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World's largest festival of light expected to attract record numbers


27 May 2016

Vivid Sydney, the world’s largest festival of light, music and ideas, opens tonight and runs until 18 June, 2016.

Traditionally a quiet visitor period, the festival has been instrumental in reinforcing Sydney as the creative industries’ hub in the Asia-Pacific region and transforming the city into one of 2016’s busiest, delivering a record $63.2 million in visitor expenditure to NSW last year.

Since it started seven years ago, Vivid Sydney has established itself as the largest festival of its kind in Australia, attracting a record 1.7 million people in 2015. From just 25 light installations in 2009, the festival has evolved this year to include an expanded program spanning 23 days and including new iconic venues such as Taronga Zoo and the Royal Botanic Gardens.

Tourism Australia Managing Director John O’Sullivan said world-class events or festivals were big drawcards for international visitors and had a significant impact on the tourism industry. “We know from our research that 43 per cent of international visitors coincide their trip with an event or festival, and the Sydney Vivid Light Festival currently one of our top three most appealing Australia events.”

Destination NSW Chief Executive Officer and Executive Producer of Vivid Sydney, Sandra Chipchase, said expanding the festival to 23 nights in 2016 will give visitors more time to experience the spectacular light, music and ideas that illuminate the Harbour City each winter. “Visitors from across the globe travel to Vivid Sydney. Last year more than 26,000 international visitors came here on Vivid Sydney travel packages and were able to see our iconic buildings bathed in vibrant colour, attend fantastic music events, hear world renowned speakers and see the city transformed into an outdoor gallery on a huge scale,” Ms Chipchase said.