• Museums Discovery Centre (MDC), Castle Hill opening Saturday 17 September, Meccano display.

Museums Discovery Centre Open Weekend

25 – 26 March 2017, 10am–4pm


Become an explorer for the weekend and traverse the boundaries of the natural and man-made world. Activities throughout the weekend are free, so join us to scale our rock climbing wall to reach new heights, or discover what lies beneath in our dig pit; take a ride on a camel or a look at the Jeep Club’s cars; explore the collections of three of NSW’s major cultural institutions, or join a curator talk or volunteer tour to learn more about the tools and traits of explorers.

There is so much to see and do, we recommend planning your day. Either pick up a program on the day or view what’s on offer in the below Open Weekend Program.

The Museums Discovery Centre (MDC) is a collaboration among the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Australian Museum and Sydney Living Museums, giving you unprecedented access to you millions of treasures from the State museum collections.

You can arrive anytime but booking your one day free VIP access pass is essential as our open weekends are very popular.


FREE Activities, Demonstrations & Shows

All activities available 10am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday, 25 and 26 March unless otherwise noted.

  • Rock Climbing Wall
    Climb the 8 metre rock climbing wall. Suitable for children as young as 3 years old.
  • Dig Pit
    Search for artefacts and gems in our dig pit; what will you discover? Use our giant bricks to help build structures like a giant step- an ancient tomb or cubby house.
  • Camel Rides
    Camels were once the most popular mode for travelling and exploring. Experience the thrill of the ships of the desert and jump on for a free ride.
    Saturday 25th March 10:00am – 12:00pm and 2:00pm – 4:00pm
    Sunday 26th March 10:00am – 12:00pm and 1:00pm – 3:00pm
  • Sydney Jeep Club
    Come meet members of the Sydney Jeep Club and see their cars on display
  • Precious Objects Craft Activity
    Drop in craft activity where visitors can create their own treasured object using craft materials
  • Archaeological Activity
    Discover Sydney’s own archaeological history with Sydney Living Museums
  • Meccano Demonstration
    Come and see the Meccano models and demonstrates
  • Yarnin’up Talking Place
    Drop in to the Yarnin’up Talking Place to hear a story or tell a story.  A place for young ones and old ones to share memories of culture in this collaboration between the Australian Museum and Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences Indigenous Teams.
    Saturday 25th March 11.00am – 3.00pm
    Sunday 26th March 11.00 – 3.00pm
  • Critter Craft
    Spin-out weaving a giant elastic spider web and decorate a colourful peacock spider to take home. Grab your camera for a photo opportunity with the AM’s larger-than-life peacock spider puppet which will make appearances throughout the day.
    Saturday 25th March 10.00am – 4.00pm
    Sunday 25th March 10.00am – 4.00pm
  • Totem Tales
    Hear the intriguing story behind the spectacular Totem pole.
    Saturday 25th March 11:00am – 11.30am and 12.00pm – 12.30pm
    Sunday 26th March 2.30-1.00pm and 3.00pm-3.30pm
  • Lord Howe Island Screenings
    Enter the fascinating world of Lord Howe Island, learn about the AM’s research project and watch Jilli Rose’s animated films ‘STICKY’ (2014, 20 mins) and ‘BRIGHT SPOTS’ (2016, 8 mins) before getting up close to the AM’s phasmids (stick insects).
    Saturday 25th March 2:00pm – 3:00pm
    Sunday 26th March 2:00pm – 3:00pm
  • Fijian Meke Dance
    The Fiji Youth Initiatives dancers perform Meke dances sharing the stories of their ancestors and daily village life.
    Sunday only 12.30 – 1.00pm and 2.00pm – 2.30pm


Talks & Tours

  • Curator Talks
    Come listen to a curator form one of the museums talk about the objects in the collection
    Saturday 25th March 10:00am – 3:30pm
    Sunday 26th March 10:00am – 3:30pm
  • Store Guides
    MDC volunteers will be roaming the stores sharing stories of the collections.



Nighthawk Diner
American cuisine and American dining culture

Foods of the Realm
Foods of the Realm serve delicious and healthy hand held meals from two distant lands in the Realm, Ceylontina and Empilon.

Bar Coco
Serving Coffee and gelato


Finding your way around

Free parking is available in the TAFE carpark via Green Road. Direct pedestrian access from the carpark to the MDC entrance is marked below in pink.

MDC site map

Additional street parking is available around the site and there are a range of car-parks that are located within a short walking distance to the site.

Alternatively, catch the bus. For more bus timetable and route information use the trip planner to plan your trip.


To stay in the loop for the latest Open Weekend news and event information click here