Shot by Chris Shain
24 hours of the Museum of Sydney

Open Today

 
10AM - 5PM
  • Shop
  • Cafe
  • Free wifi
  • Wheelchair Accessible

Entry

Adult $10

Child (under 15) / Concession $5

Family (two adults + two children) $20

Members free

Address

Cnr Phillip and Bridge Streets, Sydney, NSW 2000

Phone

Museum: 02 9251 5988
Shop:02 9251 4678
Cafe: 02 9241 3636
Sydney Living Museums Image

For 57 years first Government House was the centre of the social, ceremonial and political life of the colony of NSW. Today the Museum of Sydney protects the fragile remains of this deeply significant and symbolic site, and tells ongoing stories of Sydney and its people.

Old watercolour showing the harbour, foreshore area and gardens in front of first Government House. Yachts and aborigines in canoes are depicted on the water. First Government House, Sydney by John Eyre.

A modern museum built over and around the remains of Australia’s first Government House, the Museum of Sydney celebrates the people and events that have shaped the character and soul of this city. In 1788 Governor Phillip chose this site for his official residence. It quickly became the centre of the colony’s administrative and social life, and an important focus of first contact between the Gadigal people and the colonisers. The next eight governors also lived here, and as banquets and balls, the business of government and family home merged, the public and private lives of the colony’s leading citizens played out. Today, through a diverse and changing program of exhibitions and events, the Museum of Sydney explores the stories of this city from its origins to today, while the remains of the original building can be glimpsed through glass openings in the museum forecourt and foyer.

Find out More About Museum of Sydney

News

A large crowd look on at SLM director Mark Goggin speaking in the foyer of the Museum of Sydney foyer.

 

Iconic Australian Houses exhibition launches

New exhibition and Sydney Living Museum's exciting new Home and Architecture program launch at the Museum of Sydney.

Lion dance costumes with three people standing behind them.

Exhibition

Celestial City opens

On Saturday 29 March we celebrated the launch of the Celestial City: Sydney’s Chinese Story exhibition.

Market Gardeners enjoy some time in the mud

Museum of Sydney

To Market, Market Garden

In preparation for the opening of Celestial City: Sydney’s Chinese Story at the Museum of Sydney, a re-creation of a typical Chinese market garden is attracting growing interest in the Museum’s forecourt.

What's on

Next 30 Days
Thursday 17 April 2014 - Saturday 17 May 2014

Stories from the Museum of Sydney

B/W photo of middle aged man looking directly into the camera

Sydney Visionaries

Cities are not just built. They are created by movers, shakers, dreamers and schemers. Sydney is no different. Drawing on the exhibition at Museum of Sydney, this article profiles eleven trail-blazers who, through intellect, determination and passion, influenced the shape, culture and identity of this harbour city.
Woman leaning over scale model at work adjusting section of verandah roof.

MODELLING THE FIRST GOVERNMENT HOUSE

A beautifully crafted scale model shows, for the first time, the final form of Sydney's original government house, having grown from a basic six-room home to the rambling edifice, eventually demolished in 1845–1846.
Portrait of Elizabeth Macquarie wearing large white frilled collar and black dress. She is looking slightly sideways and has short curly reddish hair.

LIFE AT GOVERNMENT HOUSE IN THE MACQUARIE ERA

Historian Jane Kelso describes a busy schedule of social gatherings and official events at Sydney's Government House during the governorship of Lachlan Macquarie.
Colourised image of boys standing around with wheel borrows filled with bricks.

Skint! Making do in the great depression

On Tuesday 29 October 1929 the New York stock market collapsed. Twenty-six billion dollars vanished into thin air, leaving markets in ruin for the next 3 years. Australian exports fell overnight, leaving local industries at a standstill, driving up unemployment, misery and hardship. Australia's debts to overseas banks were impossible to meet. Wage cuts, shorter working hours and brakes on government expenditure hit hard. The great depression dug in...
Black and white image of a man dressed in white rowing a dinghy in calm water.

