. Your local guide will share dark tales of organised crime, corrupt cops, murder, and Oxford Street’s ultimate transformation into the centre of gay life in Sydney in the 1970s.
And, of course, a tour of gay and lesbian Sydney wouldn't be complete without a look at the city’s famous Mardi Gras — how it started, why it began, and how it’s become one of the largest events on Sydney’s festival calendar.
The tour finishes at a friendly gay pub where you’ll have a drink on us, rub shoulders with locals, and see why Sydney is one of the friendliest gay and lesbian cities in the world.
This tour is designed for everyone — gay, lesbian, or straight. So don’t worry, no matter who you are or how you identify, you’ll be welcomed!