What is Real Festival?

Real Festival is a free event at the Nepean River in Penrith. It takes place over 1-2 November and features a huge program of activities and entertainment for all ages.

What sets Real Festival apart from other events is all the interactive elements; this is your opportunity to get hands on with opportunities to be active, crafty creative and inspired at every corner of the riverbank.

Real’s program of amazing performances, activities, entertainment and experiences takes place over Friday and Saturday. There are also workshops you can book but pre-registration is required. Secure your spot now!

Where can I find out what’s happening at Real Festival?

You’re in the right place! This website has everything you need to know about what’s happening at the Real Festival. Have a look at what’s happening across Friday and Saturday. There’s so much to see and do.

Where is Real Festival held?

Real Festival is held at Tench Reserve at the Nepean River. For details on how to get there and public transport options, check out the Plan Your Trip page on this website.

What date/time is Real Festival?

Mark these dates and times in your calendar.

  • Friday 1 November: 5pm - 10pm
  • Saturday 2 November: 2pm - 10pm

Can I still access Tench Reserve car park as normal in the lead up to Real Festival?

Tench Reserve car park will be closed to the public from 7am on Friday 1 November. Parking along Tench Avenue will also be closed from 7am on Friday 1 November, however you can park your car in the Real Festival car park (adjacent to the restaurant precinct) during this time.

Can I still access Tench Reserve as normal in the lead up to Real Festival?

There will be limited access to certain areas of Tench Reserve from Tuesday 29 October. This is to keep everyone safe as we prepare for Real Festival. There will be lots of trucks, and people coming and going, so please be mindful of them. Why not take this opportunity to enjoy one of the other parks along the Nepean River including Regatta Park and Weir Reserve.

Will the Great River Walk be open as normal in the lead up to Real Festival?

Yes. You can still access the Great River Walk path which goes around the Nepean River at all times in the lead up to the Festival and throughout the event.

Will the boat ramp at Tench Reserve be closed?

Yes. The boat ramp at Tench Reserve will be closed from 7am on Friday 1 November until 12pm on Sunday 3 November. This also means the Nepean River will be closed to the public from the M4 Bridge and Victoria Bridge during these times. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and hope everyone can join us to enjoy the Nepean River at Real Festival.

How do residents of Tench Avenue access their properties during Real Festival?

Residents have full access to their properties throughout Real Festival. Tench Avenue is closed to northbound traffic from 7am on Friday 1 November through to 12pm on Sunday 3 November, residents can access their properties from Jamison Road. If you're a resident of Tench Avenue and you would like to talk to someone about access during Real Festival, please call the Events Team on 1300 736 836.

How do I get to Real Festival?

To help get you to Real Festival check out the Plan Your Trip page on this website. You can drive, catch public transport, car pool, get dropped off and there’s also the free park and ride shuttle bus service starting from Penrith Train Station, and picking up from several locations across Penrith operated by Busways across Friday and Saturday. The options are endless!

What happens if it rains?

Fingers crossed it doesn’t but if it does, make sure you’re connected with us on Facebook and Instagram to get all the up-to-date information about the event. We’ll also update this website as soon as we can in the event the Real Festival has to be cancelled. Please note if the event is cancelled, it won’t be rescheduled.

Do I need to purchase tickets to Real Festival?

Absolutely not. This is a free event for everyone to attend, however there are small fees attached to registering for one of the Real Festival workshops. You will need money to purchase food to eat, a drink from the pop-up bar or something from the market stalls – so don’t leave your wallet at home, ok?

Are there ATM facilities at Real Festival?

Yes, there are a number of ATM facilities at the event.

Can I bring my own festival chair or picnic blanket?

Absolutely! We have lots of space at Real Festival and while there are seating and tables throughout the event, if you feel like bringing your own Festival chair, picnic blanket, cushions or rugs, please feel free to do so. There will be live music and entertainment both day and night so we want you to be comfortable. No marquees are permitted for safety reasons. 

Can I purchase food and drinks?

There are loads of food and beverage options onsite including 30 of Sydney’s best food trucks and we think you are going to LOVE the amazing dining options available. Picnics and food are welcome, though please respect the venue by bringing plastic bottles and cans. Glass is strictly not allowed.

What can’t I bring?

Alcohol and illicit drugs are not permitted to be brought into the venue or car parks. Security has the right to conduct bag and pram checks as required. Intoxicated persons will be refused entry. No glass or weapons will be permitted. Alcohol can be purchased from the bar, so leave your drinks at home and head to the bar if you’re thirsty.

Where can I stay during Real Festival?

There are lots of places to stay in Penrith. Check out the special packages offered by our accommodation partnersThere’s somewhere to suit all tastes and budgets, but we suggest you book early to avoid disappointment.

What happens to lost property?

Lost property can be taken to the Festival Information Booth at the event. Items will be returned to their owners who are able to correctly identify the items. Any items that are not claimed will be taken back to Penrith Civic Centre.

What is the procedure for lost children/persons?

Let’s hope this doesn’t happen but if you do find a lost child or lose your child contact the Festival Information Booth immediately. The Information Booth staff will work with security and the police to reunite lost children with their parents as soon as possible.

Large crowds are expected – we recommend you plan a meeting point with your children in case they become separated from you. There are wrist bands available at the Festival Information Booth for you to write your contact details on and secure on your child’s wrist.

Is Real Festival accessible?

The Penrith Real Festival welcomes all members of our community, including patrons with disability and with mobility support requirements. Every effort has been made to ensure all aspects of the Festival are inclusive and accessible and can be enjoyed by all. The accessible toilets at Tench Reserve will be open throughout the entire weekend. If you would like further information on accessibility and inclusion considerations for the Festival please contact Penrith Council on 1300 736 836.