If a cheeky day in the sunshine with top tunes and 10,999 other like-minded peeps sounds like your idea of a good time, then listen up: Electric Gardens is here. Sydney has been screaming out for an event that caters to a broader crowd and Electric Gardens has changed the festival landscape. By exchanging the usual ‘roidy bro vibes for an atmosphere of inclusion, entertainment and… glitter - lots of glitter - it’s become one of the best day festivals on the Australian calendar.
From the humble beginnings of a backyard party in England, Electric Gardens has expanded to Australian shores, merging British ingenuity with an international tech and house lineup. It is likely this, along with the stellar Centennial Park location, that attracts a fresh, all-embracing crowd.
The Low Down Electric Gardens is one-day only so planning ahead will maximise your time there. Doors open at noon with the headliner getting the ‘last song’ nod at 10pm. If you want to avoid a bottleneck of attendees swarming to enter, arrive before 3pm. For the flashy ones who’ve splurged for VIP it’s worth noting your entrance closes at 7pm.
The usual festival ID rules apply and once you’re in, no pass outs are permitted. If you forgot your glitter hoodie or well-worn festival hat, you’ll need to make do with merch to sort you out.
Electric Gardens is 18+, though the crowd is more mid-20s to 50s than barely-legal partiers. Don’t be fooled into thinking an older crowd can’t bring the noise; age is no measurement of the ability to throw down.
Getting There Buses are the easiest way to get in and out of Electric Gardens. If you’re planning on taking a cab or getting dropped you off, go direct to Parkes Drive. But please bear in mind you cannot be collected from the grounds.
If you are looking to Uber or Taxify your way home, hop on the free shuttle bus to Bondi Junction and call for your ride there.
Eat, Drink, Rave, Repeat The all-important bar situation is pretty sweet at Electric Gardens with plenty of bartenders and barely any lines. PayPass and EFTPOS are accepted with the bars and food vendors closing at 9:30pm. Unsurprisingly, you can’t bring your own alcohol or food on site. However there are plenty of food trucks including BBQ, Mexican, greasy chicken wings, and even a gourmet ice cream van.
Bring a refillable plastic or metal bottle as there are two free water stations. But remember not one of those fancy glass ones as glass (and cans) are banned on site.
Very Important Portaloos VIP at Electric Gardens is a little contentious. The promise of a lux life with express entry, VIP area, beauty stations, deluxe loos and more are not fully realised yet. However, organisers do seem to listen to feedback and make improvements every year – so hopefully this will be sorted shortly.
Green Vibes Unfortunately, there is no current sustainability focus at Electric Gardens and barely any bins which mean you’ll need to work hard to stay green. Every returned can or bottle receives a $1 credit – which is good start if better publicised.
Need to Know Basis Sydney in January is a scorcher so common sense and a focus on hydration will save you from a lobster tinge to accompany your hangover. The good folks at Red Cross have extra sunscreen but do yourself a favour and make packing a hat and sunscreen a top priority, especially as all shade is on the periphery, away from the stages.
There is no coat check at Electric Gardens but lockers onsite are available, as well as phone recharging stations.
The festival is wheelchair accessible including dedicated toilets.