AN EDWARDIAN SUMMER: Sydney through the lens of Arthur Wigram Allen

In the heady and exciting years before World War I, Sydney lawyer and identity Arthur Wigram Allen, a tirelessly enthusiastic photographer, focused his attention on the myriad social and technological changes occurring around himself and his family. His talent for amateur photography produced extraordinary pictures that offer a fresh insight into Sydney's Edwardian years.
Black and white drawing of colinail house and front garden showing rows of fruit trees and other plants.

Lost gardens of Sydney

Curator and garden historian Colleen Morris takes us on a turn through a selection of long lost colonial gardens, discussing their lasting influence while throwing in a few tantalising clues to their former whereabouts.

Museum of Sydney on Instagram

Beautiful entrance to the Museum of Sydney #museum #sydney #exhibition #museumofsydney #display #japanese

Beautiful entrance to the Museum of Sydney #museum #sydney #exhibition #museumofsydney #display #japanese

2 hours 54 min
A unique #iconicaustralianhouses exhibition at #museumofsydney highlighting the influences on the amazing home designs #alvaraalto #hughbuhrich #harryseidler

A unique #iconicaustralianhouses exhibition at #museumofsydney highlighting the influences on the amazing home designs #alvaraalto #hughbuhrich #harryseidler

2 days 5 hours
Daikon growing at the Chinese Market Garden Project as part of #CelestialSydney. #MuseumOfSydney #SydneyLivingMuseums #urbangardens #growitlocal

Daikon growing at the Chinese Market Garden Project as part of #CelestialSydney. #MuseumOfSydney #SydneyLivingMuseums #urbangardens #growitlocal

4 days 38 min
Finally went to check out the #CelestialSydney exhibition at @SydLivMus today; these records of the early Chinese settlement in Sydney are so fascinating. In this pic, Quong Tart and staff stand outside Loong Shan Tea House, 137 King St. Sydney in the 1880s was a town of pubs, oyster saloons and chophouses, with not much on offer for women. This changed with the opening of the refined tearooms owned by Chinese immigrant Quong Tart.

Finally went to check out the #CelestialSydney exhibition at @SydLivMus today; these records of the early Chinese settlement in Sydney are so fascinating. In this pic, Quong Tart and staff stand outside Loong Shan Tea House, 137 King St. Sydney in the 1880s was a town of pubs, oyster saloons and chophouses, with not much on offer for women. This changed with the opening of the refined tearooms owned by Chinese immigrant Quong Tart.

4 days 45 min
A little slice of the iconic Australian houses #exhibition at #museumofsydney  including the stylish furniture supplied by www.smowaustralia.com.au @sydlivmus

A little slice of the iconic Australian houses #exhibition at #museumofsydney including the stylish furniture supplied by www.smowaustralia.com.au @sydlivmus

4 days 2 hours
A great night launching the iconic houses #exhibition at #museumofsydney big thanks to all @sydlivmus opens tomorrow  Thx @tracylines @mtwee1

A great night launching the iconic houses #exhibition at #museumofsydney big thanks to all @sydlivmus opens tomorrow Thx @tracylines @mtwee1

5 days 22 hours
Speaking of iconic, oh hello mr. Murcutt! @sydlivmus #glennmurcutt #architecture #exhibition #museumofsydney

Speaking of iconic, oh hello mr. Murcutt! @sydlivmus #glennmurcutt #architecture #exhibition #museumofsydney

5 days 23 hours
Tom Wee at the Rose Seidler House in 2006  Exhibition opens tomorrow at the Museum of Sydney. Iconic Australian Houses: an exhibition by Karen McCartney. #behindthescenes #workingwithdad #museumofsydney #50/60/70 #70/80/90 @mccartneyk @mtwee1

Tom Wee at the Rose Seidler House in 2006 Exhibition opens tomorrow at the Museum of Sydney. Iconic Australian Houses: an exhibition by Karen McCartney. #behindthescenes #workingwithdad #museumofsydney #50/60/70 #70/80/90 @mccartneyk @mtwee1

6 days 2 hours
Boyd house model. Sneak peek @sydlivmus Iconic Houses exhibition launching tonight. NB @modernister #SLMHouses #Architecture #museumofsydney

Boyd house model. Sneak peek @sydlivmus Iconic Houses exhibition launching tonight. NB @modernister #SLMHouses #Architecture #museumofsydney

6 days 7 hours