Marriage is a wonderful sacred tradition, which creates an everlasting bond with the person you’ve chosen to spend the rest of your life with. It also, however, does come with a few caveats. Debauched nights out with your mates will undoubtedly fall by the wayside once the knot has been tied, which is exactly why God invented Bucks Night!
The ‘last grasp of freedom’ before a man enters into the saintly union of marriage, Bucks Parties have grown in popularity in recent years, with the advent of affordable travel leading to entire Bucks Weekends. And what better place to spend a ravenous weekend with your mates than Sydney Harbour?
A city born for adventure, whether you favour a more relaxed affair or something a little wilder, there are a wealth of options available in the heart of the city itself, but the harbour is definitely where you’ll find the most interesting activities, the classiest clubs and the fuzzy memories that will last a lifetime.
If you’re planning to make a weekend of it, you’ll probably be visiting a number of venues, but it’s always a good idea to have a ‘base of operations’ as it were. The venue you require will obviously depend on the size of your party, but it’s always a good idea to keep everyone in one place, otherwise, you might end up losing each other (particularly if you’ve had more than a few bevvies). Hiring out a large apartment space is one option, or perhaps consider something a little quirkier, like camping on Cockatoo Island? Perhaps the most decadent (and interesting) option would be to hire a boat for the duration of the party. The harbour is perfectly placed for this, as there are numerous spots to pull in and experience all manner of bars, clubs, restaurants and activities. There’s even the option of sleeping on the boat itself if you have the sea legs for it! The best thing about this option is that there will be a boat fit for any party size, so shop around and you could net yourself anything from a small catamaran to a luxury yacht!
Every great Bucks Party starts with a cracking meal. Thankfully, Sydney Harbour is wealthy with fine dining options. The Bathers Pavilion not only offers thrilling cuisine, but is housed in an elegant art deco building that will please all but the most stringent architecture buffs. Stepping things up even further, Bennelong in the Sydney Opera House is world famous for a reason, though unless you’re a very wealthy (and very well behaved) group, you might want to save that one for after the wedding day. Another increasingly popular option for Bucks Parties is the Twin Peeks Lingerie Restaurant. If your group are not as bothered about fine dining and are more interested in the entertainment, there are also plenty of more affordable, but no less tasty and atmospheric options. To enjoy some spectacular views with your scrumptious grub, consider dining on the waterfront on the historic wharf at Woolloomooloo, which offers outdoor dining options and some of the freshest seafood in the country. If all else fails, and you’ve adopted the mantra of ‘eating is cheating’ for the night, you could always consider grabbing some fish and chips on Bondi Beach.
You might tell yourselves that you’re ‘too old’ for clubbing, but no Bucks Party would be complete without a trip to a nightclub. For live music, check out the Oxford Art Factory, where many top touring international artists will be plying their wares. Sydney’s legitimate ‘super club’ Home, meanwhile, is a glistening paradise for hard dance lovers with three levels and eight rooms. For similar, though less hectic fun, there’s also Chinese Laundry and Marquee Sydney inside the Star Casino, which has played host to some of the biggest DJs in the world in recent years. If, however, you and your guests are looking for something more intimate and secluded, there’s always the more exciting option of a cruising nightclub on the sea! You’re in a harbour after-all, so why not take advantage and explore the harbour whilst indulging in some more refined beats and some less watered-down alcohol. Some boat charter operatives, like ourselves, will also be able to help you organise the rest of your bucks party. We have contacts with a series of venue owners, activity organisers and transport companies, and we’re happy to use our relationships to get you exclusive access and great deals.
Sydney Harbour is an idyllic and iconic spot, and you probably don’t want to be spending every waking second of your bucks party drinking, so we recommend booking a sightseeing tour of the harbour. This can be a great way to get your bearings and introduce your guests to the area. The harbour itself can also play host to the whole party if you so desire. Crewed party boats are an increasingly popular option for bucks parties, offering a more intimate and customisable experience, with options for fishing, snorkelling and more. For the adrenaline junkies, there’s also the option of Jet Boat, which will take you and your mates on a thrilling speedboat ride with 360-degree spins, stops, twists and wave riding. Just make sure you book this one before the heavy drinking commences!
Just outside the harbour area is the Die Hard Indoor Paintball centre, which, as its name suggests, is the only indoor paintball centre in the city. Pretend you’re a colourful John McClane as you douse your friends in neon justice. In the same area, there’s also Laser Siege; the world’s largest laser tag complex, which offers similar thrills, only less expensive and less painful! If you’d rather shoot at inanimate objects then each other, laser clay pigeon shooting is also an option (you can even do it from a boat if you so desire) and of course there’s always the standard go-karting option and, if your party are keen golfers, Sydney is home to some of the most challenging and interesting courses in Australia.
With options aplenty, Sydney Harbour is becoming an increasingly popular venue for bucks parties alike. With stunning views, plenty of activities, and an array of thriving clubs and restaurants, it doesn’t matter what you opt for, you’ll be guaranteed to have a great night.